New Zealand is an island country located in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. It geographically comprises two main landmasses, the North and South Islands. In 1250-1300, Polynesians settled New Zealand and developed a distinctive Māori culture. Europeans first made contact in 1642. The culture of New Zealand is largely inherited from British and European custom, interwoven with Māori and Polynesian tradition. European and Māori remain the two largest ethnicities, but the large Polynesian population in Auckland has prompted the observation that Auckland is now the largest Polynesian city in the world.
In fact, Auckland is the most remote city in the world with a population in excess of one million. The country of New Zealand is currently the 122 most populated in the world. During its long isolation, New Zealand developed a distinct biodiversity. It is a marvelous place to visit and holds many unique experiences. This article will examine 15 interesting places and events in New Zealand.
The Kawekaweau is an extinct Giant Gecko unique to New Zealand. It is by far the largest of all geckos with an overall length of at least 600 mm (around 2 ft). The only recorded account of a living Kawekaweau is from 1870, when a Māori chief killed one he found under a dead rata tree in the forests of the Waimana Valley, which are now protected as part of the northern section of Te Urewera National Park.
The lizard is described as being “brownish with reddish stripes and as thick as a man’s wrist.” In 1986, a single stuffed museum specimen of a Kawekaweau was discovered in the basement of the Natural History Museum of Marseille. Nobody is quite sure how the specimen got to France. In 1990, the Kawekaweau was given to the Museum of New Zealand, Te Papa Tongarewa, which is the national museum and art gallery of the country. “Te Papa Tongarewa” is broadly translated as “the place of treasures of this land.”