more of NZ trivia

  • Rumor has it that the first European to see the country was Dutch navigator Abel Tasman in 1642.
  • There are more golf courses per capita than any other place in the world.
  • Less than 5% of NZ population is human.
  • Australia has Vegemite; New Zealand has Marmite.
  • Almost 1/3 of the country is national parks.
  • Little Blue Penguins visit NZ from other Oceania waters. They come ashore at night.
  • The Tohunga Suppression Act of 1907 made it a crime to mislead Maori by professing to possess supernatural powers.
  • Tourism accounts for 10% of Wellington's annual income.
  • John Butler was the first ordained clergyman to settle in NZ as a missionary. In 1820, he supervised the first plowing of NZ soil.
  • There is a city called National Parks.
  • People have been admiring the glow-worms of Waitomo Caves for over 100 years.
  • Although an area of the country, a pass and a river are named after him  (although spelled differently), James McKenzie's date and place of birth are unknown, as is his ultimate fate. It seems he served time for sheep rustling in 1855 and served time, but escaped twice. After being recaptured and serving 9 months of his 5-year sentence, he was pardoned and never heard from again. It is believed he went to Australia.
  • NZ has more bagpipe bands, per capita, than Scotland.
  • Frying Pan Lake, in the north island, is the world's largest hot water spring.
  • Election day is not a set date. The PM decides the day for each election.
  • Legend has it that the Beehive, the legislative building in the capital city, was actually designed on the back of a cigarette pack as a joke and was never intended to be built.
  • The only place in the world where two different sea levels can be seen at the same time is at French Pass, on the northern side of the south island.
  • Hokey Pokey ice cream is a national favorite.
  • In 1868, the Battle of Addisons Flat never happened.
  • Initially, NZ was a dependency of New South Wales. When Australia formed the Commonwealth of Australia in 1901, NZ declined to join and became independent.
  • The Buzzy Bee was originally made in NZ.
  • 'Dancing sand' can be seen, only by permission to dive, at Waikoropupu Springs, the world's largest freshwater springs by volume.
  • In 1969, the voting age was lowered from 21 to 20. In 1974, it was changed to 18.
  • The city of Auckland has the world's most privately owned boats of any city in the world.
  • William Pickering was born in Wellington. He became director of the Jet Propulsion Lab in California, which produced the first successful US earth satellite.
  • Baldwin Street in Dunedin has the steepest grade of any street anywhere.
  • The last time a prisoner was put in irons in NZ was in 1897.
  • John Pawelka was a very elusive prisoner, having escaped from custody on several occasions. His last escape was from Wellington's Terrace jail in 1911 and he was never seen or heard from again.


ChrisJ said...

We liked New Zealand very much. Got to know Aukland quite well. I liked the monorail! Drove up to the Northern area. Amazed by the fields of deer and wondered why they didn't just jump over the fences. In awe of the glow worm caves. Found it to be very much like England in many ways, yet still distinctive.

LadyFi said...

We have Marmite in the UK too.

What flavour is Hockey Pockey ice cream?

betty-NZ said...

Hokey Pokey is vanilla ice cream with bits of toffee candy in it.

Nancy/BLissed-Out Grandma said...

I never knew there were pipers in NZ. (I didn't know most of the other items, either, but bagpipes are something I used to need to know about.)

OOh, I'd like Hokey Pokey ice cream.

Sarah said...

Loving your lists of facts on NZ! I was particularly amazed to hear about how many bag pipe bands there are!