The Dutchman Abel Tasman is officially recognised as the first European to ‘discover’ New Zealand in 1642. His men were the first Europeans to have a confirmed encounter with Māori.
New Zealand was first sighted by the Dutch explorer Abel Tasman in 1642. Thinking, that he had sighted the Southern tip of the Americas he called it Staten Landt - which stands for Southern Lands in Dutch.
After his findings he became known and collated, Dutch cartographers realized that he had been off by quite a margin, and the new lands constituted a separate body. Looking at the shape of the islands and from the few descriptions of flora and fauna they had received from Tasman, they decided it was similar to their own province of Zeeland in The Netherlands and christened The newly discovered landmass as Nova Zeelandia. When the islands were later visited -and claimed for the British - by James Cook, he anglicized the name to New Zealand.
I once traveled to New Zealand and yes there is some resemblance however though my area is totally flat and it is a lot more cultivated. None the less both have beautifull white beaches with a lot of little islands and I still feel blessed to be able to spent summertime with my family at the lakes around here especially The Grevelingen, the biggest saltwater lake of Western Europe. Watersports are the main outdoor activity around here.
May there ever be a chance though to vist New Zealand for a second time, I won't hesitate.
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