Formation of the Tourist and Health Resorts
Department to look after the tourist traffic
of the railways and to take control of
resorts such as Rotorua, Hanmer, Mount
Cook, and Doubtful Sound Track, Little
Barrier Bird Sanctuary.
The THRD also started Rotorua’s electricity
Encouraged immigration to NZ through
information supplied overseas
Funding given to provide steamers on Lakes
Manapouri and Tea Anau and Milford
THRD built model Maori pa at
Whakarewarewa and Geyser round trip.
Lake Waikaremoana accommodation
THRD also took over further reserves
from Dept of Lands and Survey
THRD established offices in Sydney and
Start of Mount Cook and Southern Lakes
Touring Company with a coach service
from Timaru to Mount Cook
Further consolidation of statutes enabled
THRD to take control of 15 NZ resorts.
Decline in visitor numbers during the war
years but steady increases in domestic
By 1917 NZ was being promoted in the USA
through mounted displays and ‘moving
Start of publishing numbers of visitors to
In year ended March 1922, 8050 people
from overseas toured NZ, and each of them
spent at least £100.
1924 – plans prepared to extend hotel at
Waitomo, caves wired for electricity, and
additions to resort hotels.
Mount Cook Company took over Hermitage
1929 – new hostels opened at Waitomo,
Milford and Fox Glacier.
Severe worldwide economic depression followed by
New tourist routes opened up
1931 earthquake damaged buildings at Waikaremoana
THRD took over from NZ Railways responsibility for
booking offices, and control of land at Tongariro
National Park including the Chateau.
1935 highest numbers of visitors ever, and tourist
offices were opened in Brussels and Los Angeles.
Off season travel encouraged but war in 1939 curtailed
tourism for several years.
No tourism until WW2 ended in 1945
By 1949 tourism had regenerated with
10,768 overseas visitors that year.
First NZ National Tourist Conference
organized in 1950
THRD changed to ‘Tourist and Publicity’
Ongoing shortage of good hotel rooms in the
right places as accommodation facilitaties
had remained statis during Depression and
Pacific Area Travel Association (PATA)
formed in 1951 to help develop tourism to
The cruise line ‘Orient Line’ started a
passenger service between Sydney and
North America, calling at Auckland.
New tourism promotion based on ‘Discover
Government earned £10 million from
tourism by 1967.
Special loan schemes to encourage
construction of hotels at key tourism places
to stimulate tourism
1967 – first Minister of Tourism
1250 new hotel/motel rooms introduced by
1972 to meet visitor demand
Jumbo jets now visiting NZ
Policy changes made to streamline the
tourism department, including divesting of
reserves and thermal baths to be leased by
private companies, including the Ward
Baths at Rotorua, now known as the
1975 tourism earnings exceeded $100
Tax breaks for first class hotel construction in Auckland
Increase in informal/flexible travel arrangements
1983 Sheraton Auckland opened, Regent Hotel in
Auckland and Parkroyal in Wellington
Increase in visitors wanting an NZ trip to be an
Rise in rental vehicles as visitors wanted to tour the
Improvement in shoulder season visitor numbers
In 1985 visitor numbers increased by 15% and foreign
exhchange earnings by 45%.
New tourism facilities eg Kelly Tarltons, gondola
construction, Rainbows End
Doubling of campervan fleet
1989 - set up of Tourism 2000 Taskforce to plan for
future tourism growth
1989 Maori Tourism Association established
Tourism 2000 Taskforce policy decisions enacted
Included launch of Regional Tourism Action
campaign and establishment of Visitor Information
Air New Zealand sold to the private sector
A change in government (Labour to National)
resulted in change in direction for the tourism
Higher priority given to tourism, set up of New
Zealand Tourism Board (now Tourism New Zealand)
Overseas tourism offices re-opened
Increased focus on offshore promotion
Strengthening NZ dollar restricted growth from
In 2000 tourists spent $4,770 million
2001 – terrorist attacks on 9/11 resulted in
small tourism decline
2001 celebrated a centenary of NZ tourism
2003 difficult year for tourism worldwide (wars,
2004 NZ tourism bounced back
2010 New Zealand Tourism Strategy 2010
released charting the path for growth and
development of tourism in NZ
Tourism is NZ’s largest industry
Contributes 10% of GDP
Employs 1 in 10 New Zealanders
Earning $61 million per day!