New Zealand is known in the native Maori language as Aotearoa, often translated as The land of the long white cloud.
New Zealand is a country of stunning and diverse natural beauty: Soaring mountain peaks, fiords, lakes, rivers, and active volcanic features. The islands are inhabited many species of unique fauna, including the elusive kiwi, which has become the national symbol.
The Maori culture continues to play an important part in everyday New Zealand life, and there are abundant opportunities for the visitor to understand and experience the history and the present day form of Maori life.
The country is sparsely populated, but easily accessible. New Zealand has modern visitor facilities, and developed transportation networks. New Zealand often adds an adventure twist to nature, and is the home of jetboating through shallow gorges, and bungy jumping off anything high enough to give a thrill.
New Zealand, Romantic wonderland
Even before systematic colonisation began in 1840, New Zealand had been promoted in British publications as a wild, scenic, romantic wonderland – and a place of extremes. Guidebooks responded to the growing Victorian appetite for travel, and they marketed flora and fauna and the iconic 'old-time Maori'. These interests also reflected the European fashion for the picturesque and the perception of the 'wild and primitive' romantic landscape as the antidote to the increasingly artificial and corrupt urban life of industrialised society. According to this idea, wild places were not only but could serve as areas of physical recreation and mental and spiritual rejuvenation.