Free Travel Newsletter : March 2017
Written by Steph Kendall
Brought to you by New Zealand Tourism Guide www.tourism.net.nz.
Congratulations to Shannon Miller, this month's lucky Free Travel Newsletter subscriber, winning a "Kiwi Country New Zealand" DVD.
It's a great time to be travelling around New Zealand as the summer starts to give way to autumn. If you're in the South Island, a road trip in Otago towards Arrowtown and Wanaka is a must-do for the stunning, infamous autumnal colours. If you want to escape from it all, follow some of our Off the Beaten Track suggestions. But April also means Easter this year and during school holidays, there are numerous activities for both locals and visitors. Plenty of Easter bunnies and chocolate eggs to hunt down, lots of low-cost activities in the libraries, as well as the bigger festivals and farmers' markets - look what's on locally in a destination near you.
Read more about:
- Easter Egg Trail in Te Puke
- Lego Legends for Kids
- Ice Fest 2017 - Ice Rink and Snow Globe
- Age of the Dinosaur, Wellington
- Waikato Show
- Get Under Our Cover - NZTG is Way More Than Skin Deep!
- What There Is to See and Do In... Queenstown
- New Zealand Fast Facts
Easter Egg Trail in Te Puke
Location: Te Puke, 130a Jellicoe St, Te Puke, Bay of Plenty
Date: 1 and 11 April, 9.00am
This is just one of many Easter events and activities being held throughout the country that the whole family can enjoy - they're usually great fun, very affordable and traditional! Who doesn't enjoy hunting for chocolate treats at least once a year... check out listings online and in the local press for news of where 'dat bunny at.
On this trail in Te Puke, you have to pick your entry form from one of three locations (The Te Puke Times (23 March) or at the Te Puke Library or Four Square or Te Puke Times Office after 23 March), follow the trail and be sure to count all the eggs! Easter basket prizes are available for all ages.
Lego Legends for Kids
Location: Petone Community Library, Britannia St, Petone, Lower Hutt, Wellington Region
Not every event has to be big to be fun! Scale things down to Lego size in Wellington and give the kids some fun down-time. Kids (locals and visitors) from aged 5 and upwards – so that includes President Business ages – can go down to the library and build the Lego creations of their dreams. Thousands of bricks to choose from and plenty of other Lego Legends and Lego building books around to inspire new ideas.
Limited to ages 5 and up due to safety requirements. Lego Legends is also running regularly at:
- Naenae Library First Friday of the month, 3.45pm
- Taita Library Every Second Saturday of the month and Last Friday of the Month 3.30pm
- War Memorial Library Third Friday of the month, 3.45pm
- Wainuiomata Library Last Thursday of the month, 4pm-5pm (Starts Thursday 30 March)
- Petone Library Last Sunday of the month, 2pm-4pm
Tip for parents: need some low-cost, fun activities for your kids this school holidays. Visit your local library to see what's on.
Ice Fest 2017 - Ice Rink and Snow Globe
Location: Ice World, The Square, Palmerston North, Palmerston North
Date: 2 – 30 April 2017
The kids in Palmerston North are in for a treat this school holidays! The Ice Fest is back not only with the much-loved ice rink, but a giant snow globe is coming to the Square for the first time. It's so big that up to 12 people can be in it at one time.
The Ice Rink opens 1 April and will be open throughout the Easter and April school holidays until 30 April.
Bring the kids! Find out more on the Ice Rink website
Age of the Dinosaur, Wellington
Location: Wellington Botanic Gardens 2017
Date: 14 – 18 April 2017
Travel back in time to the Age of the Dinosaurs at Wellington Botanic Garden! Get up close and personal with our friendly T-rex, Velociraptor, Dilophosaurus and meet some baby dinosaurs. Learn about the dinosaurs, plants, and trees which lived millions of years ago in our ancient continent of Gondwana.
This amazing kids' event also includes sieving for real fossil sharks teeth, (keep the best one you find!), kids dinosaur tattoos, and making fossils. Please note that the dinosaur costumes are realistic and can be scary for very young children (Under 5). Parental guidance is strongly advised. Children under 2 are free.
Tickets are selling fast and you must buy online.
