Following my arrival, the IFSA-Butler team made the welcoming and transition to kiwi life very easy. We were given four days of a recreational park where the Auckland YMCA was built. Here we had days of kayaking and mountain boarding (a combination between snowboarding and skateboarding) throughout the park. In addition to these fun games we were taught how to play rugby (a very crucial knowledge in NZ) and how the school system is here. It was all very informative and joyful with free meals along the way. I couldn’t be happier with the program I chose due to these amazing experiences and the many amazing experiences to come.
The first week went by in a flaw, we were given a international students orientation which gave us tips for being successful here as well as an exploration. I chose the red rocks beach which is a 2o minute bus ride from Wellington and allows you to see heaps of seals on these ‘red rocks’ along the coast. We even saw a few penguins!
Finally, this weekend my friends and I took a trip to Martinsborough where we did some extravagant wine tasting and got a feel for the kiwi drinking culture. Renting a batch and car for somewhere so close was a good experience and helped for planing future travels that included 3-day backpacking hikes.
I wouldn’t have traded my orientation or first week at Victoria University for anything, I got to understand the culture and travel here so well from those few experiences.