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Thread: North Island v South Island

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    welwynrose's Avatar
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    Default North Island v South Island

    as you know we're hoping to come out the NZ next year with the hope of finding work & making the move official - at the moment hubby & I are unsure which is the best area to look at - hubby is a painter & decorator & I'm a bookkeeper/accounts person so both of us can work anywhere - I like the look of the South Island as I think a move to a less populated area would be good for us - the main problem being that I don't drive (could always learn though) - I've commuted & worked in London for more years than I can remember & hubby just goes where the work is - we're past the stage where we want to be out clubbing every weekend especially since we've had dogs - we've got no kids to worry about & were wondering about the advantages/disadvantages of both Islands

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    Ah, the great north/south divide. I guess it's horses for courses when deciding where to live. What I would normally advise anyone is to go where the work is. Many people arrive in NZ with pre-conceived ideas about where they want to settle, but it's easier said than done if you can't find work in your ideal location.

    Also, if you have the opportunity, it's always a good idea to try to tour around NZ, both to look for job opportunities and also to see how you feel about the different places. There's nothing like being there in person to get good or bad vibes about a place.

    Certainly there is a smaller population in SI, but there's also great places in NI where you can still 'get away from it all'. If you don't drive, you would preferably need to be near a town or city so that your commute wouldn't be too difficult.

    The weather in SI can be quite a bit colder than NI with snow in winter, but there's plenty of sunny days as well. It can snow in the centre of NI, too.

    As you will read on here from time to time, there are several members who've settled in both NI and SI and all seem to be very happy with their choices.
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    KiwiHopeful's Avatar
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    South Island rules, North Island Drools!

    There, I said it.

    In all seriousness, I agree with MB that it's courses for horses. You have to think about what you're looking for in a place to live. For us, we got some great advice about Chch and it has seemed to be a perfect fit. But, I haven't been to Nelson and I haven't been to Hamilton, which some people on this forum seem to like even though it is on the North Island and is probably the only city in NZ that isn't on a lake or the ocean.
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    Yeah, yeah, yeah KH understand your consternation because we had every intention of living near the sea when we came here. Why come half way around the world and live inland in a city eh? Well, to be honest I ask myself the same question some days and I pretty much reckon my answer is this - nothing is forever. You do what you need to do when you need to do it. 'Cities' here are nothing like 'cities', they aren't big, they aren''t busy, they don't have a lot of people in them. You can drive around the middle of Hamilton, the 4th largest 'city' in NZ on a Saturday afternoon and see about 6 people. It'z crazy.

    We hadn't even considered Hamilton before we left the UK but after passing through on the way on our tour around the NI we found our way back. The countryside is spectacular, real Middle Earth country, most of the dairy farming is based here because the land is so fertile thanks to the volcanic landscape, it's a very wealthy region, its full of horses (all the racehorses are bred here) vair vair high satisfaction hit for me, Hamilton is a university city and with approx 45000 student pop there's plenty to do and it feels alive. It's going places I think and when all's said and done it's just where we are right now. That doesn't mean we'll stay here, settle forever here, make our future here and then again it might. We'll do whatever. We can be on a beach on the wild, rugged West Coast in 30 mins or a white sandy beach lapped by the calm Pacific in the East in 60 mins, we may decide to add ourselves to either of these sparse populations we may not. We'll do whatever. Maybe we'll head south, maybe we'll head north, maybe we'll head where we head and see what we see when we get there.

    You get the point. A life is for living. Dont see your initial move as definitive, it's just a step on a journey. Be open to opportunity and experience and you'll find yourself in places you never dreamed of. It's all there for the taking and it's all there for you to enrich your lives with. Live in the moment and the future will take care of itself.
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    Hi,

    I agree with MB and I would take the opportunity to travel round for a few weeks before looking to settle somewhere.

    There are advantages of both Islands. I love the South Island and would love to live in Nelson for example but the job opportunities and wages aren't as great as some of the other cities.

    We've been in Wellington for almost a year now and before we moved out here I was adamant I wouldnt live in another big city and defo not Wellington. I didnt take to it when we visited on holiday and kept this image that it wasnt that great. Now I love it. I dont think we'll be here forever but certainly long enough to get some savings behind us then perhaps we'll head up North a bit more.

    It's really difficult to decide on where to settle until you're here.

    Another good idea is to get on the web and have a look at vacancies in your prefession.

    www.trademe.co.nz and SEEK - New Zealand's no. 1 jobs, employment, career and recruitment site will give you a good idea on what's on offer and where on the job front.

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    We went in the opposite direction from what everyone else is advising--go figure, eh?

    We considered doing the 'grand tour' upon arrival, but when we really thought about it, it didn't really seem all that realistic for us. The idea of driving around from place to place to figure out where to settle was a bit nerve-wracking, so we picked Chch, sight unseen. From that moment on, there was some clarity at least about that one part of this move.

    As Dawn rightly notes, nothing is forever. If we chose wrong, we'll move on. But at least we got our feet under us rather quickly, and that was important to me--especially since I have a 2 1/2 year old and a 4 year old!
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    We did the 'tour' of NZ and decided that whilst the South Island is ideal for summer vacations, the North Island rules.

    The North Island has more population so more opportunities and facilities, and it has better weather! OK, looking at statistics most of the South Island has better weather than most of the UK but you need to feel the difference, and that is more likely in the North Island. Nelson and Blenheim are the two areas I would consider in the South Island with their long hours of sunshine, but for employment opportunities Christchurch seems to be the place.

    Last edited by Glenda; 30-09-2007 at 01:04 PM.
    Glenda
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    kokopeli is offline God like figure
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    Definately South Island for me, although I do admit that you can't beat some of those North Island beaches.

    I think the image of the South Island as a cold, deserted place actually works in its favour. If the rest of the world knew what it was really like here, we'd have another million or so next-door neighbours.....

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    Quote Originally Posted by kokopeli View Post
    If the rest of the world knew what it was really like here, we'd have another million or so next-door neighbours.....
    If u don't tell, we won't
    Inside me is a skinny woman crying to get out but I can usually shut her up with cake!

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    Koko, I got an email this morning from Hurunui Horse Treks, they're up in Canterbury and they're for sale! Jeez how would I love that! That might be just enough to tempt me to the SI. An amazing opportunity for a business but with over 21000 hectares guess it's gonna be a few grand eh? Any like minded horsey peeps out there fancy going into business? This isn't just any trekking station, it's world renowned!
    Passionate about the unfathomableness opportunities of kiwi-a-gogo-land

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