This great little country of ours has a fascinating a landscape, unique flora and fauna, plus a rich cultural heritage. Throughout Aotearoa there are a number of experiences designed to take you on a memorable journey of discovery about our place.
Here is a selection of some of the best places and activities that can educate and entertain your family.
Please note: Venue information was correct at the time of publication. Please check with individual venues for the latest opening dates, times, prices, etc, before making plans.
1. Footprints Waipoua, Northland
Local guides take you on a memorable journey through nature’s stages of evolution, whilst providing a mythological and interactive interpretation of life in the forest. Visit Te Matua Ngahere (‘The Father of the Forest’) estimated to be between 2,500 and 3,000 years old, and Tane Mahuta (‘The Lord of the Forest’) who stands an impressive 51 metres (150ft) tall.
2. SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton’s Aquarium, Auckland
Home to thousands of marine animals including penguins, sharks, turtles, stingrays, octopus, fish and more. Enjoy over 30 live animal exhibits in spectacular habitat displays, including the world’s largest Sub-Antarctic penguin colony exhibit and amazing underwater viewing tunnels.
3. National Aquarium Of New Zealand
Discover and learn about saltwater, freshwater and land animal exhibits from New Zealand and around the world. Journey through the Oceanarium in an underwater viewing tunnel via a 50m travelator as fish swim and feed, above and around. Plus you can meet and learn about Little Penguins.
Explore the native forest at your own pace or be led by a guide and discover more than 40 rare native species. During the day, walk amongst rare birds like hihi, kākāriki and takahē. Spot prehistoric reptiles like the tuatara bathing in the sun. After dark, search for thousands of glowworms and over 150 kiwi roaming free.
5. Whale Watch Kaikoura
Year round you can learn all about the giant sperm whale in their natural environment with New Zealand’s only marine based whale watching company. In addition you may see four other whale species, New Zealand fur seals, pods of Hector’s and dusky dolphins, the endangered wandering albatross plus a variety of seabirds.
And some new locals…
9. Huka Honey Hives, Taupo
Indoor and outdoor, guided tours take you through the beautiful gardens, introducing you to busy bees. Learn all about bees and the importance of bees to our lives, their essential place in our world, and how you can encourage these fascinating creatures to thrive in your own backyard. In season, you can even extract your own jar of honey from the hive.
Main photo credit: Camilla Rutherford
- Why Not Roadschool These School Holidays?
- 5 Places To Travel To In A Campervan These School Holidays
- New Zealand Bucket List: Have You Been Everywhere?
Written by Kidspot New Zealand in partnerships with Tourism New Zealand.