New Zealand tourism is on the rise as more and more people discover the beauty and adventure that this small country has to offer. From breathtaking landscapes to unique wildlife, New Zealand has something for every type of traveler.

One of the main draws of New Zealand tourism is the country’s natural beauty. The North Island is home to the iconic Bay of Islands, where travelers can take a boat tour to see dolphins and whales or go fishing and diving. The South Island is where you’ll find the famous Milford Sound, a fjord known for its stunning waterfalls and rainforests. Other natural attractions include the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, a popular hiking trail that takes you through volcanic landscapes, and the Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers, where you can go ice climbing or take a helicopter tour.

New Zealand tourism
Tourists enjoy the view of Mount Taranaki in New Zealand, on June 22, 2021. (Photo by Lu Huaiqian/Xinhua via Getty Images)

Tourism is a vital industry for New Zealand, as it brings in a significant amount of revenue and employs a large number of people. However, with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the tourism industry has been hit hard, leading many to question whether New Zealand can survive without it.

Before the pandemic, tourism was a major contributor to New Zealand’s economy. In 2019, international visitors spent a total of $14.5 billion, which made up 8.1% of the country’s GDP. In addition, the industry provided employment for around 285,000 people, making up 10% of the total workforce. This highlights just how important tourism is to New Zealand’s economy.

One of the main draws of New Zealand tourism is the country’s breathtaking landscapes. The North Island is home to the volcanic Tongariro Alpine Crossing, a popular hiking trail that takes hikers through stunning alpine terrain, past active volcanoes, and over emerald-colored lakes. On the South Island, visitors can explore the rugged beauty of Fiordland National Park, where steep cliffs, deep fjords, and cascading waterfalls create a truly awe-inspiring experience.

New Zealand tourism
NUGGET POINT, OTAGO, NEW ZEALAND – 2020/03/07: View of the Nugget point lighthouse at sunrise on a cloudy day and calm sea. (Photo by Jorge Fernández/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Another major attraction for New Zealand tourism is the country’s rich Maori culture. The Maori are the indigenous people of New Zealand, and their culture is deeply ingrained in the country’s history and identity. Visitors can learn about the Maori culture through traditional powhiri (welcome ceremonies), haka (war dances), and hangi (feasts cooked in underground ovens).

However, with the outbreak of COVID-19, international travel came to a halt, and the tourism industry has taken a significant hit. In the first half of 2020, international visitor numbers decreased by 96% compared to the same period in 2019. This has had a significant impact on the economy, with a projected loss of $9 billion in GDP for 2020.

Despite the current situation, it is important to note that New Zealand has a diverse economy. Agriculture and manufacturing are also significant contributors to the economy, and these industries have continued to operate during the pandemic. Additionally, the country has a strong export market, with products such as dairy, meat, and wood being exported to many countries around the world.

New Zealand tourism
Two young women climb up and look out over the viewpoint at the top of Mt. Roy in New Zealand

The government has also implemented a number of measures to support businesses and individuals affected by the pandemic. The wage subsidy scheme, for example, has helped to keep many people in employment, while other measures such as the Small Business Cashflow Loan Scheme have provided financial support to businesses.

In the long term, the tourism industry will likely recover, as the world eventually finds a way to control the pandemic and international travel resumes. However, it is important for New Zealand to diversify its economy and reduce its reliance on tourism. This can be done by investing in other industries, such as technology and renewable energy.

In addition, the government can also focus on promoting domestic tourism, encouraging New Zealanders to travel within their own country. This can help to boost the economy and support local businesses, while also reducing the country’s reliance on international visitors.

Overall, while the tourism industry has been hit hard by the pandemic, it is not the only industry in New Zealand. The country has a diverse economy, and there are other industries that can help to support the economy while the tourism industry recovers. Additionally, the government can focus on promoting domestic tourism and diversifying the economy, to reduce the country’s reliance on tourism in the future.








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