|New ZealandPeople of Character
New Zealand is a land of
rich contrasts, warm enough to grow exotic fruits, southern enough to support penguins and
whales. It's a country of cosmopolitan cities and ancient rainforests, farms and
wilderness, blue ice glaciers and golden-sand beaches. Yet of all its extraordinary
characteristics, New Zealand's most remarkable resource has to be its people. Forced by
their history and geography to be practical and inventive, New Zealanders are resourceful
and talented and show a great passion for the outdoors and for sports.
One of the last
significant land masses in the world to be inhabited, New Zealand's documented European
history is only 250 years old, giving its culture an aura of freshness and self-invention.
But the two chief cultures it draws from, Maori (Polynesian) and Pakeha (mostly European
immigrants), have roots that are thousands of years old.
The arts in New Zealand
offer a rich and diverse manifestation of a nation with great creative potential and
plenty of confident expression. Over the last decade, fueled by the ease of global
communication, there has been a cultural flowering in New Zealand, expressed not only in
the arts, but also in its food and wine. For those who love great dining, great
performances and marvelous objects, these are the best of times.
A Colorful Cuisine
A visit to New Zealand
can be an adventurous, rewarding culinary experience. Inspired by European, Asian and
Pacific tastes, the past decade has seen a culinary metamorphosis in New Zealand, and the
result is a delicious, creative cuisine. In all the world, only California can match New
Zealand for its incredible market gardens, and no one can match the marvelous range of
fresh fish. New Zealand is justly renowned for the quality of its dairy products,
especially its wonderful cheeses. It also produces delicious farmed venison (cervena),
superb beef and lamb that is rated the best in the world.
The story of New Zealand
wines is one of remarkable success achieved in a radically short time. With its long, slow
growing season and cool, maritime climate, the country has always been near perfect for
growing grapes, but only a generation ago, fortified wines and beer were the norm. Now its
fine wines have come of age. Around the country, more than 200 wineries, many of them
family owned or boutique wineries, are producing wines that consistently bring home top
awards from international wine competitions. Easily accessible for tastings, many of the
wineries have restaurants and/or pleasant gardens for picnics and barbeques. Wine tours
are available, but casual visitors to vineyards are always welcome. Fall and spring are
the best times to visit the wineries.
Fishing for Thrills
Seventy years ago, the
writer Zane Grey, dubbed New Zealand an "angler's El Dorado," and the country
has been proving him right ever since. Here you will find some of the world's best fresh
and saltwater fishing in locations as breathtakingly beautiful as nature has ever devised.
In addition to spectacular scenery, you will find yourself fishing in crystal-clear waters
for fish that are bigger and wilder than anywhere else.
Since the introduction
of trout from California in the latter part of last century, anglers from all over the
world have realized their finest fishing dreams in New Zealand. The numerous streams and
rivers of this mountainous country offer excellent stream fishing for both browns and
rainbows. Here anglers can fish the very best dry-fly waters in the world with guides who
are internationally recognized leaders in their field. In addition, literally hundreds of
pristine lakes are all worth visiting. The average size of the trout taken is 4 to 4 1/2
pounds, but trophy fish ("double-digit") are caught with remarkable-and
Like the Babylonians,
who believed the gods did not subtract from a person's allotted time on earth for the time
spent fishing, New Zealand's avid fishing population has elevated trout fishing beyond
mere sport. They even made "catch and release" a regular practice. Most American
fly-fishers visiting New Zealand practice this too.
On the North Island, the
summer trout fishing season runs from October to April in most districts. Winter trout
fishing is available in the Taupo/Rotorua regions, with April/May and September/October
being the best months. The Tongariro River is considered one of the best trout fishing
rivers in the world. Its best fishing times are from May to October.
Trout fishing in the
South Island can also provide world-class brown and rainbow trout dry-fly fishing.
Dry-fly, nymph, streamer or lure fishing is best from October through April (spring
through autumn), although good, year-round fishing is available in some designated lakes
For the spin fisherman,
there is both trout and quinnat (chinook salmon) fishing in late summer and autumn.
Fly-fishing float trips
can be arranged. Helicopter fly-outs can take anglers deep into the back country to remote
and magnificent trout streams, rarely visited by humans.
The main fishing rivers
for salmon are the Rakaia, Waimakariri, Rangitata, Ashburton and Waitaki Rivers of the
east coast of the South Island. The season is spring through autumn, with February and
March being the best months. Guides operate mainly on the Rakaia River, and they provide
all tackle, transport and refreshments.
Saltwater boat fishing
takes place year-round. Guided saltwater sportfishing from charter boats is available all
around the coast, but particularly from spots such as Whangaroa, Bay of Islands, Tutukaka,
Tauranga, Whakatane, the Marlborough Sounds and Milford Sound. There are no closed season
restrictions, and you don't even need a fishing license.
New Zealand's big-game
fishery has a worldwide reputation, every bit as fantastic as a fisherman's tale. Species
fished include striped marlin, Pacific blue and black marlin, and broadbill swordfish.
Kingfish (yellowtail), mako, hammerhead, thresher sharks and yellowfin tuna are also
Fishing tends to be
concentrated on the east coast of the North Island, from bases in the Bay of Islands,
Tutukaka, Whangaroa, Whitianga, Tauranga and Whakatane to Te Kaha. Best months are January
to May. You will need to charter a big-game boat and skipper who will provide everything
necessary for fishing, including bait, tackle, equipment and refreshments.
Return to :
171 Parrot Castle Rd.
Whitehall, MT 59759
Toll free: 800-440-2699