The World's Most Breathtaking Country Is a Cinch for Americans to Move To

Published On 06/02/2017 Published On 06/02/2017
Wellington, New Zealand
Wellington, New Zealand | Yevgen Belich/Shutterstock
S S am Rozitis and her partner Kevin weren’t keen on sticking around central Canada after college. Spending three years building a resume to get an engineering job in Vancouver just didn’t sound like happily ever after. The cold. The sparseness of culture. The flat of it all. The plains are so-called for a reason.
Then one day Kevin popped the question: “How would you feel if we moved to New Zealand?” To anyone in North America, it would sound like an extreme leap. The land of sheep and cinematic Lord of the Rings backdrops is more than 6,000 miles from San Diego, and almost 9,000 miles from New York.
But they figured, What the hey? Armed with a working holiday visa -- a generous welcome that’s also open to Americans -- the couple packed up and forged ahead to Wellington. Within six months they both found work. Two years later, as they flew back to New Zealand after a trip home for the holidays, they looked at one another and realized they had no intention of ever moving back to the prairies.
The Southern Alps of New Zealand | Dmitry Pichugin/shutterstock
Christchurch, New Zealand | Peter Unger/Lonely Planet Images/Getty Images
If you’re not tied down, quality of life here is just plain better than in most of the Western world.
Paraglider in Queenstown | Martin Maun/Shutterstock
“There’s a lot here, a LOT... You never stop snapping pictures.”
Emerald Lakes, Tongariro National Park, New Zealand | Dmitry Pichugin/Shutterstock
Piha beach | Filip Fuxa/Shutterstock