About New Zealand
New Zealand is divided into North Island and South Island. The people are all very friendly and tourists are always welcome to both Islands.
New Zealand is one of the first places in the world to see the new day, 12 hours ahead of GMT (Greenwich Mean Time). In summer New Zealand uses ‘daylight saving’, with clocks put forward one hour to GMT+13. Daylight saving begins on the first Sunday in October and ends on the third Sunday of the following March, when clocks are put back to GMT+12.
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New Zealand's unit of currency is the New Zealand dollar (NZ$). Coins have values of 10, 20 and 50 cents, $1 and $2; notes have values of $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100.
Currency Conversion: http://www.newzealand.com/travel/app_templates/behaviors/dsp_uccform.cfm?language_uuid=69B3E9FB-2E57-4EDB-9046-4684AA660A92
There is not usually a restriction on the amount of foreign currency that can be brought in or taken out of New Zealand.
Foreign currency can easily be exchanged at banks, some hotels and Bureau de Change kiosks, which are found at international airports and most city centres.
All major credit cards can be used in New Zealand. Travellers Cheques are accepted at hotels, banks and some stores.
English is the common and everyday language of New Zealand. New Zealand is a multi-cultural society and you may hear many other languages spoken, including Maori, which is also an official language of New Zealand.
In summer, the average maximum temperature ranges between 20-30ºC and in winter between 10-15ºC. For more localised weather information, click on:
You can also check on weather conditions in New Zealand on the New Zealand Met Service website.
New Zealand's wine growing areas come from amongst the ten main wine growing regions. The main areas on North Island are located in Auckland,Bay of Plenty, Gisborne, Hawke's Bay and Wellington.On the South Island the main areas are Nelson, Marlborough, Canterbury and Central Otago. Three of most important grape varieties grown are Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Merlot, Syrah, Malbec, Riesling, Gewurtztraminer and Pinot Gris are also grown to a lesser extent. It is often mentioned that the best Sauvignon Blanc in the world is produced in the Marlborough region.
NZ also makes fine sparkling wine, one of the best is the Pelorus Vintage Brut which comes from the home of Cloudy Bay.