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Area Codes in New Zealand

+64

The agricultural country of New Zealand, located in the Pacific Ocean far away from Sweden, began to create a modern welfare state as early as the end of the 19th century. Despite strong social cuts in the 1990s, New Zealand is still good at statistics on living conditions. In recent times, foreign and cultural, the country has made a course change away from the UK, from where a majority of the population originated, and formed closer ties with the surrounding Pacific region and Asia. The indigenous Maoris are Polynesians.
  • Abbreviationfinder: Brief profiles of New Zealand, including geography, history, politics, economics as well as common acronyms about this country.

Geography and climate

New Zealand is located in the temperate zone of the Pacific Ocean between the equator and the South Pole, about 160 miles southeast of Australia. The surface area is slightly larger than Norrland, but as far as Sweden. It consists mainly of two elongated mountainous islands: the North and South Islands, which are separated by the three-mile wide Cook's Sound.

The Stewart Island (Rakiura) just south of the South Island also belongs to New Zealand as well as a number of smaller islands: the Kermadec and Chatham Islands north and east of the main islands as well as Niue Island, Tokelau and Cook Islands in the South Sea. Niue Island and Cook Islands are self-governing. New Zealand also manages the Ross Sea area in Antarctica.

Geography and climate of New Zealand

About half of the two main islands consist of cultivated land and pasture land, while the remainder mainly consists of forest and inaccessible mountains. On the North Island there are scenic volcanic areas around Lake Taupo with geysers, boiling lakes and three volcanoes. The highest volcano Ruapehu reaches 2,700 meters above sea level, but Ngauruhoe and Tongariro also reach altitudes of 2,000 meters. Both islands are seismically active and severe earthquakes have occurred. In 2011, a quake occurred in the city of Christchurch on the South Island which is described as the most serious in 80 years. 185 people were killed and severe material damage occurred.

The coasts of the North Island are partly made up of large bays. The South Island is dominated by the Southern Alps (Ka Tiriti o te Moana) mountain range, which runs in a north-south direction with glaciers and snow-capped peaks that in some cases reach over 3,000 meters above sea level. On the south-west coast of South Island there are deep fjords and on the east coast the Canterbury plain is spreading. New Zealand's rivers are contested and provide excellent opportunities to extract hydropower.

By the arrival of the Europeans towards the end of the 18th century, two thirds of the country was covered by forest, but only a small part of the original forest remained. Large forests in the subtropical area in the far north were destroyed by the colonizers. Nowadays, forests are protected by law and in large areas, mainly imported, fast-growing pine trees are newly planted, partly for harvesting and partly for tying the soil. The most important forest area is the Taupo region on the North Island. On the west side of the South Island, where the climate is humid, rainforests grow with deciduous trees as a southern ebb and conifers like cypresses. In drier areas there are grass and bush steppes and in the mountains alpine plants.

New Zealand's location means that there are many animal and plant species that are not found anywhere else. Among them is the endangered kiwi bird, which is a national symbol and has given the population the nickname "kiwis".

Climate

New Zealand has a mildly temperate ocean climate with small temperature changes, abundant rainfall and plenty of sun. As the country is in the southern hemisphere, the temperature drops further south.

In the far north, summers are often long and warm, while the mountainous areas of the South Island can get temperatures down to -10C in winter. Weather can change quickly and unexpectedly when cold fronts or tropical cyclones blow in.

The warmest months are December, January and February, when summer prevails. The coldest is June, July and August, which are winter months. In summer, maximum temperatures can vary between 20 and 30 C and in winter between 10 and 15 C.

Winter gives more rain on most of the North Island, while South Island gets some rain in the winter. South Island has more rainfall on the west side than on the east side. Mountain ridges on both islands become snow-covered in winter with beautiful landscapes and excellent skiing opportunities.

FACTS - GEOGRAPHY AND CLIMATE

Surface

270 534 km2 (2018)

Time

Swedish + 11 hours

Capital with number of inhabitants

Wellington 398,000 inhabitants (2015) 1

Other major cities

Auckland 1.5 million (with suburbs), Christchurch 382,000, Hamilton 224,000 (2015) 2

Highest mountain

Mount Cook (3764 m asl)

Important rivers

Waikato (on the North Island), Clutha (on the South Island)

Average Precipitation / month

Auckland 64 mm (Jan), 142 mm (Aug), Christchurch 84 mm (May), 46 mm (September)

Average / day

Auckland 19 C (Jan), 11 C (July), Christchurch 17 C (Jan), 6 C (July)

  1. metropolitan area
    2. metropolitan areaSources
 

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