In New York on December 15, 2019
Valid until February 13, 2020
That day marks the beginning of your trip to New Zealand.
Your holiday will be a one-of-a-kind, unforgettable experience, one you’ll cherish forever.
But those are fancy words, and we all want facts, because that’s what an experience is all about.
Your itinerary will take you all over the country, providing an overview of New Zealand with the best sightseeing. On the North Island, you’ll discover beautiful beaches, kauri forests, caves and incredible geothermal activity. On the South Island, the emphasis is on the great mountainous landscapes, adventure activities, historic architecture and wildlife.
Poor Knights Islands, Northland & Bay of Islands
Accommodations in Northland
You’ll go over Auckland Harbour Bridge towards the bays and beaches of Auckland’s north shore. The motorway will quickly take you north until the suburban scenery gives way to peaceful farmland. You’ll visit attractions such as the Matakana Farmers' Markets and the Goat Island Marine Reserve en route to Whangarei.
You can spend the night here or in Paihia before exploring the Bay of Islands and Poor Knights, famous for their fantastic scuba diving. For a cultural experience, we’ll take you to the Waitangi Treaty Grounds.
Rangitoto Island, Auckland
Accommodations in Auckland
A vibrant city of harbours, beaches and islands, Auckland is known as the ‘City of Sails’. You’ll catch a ferry to one of the islands dotted just offshore from the city, or kayak there if you're feeling adventurous.
Waiheke is known for its vineyards, sandy white beaches and quirky galleries, while Rangitoto is a dormant volcano laced with spectacular hiking trails. Many of the islands are within a 40-minute ferry ride from downtown Auckland.
Waitomo Glowworm Caves, Hamilton - Waikato
The Waitomo Caves region is famous for its subterranean splendour. Beneath the surface of this ancient limestone region is a series of vast cave systems decorated with stalactites, stalagmites and glowworms. Choose your level of adventure, from a guided walk and gentle boat cruise to blackwater rafting, caving and abseiling into the abyss.
Te Puia, Rotorua
Accommodations in Rotorua
Your journey to Rotorua will take you through a mixture of farmland, lakeland and forest. Te Kuiti is the only major town you’ll encounter, so stock up on provisions for the trip. If you feel like hiking, we can take you to the beautiful Pureora Forest Park, which is home to several rare bird species. But if you prefer trout fishing, you could try your luck at Whakamaru Lake.
Upon reaching the city of Rotorua you will see (and smell) the geothermal steam columns of Whakarewarewa. A visit to Te Puia will be a chance to learn about Maori arts and crafts, as well as to take a look at the famous Pohutu geyser.
Relax at the Rotorua Polynesian Spa
Rotorua sits squarely on the Pacific Ring of Fire, so there’s evidence of volcanic activity everywhere you look. Later, you’ll have time to relax at a hot spring spa in the evening.
We’ll travel to Taupo to discover the Maori rock carvings of Mine Bay. These carvings have become an iconic cultural attraction for the Taupo region and are a clear demonstration that traditional Māori knowledge and skills continue to be passed from generation to generation. These carvings can only be reached by boat and are best viewed up close from a kayak.
Tongariro National Park, New Zealand
Travel through the Central Plateau to get amazing volcanic views of Tongariro National Park. In Waiouru, the National Army Museum is worth a visit. As you drive south to Taihape (the Gumboot Throwing capital of the world), the landscape becomes dominated by rivers and valleys. The Mangaweka Gorge is a scenic masterpiece.
Offshore from Waikanae is Kapiti Island, a nature reserve for close encounters with rare birds. The Kapiti Coast is known for its gourmet food, especially cheeses; stop for a bite before carrying on to Wellington.
Cable car, Wellington
Accommodations in Wellington
Nestled between the harbour and the hills, Wellington is ideal for explorations on foot. Navigate a maze of street art and coffee shops before taking a tour of the nearby film studios. Other famous attractions include the Wellington Cable Car, the Houses of Parliament, Zealandia and the Wellington waterfront.
Welcome to Marlborough, where neat rows of thriving vines remind you that you’re truly in wine country. There are plenty of guided tour options that'll allow you to taste the best food and wine in the region. Marlborough is also on the 380 km Classic New Zealand Wine Trail that spans four wine regions and more than 100 cellar doors.
Hanmer Springs, Christchurch - Canterbury
Hanmer Springs is a destination for relaxation and enjoyment. You can soak in the hot springs or treat yourself to a variety of spa therapies. Outdoor activities are another Hanmer specialty. The options include forest walks, horseback riding, trout fishing, jet skiing, bungee jumping and golf. See more must-do experiences in Hanmer Springs.
Christchurch City, Christchurch - Canterbury
Accommodations in Christchurch
Ever-changing and fashionable, Christchurch is the South Island’s largest city. Old English gardens contrast with pop-up bars and shopping centres in this enduring area, which is rebuilding itself after the terrible earthquake in February 2011. Favourite activities include sailing down the Avon River, biking in the Port Hills, visiting Sumner Beach or exploring the Antarctic Centre.
