Paraparaumu

Travel Guide Oceania Polynesia New Zealand North Island Paraparaumu

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Introduction

Paraparaumu is a town in the southwestern North Island of New Zealand. It lies in the Kapiti Coast, 55 kilometres north of the nation's capital city, Wellington.

Like other towns in the area, it has a partner settlement at the coast called Paraparaumu Beach, which lies directly opposite Kapiti Island. The two towns form part of the Kapiti Coast District. Together with the nearby Raumati and Raumati South they are among the fastest-growing urban areas in New Zealand, and are major dormitory towns with workers commuting to the cities that make up the Wellington urban area. The four towns between them have a 2012 population of over 49,000 people.[2] Inland behind Paraparaumu is the Maungakotukutuku area.

Paraparaumu means "scraps from an earth oven" in Māori: "parapara" means "dirt" or "scraps" and "umu" means "oven". It is commonly abbreviated to "Para-Param", particularly by longer-term residents of European ethnicity, and simply "Pram" by local youth.

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Getting There

By Plane

Kapiti Coast Airport is a popular recreational airfield and hosts the Kapiti Aero Club. Air New Zealand has daily flights between the airport to Auckland, Sounds Air operate to Blenheim and Nelson. Locally based Air2there operate to Blenheim and Nelson also.

By Public Transport

Paraparaumu is located on the North Island Main Trunk Railway, on the Kapiti Line of Wellington's commuter railway network operated by Tranz Metro under the Metlink brand. Electrified commuter services were extended to Waikanae on 20 February 2011, and additional stations have been proposed at Lindale and Raumati. EM and FP class electric multiple units operate the commuter trains. Beyond Paraparaumu, Tranz Scenic operates two diesel-hauled long distance services: the Capital Connection between Palmerston North and Wellington, and the Overlander between Auckland and Wellington. Both trains stop at Paraparaumu. There are also feeder and local commuter bus services.

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Keep Connected

Internet

Internet cafés are widely available throughout New Zealand at rates of around NZ$2-4, though sometimes more in smaller places. Besides internet and e-mail services, most big internet cafés also offer some way for travellers to connect their digital camera and burn cds. Many public libraries have public Internet access, and most of them offer short free internet sessions. Wi-Fi access is getting more and more common in for example coffee places or fast food chains. It is becoming more common for Wi-Fi to be provided at hotels and motels, though sometimes at a fee. Wireless Hotspots are located in many cities and towns all over New Zealand from dedicated Wireless providers from whom you can buy connect time. Many camping holiday parks also have such services available.

Phone

See also International Telephone Calls

Dial 111 for emergency police, fire or ambulance services. The worldwide emergency number for GSM mobile phones, 112, can also be used.
The country code is 64.

Most payphones in New Zealand require the use of phone cards for payment and it is getting harder to find payphones that accept coins. As phone cards are available at a lot of outlets, they are easy to purchase and very handy as a backup in case of emergencies. Many of them also accept creditcards. Local calls are free from residential phones and charges for calling outside that area can be found at the front of the regional phone books, amongst many other services.

Mobile telephone coverage is effectively national in near urban areas although the mountainous terrain means that outside the urban areas, and especially away from the main highway system, coverage does have huge dead patches. Do not rely on mobile phones in hilly or mountainous terrain. Mobile telephone users can call 555 only to report Non-emergency traffic safety incidents, such as a breakdown, road hazard or non-injury car crash, to the Police. There are currently three major mobile carriers in New Zealand.

  • Telecom operates a UMTS (3G) network, named XT Network, nationwide on 850MHz with supplementary 2100MHz in metropolitan areas. (the same frequencies as Telstra in Australia and AT&T in the U.S.)
  • Vodafone operates a GSM network on 900MHz/2100 MHz and a UTMS (3G) network operates nationwide 900MHz with supplementary 2100MHz coverage.
  • 2degrees operates a UMTS (3G) network (2100MHz) in Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch, with supplementary GSM coverage provided elsewhere by Vodafone.

A prepaid sim-card connection pack with $10 credit from Telecom or Vodafone costs around $30, and prepaid sim-cards from 2degrees cost $10. Telecom has broader coverage in remote areas away from major cities compared to Vodafone and 2degrees.

Post

Most areas have dedicated PostShops, however stamps can also be bought at grocery shops, supermarkets and book stores. There are two main formats for domestic mail, namely Standard Post and Fast Post. Fast Post is used next day delivery between major towns and cities (two days from rural areas), whereas Standard Post will take a few working days to deliver nationwide. Standard costs NZ$0.50 for letters/postcards (NZ$0.80 for larger envelopes), Fast Post costs NZ$0.80 (NZ$1.20 for larger envelopes). International mail takes about 3-6 days to Australia (NZ$1.50), and 6-12 days to Europe, Asia and the United States (NZ$2). Post boxes are white, red and black and can be found in many areas throughout towns and cities, including information about when their contents are collected. Most post offices and smaller post shops have opening hours from 9:00am to 5:00pm Monday to Friday, and 9:00am to 12:30pm on Saturday. You can buy stamps here, or at newsagents and general stores. For parcels, you can use the NZ Post or otherwise courier companies like TNT, DHL, UPS or FedEx.

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This is version 1. Last edited at 10:06 on Aug 16, 16 by Utrecht. 4 articles link to this page.

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