15 Countries Easiest to Visit from New Zealand
15 Countries Easiest to Visit from New Zealand

15 Countries Easy to Visit from New Zealand

© Unsplash

The Closest Countries to New Zealand

No doubt your journey to New Zealand is as long and as tasking as Frodo’s journey to Mordor. Although New Zealand feels like it is far away from everything, there are some amazing countries and tropical islands nearby to really extend your travels around Oceania. Don’t miss the opportunity to explore the counties near New Zealand!

Don’t know where to start? This quick list will give you an idea of what countries are closest to New Zealand so you can start adding them to your travel bucket list! The South Pacific provides huge diversity for travellers, whether you are looking for a tropical getaway, a gap year in Australia or something adventurous in the Antarctic.

1. Australia

Distance from New Zealand: 2,100 km (1,300 mi)
Flight time from New Zealand: 3 hours

It should really go without saying. Australia is New Zealand’s big brother, so it would almost be a crime not to visit the Aussies, cuddle a koala and dive in the Great Barrier Reef during your stay Down Under. Find out how to plan a trip to New Zealand’s closest neighbour in our complete guide, How to Plan a Trip from New Zealand to Australia.

Pixabay© Pixabay

2. Fiji

Distance from New Zealand: 1,800 km (1,120 mi)
Flight time from New Zealand: 3 hrs 5 mins

A tropical paradise with a huge but diverse tourism industry, Fiji is an archipelago nation of around 333 islands. Lap up the sun in a luxury resort, backpack around the islands swimming with manta rays and sharks, or plan the perfect family getaway. Take a look at Fiji – Guide for Backpackers for more information on backpacking in Fiji or FijiPocketGuide.com for practical advice on planning your island holiday!

fijipocketguide.com© fijipocketguide.com

5. Samoa

Distance from New Zealand: 2,800 km (1,740 mi)
Flight time from New Zealand: 3 hrs 45 mins

A more “off the beaten track” South Pacific island nation, Samoa is filled with wonderful natural attractions across its volcano-formed landscape. Relax on the beach, find insanely beautiful swimming holes, and see blowholes blasting water 30 metres high! For more things to do there, check out Samoa – Guide for Backpackers, as well as our complete sister travel guide SamoaPocketGuide.com.

10 Countries Easy to Visit from New Zealand© SamoaPocketGuide.com

6. Tonga

Distance from New Zealand: 1,900 km (1,180 mi)
Flight time from New Zealand: 3 hours

This Pacific Island appeals more to the adventure-seekers, with whale swimming, cultural experiences, active volcanoes, caves and so much more! Sure, you can get your island resort fix here too. There are 176 islands yet only 60 of those are inhabited. Plan your island escape in our Tonga – Guide for Backpackers or on our sister website, TongaPocketGuide.com.

10 Countries Easy to Visit from New Zealand© TongaPocketGuide.com

7. The Cook Islands

Distance from New Zealand: 3,000 km (1,865 mi)
Flight time from New Zealand: 3 hrs 45 mins

Out of all of the South Pacific Islands, the Cook Islands provide the closest “vibe” to New Zealand. The culture, Cook Islands Maori, share similar traditions and the currency is the same, as is the laid-back atmosphere. What’s the difference between the Cook Islands and New Zealand? Picture-perfect lagoons, swimming with turtles and the weather is a lot warmer! Find out more about this set of 15 islands in our Cook Islands – Guide for Backpackers, or at CookIslandsPocketGuide.com.

10 Countries Easy to Visit from New Zealand© Charlotte Piho - CookIslandsPocketGuide.com

8. Niue

Distance from New Zealand: 2,400 km (1,490 mi)
Flight time from New Zealand: 3 hrs 30 mins

One of the least visited countries in the world, Niue is nicknamed the “Rock of the Pacific” as the world’s largest raised coral atoll. If you’re drawn to a destination that’s full of intrigue, yet get your tropical fix of snorkelling, whale swimming and discovering uncrowded natural attractions, then this is the place. Good attractions, good food and easy to get around; why not pick Niue as an easy country to visit from New Zealand? Learn more in A Travel Guide to Niue: How to Plan a Trip from New Zealand or head straight to NiuePocketGuide.com.