Moeraki Boulders, Waitaki
Heading south, the Southern Alps provide outstanding scenery for your journey. Just before Timaru, you’ll reach Temuka, a town that produces high-quality pottery. Visit the Temuka factory store to pick up a useful souvenir.
The town of Oamaru has interesting historic buildings and its own colony of little blue penguins that stroll along the beach at sunset. On the way to Dunedin, be sure to stop off at the famous and mysterious Moeraki Boulders.
Ulva Island, Stewart Island - Rakiura
Half an hour south, you’ll come across tranquil Lake Waihola, a popular venue for picnics, yachting and waterskiing. As you continue onwards through the Catlins, winding roads will take you to see seals and sea lions, wilderness beaches, waterfalls, walkways and rivers.
From here, visit Invercargill or Bluff before catching the ferry to Stewart Island (Rakiura in Maori). The ferry trip, which can sometimes be rough, takes about an hour. Alternatively you can choose to fly there from Invercargill, which takes about 15-20 minutes. Much of Stewart Island was recently declared New Zealand’s newest national park. Visitors come to the island to enjoy nature at its wildest.
Kayaking in Fiordland, Fiordland
The road to Milford Sound is one of the most panoramic routes in New Zealand. We’ll take you on a trip from Te Anau.
The first part mostly consists of crop fields. Then you’ll ease into beech forest near the entrance to the Fiordland National Park, until reaching the Avenue of the Disappearing Mountain and the Mirror Lakes. A cruise in Milford Sound will take you to a dream world. This remarkable natural environment features stunning fiords, spectacular waterfalls and snow-capped peaks.
The alpine resort of Queenstown is exciting and fantastically attractive. It’s the place to start almost any kind of adventure, including bungee jumping, jet boating, horse trekking, rafting and river surfing. It’s also a destination for luxury experiences: gourmet food and wine, spa treatments and leisurely games of golf.
Rippon Vineyard, Wanaka
The shortest route to Wanaka is over the Crown Range Road. It’s a challenging drive, but the views are amazing.
More conservative drivers can take the route that runs beside the Shotover River, Lake Dunstan and the Clutha River. The vineyards of the Gibbston area and bungee jumpers at the Kawarau River Bridge are interesting distractions along the way. Whichever route you take, an easy detour to the charming historic village of Arrowtown is a fantastic idea.
Franz Josef Glacier, West Coast
You'll want to leave early so you have plenty of time to stop and enjoy the remarkable scenery, as well as visit the West Coast Glaciers.
Lake Hawea is the first scenic highlight of your journey, followed closely by the northern end of Lake Wanaka. The famous ‘bra fence’ is impossible to miss – it started as a joke, but it’s become a local legend. At the wilderness town of Makarora, you can fuel up and rest before you take on the dramatic twists and turns of the Haast Pass. Enjoy waterfalls and river scenery as you make your way through the rainforest. Stay in the town of Fox Glacier and from here take guided walks of the region.
Devils Punchbowl, Arthurs Pass, Christchurch - Canterbury
Classic West Coast river and forest scenery leads you east towards Christchurch. Rapids, impressive bridges and tiny towns gradually give way to the misty mountains of the Southern Alps. The Maori tribes originally used the route known as Arthur’s Pass to cross to the West Coast in search of pounamu (jade). Today it’s a modern mountain pass, memorable for its scenery as well as its breathtaking civil engineering.
A farewell dinner at the SidArt Restaurant will end your journey, a wonderful experience you’ll never forget.
Everything that will make your experience unique and unforgettable:
|Transportation in private vehicles||2||150.00||100%||0.00|
|Internal transportation in a luxury-class vehicle with a driver-guide in New Zealand (price per island)||2||2,100.00||4,200.00|
|Half-board accommodation in junior suites of categories 4* luxury or higher||23||210.00||4,830.00|
|Two lunches at Michelin-star restaurants (price per person)||4||367.00||1,468.00|
|Three dinners at Michelin-star restaurants (price per person)||6||428.00||2,568.00|
|Handling of visas||2||150.00||100%||0.00|
No vaccines or special precautions are required to travel to New Zealand. Once you’re there, medical care in New Zealand is excellent but expensive. All visitors are advised to purchase travel medical insurance. In Auckland and in all major cities, you will find world-class hospitals with excellent standards of care. The phone number for ambulances and emergencies is 111. Medication can be found almost anywhere in the country. For more information, contact an International Vaccination Centre. Just remember that due to the time difference, the flight from Europe causes significant 'jet lag’, and it takes several days to fully recover.
New Zealand is a very safe country with a very low crime rate. Even the big cities are safe, and you are unlikely to have any problems moving about day or night, without overlooking basic safety precautions. Even the red-light and gambling districts are safe and tranquil. Also, there are no problems for women, who are safer and freer here than in most countries on earth.
Tipping isn’t very well regarded in New Zealand. In fact, when you arrive in the country, there are posters indicating that tipping is not a local custom and advising travelers not to do it.
In some tourist spots and luxury restaurants, the custom of tipping is starting to be introduced.