Kiwis Motivated By Cultural Travel | Avis Car Rental

With international travel brought to a near standstill over the past 18-months, Kiwis have been seeking out cultural travel experiences from home as a way to understand more about their own history and identity.

According to a recent study, one-third of Kiwis have taken a holiday focused on heritage tourism and ancestral connection, while the majority (66%) are looking to include heritage travel as part of their upcoming holiday plans.

The most common reasons people want to undertake cultural travel is to educate themselves about New Zealand and its cultural history (55%) and to travel with a deeper understanding of our country’s historical context (40%).

The research, conducted by Avis New Zealand, analysed a wide range of travel trends and found a common theme across all generations was a desire to consider cultural travel as a way to gain a better understanding of their own family (31%).

"Whether it’s to retrace your family history, explore cultural attractions, visit national parks or local museums and art galleries, our research shows Kiwis are redefining the travel space through their desire to explore and search for meaning through travel," Lee Marshall, General Manager at Avis New Zealand says.

"The reasons why people love to travel are varied and very personal. But for most Kiwis (66%) heritage travel will be part of their next holiday, indicating a strong interest to experience and learn something new about our country and its history."

The newest addition to the Waitangi Treaty Grounds, Te Rau Aroha Museum, was opened in 2020 and commemorates the service and sacrifice of Māori in the NZ Armed Forces, sharing stories of heroism, loss and restoration from the world wars and subsequent conflicts.

Waitangi Treaty Grounds Trust Chief Executive, Greg McManus, says New Zealanders have been flocking to Waitangi over the past year.

"Domestic visitor numbers since our borders closed have exceeded all expectations. It is fantastic to see so many Kiwi families coming to Waitangi to engage in a conversation about our shared histories."

The concept of heritage tourism is travelling with the purpose of exploring the history and heritage of a place, increasing your understanding of the land and its ancestral and cultural history.

The survey of more than 1000 Kiwis found those interested in cultural travel, and without children at home, are more likely to be motivated to undertake cultural travel claiming it is something they have always wanted to do (34%).

"It’s great to see Kiwis are using travel as a way to create meaningful connections with each other and the country," Marshall says.