10 Countries Easy to Visit from New Zealand© NiuePocketGuide.com

9. Vanuatu

Distance from New Zealand: 1,900 km (1,180 mi)
Flight time from New Zealand: 3 hrs 15 mins

If culture is what you seek, then don’t miss Vanuatu with its ancient history and diverse culture. Visit villages where tribes stay true to their traditions and see the famous land dive, which is said to be the inspiration for the modern bungy jump invented in New Zealand. For more information on Vanuatu, visit Vanuatu – Guide for Backpackers.

Pixabay© Pixabay

10. New Caledonia

Distance from New Zealand: 1,500 km (930 mi)
Flight time from New Zealand: 3 hrs 5 mins

Experience a fusion of Europe and Polynesia in New Caledonia. Enjoy good food, great beaches and a place where relaxation is a priority! Find out more about planning an affordable trip to this South Pacific paradise in our New Caledonia – Guide for Backpackers and How to Plan a Trip to New Caledonia from New Zealand.

Pixabay© Pixabay

11. Antarctica

Distance from New Zealand: 2,600 km (1,615 mi)
Flight time from New Zealand: 5 hours

If you want to freeze yourself stupid in Antarctica, taking a trip from New Zealand would be the time to do it! Needless to say, flights from the Christchurch gateway to Antarctica are extremely limited, while cruises provide a better bet for reaching the southern depths of the earth. Check out cruises from New Zealand to Antarctica on TourRadar. Otherwise, visit the International Antarctic Centre in Christchurch to get your Antarctic fix without leaving New Zealand!

15 Countries Easiest to Visit from New Zealand© Unsplash

12. Hawaii

Distance from New Zealand: 7,000 km (4,350 mi)
Flight time from New Zealand: 8 hrs 35 mins

If you don’t mind travelling further afield, how about a trip to an alternative Pacific paradise, Hawaii? Combine the unbeatable service and connections to the US as you explore this well-established tourist hotspot boasting an array of holiday experiences for backpackers, families, honeymooners and everyone in between. Find out more in How to Plan a Trip to Hawaii from New Zealand.

10 Countries Easiest to Visit from New Zealand© Pexels

13. Tuvalu

Distance from New Zealand: 3,000 km (1,865 mi)
Flight time from New Zealand: 6 hours

The world’s smallest country is the destination for the free-spirited traveller! Made up of nine islands, Tuvalu is located just below the equator between the island nations of Fiji and Kiribati. Flights operate to Tuvalu from Fiji to this stunning South Pacific island nation with paradise coastlines and lagoons. Learn more above visiting this final frontier of South Pacific travel in our Tuvalu – Guide for Backpackers.

10 Countries Easiest to Visit from New Zealand© SPTO

14. Stewart Island

Ok, so Stewart Island is not its own country, but it is a small island of New Zealand that many neglect to visit. To say you have visited New Zealand’s third-most populated island will blow people’s minds! Just take one of the daily ferries from Bluff at the bottom of the South Island and you’ll be at this subantarctic paradise in no time. Take a look at The Complete Travel Guide to Stewart Island to start planning your trip.

© NZPocketGuide.com

15. Antipodes Islands

On the subject of New Zealand islands that people rarely venture to, the Antipodes Islands is one of the lesser-known subantarctic islands of New Zealand. Cruises departing from Dunedin or Bluff will bring you to its two grand volcanic cones and habitat for penguins and seals. Learn more about these islands on the Department of Conservation website.

Pixabay© Pixabay

More About Countries Near New Zealand

How about somewhere a little warmer? There are heaps of tropical islands you can visit too. Check out our 10 Tropical Islands You Can Visit from New Zealand. Otherwise, see these guides:

Finally, don’t forget to check out SouthPacificPocketGuide.com to see our full suite of travel guides for countries near New Zealand.


Robin C.

This article was reviewed and published by Robin, the co-founder of NZ Pocket Guide. He has lived, worked and travelled across 16 different countries before calling New Zealand home. He has now spent over a decade in the New Zealand tourism industry, clocking in more than 600 activities across the country. He is passionate about sharing those experiences and advice on NZ Pocket Guide and its YouTube channel. Robin is also the co-founder of several other South Pacific travel guides.

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