today is the 24th of April and I have about 3 months left in New Zealand, in Auckland. I have been here for three months now and it has been an incredible time! At the start the weather was great! Me coming from freezing cold Germany to sunny hot New Zealand, that was truly great :) me and the friends who I met quite fast did a lot on the beach and met a few times after school to just chill on the beach and enjoy the weather and life.


I found friends quite fast here but I have to say that I had a huge advantage because my host sister Annika is my age as  and we just get along perfectly, so obviously I got to hang out with some of her friends. This also is how I met Grace. Grace and Annika are my two closest kiwi friends and we always have good laughs when we are together. I'm just really glad that I met those two. 


In case you also plan on coming to New Zealand, just be friendly and opened to new people and you’ll easily find friends! In the beginning it's all quite scary but me and also all my other friends that are here on an exchange had a "buddy" on our first days at school. This buddy normally is a girl or a boy from your year and they show you the school. You can always just hang with them at Lunch and Morning Tea. After the days with your buddy you already know a few people and don't feel as lost as maybe before. After a while you’ll also make friends in the different classes you take!!


Besides my kiwis friends I also have a lovely "international squad”. That is how we call ourselves hahah. We are 6 girls from South America and from Germany. Unfortunately, two of them were only staying in New Zealand for three months so we had to say goodbye to them a week ago. That was really sad but our friendship grew so strong in three months that we definitely will stay in contact and visit each other. It is so cool that I got the opportunity to meet friends from the other side of the world. Those most likely are friendships that last for a lifetime. And I am really grateful that I met such nice people to share this entire experience with.


As I already said I have been here now for 3 months. I arrived in Auckland on the 25th of January. I flew with a group of about 15 other boys and girls, which made the looong, long journey easier. Wow,  I can still remember the flight. It was so exhausting, I mean everybody would be completely done after 6 and then 16 hours in a plane no matter how great the time to come will be or how much you are looking forward to New Zealand. But luckily we had heaps of movies, series, games and food:)) so time went by relatively fast after all.


On arrival we had 3 days of “Welcome Meeting” in Auckland. We visited popular places such as the Sky Tower and the beach Mission Bay. In total the welcome meeting was a really nice way of getting introduced to the New Zealand lifestyle and to get over our jet lag. I especially enjoyed those three days because there I made 3 really good friends: Emma, David and Jakob. We did everything together and grew together as the 5er squad - including my really good friend Marie who I kind of came to New Zealand with.  Even though we all live in different places all over New Zealand we are in touch regularly and we even got to meet on one day in Auckland. We have also been on a Southisland trip together in our Term holidays.

I would definitely say that an exchange is the perfect way of finding new friends and to meet new people.


After the welcome meeting everybody met their host family. Some had to take another domestic flight but in my case, as we were already in Auckland, I got driven by car. 

It wasn't the first time that I met my host mum Karin, host dad Richard and my sister Annika as they already visited me and my family in Germany last November on their summer holidays in Europe, but it was the first time that I met Tui their little dog. She is really crazy but very, very cute. My host family is great and very nice. I am super happy there, especially because of Annika. 


My first school day at Glendowie College was about a week after I had arrived and obviously I was really nervous. So many new people and also a new way of learning. A big difference that I noticed was the way the teachers teach and their expectations from expect of the students. It's a lot more than in Germany—here, students get taught how to learn independently and how to prepare and organise their classes and tasks. It's quite similar to university and really different to how school is in Germany. At the beginning I missed the structure in the school day and after school, that is, somebody that tells me when I have to do what. But slowly I adapted to the way they learn and got used to it. I am one of the few international students that actually does something for school, as I was told on the South Island trip I went on. Apparently, nobody even cares about homework or paying attention in class while I have been writing 5 page long essays. It was really stressful towards the end of the  first term but next term I won't be as fixated on school as I thought I have to be and rather be active after school and explore the most I can. This is another thing that I learned in the South Island trip: to try and see as much you can and to always be curious and interested because especially in New Zealand it is really worth spending heaps of time outside!! 


On that note…some things I really want to do in the next 2 1/2 months are: going to Rangitoto Island and also visit the Waitomo Glowworm Caves


The South Island trip that I have briefly mentioned is a 15-day-long road trip along the South Island of New Zealand. I did this with an organisation specialised on tours of New Zealand for international students, ISENZ—and I can only recommend it. Over this 2 week period we got to see the most beautiful places ( although is it hard to sort out not beautiful places- meaning that it is the most stunning place I have ever seen). We visited glaciers, beaches, cities, lakes, rivers, mountains, waterfalls, rainforests and more.  On the South Island trip I also met many new people that I became friends with. It was a very special experience for me and I would do it again if I could! 





at lunch time after having delicious sushi made by eva and vir

last day of school - all excited for the holidays



sailing trip with annika and karin cuddles browns island

one of the best days and unfortunately one of the last warm summer days

our whole pants got wet because of unexpected waves ;( hahaha

15-03-2017 to 17-03-2017


sunsets in tawharanui first time kayaking summer&beaches buzz and me

Pe camp to the tawharanui nationalpark

camped there for 2 nights

just after the geocamp so i was super tired

kayaking, mountain biking, surf life saving, horse riding, snorceling, morning yoga

12-03-2017 to 14-02-2017


busview goals!! unique landscape

geography classtrip to the tongariro volcanic centre in the middle of the northisland

another beautiful place

while doing the first part of the tongariro crossing (a very popular walk in nz) we felt like we were walking on mars (it kind of looked like mars too) - a very special experience 



spa pool time at graces

enjoying our watermelon and graces new spa pool

so relaxing



annika and tui karekare beach smile please

our first family trip

(1 hour drive from glendowie)

i still remember how i felt seeing the stunning nature - wow

had a picnic there

annika and i jumped into rockpools hidden in the forest and swam a little bit - SO COOL but the water was quite cold



beautiful auckland skyline

*welcome meeting*

took the auckland-rangitoto ferry from devonport to auckland city

we went to the viewing platform of the auckland skytower (the tall tower in the middle) on the same day



on the 16h plane to aucklaaaand