Tuesday, August 20, 2013

10th Anniversary, Please?

10 years ago I wrote a paper on New Zealand, and fell in love.
I want to go there for my 10th Anniversary of marriage :P


      Have you ever heard of New Zealand before?  Although it is off the beaten path, New Zealand is a charming place to visit.  Located about 1,100 miles southeast of Australia, New Zealand has a mild and rainy climate.  Many natural wonders appear within its 103,738 square miles of land.  Over three and one-half million New Zealanders, live on North Island where their capital city of Wellington is located.
     New Zealand’s land consists of mountains, valleys, and volcanic landscapes.

In certain parks and other regions, you can experience volcanoes, explore

volcanic terraces, see mud boils, hot springs, and geysers.    There are also

lush rainforests, incredible fjords, impressive craters, large plains, and huge

waterfalls.  On the southern island, you may see low tablelands as well.   

     Throughout the countryside are large farms.  Farmers grow a variety of

things.  Many grow apples and kiwifruit, especially in Kerikeri, New Zealand’s

largest kiwifruit producer.  Farmers also produce fodder, trees for timber, and


     In the cities, factories manufacture food, aluminum, wood, paper and paper

products, and textiles.  These products are then exported to other countries.

     Although tourism is not a very big business, there are a number of amazing

places to visit.  For example, Fjordland National Park located in the Southland

region is a wonderful place to visit.  Besides the park’s steep mountains, lush

rainforests, and excellent examples of fjords, Fjordland National Park contains

some of the highest waterfalls in the world.  Milford Track, a well-known attraction located in the park, has been billed as the finest walk in the world. In addition to this, Fjordland may be one of the wettest places in the world, but it is the water itself that shapes the land to make it so beautiful.
     Another great place to visit is Queenstown, the busiest and fastest growing

city in New Zealand.  Maybe you are wondering why Queenstown grows so

quickly when all its neighbors do not.  The key is tourist based activities.  First of all, it is the home of bungee jumping and jet boating.  Another big activity is white water rafting down the roaring rivers.  Queenstown has a few good places to go snow skiing.  For the sightseers, there are breathtaking mountain views.  These activities create jobs for New Zealanders and bring people to the area that would  not have discovered otherwise that they want to live here. 
     Since few waterways are used in New Zealand, New Zealanders use railways, highways, and airplanes for transportation.  Of the one hundred eleven airports, only forty-four have paved runways.  This means most of New Zealand’s airplanes are small. 
     Have you ever eaten titi, mutton bird?  Or how about rewena, a bread similar to fried doughnuts?  How about kina, sea egg?  These and other foods like shellfish, eel, dried shark, and fermented corn are a few of the traditional Maori foods. 
     As in England, some favorite New Zealand pastimes are rugby and cricket.  Hockey is played as well.  In the mountains, snow skiing is a popular sport.  New Zealand is also a wonderful place to go hiking, and because of this there are many trails to explore. 
     Almost all of the people of New Zealand consider themselves Christians; 81% to be more precise.  To me, this means that more people say they accept Christ as the Son of God, than have asked Him to forgive them for their sins and have become born again Christians.  Only 18% claim to have no religion, or do not specify an affiliation.  Only 1% claim to be Hindu, Confucian, or other. 
     Among New Zealand’s most famous modern writers is Janet Frame.  Presently, she is a novelist for the magazine Landfall.  She has written three autobiographies so far.  The names of these books are To the Island, An Angel at My Table, and The Envoy from Mirror City.
     Some of New Zealand’s painters and sculptors are quite interesting.  One man, Colin McCahon, is perhaps the most contentious painter in New Zealand.  Some people think of his paintings as gods and seem to worship them. 
     Len Lye is a kinetic sculptor.  He is known internationally as a pioneer of direct film techniques.  That is, he scratches images directly onto celluloid, or photographic film.  
    There are many Maori woman painters in New Zealand.  Robyn Kahukiwa, Kura Te Waru Rewiri, and Shona Rapira Davies show through their paintings a concern for land, whanau or family, anti-sexism, and anti-racism.  They also reflect Maori pride and values. 
     New Zealand has had a very exciting history.  Captain James Cook, the first white explorer to claim the land, discovered New Zealand in 1769 for England.  In a skirmish with the locals of Kealakekua Bay, Hawaii, Cook was killed, only nine years after his discovery.       
     It was the Maori who settled New Zealand first.  They arrived from Polynesia in the ninth century and have lived there ever since.  Today, only about nine percent of New Zealand’s population is Maori.  
     In 1814, the first British missionaries arrived and the Treaty of Waitangi, in 1840, recognized Queen Victoria as the protector head of New Zealand.  By 1841, New Zealand was a full-fledged colony.  Bloody wars between the Maori and the English resulted in the loss of lands for the Maori people in the year 1870. 
     Of the many reasons to visit New Zealand, there are some that really stand out.  Besides the already mentioned items about Queenstown, there is a vintage vehicle museum, a kiwi and birdlife park, and a spectacular underwater world.  There are also two radio stations just for tourists.  
     An amazing mountain located in Fjordland National Park, is Mitre Peak which stands one mile high straight out of the water.  Fjordland has lots of record-breaking sights, and the park itself is one of the largest in the world. 
     Rotorua and the volcanic plates which are located just south of the Bay of Plenty on North Island are perfect places to study volcanic activity.  Rotorua is very famous for its volcanic sites, geysers, boiling pools, hot springs, boiling mud, volcanic terraces, and craters.  Pohuto, or splashing, is a geyser located on Geyser Flat.  It shoots over one hundred feet into the air.  If you think Pohuto looks like soap suds, you are right.  Soap is added to the water through an underwater process to make it more spectacular. 
     At Rainbow and Fairy Springs, you can handfeed deer, rainbow trout, brown trout, and brook trout, besides many native birds, and Captain Cooker wild pigs. These pigs are named after the man who introduced them to New Zealand, Captain James Cook. 
     Bay of Islands has over one hundred fifty islands to explore.  Marine life is very abundant here.  For all the golfers, you have just found an excellent place to go golfing.  Many visitors enjoy playing this sport in the sunny, warm, climate. 
     Mount Cook National Park has the word’s largest ski park.  It is another place full of records; Mount Cook is New Zealand’s biggest mountain. 
     New Zealand has many historical places.  The National Museum and Art Gallery, which is just full of history, collects everything from Maori artifacts to items from Captain Cook.  Along with them are objects from colonial life. 
     Dunedin is not only New Zealand’s Scottish city, but it is also its Victorian city.  Dunedin contains Saint Paul’s Cathedral, a church with gothic pillars.  The church owns an impressive organ that has three thousand, five hundred pipes. 
     Dunedin Railway Station is perhaps the finest stone structure in the country.  Three huge clock faces stare at the people under the covered carriageway.  Many had admired the original floor, which had 725,760 half-inch Royal Dalton porcelain squares on its surface. 
     As you can probably tell by now, Rotorua, Queenstown, Fjordland National Park, and New Zealand as a whole, contains incredible sights, thrilling activities, and memorable experiences to enjoy. There seems to be something to interest about anyone.  If you are planning take a vacation to another country, New Zealand is a great place to go!         

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