Explore our guide and discover 10 spectacular countries you can visit visa-free – at least for a while – when you hold a Kiwi passport.
Let’s start out with a little country that has a huge amount to recommend itself as a holiday destination. Fiji is the perfect destination if you’re after somewhere that will allow you to explore a fascinating new culture, participate in some brilliant activities, enjoy glorious weather, and do it all in the most beautiful and tropical of surrounds. There are heaps of great ways to earn that seafood lunch or after dinner cocktail, such as diving the Great Astrolabe Reef. Located off the island of Kadavu, this spectacular barrier reef is over 100 kilometres in length and rated one of the world’s great diving locations. Those who make the trip will see stunning coral gardens, dramatic drop-offs and a kaleidoscope of colourful marine life.
Canada is one of those countries that will take your breath away at every turn. The fact that, if you’re lucky enough to be in a financial position to do so, you can stay here for half a year without a visa (if you have an NZ passport) is unbelievable! There are just so many reasons you should visit this vast country that we don’t know where to begin. However, a few choice places you wouldn’t regret visiting or activities you must be a part of are the pristine Eastern townships, the drive from Jasper to Banff, snowboarding the myriad mountains through British Columbia and Alberta, catching the Northern Lights in Yellowknife and taking a train tour through the stunning autumnal beauty of the Agawa Canyon.
The East and West Tsavo National Park, Amboseli National Park, Masai Mara, Lake Nakuru National Park and Aberdares National Park are just some of the fantastic, life-changing reasons you should visit Kenya. The wildlife, people, and incredible vistas that will have you questioning the veracity of your own eyes are a few more. This is a magical place. It’s said that Africa gets under your skin, into your blood. And it’s not just the sweeping plains and mind-blowing safaris that you need to see. If you’re partial to a day on the beach then Diani Beach will leave you flabbergasted by its perfection. Shanzu Beach is another you should spend a lazy day or two at as well.
Uruguay is sometimes overlooked due to its more famous and bigger neighbours like Brazil. This is a shame for those who only breeze into this varied and interesting South American country. Montevideo, the capital is a place of contrasts, where the modern offices of downtown sit next to the old buildings of the historic centre (such as in Plaza Independencia). Obviously, you can’t visit this part of the world without indulging in a little asado – the traditional barbecue of South America – unless you happen to be vegetarian. Maybe you want to learn a little tango? Well, Uruguay is famous for its dancers. Basically, there is a lot to see and a lot to do, and if you want to holiday somewhere that is somewhat off the beaten track when it comes to tourism then why not head to this little South American spot.
When you think Peru the first thing that leaps to mind like a flea on a pogo-stick is Machu Picchu. This is obviously a must do for absolutely everyone that visits Peru, but there is far more to this wonderful place than just the famous, ancient Incan ruins. If you’re a fan of Doctor Seuss you might want to head out to the remote and candy-striped Rainbow Mountain in the Peruvian Andes. There’s a remarkable geological formation resembling a forest made of stone that is very much worth checking out too, the Huayllay National Sanctuary. In fact Peru is simply stuffed with fantastic things to do and see from the Nazca Lines to the Boiling River of the Amazon, this country won’t disappoint.
Ah, Ireland. What can be said about this great little country? The people are friendly, the pubs probably the best in the world, the whisky, beer and food excellent, and some of the scenery will simply blow you away. These are all things synonymous with the Emerald Isle, but it has more strings than those to its bow – or harp. Sure, you can head to St. James’ Gate and drink the freshest Guinness you can find on the planet, but you can also, for instance, catch some big wave surfing in Co. Donegal, Mullaghmore. Or perhaps you want to see a bit of nature? Then head to west Cork and do a bit of whale-watching. If you fancy soaking in some of Ireland’s natural beauty then you should cycle or drive the Ring of Kerry, one of the most stunning drives in the world.
With a heritage that dates all the way back to ancient antiquity, it’s no wonder that people who are new to the Middle East are blown away by Kuwait. For a country that is situated in one of the driest and inhospitable places on earth, Kuwait has really thrived. It’s the architecture that will catch your eye when you initially get there. The Kuwait Towers are the symbol of this little nation, but your eye will also be drawn to the Grand Mosque, Liberation Tower and Al Hamra Tower. For a serious perspective change it’s definitely worth spending a night or two out in the desert.
Panama is one little Central American country that has got it all going on. Landing in Panama City, it’s worth checking out the scale of the Panama Canal. If you aren’t too familiar with it you’ll be blown away by the sheer audacity of the idea and execution of it. It really is a marvel of the modern age. Panama really does have it all. There are rainforests to explore, ancient ruins and sublime architecture to marvel at and, when you’re knackered from playing tourist, there are some of the most exquisite stretches of beach you could wish to throw a towel down on; San Blas Islands, we’re looking at you.
Guyana, found on South America’s North Atlantic Coast, is an English speaking country that loves its cricket and calypso, and is more culturally connected to the Caribbean region than other South American countries. It’s quite strange to be this far south and see architecture that is so quintessentially English. There’s nothing English, however, about the Kaieteur Falls, Iwokrama Forest or epic Kanuku Mountains. Guyana really has to be visited – and seen – to be believed.
Dominica remains an unspoiled paradise for divers, hikers, and naturalists. It is a wonderland that can count lush rainforests, waterfalls, lakes, gorges, rivers, and steamy hot springs as part of its geographic and topographical makeup. Dominica is a fusion of British, French, and West Indian cultures, and is home to the Eastern Caribbean’s largest Carib Indian community. This place is commonly visited by those hopping off a cruise ship for a day or two, but it’s at its best if you have the time to spend weeks here – preferably in the winter while you’re escaping from colder climes.