Tourism New Zealand is a government agency that serves as a hub for the 28 different Regional Tourism Organizations (RTOs) based throughout the country. These locally funded RTOs run most of the i-SITE visitor centers. Many of these have computerized booking systems in place, so rather than drive from lodge to B&B to hotel, making inquiries, the i-SITE can be a good place to let you know instantly which places are vacant. These centers are marked with blue signs and a lowercase white letter i.
Tourism New Zealand (501 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA, 90401. 866/639–9325. www.newzealand.com.)
Best New Zealand Travel Sites
Tourism New Zealand's site includes city and regional overviews, travel journals, information on major events like the America's Cup, and cultural background. Stuff and NZ Pages are also good catchall sites for Kiwi news, links to local resources, and more.
For the latest on the grape, Wine OnLine and New Zealand Wine, the official site for the country's wine and grape industry, post updates on some of the country's top wineries. NZ Gardens Online cultivates information on New Zealand's public and private gardens. At Maori.org, you can find answers to cultural FAQs.
For detailed information on New Zealand's wilderness areas, visit the Department of Conservation's site, which covers all the national parks, major walking tracks, campgrounds and huts, safety tips, and so forth. Snowco provides countrywide snow reports; the New Zealand Alpine Club focuses on climbing. To get up to speed on rugby, check out the New Zealand Rugby Union or the comprehensive Planet Rugby.
The New Zealand Historic Places Trust site will give you the latest on heritage sights throughout the country.
Department of Conservation (www.doc.govt.nz.)
New Zealand Alpine Club (www.alpineclub.org.nz.)
New Zealand Historic Places Trust (www.historic.org.nz.)
New Zealand Rugby Union (www.allblacks.com.)
New Zealand Wine (www.nzwine.com.)
NZ Gardens Online (www.gardens.co.nz.)
NZ Pages (www.nzpages.co.nz.)
Planet Rugby (www.planet-rugby.com.)
Tourism New Zealand (www.newzealand.com.)
Wine OnLine (www.wineonline.co.nz.)
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