Here in New Zealand, we’re super fortunate to have an absolute smorgasbord of inspiring, beautiful, and sometimes even lifechanging bucket list experiences right here in our own backyard. In celebration of this, we’ve decided to put together our very own Chuffed Kiwi Bucket List. A gift category designed to inspire the recipient to get out of their comfort zone, take on a new experience, and ultimately, tick off one of New Zealand’s internationally renowned bucket list experiences.
Now, we know that everyone has different tastes, and one person’s idea of fun isn’t the same as the next. The beauty of the Bucket List experiences category (and any Chuffed Gift for that matter) is the choice it brings to the giftee. From hurling yourself from a plane at 12,000 feet, to submerging yourself in one of the world’s most pristine marine environments, or simply indulging in a world class spa treatment, we’ve assembled some bucket list experiences designed to offer something for everybody, check ‘em out below!
Horse Trekking on a Black Sand West Coast Beach
New Zealand’s black sand beaches have long drawn crowds from all over the globe, and what better way to experience them than on top of a trusty four-legged steed! This West Coast adventure takes place on a family farm about 30 minutes from Raglan. After a ride over farmland, through a stream and native bush block, down the beach and in the surf – you get to kick back with some locally sourced food and drinks and watch the sun set over the Tasman, it’s hard to top!
Hobbiton Movie Set Tour & Evening Banquet
This experience is too high up on the bucket list of international visitors for us to ignore! The evening begins with a tour of the rolling hills of the Shire, before you head into the Green Dragon Pub for a drink and onto the dining room where the tables are set for a feast like no other. You’ll then walk off the food with another walk through the Shire, this time guided by candlelight. Movie buff or not, this is an incredible experience not to be missed!
Rotorua’s Ultimate Zipline Experience
As educational and inspiring as it is thrilling and adrenaline pumping, this is a ziplining tour with a difference. When Rotorua Canopy Tours began, they made a pledge to use tourism to make a difference, and ultimately transform a small, derelict piece of native NZ forest back to its full glory days. Eight years on, the tens of thousands of customers who have used ziplines, swing bridges and suspended spiral staircases as a means to travel through the Canopy have all contributed back to the restoration of the forest and become not just a customer, but a part of the story. Go see for yourself why this is the #1 outdoor activity in Rotorua!
Full Day Canyoning Adventure in Coromandel
Probably one of the lesser known activities on this list, we consider this trip an absolute hidden gem! Coromandel’s Sleeping God Canyon is an incredibly raw and inspiring place, and there is no better way to see it than by challenging yourself with a full day of navigating waterfall abseils, natural water slides, and taking the leap into deep pools high up in the hills. This is a mind-blowing day of fun that we think all Kiwi’s should get amongst while they can!
Massage, Mud Wrap & Private Bathing at Polynesian Spa Rotorua
A little bit against the grain here, we know, but bear with us! Rotorua’s Polynesian Spa was established in 1972 and is Rotorua’s most iconic spa complex, in fact it's recognised as one of the top 10 spas in the world. The geothermal qualities of the water and mud used in these treatments has been drawing visitors to the area since the early days of NZ tourism in the 1800’s. The world-class treatments here are sure to melt away any worries and leave you feeling completely rejuvenated – as much of a bucket list activity as any other, we reckon!
Waitomo's Lost World Underground Experience
Visitors have flocked to Waitomo for generations to see the underground Glow Worm formations that have made this place famous the world over. But this adventure offers so much more than a short stint underground and a glimpse at these strange little luminescent creatures. Swap boardwalk for abseil as you descend into the bowels of the earth for an incredible underground adventure that you’d be hard pressed to match anywhere else in the world! This is a true blue New Zealand adventure tourism experience that you’ll be raving about for a long long time!
Scuba Diving at the Poor Knights Islands
Diving the Poor Knights Marine Reserve is a truly special experience. Sitting 23 KMs off the coast of Tutukaka in Northland, these islands are a total Marine Reserve, a pending world heritage site and an internationally renowned icon in the diving world. The abundance and variety of bird, fish and plant life above and below the surface here can only be seen to be believed, and the team at Dive Tutukaka have all the expertise, gear and training you need to get a taste of scuba diving in this pristine marine environment.
12,000 Foot Skydive with Skydive Tauranga
Could we have a category called 'The Bucket List’ without including as quintessentially bucket list an activity as you can get? We thought not! There really is no feeling quite like the adrenaline you get from jumping out of a plane and free falling for 45 seconds. We found that once you adjust to the feeling, you’ve got plenty of time to appreciate the incredible views of city and ocean from this unique perspective before you touch down, but don’t take our word for it – take the leap for yourself.
Unfortunately for many of our partners in our bucket list experiences category, New Zealand’s big-ticket tourist attractions are amongst those who have been the most impacted by the closure of our borders. Many of these businesses are kiwi owned and operated and are the product of a lifetime of passion. Whether this passion is for people, place, or activity, our partners take pride in delivering these world class experiences, and at Chuffed, we’re proud as punch to be able to facilitate a connection between our customers and partners.
Now, our bucket list experiences are a bit of a work in progress. As Chuffed works its way through the rest of the country, we’ve got big plans to add to this (and all) categories of gift. We’re talking bungees, dog sledding, helicopters, private yachts, and plenty more. We’d love to hear from you if you think we’ve missed anything!
The activities in this category attract people from all over the world, and by purchasing a gift from the Kiwi Bucket List, not only are you gifting memories that will last a lifetime, you’re also supporting a Kiwi business who have had the wind knocked out of them in 2020. That’s what we call a win-win!