• New Zealand Regions
      • Hawke's Bay
      • Bay of Plenty
      • Waikato
      • Whanganui
      • Manawatu
      • Northland
      • Auckland
      • Gisborne
      • Taranaki
      • Wellington
      • West Coast
      • Nelson
      • Canterbury
      • Otago
      • Marlborough
      • Southland
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      Hawke's Bay

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      Beaches, wineries and Art Deco. The Hawke's Bay has a diverse economy, including business services that support its sectors to be the second largest contributor to regional GDP in the country. A popular tourist destination, the region has some of the countries best restaurants as well as stunning scenery, markets and festivals.

      Districts

      HastingsNapier

      Bay of Plenty

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      The Bay of Plenty is officially New Zealand's sunniest destination, enjoying short-lived winters and long summer days. The Region offers some of the country's most spectacular views and many ways to enjoy the pristine scenery and natural wonders. Visitors also enjoy exploring the Bay's Māori heritage and pre-European roots.

      Districts

      OpotikiOpotiki iSiteKawerauWhakatane

      Waikato

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      The Waikato is known for its rolling plains, fertile land and the mighty Waikato River. The region is the fourth largest regional economy in New Zealand, with a strong focus on primary production and associated manufacturing.

      Districts

      South WaikatoWaikato District

      Whanganui

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      Welcome to Whanganui. This is our place; where history is full of stories, legends and rich legacy. Where a thriving arts scene, creativity and evolving culture inspire our modern lives. Where breath-taking natural landscapes capture imaginations at every turn.

      Manawatu

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      Located in the lower North Island, Manawatu is heartland New Zealand, offering an authentic Kiwi experience.

      The main in the region are Palmerston North, most notable for Massey University. Palmerston has a vibrant, arts and culture scene.

      The region's economy is based on food production and processing, research and education. The region is also home for the New Zealand defence force.

      Northland

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      Northland was originally home to some of our country's first human inhabitants. Today, it is one of the fastest growing regions in New Zealand and home to nearly 189,000 people. Rich in culture and history, the region boasts a stunning natural environment.

      Auckland

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      Auckland Region stretches from the the beaches of the Pacific Ocean in the east to the expansive beaches of the rugged west coast of the Tasman Sea. Auckland City, the largest urban area in New Zealand is considered the main economic center of New Zealand and a popular destination for international students and travellers.

      Gisborne

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      Gisborne is a Region on the east coast of New Zealand's North Island. It's known for wineries and surf beaches such as Makorori. The region has maintained a strong Maori heritage. The region's economy is made up mainly of agriculture, horticulture and forestry.

      Taranaki

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      Taranaki is a coastal and mountainous region on the western side of New Zealand's North Island. Its landscape is dominated by Mount Taranaki, its namesake volcano, which lies within the rainforested Egmont National Park.

      The port city of New Plymouth is the area's cultural and commercial hub. Taranaki's economy is diverse and includes dairy, oil and gas. The region is the highest contributor or national GDP per capita. 

      Wellington

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      The Wellington Region covers Wellington city in the south, Upper and Lower Hutt valleys to the north-east, and Porirua to the north-west. The region takes its name from Wellington, New Zealand's capital city.

      Wellington is famous for its arts and culture scene and is also the centre of New Zealand's film industry.

      West Coast

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      The West Coast, or as some locals call it, the "Wild West", is a long thin region that runs down the South Island's west coast.

      The region has the lowest population in all of New Zealand. It is famous for its rugged natural scenery such as the Pancake Rocks, the Blue Pools of Haast, and the glaciers.

      The main industries in the region are dairy farming and mining. Tourism also plays an important role.

      Nelson – Tasman

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      Nelson Tasman is an extraordinary, vibrant region where art and businesses thrive together among a stunning natural landscape. With one in five people internationally born, Nelson Tasman has 48 different cultures living in its environs.

      The region prides its self on being New Zealand’s leading Research and Development areas, with the highest proportion of people working in the research, science and tech sectors out of anywhere in New Zealand.

      Canterbury

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      Canterbury is a region on New Zealand’s South Island marked by grassy plains, clear lakes and snow-capped mountains. Its largest city, Christchurch, is famed for its art scene and green spaces.

      Otago

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      There are few places in the world which will leave you with a lasting sense of difference. Central Otago is undoubtedly one of them from its landscapes, its seasons, its people, its products and experiences.

