With its proud Maori heritage, awe-inspiring natural wonders, ease of access to extreme sports, and British English tinged with kiwi flavors, New Zealand is an inspiring and exciting destination to study English
1. The Kiwi people
The nickname kiwi, used to refer to New Zealanders by birth, derives from their national symbol, the eponymous native bird (not the fruit!). The locals are extremely relaxed, friendly and welcoming, and have a passion for outdoor activities and extreme sports. It is a great place to study, as it is easy to find conversation partners and there are plenty of opportunities to use your English on a daily basis.
2. Kiwi jargon
Kiwi English is a fun and charming combination of British English and local Maori terms. Kiwis have even coined their own words like “jangels” (flip flops), “dunny” (toilets) or the abbreviation “ta” for “thank you”. You will also hear words like “kia ora” (pronounced the key-or-a) which is a Maori term used to say hello or “tiki tour” which indicates a tourist route or rather long towards a given destination.
3. The rich Maori culture
Although marginalized in the past, Maori culture, which has taken an increasingly important part in New Zealand’s national identity, has become a source of pride. One day, the native “Tangata whenua” landed on the island after leaving his mythical Polynesian homeland, and today about 15% of the population is of Maori origin. The illustrious traditional Maori dance – the Haka – made famous by the All Blacks rugby team, impresses many with its power, originality and unity.
4. The excellent level of education
New Zealand has one of the best education systems in the world. Eight of the best universities in New Zealand have even won in the QS World University Rankings, including the University of Auckland and Otago. If you are hoping to spend more than a few months in New Zealand, it is a good idea to improve your English level first and then apply for a study program at one of the universities in the country.
5. Extreme sports
New Zealand is arguably the best place in the world to channel the intrepid explorer within all of us (and whom we sometimes lose sight of). You can try your hand at skydiving, bungee jumping, canyoning, rafting, jet-boating, ziplining and off-road driving, just to name a few of the extracurricular activities you can participate in. The fact that this adrenaline rush takes place in such a beautiful setting is just a nice bonus.
The first official rugby match was held in 1870 and since then rugby has been considered a national sport. New Zealanders are very proud of their great All Blacks team and watching a rugby match is one of the best – and most entertaining – ways to experience Kiwi culture.
7. The wonders of nature
The natural wonders of New Zealand will make you feel all the positive vibes; from glistening caves and magnificent glaciers, to sandy beaches, ancestral forests, mountain vistas and volcanic landscapes, you will be amazed at every turn and will likely utter the word ‘wow’, as you explore of the North and South Islands. The country is practically made for exploration and arguably one of the best places in the world for a road trip with friends. Once again, we can’t think of a better way to spend your weekends off…
8. Unique fauna
A multitude of mammals and birds living in this part of the world cannot be seen anywhere else. The kiwi, which has become a unique symbol of the country, is also one of these incredible creatures. On the various islands you can also discover the smallest species of dolphins in the world, alpine parrots, blue or yellow-eyed penguins, wood pigeons, fur seals and many other distinctive species.
9. The delicious food and coffee
Much like their Australian neighbors, Kiwis are renowned for enjoying good food and tasty coffee. Make sure to order a flat white at your local cafe on the way to class and sample local delicacies such as kawakawa tea, hokey pokey ice cream and manuka honey, while exploring the fantastic cafes and restaurants. from Auckland.
10. The best point of view to watch the sunrise
Have you always dreamed of being the first in the world to witness the sunrise? When you are in New Zealand, you can cross this wish off your list. The Eastern Cape, at the eastern end of the North Island, is the first place to see the sun (at the beginning of the year at least, because later that point moves further north).