New Zealand is a country of islands located in the Pacific Ocean.The country’s nearest neighbour is Australia,which lies more than 1,600 km northwest of New Zealand. It’s never very hot or very cold in New Zealand because it is surrounded by water. New Zealand has another name, Aotearoa, which means ‘the land of the long white cloud’ in the Maori language.
New Zealand has got it all-snow-capped mountains, fast-flowing rivers, green forests and peaceful lakes with crystal clear water. You can spend a whole day by some lake or river and be the only person there. There are places in this beautiful land that have never felt a human footstep. In fact, New Zealand is one of the least populated countries in the world. A little more than 4 million people live there.
Lake Taupo in the centre of the North Island is the largest lake in New Zealand. It was created by the most violent volcanic eruption the world has ever seen. It was so big that its ashes reached China and Europe.
Mount Cook, which is 3,764 metres high, is New Zealand’s highest mountain. It was named after Captain James Cook, the famous English explorer. There are many lakes and rivers here too, and it is a very popular place for sport-skiing in winter, and water sports in summer.
The most unusual place in New Zealand is probably Rotorua, a city in the northern part of the North Island. It was built in the heart of a volcanic crater. Here the air smells of eggs, and steam and hot water explode out of the hot ground. The hot water lakes in Rotorua are of extraordinary colours: yellow, green and even orange. And there are pools of natural hot water where you can swim. Near here is the Lady Knox geyser, which can shoot water 20 metres into the air.
It is the country of my dream! And I’d like to say, that New Zealanders are very warm-hearted and hospitable but don’t be surprised if you are greeted with a Hongi-the traditional Maori pressing of noses.
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