Zipline – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

A zipline over the forest canopy on Waiheke Island

Z is for zipline . . .  or zoom. Practical Information:  Waiheke Island is a short ferry ride from Auckland. Eco Zip has side by side ziplines that take you over vineyards, then over the forest canopy. Personally, I am a chicken, and prefer to spend my afternoons on Waiheke at either the beach or one of the many wineries. […]

Yachting on America’s Cup Boats – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Yachting in New Zealand - Princess Kate racing against Prince William race against each other on former America's Cup boats.

Y is for yachting on America’s Cup Boats  . . .  or yacht racing. Practical Information:  This is the real thing, yachting at its most exciting. It’s an opportunity to crew on a former Team New Zealand America’s Cup yacht.  Most of the time they take out only one of the two boats, but during summer on […]

Xanthospermous – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Kowhai - the unofficial flower of New Zealand is a Xanthospermous as it has yellow seeds

X is for xanthospermous . . .  meaning having yellow seeds. Practical Information:  Kowhai is often considered to be the national flower of New Zealand, although officially, the country doesn’t have a national flower. It is not uncommon in summer to see Tui drunk in the trees (or falling out) after drinking the Kowhai nectar. […]

Waterfall – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Waterfall in KeriKeri, New Zealand

W is for waterfall . . .  or wow. Practical Information:  Haruru Falls is a block waterfall located on the Waitangi River. Haruru means “big noise” and you know it is named correctly as you hear it long before you see it. According to Māori legend, a taniwha (water monster) lives in the lagoon below this waterfall. […]

Volcanic Crater – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

The Auckland city skyline seen while looking over the 50 metre crater of the extinct Mount Eden Volcano, Auckland New Zealand.

V is for volcanic crater. Practical Information:  Now grass covered, the volcanic crater is 50 metres deep. The photo was taken from the Mount Eden’s summit, just outside the volcanic crater. It is the highest natural point in Auckland. Hiking to the top is steep in parts, but overall it is pretty easy, and took us […]

Uphill – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Walking to the lookout on Mt. Victoria in Wellington

U is for uphill. Practical Information:  New Zealand is a country created on volcanic fields, so up is a common direction. This photo was taken when we had hiked about half way up Mt Victoria in Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city. For an uphill walk, it’s a relatively easy climb to 196m above the city, where we were […]

Tekapo: A Stunning South Island Lake – #AtoZ Postcards of NZ

Beautiful azure lake Tekapo on the South Island of New Zealand

T is for Tekapo . . .  or turquoise waters. Practical Information:  Lake Tekapo is one of three lakes in the Mackenzie basin on the South Island. It’s about halfway between the Christchurch and Queenstown Airports, making it an ideal stop to break up the six hour drive, or a destination on its own. Water from the lake is […]

Sunken ship – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Sunken Ship on Okoromai Bay in Auckland, New Zealand

S is for sunken ship. Practical Information:  This ship is one of three that were sunk on purpose to create a shelter inside Okoromai Bay on the Whangaparaoa Peninsula. The other two are deeper, not visible, and not that near. It can only be seen at low tide, and the photo was taken at a king low […]

Rangitoto Island – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Rangitoto Island is the youngest volcano in Auckland New Zealand

R is for Rangitoto Island . . .  or run if she decides to blow. Practical Information:  Rangitoto is Auckland’s youngest and largest volcanic field and home to the world’s largest pohutukawa forest (a native tree that blooms with red flowers in December, earning the nickname “New Zealand Christmas Tree“) Getting to Rangitoto Island is easy […]

Queen Street Waharoa – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Queen Street gate in Aotea Square in Auckland New Zealand

Q is for Queen Street waharoa . . .  or quite cool gateway. Practical Information:  Waharoa means “gateway” in Māori. This one was formed in wood and copper by Selwyn Muru, a Māori sculptor who carved it with chainsaw and chisel. The five symbols across the top are Whetu me te Marama (representing heavenly spheres), Tawhiri Matea […]

Penguin – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Little Blue Penguin (ferry penguin) in New Zealand

P is for penguin . . .  or precious.   Practical Information:  Native to New Zealand these little blue penguins are fairly common on New Zealand coasts and also found in southern Australia. They are the world’s smallest penguin, standing just over 25cm (10 inches) and weighing only about a kilogram (2.2 pounds). They are […]

Ocean Sailing – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Ocean Sailing? In days past, today this boat just goes out from the Auckland Maritime Museum

O is for ocean sailing . . .  or offshore fun. Practical Information:  This is the Ted Ashby, a ketch-rigged deck scow. It sails nearly everyday from the Auckland Maritime Museum. As an island nation, people arrived here via ocean sailing. It’s only in modern times that there are alternative forms of transportation. The Auckland Maritime Museum […]

