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Travel & Experiences

The top 5 winter experiences in New Zealand

As the cold weather sets in and the Trans-Tasman bubble becomes a reality, we’re looking straight towards the snowy peaks of New Zealand. From skiing to snowboarding to steamy hot springs, there are many ways to enjoy winter at its best in NZ.

Bubbling with excitement to get to your winter wonderland? We’ve rounded up our favourite winter experiences, so you can make your escape and book your trip to New Zealand for less!

Go snowboarding or skiing

If a New Zealand winter is known for one thing, it’s epic ski resorts. Boasting an abundance of snowfall and colossal mountain ranges, you'll have no difficulties finding a place to practise your plough here.

There are many notable ski resorts dotted across the country, with most catering for different skill levels. For those looking to shred some powder in the North Island, head to Whakapapa, or up the ante by scaling the slopes of an active volcano at Mount Ruapehu. If you’re heading to the South Island, Treble Cone, Mount Hutt and Cardrona are all great spots for a snow-filled adventure.

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Watch for whales

We're not the only ones travelling around New Zealand this year! Winter is the best time to go whale-watching in NZ, with many different species passing through on their annual migration. There are plenty of great vantage points to catch whales breaching and splashing around, with one of the best spots being Kaikoura, a coastal town on the South Island. Otherwise, head to the stunning Marlborough Sounds, or Moutohora Island in the Bay of Plenty for a North Island alternative.

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Take a dip in the hot springs

Ah, New Zealand. Where else can you strip down to your bathers in the snow and still feel as snug as a bug? Yet another draw card for this incredible country is its geothermal springs.

New Zealand sits across two tectonic plates, forcing warm water to bubble up through the earth’s crust, forming hot pools that are perfect for cosy winter dips. Believed to contain healing minerals, the springs have been used for centuries; and some have even been developed into modern day spas. Although they’re dotted across the country, the highest concentration lies in the Central Plateau region of the North Island. Settle in for a relaxing day at Kerosene Creek and Mud Pool or Onsen Hot Pools, or have a go at digging your own hot spring at Hot Water Beach. We know you want to!

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Sip on shiraz

The fertile land of New Zealand means at least one thing that's music to our ears – good wine. And winter is the best time to head into the vines on a wine tour. Wherever you are, there will be a winery not too far away; so get checked in to your New Zealand accommodation and prepare to sample some of the country's finest drops. From relishing in a variety of reds in Central Otago, to sipping the renowned whites of Marlborough, the wine lover in you will go wild for New Zealand.

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Explore Milford Sound

While the keen hiker may want to save Milford Sound for the summer months when the Great Walks are accessible, there’s nothing better than seeing a natural wonder without the crowds. For that reason, we love heading to this majestic fiord in the cooler months, where you can take in the incredible landscape without a backdrop of hundreds of selfie-snappers. Marvel at undisturbed wildlife, snow-capped peaks and icy waterfalls in all their winter glory. Some of the cosiest winter accommodation in New Zealand is also found in Milford Sound, so settle in, snuggle up and get ready for a trip that will delight your senses.

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Rugged up and ready to go? Make your escape and explore New Zealand for less with our great cashback deals from Booking.com.

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