The land of the long white cloud appeared perfectly formed in the afternoon sky, lingering just long enough for a sharp-eyed passenger to snap it through his car window.
Ari Jeory and his family were driving through Ōpōtiki, Bay of Plenty, on Boxing Day when he spied a familiar looking shape floating in the blue beyond.
"I thought, wait a second, that looks a bit like New Zealand. No, that looks exactly like New Zealand," Jeory said.
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Knowing the shape wouldn't remain for long, he quickly snapped some photos of the cloud formation and uploaded it to Reddit, where positive comments quickly flooded to his post, Jeory said.
"Great spotting, that's so cool!" commented one underneath the photo.
"New Zealand-ception," wrote another.
MetService shift meteorologist Tui McInnes called the Aotearoa-shaped cloud a "neat little find".
"Cloud like that is pretty random because of the formation it just forms from little eddies in the air," McInnes said.
"Where the air is not moving in a flat straight flat line, it's bouncing around a little bit and you get situation where the air gets to move up slightly and as it moves up it cools and condenses which is basically how you get clouds."
McInnes said it was quite rare to see clouds in shapes, but he had seen an elephant-shaped cloud form after a thunderstorm.
"If you looked at that cloud in about two minutes time it probably wouldn't look like this. It's that really opportune time where the photo has been taken at the exact right time."