Yesterday BuzzFeed published '69 Facts About New Zealand That’ll Blow Your Mind'. Just in time for Veg Travel Guide's trip to New Zealand! I've picked out five of my favourites from this list that will appeal to all the nature loving, animal loving, veg travellers out there! View the full list here: http://www.buzzfeed.com/jemimaskelley/things-you-did-not-know-about-new-zealand
1. The kea, a bird native to NZ, is known for pulling windscreen wipers off cars and eating the strips of rubber from windows.
On our last trip to New Zealand, we did happen to have a kea encounter. We had just finished spending the day at Milford Sound (where Travis told me all about these crazy mountain birds called kea). On the drive out of Milford Sound, Travis suddenly pulled over at a rest stop, he had spotted something. A pair of kea! We parked up and wound down the windows, hoping to get some good shots of them. Before we knew it they were charging towards the car. Next thing they were on the car. Then they were trying to pull it apart. I have never in my life wanted a car window to wind up as fast as I did in that moment.
Our feeble attempts to shoo them away by tapping at the windows and putting the windscreen wipers on did nothing to deter them from their task. In the end we managed to escape unharmed ;-) But what an exciting (and strangely terrifying) experience!
Here's some of our pictures:
6. Only 5% of NZ’s population is human- the rest are animals.
So animals aren't actually counted in New Zealand's population, but it does have one of the highest animal to human ratios in the world. Pack your camera - there are plenty of sweet wildlife photography opportunities. 18. NZ is home to more species of penguins than any other country.
Penguins are incredible little creatures. If you want an opportunity to see them in the wild, you will love New Zealand! In Oamaru you will even see penguin crossing road signs! Where else but NZ ;-)
Here are our pics from Oamaru:
29. About one third of the country is protected national park.
Conservation and environmental protection is part of the national psyche. Before embarking on a trip to New Zealand, have a look at the National Parks section of the Department of Conservation's website to learn how you can enjoy public conservation areas on your trip.
39. Two NZ rescue dogs were taught to drive a car around a track, in order to prove the intelligence of shelter animals.
I can't watch these videos enough. You really have to meet Monty, Porter, and Ginny.
So, if you're the kind of veg traveller who loves a nature and animal packed holiday - put New Zealand on your list!
Veg Travel Guide is travelling to New Zealand this week - make sure you check back for updates on our eco travels (freedom camping style!)