About New Zealand
New Zealand is a country with beautiful scenery, welcoming people and a well developed infrastructure for visitors. For visitors coming from overseas, we recommend taking a little extra time to see some of the attractions, since it may be one of the few times you'll come here.
New Zealand is split between two main islands, the North Island, which has most of the people, and the South Island, which is the most scenic and beautiful part of the country.
The three largest Cities are Auckland and Wellington in the North Island, and Christchurch in the South. However going by LUG stregth, Dunedin (DunLUG) and Hamilton (Waikato LUG) have to be two of the strongest.
New Zealand has a varied but generally mild climate. January is mid summer in New Zealand, with daytime temperatures ranging between 15 and 30 degreesC. Many New Zealanders take a summer vacation after Christmas through to mid January, and the conference will happen at the end of this period, before the Universities go back.
New Zealand is the first country to see each day, New Zealand Standard Time (NZST) is UTC+12 hours and this one timezone applies to the entire country, New Zealand Daylight Time (which it will be in January) is UTC+13 hours. Type "TZ=NZ date" to see the current time here.
The New Zealand electricity supply is 240V 50Hz, using a plug specific to Australia and New Zealand. Travelers from further afield will need power plug adapters, available at airports.
Two overpriced cellphone networks are available in New Zealand. People with GSM phones can either use global roaming or purchase a prepaid Vodafone SIM for $35 from Dick Smith Electronics.
Telephone sockets are BT-style (See image below), different from what is used in Australia and North America. You can buy adaptors from local Dick Smith Electronics stores. We will have wireless and ethernet internet access available at the conference venue. If you want to purchase dial-up access for when you are traveling in New Zealand, see Earthlight or Australian Ihug customers may be able to use their existing accounts if they contact ihug.
Dunedin is located in the South of the South Island, the second largest city there. It is a student town, hosting Otago University, the Dunedin College of Education, and Otago Polytechnic, as well as a number of smaller institutions. Dunedin was formed as a Scottish settlement in 1848, and still retains a Scottish flavour today.
Dunedin is also a popular tourist and conference destination, as well as a gateway to Central Otago. The Otago Peninsula is known for its wildlife including the Royal Albatross and the Yellow Eyed Penguin. In Dunedin itself you can tour the local brewery and the chocolate factory.
You will find more information about Dunedin and the things you can do here from the links below.