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If you have set roots in New Zealand to live and work, you’re probably looking forward to a few of the public holidays this year. Public holidays NZ, offer ex-pats the perfect opportunity to relax, unwind, and of course, explore their new home country. As a South African ex-pat, you’re probably keen to bust out the barbecue, light up the coals and get to work on a good old fashioned South African braai, but perhaps now is the time to try something a little different. It’s time to explore and appreciate all that New Zealand (aka your new home) has to offer.

New Zealand is rated as one of the top 4 places in the world for ex-pats to live. Phew! You made a good choice! Also, as a new “local” to the country, you will quickly learn that New Zealanders firmly believe that life is meant to be lived and thoroughly enjoyed. This is probably why the HSBC 2017 Expat Survey uncovered that the country is rated 6th in the world when it comes to work-life balance.

New Zealand public holidays

First off, let’s take a look at what the NZ public holidays 2020 have in store for you. Unlike South Africa, New Zealand only has a handful of public holidays, so it’s best to make the most of them. Below is a list of NZ’s 10 public holidays:

New Year’s DayWed, 01 Jan 2020
Day after New Year’s DayThu, 02 Jan 2020
Waitangi DayThu, 06 Feb 2020
Good Friday Fri, 10 Apr 2020
Easter MondayMon, 13 Apr 2020
Anzac Day Mon, 27 Apr 2020
Queen’s BirthdayMon, 01 Jun 2020
Labour Day Mon, 26 Oct 2020
Christmas DayFri, 25 Dec 2020
Boxing Day Mon, 28 Dec 2020

Knowing these dates is quite handy as you can ascertain which areas and places of interest will be busy on which dates.

Popular Things to do on Public Holidays in New Zealand

While you probably already have a hit list of places you would like to see and things you would like to do, what do the locals and other newbies get up to on public holidays in New Zealand? Let’s take a quick look at some popular activities and places to go:

Get to know more about Christchurch

Christchurch is the perfect place for ex-pats, who want to have a real taste of New Zealand, to visit. Here you can enjoy a Maori cultural show at the Willowbank Wildlife Reserve or even go sightseeing by boat with Punting on the Avon. North Hagley Park has some of the most beautiful gardens you will ever see and if you want to see a bit more of the countryside, go sightseeing by cable car with the Christchurch Gondola.

Visit Hobbiton

If you have ever watched The Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit Trilogies, you would have seen The Shire and the village called Hobbiton. Believe it or not, that every village is nestled just outside the town of Matamata in Waikato. The movie set remains intact and is popular for both locals and foreigners to visit.

Wander around Wellington

If there’s ever been a place worth wandering around, it is Wellington in New Zealand. See rare native birds and trees in the Zealandia Ecosanctuary, stroll through the lush flora at the Wellington Botanical Gardens, and even enjoy an interactive animal encounter at the Wellington Zoo. Wellington is often a firm favourite for newbies to NZ.

Glow-worm grotto

What could be better than spending your time off with a bunch of glittering glow-worms? You can find these beautiful glow worms lighting up the inner cave system of the Waitomo Caves. While inside the caves, visitors are astounded by the dramatic display of natural wonders. A night tour of the caves, with glow worms as your lights and guides, what could be more magical.

Lazy days in Auckland

Many locals and newbies to New Zealand head to Auckland for a few days of rest and repair when the public holidays and annual leave days come around. Auckland is reputed to be a firm favourite for South African ex-pats, so you might hear a few familiar accents there.  There’s much to see and do in Auckland, such as visiting the volcano and lava tubes at Rangitoto Island, gazing across a panoramic city view from the Sky Tower (great for sending pictures back home), and spending the afternoon wine tasting at Waiheke Island. The Auckland Zoo and the Auckland War Memorial Museum are also well worth a visit.

Making the Most of Public Holidays NZ

Much like in South Africa, if New Zealand public holidays fall on a weekend, the next business day is the day that will be observed for it. This means that you can possibly make a long weekend of it and get to see and explore more. Whatever you choose to do with your upcoming public holidays, NZ will not disappoint you with things to do, places to go, and a plethora of things to see too.

FinGlobal: Financial Emigration Specialists

At FinGlobal, we have close on a decade of experience in tax emigration and financial emigration for South African ex-pats. With our expertise and know-how, we know just what it takes to get the most out of financial and tax emigration for you. With a firm understanding of the processes involved, we are able to cater to the needs of our customers by providing a premier advisory and guidance service. It is our aim to ensure that South African ex-pats the world over have access to affordable services that are fast, and efficient.  For professional assistance and guidance regarding ex-pat finances, contact us today. Simply give us a call or send us an email for more information and advice.