from Whakarewarewa
The Living Māori Village

If I could only visit one city in New Zealand it would be … Napier. My hometown. Semi Mediterranean climate, stunning Art Deco architecture. An abundance of hot spots for foodies, award winning vineyards and it’s coastal.

Three things I love about the North Island are … 1. Geothermal activity, 2. the beaches, 3. Māori culture.

Describe the typical New Zealander in three words … Casual, chatty, barefooted.

My favourite spot to relax is … Lake Tarawera, Rotorua, with friends and family. Nothing beats a day on the lake.

The best pie in New Zealand can be found at … Whakarewarewa! Our hangi pie is a #musteat!

Essential Kiwi lingo to learn … “Yeah nah”. Everytime I hear this I think “which is it?” Yeah or nah?

For a winter adventure, check out … Rotorua. The geothermal activity here is more intense in the winter, everything is even more steamy and magical. The hot pools are the perfect respite on a chilly day.

My ultimate ‘family day out’ would be … Mountain biking in the morning with my dog and family, soaking in the hot pools in the afternoon, hanging out with friends over good food and craft beers in the evening.

If you love adventure you should check out … Rotorua’s mountain bike trails. There is something for everyone. Tip: Hop on the shuttle if you don’t like biking uphill.

When I need a caffeine fix I go to … Ciabatta Bakery for a relaxed vibe and sensational coffee (and the best sandwich in town).

Soak and relax at … Waikete Valley Hot Pools. At this natural thermal bathing complex the pools look out over the beautiful Waikite Valley, native bush and surrounding geothermal activity. Stunning.

My hometown’s best-kept secret is … Hot Water Beach on Lake Tarawera. This is where the locals and their boats are found on most weekends. Accessible only by boat, it is great for camping (in summer) or relaxing in the hot springs. You can book a water taxi, or find a friendly local and hitch a ride!

I love New Zealand because … Its natural beauty, chilled out atmosphere, friendly folk and there’s an abundance of things to do.