The Undiscovered Country
A small rural town’s heart-warming story shows just how desirable country New Zealand can be, not only to inner-city Kiwis but also to the rest of the world.
Read the recent hyped-up headlines out of Auckland and Wellington on the dairy market and you'd think country folk were on their knees and looking for a way out. But the truth is quite the opposite, and if some in the Big Smoke don't get it, the rest of the world certainly does.
Recent terror attacks have made New Zealand the world's preferred escape route. Comedian Billy Crystal says he'll move here if Donald Trump is elected President of the United States. So too has one of America's most senior judges. In the aftermath of Britain’s vote to leave the EU, Immigration New Zealand’s website was inundated by inquiries from the UK. “Move to New Zealand” was even a top Google search term.
But the search for the Kiwi good life hit stratospheric levels thanks to the efforts of Kaitangata, a small community of about 800 people south of Dunedin. It became the "tiny town with too many jobs and affordable homes" after its unique plea for families to relocate was picked up by news outlets around the world.
The town was offering house-and-land packages for $230,000 in the hope that Kiwis struggling with life in big cities would be tempted to move. And if that wasn’t incentive enough, there were up to 600 jobs in the area that needed to be filled, with the major employers linked to primary industries.
The response to the town’s campaign was overwhelming.
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