      Marlborough

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      Marlborough Region is on the north-eastern corner of the South Island. The region is well known for its winemaking industry, and the Marlborough Sounds, an extensive network of coastal waterways, peninsulas and islands.

      Apart from the wine industry, aquaculture, agriculture and tourism play an important role in the local economy.

      Southland

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      Southland is New Zealand’s most southerly region and includes the World Heritage ranked Fiordland National Park.

      The region's only city Invercargill offers a relaxed pace of life with wide streets, little traffic, spacious parks and gardens, striking Victorian and Edwardian architecture and impressive sporting facilities including New Zealand’s first indoor velodrome. Southland's location is such that views of Aurora Australis or the Southern Lights are common.

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Road signs

Most of the signs you will see on New Zealand roads are international symbolic signs. This means they use the same shapes and symbols as traffic signs all over the world. Symbolic signs are used because they are quick to read and easy for all drivers to understand. New Zealand’s signs are generally made of reflective material, making them easier to read at night.

 

The three types of signs
The signs on our roads can be divided into three types:

  • compulsory signs
  • warning signs
  • information signs.

You must be able to recognise and understand each type of sign.
Some examples of these signs are shown below. The examples shown are only a small sample of the symbolic signs used on New Zealand’s roads. They are intended to familiarise you with the three main types of symbolic sign rather than introduce you to all of the signs you will see when driving.

 

Compulsory signs

Compulsory signs tell you what you must or must not do. They are usually red or blue.

Regulatory traffic sign with turn right arrow on a circular blue background

Turn right

 

Regulatory traffic sign with an arrow pointing up on a circular blue background

Keep going straight ahead

 

Regulatory traffic sign with keep left arrow on a circular blue background

Keep left

 

Regulatory traffic sign with the number 50 on a circular red background

You must not go faster than 50km/h

 

Regulatory traffic sign with the text no entry on a circular red background

You must not drive into this road

 

Regulatory traffic sign with a red strike on a left turn arrow and it has a circular red border

You must not turn left

 

Regulatory traffic sign with a red strike on a curving U arrow and it has a circular red border

You must not make a U-turn

 

Regulatory traffic sign says stop on a red hexagon

You must stop and then give way

 

Regulatory traffic upside down triangular sign with a red border that says give way

You must slow down and give way (or stop, if necessary)

 

Regulatory traffic sign that says school patrol stop on a circular red background and it has a handle protruding on the side

School patrol – you must stop

 

 
Some compulsory signs have red borders.

Regulatory traffic sign says keep left unless passing and it has a rectangular red border

You must keep left unless passing

 

Regulatory traffic sign has a bus icon on top and the word lane underneath. The sign has a square red border

Bus lane that can also be used by cycles, motorcycles, mopeds

 

Regulatory traffic sign has a bus icon on top and the word only underneath. The sign has a square red border

Bus lane that can only be used by buses

 

Regulatory traffic sign with four lines of text and it has a red border around the sign. The top line says transit lane. The middle line has a T2 icon and a car icon next to each other. The third line in smaller print says 6am-10am. The fourth line also has Mon-Fri in smaller print.

Transit lane, which can only be used by passenger service vehicles, cycles, motorcycles, mopeds and vehicles carrying at least the number of people displayed on the sign (eg T2 means two or more people, T3 means three or more people)

 

Warning signs

Warning signs alert you to a particular hazard on the road ahead. They warn you to be careful for your own safety, the safety of other road users or the safety of road workers carrying out maintenance.

There are two types of warning signs:

  • Those that warn you of a permanent hazard.
  • Those that warn you of a temporary hazard.

Both types of sign are usually diamond shaped.

 

Permanent warning signs

Permanent warning signs are either yellow and black or green and black.

Pedestrian crossing

 

Look out for children

 

Slippery surface

 

Road narrows

 

Clearance height advance warning

 

Temporary warning signs

Temporary warning signs are orange and black.

Roadworks

 

Left lane closed

 

Slips

 

Gravel surface

 

Stop on request

 

Other hazard

Note: this sign will always be
displayed with another sign
explaining the hazard,
eg ‘Flooding’
 

Information signs

Information signs give you useful information, for example, the distance to the next town. They are all rectangular, but come in a range of different colours and sizes.

You may turn left, but first give way to any
pedestrians and vehicles

 

Shows the state highway number and the
distance in kilometres to places listed

 

Shows directions to places
at the next intersection

 

Shows the way to the nearest
information centre

 

Shows the state highway number
and direction to places listed

 

Temporary information sign – roadworks or
construction site access 100 metres ahead

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