New Zealand may not exactly be the place you think about when you want to see cherry blossoms, but the delicate pink flowers are also synonymous with the onset of spring in the country. It’s the destination that should definitely spring to your mind if you are planning a holiday in the coming months.
Step into spring in September
September is the perfect time to visit the country, if you want to witness New Zealand bloom in 16 to 19 deg C daytime temperatures. Head over to Christchurch in South Island for a closer look at springtime in the city – you’ll be able to capture different flora peeking from every corner. Take a walk along Hagley Park that will be teeming with cherry blossoms and bright yellow daffodils during the season.
Enjoy the springtime backdrop in the company of your friends or indulge yourselves with a cone of ice cream while enjoying the splendid blooms of azaleas, rhododendrons, magnolias and cherry blossoms.
For a full-blown celebration of the arrival of spring, you can visit the nearby town of Alexandra for its annual Blossom Festival. The town hosts the festival to welcome spring with fun events and a grand parade that is a feast for the eyes of locals and travellers alike.
There’s more to spring in New Zealand than viewing flowers. Take a road trip from Christchurch to the thriving wine country of Marlborough in South Island and get to know its world-renowned sauvignon blanc amid the region’s breathtaking scenery. Gather your travel mates to explore the various vineyards of the region and pair your wines with local delicacies such as Regal King Salmon and Kaikoura Cheese while enjoying outdoor dining.
Summer in December
For families looking for year-end travel ideas, why not spend the last month of 2019 in New Zealand? While it’s chilly in the northern hemisphere, it is summertime south of the equator from December onwards – the best time to explore the great outdoors. New Zealand boasts adventures suitable for all ages, from kayaking to hiking different terrain.
Give the kids an unforgettable experience by taking them to an active marine volcano in North Island. With a small-group guided tour, visitors can fly in with a helicopter to get a close look at White Island, also known as Whakaari, that spews 800 deg C toxic gases. The tour allows you to tread along safely around the crater and to get to appreciate nature from a different perspective.
If you think stepping on an active volcano is too extreme, you can check out Mt Tauhara, a dormant stratovolcano that overlooks the serene Lake Taupo – which is the size of Singapore – in North Island. You can reach the summit in around three hours by following the 2.8km trail that goes up to 1,088m above sea level, where you can take in sweeping panoramic views.
There’s no shortage of water-based activities in New Zealand as well. Take a kayak to Auckland’s Rangitoto Island, as the sun sets over the city’s most iconic island. Take a short guided tour around the crowd favourite destination before paddling back to see the city lights welcoming you on your return. You can also try stand-up paddleboarding at Lake Hawea in the town of Wanaka in South Island.
Whether you are planning a trip in spring or summer, there’s an exciting array of outdoor activities waiting for you in New Zealand.