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New Zealand

Travel Destinations for the Eco-Minded Individual: New Zealand

When I was in college, I didn’t give as much thought to my study abroad destination opportunities as most did. My thought process was along of the lines of:

Hmm. A semester in New Zealand and Australia…
I haven’t been there yet…
I heard they have some great surfing…
I guess I’m gonna go there.

Luckily, I did more than just surf during my time down unda. I spent a good amount of time doing school stuff, too. Which is good because it was, after all, a study abroad trip.

This ended up being the perfect trip for me in so many ways. The program was centered around Sustainability and started in Dunedin, a uni town on the southeast edge of the South Island, to gain an introduction to New Zealand’s history, culture, and environment. I then traveled out on a clockwise route around the South Island, stopping to experience a diversity of ecosystems along the way. In Kaikoura I participated in interpretive nature hikes where I learned about Maori culture and how it intertwines with the environment. spent some time in Queenstown, “the adventure capital of the world,” where I learned about glaciology and recreational ecotourism.

Among many other experiences and activities, I got to learn so much about the environmental culture of New Zealand. This is a country that values their earth and natural resources, and has truly committed to preserving them.

So, for those of you eco-conscious travelers who want to be more intentional with your adventures, New Zealand is a great destination. Here are some of my favorite ways you can have a first-hand experience with the local environment. Continue reading