• At latitude 41° south, Wellington is the world’s southernmost capital city and shares the honour of being the most remote with Canberra, over 2000km away.
• Possums are the national pest. When seen on the road, these introduced marsupials turn normally mild-mannered folk into killers. Flattened examples are everywhere.
• Kiwis love foreign affirmation: Flight of the Conchords were turned down by domestic television and only became a local success after their HBO hit series.
• Maori ex-prostitute Georgina Beyer became the world’s first transsexual MP in 1999.
• There are no snakes in New Zealand, and only a few venomous spiders, rarely seen.
• The numerous Maori words that have crept into everyday conversation easily confound visitors: aroha is love; kia kaha means be strong; kia ora can be hi or might signify agreement; and koha is a donation or offering.
• New Zealand’s eels live to 80 years and only breed once, at the end of their life – and they swim all the way to Tonga to do it.
Everything you need to know before you set off.
Travel offers; book through Rough Guides
Planning your trip to New Zealand
Everything you need to plan where to go and what to do.
New Zealand features
The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.
The most beautiful country in the world – as voted by you
There's nothing like an amazing view to inspire you to book your next trip, whether you're drawn by rolling countryside, isolated islands or soaring mountain …
24 breaks for bookworms
1. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas In 1971, fuelled by a cornucopia of drugs, Hunter S. Thompson set off for Las Vegas on his “savage journey to the heart of …
How to find the right New Zealand for you
While it may not loom large on the world map, New Zealand feels incredibly vast and imposing on the ground, especially to those who try to visit the North and S…