A multicultural country
New Zealand has been a land of immigration since its existence. New Zealanders come from different countries and cultures. Immigrants come mainly from the United Kingdom, the Pacific Islands, Asia and South Africa.
Each ethnic group retains and develops its own culture and values in the New Zealand context.
New Zealand uses three official languages: English, Maori and Sign language. The first two suggest a real cultural hybridization at least in terms of language. Maori words like 'kia ora' (hello) and 'haere mai' (welcome) are part of everyday language. New Zealand is very commonly referred to as 'Aotearoa New Zealand', Aotearoa being the very poetic maori word meaning 'Land of the long white cloud'
Maori concepts, such as whanau (family) and mana (spiritual authority), are an integral part of the New Zealand system of thinking. The national identity, half Maori half pakeha (New Zealander of European origin) is well established.
Although according to the founding treaty (the Treaty of Waitangi) New Zealand is officially bi cultural, the presence of very large numbers of immigrants (although it is less the case on the South Island than the North Island) makes it globally very multicultural compared to many countries.
It retains however a very British stamp.