New Zealanders open their hearts to newcomers.
In fact, nine out of ten migrants find the welcome they receive meets or exceeds their expectations, according to a recent Immigration New Zealand survey.
Naturals at welcoming strangers
New Zealanders know what it’s like arriving somewhere new. We’re great international travellers and nearly a quarter of us were born outside New Zealand. Over 90% of us feel some connection with another country through family, friends or interests.
Our warmth and hospitality is also a product of our size. New Zealanders don’t have to protect their private space by staying aloof. Quite the opposite - living on the edge of the world as we do, we prefer to reach out and make connections.
Relationship with the land
Kiwis in many respects are quite a different breed. It’s a result of where we come from and the values we hold.
Our country is a land of wide open spaces, where the elements come alive. We share a fierce appreciation of the land that inspires us and provides opportunities for ourselves and for future generations.
Shaped by our culture
Our character is also shaped by a unique mix of Māori and European culture. This melding of ideas and customs began with the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840 and continues to this day.
The culture that has created is a strong connector between us, and a bond we love to share with visitors.
Today, New Zealand is diverse, combining influences from around the world, especially the Pacific. We’re a country of open, welcoming people, a place you’ll make lasting friendships.
Open spaces, open hearts, open minds. That’s New Zealand and its people in a nutshell.
A tradition of hospitality
The spirit of welcome runs deep here. Māori have a word for it - Manaakitanga.
Loosely translated as hospitality, Manaakitanga sums up the act of welcoming and looking after guests. The idea is that by offering hospitality, generosity and mutual respect everyone involved comes out better off.
Bringing people together
Food and hospitality have always been at the heart of the Māori way of life.
Whether it's a picnic on the beach, a hāngi at your child's school or a barbeque with neighbours - you'll find that food and friendship go hand-in-hand in New Zealand.
Manaakitanga extends far beyond Māori tradition. It’s even recognised by our Government as one of the two core values of our tourism strategy.