Summer finally came and my parents decided that our family was going to take a trip somewhere out of the country. They said we needed to experience a different culture. Before my family and I could start planning our trip, we had to decide where we would like to go. My family and I looked at many different countries and they all had their own unique culture that stood out. The one I liked the most, though, was New Zealand. New Zealand has an interesting history, a variety of land features and unique people.
The first people to find New Zealand were the Maori people. They first arrived in New Zealand in about the tenth century A.D.(“About”). Now, Maori people make up fourteen percent of the New Zealand population (“About”). The Maori people named New Zealand “land of the long, white, cloud” (“About”). Europeans first sighted New Zealand in the seventeenth century and by the early nineteenth century British settlers had arrived. New Zealand became a British colony in 1840 with the signing of the Waitangi Treaty (Smelt 19). The Treaty of Waitangi is very important to the New Zealand people. This agreement between the British Crown and the Maori Chiefs is the founding document of New Zealand (Shepard 51). In 1852 Britain allowed New Zealand to be self-governing. As people continued to migrate to New Zealand there was an increasing demand for the land. Conflict between settlers and the Maori eventually led to land wars in the 1960s. In the end, the Maori lost the war and their land (Smelt 24). New Zealanders have sought to modify capitalism by destroying privilege, expanding human opportunities through education, and providing secure employment, free medical care and inexpensive housing (“New” 247a).