Three places in New Zealand you won’t find in any guidebook
Visiting Hot Water Beach, Queenstown or any other well-known tourist hotspot in New Zealand is always an awesome experience, but you’ll be sharing that experience with the crowds – not always pleasant!
The Kiwi nation has so much more to offer intrepid travellers who dare to venture from the proverbial beaten track. Here are three places to visit in New Zealand that are as cool as anywhere else in the country – they just haven’t been fully discovered yet!
1. Rere Falls (East Cape, North Island)
The tiny North Island hamlet of Rere is home to these eponymous Falls. Even though they aren’t especially tall at just five metres, what they lack in height they make up for in length. You can walk behind the gently cascading water, which is cool in itself – and we’re not just talking about the water! However. that’s nothing compared to what you’ll find on the other side of the Falls…
The Rere Rock Slide is a 60-metre-long natural water slide carved smooth by the Wharekopae River over millions of years, so grab your boogie board or big rubber ring and head on down in a wild ride to the bottom!
2. Cape Palliser (Wairarapa, North Island)
Well, Cape Palliser is in the North Island, but on the very southernmost tip, putting it below many major South Island towns when looking at a map. So? What’s so interesting about Cape Palliser, apart from where it is?
For a start, the mighty red and white lighthouse. This cast iron behemoth was built in 1897 after over 20 ships were smashed up on the rocks that surround the area during the 19th century, and it’ll make for a sweet, if a little morbid Insta snap. The 250 steps needed to reach the lighthouse might see you out of puff at the top, but it’ll be worth it in the end.
On your way down, keep an eye out for the North Island’s biggest seal colony. They’ll be making a right racket, and if you visit during the summer months, the lucky amongst you may see some pups…
3. Lake Hauroko (Fiordland National Park, South Island)
The fact that Lake Hauroko is the deepest in New Zealand isn’t the only thing to make it worth a visit. Aside from the wealth of walking tracks that allow for sweet views of the Foveaux Strait and the Takitimu, Princess and Kaherekoau mountains, there’s also a cursed island in the middle of the lake.
A Maori woman, known as the ‘Lady of the Lake’ was buried here around 500 years ago. When we say buried, we mean seated on a bier, dressed in a flax cloak, in full view. She’s still there today, and you can visit her, if you dare…