Location: Claudelands Arena, Brooklyn Rd, Hamilton, Waikato
Date: 14 - 18 April 2017
The biggest community show in the Waikato featuring shopping, animals, games, food, entertainment, amusement rides, exhibition stalls, competitions, and loads more including food competitions, music competitions, spot prizes and giveaways.
The best, most affordable, fun-filled family day out.
- Savour the flavours of the world in the Cultural Village
- Feel all the fun of the fair
- Cuddles and cuteness with all kinds of animals
- Dance, sing and enjoy the family stage entertainment
- Win prizes, bargains, competitions galore
- Learn, explore and engage with local stall holders
View more information about the Waikato Show including times and tickets.
Get Under Our Cover - NZTG is Way More Than Skin Deep!
There's a stack of online information inside the New Zealand Tourism Guide and from the home page you only see our front cover. And gorgeous and informative though it is, it's only our skin – we would love you to dive deeper and find out everything else that's beautiful about us too!
How best to do it? Go to our nifty little search tool – it's in the top right hand corner of our home page and it's on the large images featured across our pages too. You can choose from searching the whole directory for specific events or topics in specific towns or regions OR search for specific businesses (by type, location or by name). Zorbing by the way is BIG in Rotorua! You'll find that out very quickly using our search tool – and you'll find a quick link to New Zealand travel insurance too (we got you covered).
What There Is to See and Do In... Queenstown
We've picked just ten of the many activities and attractions the 'Adventure Capital of New Zealand' is famous for. This lively, lovely town is nestled amongst The Remarkables, Cecil Peak, Walter Peak, Ben Lomond and Queenstown Hill ranges. This region is one of the country's most beautiful and characterised by postcard-perfect mountains, lakes, rivers, rainforest grassland and hills. A spirit of fun and adventure pervades the town, but it truly offers something for everyone.
Top 10 Things to Do and See in Queenstown
- Queenstown is home to the original New Zealand bungy jumping experience – adrenalin seekers simply have to do it! Jump off a bridge, ledge or high-wire... go on.
- Take to the water at speed with a heart-racing jet boat ride or try a thrilling white-water rafting trip - or forget the boat completely and try canyoning!
- Get out into the mountains – there are plenty of easy day walks starting from Queenstown as well as short overnight or multi-day hikes. Guided tour companies can provide accommodation, the guide and much of the gear you'll need.
- Have a 'yesteryear' sort of day with a steamboat cruise on the lake, an exploration of traditional lakeside stations and gardens, finishing off with a winery visit to taste the historic vines.
- Walk along the waterfront and check out Queenstown's underwater observatory, watch the fish and eels swimming whilst you enjoy the town's bustling, friendly atmosphere.
- Take the gondola up the mountain slope and enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner with a spectacular view of the mountain ranges that surround Queenstown.
- Put on your party shoes and enjoy Queenstown's nightlife – romantic cafes, gourmet dining, lively bars and more. You can always recover the next day with a spa treatment and pamper.
- Explore Milford or Doubtful Sounds – enjoy your drive or flight out of Queenstown through some of the most beautiful scenery in the South Island before boating on one of the famous fiords.
- Take a day trip out of Queenstown and visit historic Arrowtown just one hour away – this is the quaint gold-rush era resort town where the autumn colours are truly something to behold.
- Stay a bit longer – it's easy to do that - and enjoy the wonderful alpine resort of Cardrona which offers world-class skiing and outdoor snow sports.
What Did You Do and See in Queenstown?
If you enjoyed an activity during your stay in Queenstown, why not let other NZTG readers know about it? You can share with the Instagram community or post on the New Zealand Tourism Guide Facebook page. We look forward to seeing your news and views.
Find out more about New Zealand's Queenstown region.
Share Your Experience
If you have had a particular experience during your stay in New Zealand unlike anything else, why not let us know. We've picked out a few to give you some ideas!
New Zealand Fast Facts
In Māori tradition, poi are women's dances involving the swinging of balls, about the size of tennis balls, attached to cords. Poi's origins lie in the precolonial practice of training with poi to improve agility in battle, but today poi is used to showcase the beauty and gracefulness of the women.
Poi were traditionally used by women on long waka voyages as a mean of keeping timing of the male paddlers. This is the reason for the emphasis of the sound of the poi striking the hand. Performers swing the balls in synchrony in a variety of figures and rhythms while simultaneously singing a song.