Ninety Mile Beach – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Sunset on 90 mile beach in New Zealand

N is for Ninety Mile Beach . . .  or nice sunset. Practical Information:  Possibly the most famous beach in the country, Ninety Mile Beach is actually only about 60 miles long. Ninety Mile Beach is a road and therefore all road rules apply. (And yes, people do frequently get stuck if they don’t watch the […]

Mob of Sheep – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Mob of sheep at Shakespear Park, Auckland New Zealand

M is for mob of sheep . . .  or maa Practical Information:  A group of sheep is called a mob. (More specifically, a mob of sheep is “a group or cohort of sheep of the same breed that have run together under similar environmental conditions since the previous shearing.”) In New Zealand, a mob […]

Lord of the Rings – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Gollum on display at the Wellington Airport in New Zealand

L is for Lord of the Rings… or large. Practical Information:  Wellington airport bills itself as the middle of Middle Earth. The Gollum photoed on the page was installed in October 2012. The total exhibit has three fish and is 13 metres long and 3 metres high. The Lord of the Rings trilogy utilized over 150 filming […]

Kaka – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Kaka, a native forest parrot of New Zealand

K is for kaka. Practical Information:  The kākā is a large forest parrot found on the North Island, South Island and Stewart Island.  With between 1,000 and 5,000 remaining, they are considered nationally vulnerable. Generally considered diurnal, they are also active in a full moon or on fine weather evenings. Often heard before they are seen, they make a […]

Just Published (Choose A Way Auckland) – #AtoZ

Choose A Way Auckland

J is for Just Published. Today my first book Choose A Way Auckland publishes. It’s an interactive ebook offering you choices like: Would you rather . . . OR OR More about Choose A Way Auckland:  Choose A Way Auckland is an interactive city guide by local travel writer and photographer Rhonda Albom. She shares firsthand […]

Inlet – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

An inlet along the northern coast of New Zealand

I is for inlet. Practical Information:  There is over 14,000km of coastline in New Zealand. This inlet is one of 1000’s of beautiful and peaceful spots. I captured this shot through an open window at Mangonui Fish Shop in Northland, a popular spots for fish and chips on the North Coast. The shot was taken looking out towards Doubtless […]

Hiking – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Hiking on Waiheke Island, New Zealand

H is for hiking. Practical Information:  With our reputation as being clean and green, of course there are a seeming unlimited number of hiking options, through subtropical rainforest, glaciers, parks, forest, and so much more. There are nine “Great Walks” in New Zealand, offering Department of Conservation shared cabins and requiring reservations. Total walking enthusiasts […]

Glacier – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Walking on Fox Glacier on the South Island of New Zealand

G is for glacier . . .  or glacial ice. Practical Information:  A glacier is a river of ice that is slowly moving downhill. Fox and Franz Josef are the two best known glaciers in New Zealand, and are often considered to be the most accessible glaciers in the world. They each travel through subtropical rainforest, […]

Flowers – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Flowers seen at the Auckland Domain Wintergardens in Auckland New Zealand

F is for flowers . . .  or fragrant. Practical Information:  I took this photo in the Wintergardens on the Auckland Domain. It is a Salpiglossis from their Royale mix series. New Zealand, being a relatively isolated island, has one of the richest bio-diverse flora on earth offering a wide range of flowers, with 80% of flora being native. […]

Endangered Takahe – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Critically Endangered Takahe on Tiritiri Matangi

E is for endangered. Practical Information:  Now classified as critically endangered, the takahe were once thought of as extinct until they were rediscovered in the Murchison Mountains (Fiordland) on the South Island in 1948. Takahe are flightless birds found only in New Zealand. They display their wings during courtship or as a show of aggression. Takahe are […]

Dunes – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Giant Sand Dunes at Te Paki, Northland, New Zealand

D is for dunes . . .  or daredevil. Practical Information:  Great for sand surfing, which is free if you have your own board. If not, don’t worry, you can hire one there for only $15. The giant sand dunes at Te Paki are located on the western side of the narrow peninsula, about 17 km […]

Cable Car: #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Cable Car in Wellington New Zealand

C is for Cable Car . . .  or climb. Practical Information:  On the “must see” list of most visitors to New Zealand’s capital city, the country’s only funicular railway runs from the centre of town on Lambton Quay up hill for 612m. Once at the top you will find the Wellington Botanic Garden (free), the Cable […]

Baby Lambs – #AtoZ Postcards of New Zealand

Spring lambs in Shakespear Park, Auckland, New Zealand

B is for baby lambs . . .  or baaa. Practical Information:  New Zealand has the highest density of sheep per unit area in the world. It has more sheep than people. In fact, the country is home to nearly 4.5 million people and 30 million sheep. Springtime is lambing season, and the hills all over the country […]