With its unusual double bays teeming with the greatest number of boats per head in the world, New Zealand earns its name, "City of Sails". Located on a narrow stretch of land amongst dormant volcanic peaks, the bays open into two different bodies of water: the Pacific Ocean and the Tasman Sea.

Auckland is shaking off its "Olde England" feel to rival Sydney as one of the most enjoyable harbour cities in the Southern Hemisphere. You can still step back in time to enjoy a slower pace of life, but with the international cuisine, theatre, transport and nightlife typical of bigger cities when you need it.

The climate in New Zealand is temperate and pleasant most of the year round, providing good conditions for outdoor pursuits. If the winter blues are taking over – remember – it will be a sunny Christmas on the beach in New Zealand! The rugged, forested terrain, islands and water offer the sports enthusiast places to sail, hike, paraglide and surf. Of course, don’t miss New Zealand’s particular brand of adrenalin… this is the birth place of commercial bungee jumping.

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Here you will find a melting pot of cultures. The Maori culture is having a renaissance, with funding to promote its culture, arts and music. The early British settlements are also still evident in key areas today. Joining the Maoris and the ancestors of early British settlers, are people from around the Pacific Rim, Polynesia, mainland Asia and the Mediterranean.