New Zealand

<b>Distance from Baltimore:</b> About a 22-hour flight (with stops)<br>
<br>
<b>Why it's hot:</b> <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="ENMV0000205" title="The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" href="/topic/entertainment/movies/the-hobbit%3A-an-unexpected-journey-ENMV0000205.topic">"The Hobbit"</a> movie was filmed in this South Pacific nation, know for its vibrant green landscape. (The film is so popular here that Air New Zealand recently unveiled a Hobbit-themed plane in Auckland.) The two-island nation offers a vast array of attractions. On the North Island alone you'll find snow-capped mountains, national parks full of hiking trails and roaring white-water, thermal pools to soak in, wildlife found nowhere else on Earth and enchanting Maori culture.<br>
<br>
<b>Don't miss:</b> Rotorua, above. Geothermal activity and Maori culture draw visitors to the Rotorua area, where roughly 35 percent of the 70,000 residents are native people. A variety of places offer Maori performances and the traditional hangi meal, cooked in underground pits by geothermal heat. The Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland is just south and features a bubbling mud pool.<br>
<br>
<b>Information:</b> Go to <a href="http://www.newzealand.com">newzealand.com</a>.

( Karolina Werner DuBois, For The Baltimore Sun / April 28, 2009 )

Distance from Baltimore: About a 22-hour flight (with stops)

Why it's hot: "The Hobbit" movie was filmed in this South Pacific nation, know for its vibrant green landscape. (The film is so popular here that Air New Zealand recently unveiled a Hobbit-themed plane in Auckland.) The two-island nation offers a vast array of attractions. On the North Island alone you'll find snow-capped mountains, national parks full of hiking trails and roaring white-water, thermal pools to soak in, wildlife found nowhere else on Earth and enchanting Maori culture.

Don't miss: Rotorua, above. Geothermal activity and Maori culture draw visitors to the Rotorua area, where roughly 35 percent of the 70,000 residents are native people. A variety of places offer Maori performances and the traditional hangi meal, cooked in underground pits by geothermal heat. The Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland is just south and features a bubbling mud pool.

Information: Go to newzealand.com.

  • Email E-mail
  • add to Twitter Twitter
  • add to Facebook Facebook