Major Cities in New Zealand
Like Australia, New Zealand is also an island country. It is located 2000 kilometers south east of Australia and is comprised of two land masses commonly known as the North Island and the South Island. The indigenous Maori name is Aotearoa which loosely translates to 'The Land of the Long White Cloud'. The country has a population of over 4 million people.
Their national icon is the kiwi (pronounced as kee-wee) it is a flightless bird, about the size of a chicken. The birds usually have dark brown feathers and have a distinctive long and thin beak. They are native only to New Zealand and though there are five known species of the kiwi, they are all currently an endangered species. Kiwis are closely related to Australia's Emu and Africa's Ostrich. Colloquially, people from New Zealand are also referred to, as 'Kiwis' or otherwise are known as New Zealanders.
Sports are a very important part of New Zealand's culture. Though they are a small country with a small population compared to other sporting nations, New Zealand does very well on the international sporting stage. The most popular sporting teams are the New Zealand cricket team, the national netball team known as the Silver Ferns (netball is the most popular women's sport) and the All Blacks in rugby union which is considered the national sport of New Zealand and are a very successful international team. They are known as the All Blacks because of their uniform and are also well known for the performance of the haka, a traditional Maori that consists of the rhythmic stamping of feet and chanting, before every international game.