Some people use Instagram as a visual diary to share with friends, others like to check it for what their favourite celebrities are up to on any given day.

The social network is a treasure trove of inspiration, with beautiful images posted by those with a keen eye for photography, or inspirational messages shared by people worth looking up to.

We're not talking about the ones with the most followers, like KJ Apa or Lorde. We're talking about regular Kiwis who have really taken their Insta game up a few levels and definitely deserve a follow.

1. polkadotpassport, Nicola Easterby


For some travel inspiration, look no further than Easterby's beautiful Instagram feed. Snowy peaks, waterfalls, insanely beautiful landscapes ... this Kiwi on Insta will get you travelling, even if only in your daydreams.

Nothing quite like first light by the lakeside

A post shared by Nicola Easterby (@polkadotpassport) on

2. forkingyum, Emily

Auckland-based Emily will have you drooling all over your phone screen if you are not careful checking her Insta. Her foodie shots are insanely good, without being pretentious or faux haute cuisine. Sometimes a sandwich is just a sandwich, you know?

3. thebuzzykiwi, Stephen McDowell

Go on a trip around the world with McDowell's incredible travel photography, which frequently includes some of the best shots of our own Aotearoa.

IM BACK!!! 🙌🏽
I genuinely missed you all 🙏🏽
It feels like I have been gone for a life time. I want to start with saying THANK YOU!
I can not begin to express how much your messages of support and kindness kept my head above water at a time where I felt like I was drowning 💙 For a moment there the thought of giving up crossed my mind but then you all reminded me of something very important.
You reminded me of the incredible supportive community we have created together on this platform.
You reminded me that despite all the bad people in the world there is still an abundance of good, caring, open minded and consciously free people willing to support others at the drop of a hat.
You reminded me that we are all united, no matter where in the world we are from we are all one. It’s so easy to feel alone in this messed up and chaotic world but know it’s just a feeling. “You are never alone or helpless. The force that guides the stars guides you too” 💙
Some crazy, borderline supernatural things have happened to me in the past 3 months and as much as the universe is throwing everything it possibly can at me to stop me, I truly believe there is a reason for it all. How we respond to disaster lays the foundations for the new road your life journey will take.
Listen to your heart, follow the signs and never stop believing for as long as you are breathing you have the gift ✨
So here I am, swinging towards the sky with my eyes on the mountain top, arms out wide, surrendering to the universe, trusting the rope of life will hold for one last go at chasing my dreams 💭
Will you join me??? 👁👁

A post shared by Stephen McDowell (@thebuzzykiwi) on

4. healthychick101, Riley Hemson

Hemson is, as she puts it, just a huge girl trying to get some abs. The graduate paramedic intern is both funny and inspirational - a tough combination to get right online but one that she nails on the regular.

5. lulasticblog, Lucy Aitkenread


Aitkenread is living her best life in an yurt with her happy hippy family. She blogs and vlogs about all things DIY, parenting and sustainability and you can start by following her on Instagram but do check out her YouTube and website as well or you'll be missing out on some good tips to live a better life.

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