8 Cool Things to do in New Zealand as an International Student

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If you're an international student studying in New Zealand, you might be wondering what there is to do outside of your university life. We have listed a few exciting things for you to do in New Zealand that will help you make the most of your time here!

1. Relax in one of nature's hot springs!

If you're looking to relax and rejuvenate, there's nothing quite like a dip in a natural hot spring. Surrounded by beautiful scenery, with the warm water easing your muscles, it's an experience in itself and one of the things not to miss in New Zealand! Rotorua is home to natural hot springs, boiling mud pools, and massive volcanic craters. These natural wonders occurred as a result of the city's location on the Pacific Ring of Fire.

Did you know: Rotorua is the perfect weekend getaway for students studying at the University of Waikato. Just a one-hour drive away, Rotorua offers plenty of activities and attractions to enjoy!

2. Hike through some of the most scenic landscapes in the world 

One of the best things to do in New Zealand is to wander through some of the most beautiful scenery in the world. Hiking is a popular pastime among students and there are plenty of trails to explore. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is rated as the best one-day hike in New Zealand. It is one of New Zealand's most popular walks and takes you through volcanic terrains, alpine meadows, and native forests.

It is a 19.4km journey through the Tongariro National Park that takes 7-8 hours. The track starts at Mangatepōpō Road end and ends at Ketetahi Road. It's important to plan your car park and shuttle transportation well in advance of your trip because the Tongariro Crossing begins and concludes at different locations.

3. Experience a real Maori cultural Hangi dinner

If you are seeking fun or want to experience local culture, this is certainly something for you. As an international student in New Zealand, you must experience a real Maori cultural Hangi dinner.

This is a meal that is cooked using traditional Maori methods, typically involving heating rocks in a fire and then placing food on top of the rocks to cook. Hangi is a type of cooking that traditionally involves fish and sweet potatoes. However, modern hangi now includes pork, lamb, potatoes, pumpkin, and cabbage. Hangis are often held at special events or occasions, and it is definitely an experience not to be missed!

4. Visit Hobbiton, the movie set from The Lord of the Rings films

If you are a film buff and an international student in New Zealand, one of the famous things in New Zealand that you cannot miss is the Hobbiton! This was the movie set from The Lord of the Rings films and it is now a working farm open to tourists. It's a great place to take photos for your instagram and soak up some local culture. Did you know: The University of Waikato is located just half an hour away from Hobbiton, making it the perfect place to visit for students.

5. Go jet boating downriver past native forests and rocky gorges

One of the best ways to experience all that New Zealand has to offer is by jet boating downriver past native forests and rocky gorges. This is an exhilarating way to see some of the most beautiful parts of the country, you'll surely have a blast! If you're looking for an adrenaline rush while visiting Queenstown, be sure to check out the Shotover Canyon Swing. And for those who prefer a more relaxed vacation, 12 Mile Delta is the perfect spot for camping

6. Visit one of New Zealand's many beautiful beaches

One of New Zealand's many incredible natural attractions is its beaches. Miles and miles of coastline, with golden sand beaches and deep blue waters, make it perfect for a summer's day out. A popular spot among international students is the Hot Water Beach on the Coromandel Peninsula. Here, you can dig your own private hot pool in the sand which is then filled with natural hot water bubbling up from underground!

Did you know: University of Auckland is the top university in New Zealand! Not only is it the top university in New Zealand, but it's also located near some of the country's most beautiful beaches.

7. Visit the earthquake survivor museum in Christchurch 

If you find yourself in Christchurch, New Zealand as an international student, be sure to check out the Quake City Earthquakes Museum. The museum chronicles the stories of those who survived the devastating earthquake that hit Christchurch in 2011. Through exhibits and interactive displays, you'll learn about how people coped in the aftermath of the disaster and what life is like for survivors today.

Did you know: Canterbury is home to University of Canterbury and Ara Institute of Canterbury. If you're a student at either of these universities, you are just a few kilometers away from this museum.

8. Check out the street art scene in Wellington

Assuming you're talking about graffiti and the street art scene in Wellington, New Zealand. Wellington is known for its vibrant street art scene. If you're in Wellington, be sure to check it out! You'll find a variety of murals and pieces from both local and international artists. For a real treat, head to Cuba Street and be enthralled by its colourfully-painted buildings and lively cafes. If you're looking for a place to take some great photos to spice up your Instagram grid, this is definitely THE place for you!

Did you know: Nestled in the heart of Wellington is Victoria University of Wellington, a world-renowned university of higher learning. Within walking distance are the art street and lively cafes.

There is no doubt that New Zealand is an excellent place to study. There are so many great things to do in New Zealand, and student life is truly unbeatable!

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