New Zealand (Aotearoa) is a South Pacific country located midway between the Equator and the South Pole, and approximately 1600 kilometres east of Australia. The country consists of two main islands, the North and South Islands, which are together similar in size to Japan or Britain. New Zealand’s climate is oceanic, without extremes of hot or cold. Most parts of the country enjoy ample sunshine and rainfall, although the weather is changeable.
There are just over four million New Zealanders of all races, but predominantly of European and Polynesian origin. The Māori population is around 13% of the total. 75% of all New Zealanders live in the North Island.
New Zealand is an independent parliamentary democracy within the British Commonwealth. The formal head of state is Queen Elizabeth II, who is represented by a New Zealander as Governor-General. The capital city and seat of government is Wellington.
New Zealand has a world-wide reputation for agricultural products. Meat and wool are produced from 53 million sheep, and meat and dairy products from more than 8 million cattle. Almost half of New Zealand’s export earnings are derived from farming. Other major exports are timber and timber products, fish and horticultural produce. Tourism has increased dramatically in significance over the past decade and is now one of the major income earners for New Zealand.
Wellington is the capital city of New Zealand, located in the southern part of New Zealand’s North Island. This is small (about 400.000 inhabitants) but very attractive city, which has been ranked the fifth best eco-city of the world by The 2010 Mercer Worldwide Quality of Living Survey.
The central business district is very lively, with many stores and lots of restaurants, cafés and bars. According to Wikipedia, Wellington has more cafés per capita than New York City. The views are also abundant, not only from the city arbour but also from the hills surrounding the city centre.
If you like records, put on your travel book that Wellington is the southernmost capital city in the world.
Victoria was founded in 1897, the year of Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations, and named in her honour. The Victoria’s Māori name is Te Whare Wānanga o te Ūpoko o te Ika a Māui. The first part of the name, Te Whare Wānanga, translates as “the place or house of higher learning”. The second half of the name says that Victoria is located “at the head of the fish of Māui”. This derives from Māori legend that tells the story of a Polynesian explorer, Māui, who hauled up the North Island from the sea using a magic fishhook.
Victoria has almost 25,000 people, of which about 19000 are domestic students and 3000 are international students.
Victoria University’s Kelburn Campus
Victoria University’s Hunter Building
Victoria University’s Pipitea Campus