One Traveler Uncovers the Attraction Behind New Zealand


Image above of Matt Long on a glacier in New Zealand. Image owned by Matt Long.

I am truly thrilled and honored to introduce to you our guest blogger for today, Matt Long Editor-in-Chief and creator of LandLopers.com.

Matt has traveled all over the world and one of his all time favorite places is New Zealand. So what makes New Zealand his favorite? Find out in the below interview:

1. You’ve mentioned on your blog, LandLopers, that you love New Zealand for its quirky characteristics. Tell us about these characteristics and what it is that draws you to them. Do you have any examples, such as The Hobbit Hotel?

I’ve traveled a lot and experienced many different cultures, but there’s just something totally unique about New Zealand that drew me in right away. Ultimately it goes back to the great Kiwi sense of humor and willingness to try and do anything. Not many people share these characteristics around the world, and it makes traveling there a lot of fun. The Hobbit Hotel or the giant sheep statue at the Agrodome in Rotorua are just the physical manifestations of this spirit.

2. What would you say New Zealand’s best kept secret is?

I’d say its urban escapes. New Zealand is world famous for its natural splendor and adventure activities, but the cities are just as great and I think often overlooked. Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch are all vibrant, exciting cities that deserve just as much time and attention by travelers as do the Southern Alps or Waitomo.

Christchurch

Christchurch

Image above taken by and owned by Matt Long.

3. You’ve done some wine tasting in New Zealand. Tell us about this experience and what some of your favorite wineries and wine regions are.

I wish I had more time for wine tasting in New Zealand—an entire trip could be built around it. The country has some amazing, small batch wineries that many people outside the country never get the chance to taste. My personal favorite was the picturesque Rippon Vineyard in Wanaka. The wines were great and the stunning lake views really made for a wonderful afternoon.

Rippon Vineyard

Rippon Vineyard

Image above taken by and owned by Matt Long.

Lake Matheson

Lake Matheson

Image above taken by and owned by Matt Long.

4. What are your three favorite adventure activities to do in New Zealand?

1. It may sound strange, and it’s not really adventure, but driving is my favorite New Zealand activity. I had the opportunity to drive a fair amount around both the North and South Island, and it was one of my favorite experiences. Finding quirky little rest stops or amazing views that you didn’t know existed—that’s what New Zealand is about for me.

2. Black water rafting in the Waitomo glowworm caves. It was winter, cold, and dark but a lot of fun.

3. Franz Josef glacier. Whether you hike up the glacier, or take a helicopter to the top, it’s a rare and exhilarating experience to wander around the glacier.

5. Is there anything else you’d like to add?

I’ve been lucky. I’ve traveled to nearly 40 countries and tasted life in almost every corner of the planet. But New Zealand truly is one of my favorite places and one that I hope to continue exploring in the future. There’s a certain indefinable quality to it that makes traveling there a true pleasure.

About Matt Long and LandLopers:

Matt Long, Editor-in-Chief and creator of LandLopers.com , has a true passion for travel. As someone who has a bad case of the travel bug, Matt travels the world in order to share tips on where to go, what to see and how to experience the best the world has to offer. Matt is a Lonely Planet Featured Blogger, a contributor to many other travel sites and publications including Dabble Magazine and National Geographic Books. Matt’s site LandLopers.com is listed in the Top 100 Travel Blogs, Top 100 Independent Travel Blogs, Most Influential Online Travel Personalities and Washington Flyer’s Top 100 Travel Blogs.

Loved this post? Visit Matt’s site, LandLopers.com, or share this post with your followers on Twitter.

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