Day 1 Arrival at Queenstown Airport
Welcome to New Zealand
On arrival at Queenstown International Airport you will be met by our local representative and you will be transferred to the hotel.
Day is free, for you to explore the city at your own pace.
Queenstown, New Zealand, sits on the shores of the South Island’s Lake Wakatipu, set against the dramatic Southern Alps. Renowned for adventure sports, it’s also a base for exploring the region’s vineyards and historic mining towns. There's bungee jumping off Kawarau Gorge Suspension Bridge and jet-boating on the Shotover and Dart rivers. In winter, there's skiing on the slopes of The Remarkables and Coronet Peak.
Overnight in Queenstown
Day 2 Queenstown
Breakfast at the hotel. Today the driver will pick you up in your hotel and you will join a group for your Queenstown Highlights Half Day Tour. Make the most of your time in Queenstown with this 5 'Must See' attractions tour in the area: Queenstown Hill, Kawarau Bridge and Bungy Dome, Gibbston Valley and Arrowtown.
First stop is on the Queenstown Hill with spectacular panoramic views over the town centre, Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkables Mountain Range. Next is a visit to the birth place of bungy jumping as we know it and home to the Bungy Dome, an 8 minute multi media show that allows passive bystanders to experience the thrill of bungy jumping without taking the leap. The Bungy Centre is a state of the art facility that offers grand stand viewing of the Kawarau Suspension Bridge and of the Bungy jumping platform. Then head to Gibbston Valley for some wine tasting and cheese tasting. Then onto Kawarau Gorge where a scene from 'Lord of the Rings - Pillars of the Kings' was filmed. To complete the highlights of the Queenstown area, visit the picturesque town of Arrowtown which retains its old world charm through careful preservation of its colourful history and colonial style architecture.
Includes: Hotel pick up and drop off, entry to the bungy dome and Aj Hackett bungy bridge, wine tasting tray of 4 wine at Gibbston Valley winery, commentary by a driver-guide.
Day 3 Queenstown
Breakfast at the hotel. Relax and unwind while you enjoy the natural beauty that surrounds you in the hotel or there are a variety of OPTIONAL TOURS that you can choose from. Optional tours you can book with us
Milford Sound Day Tour from Queenstown with Buffet Lunch
Take an unforgettable journey into the heart of Milford Sound, New Zealand's most famous tourist destination. You'll experience the world-famous fiord in all its natural glory - surrounded by dense rainforest, glacier-carved valleys and beautiful waterfalls.
Leaving Queenstown, travel into southern farmland to Lake Te Anau. After a morning tea stop (own expense), travel into Fiordland National Park. Enter the picturesque Eglinton Valley and take advantage of the photo opportunities on offer along the Milford Road, like the stunning Mirror Lakes, where on a calm day the surrounding mountain ranges are perfectly reflected in the still waters, and Knobs Flat, where glaciers have carved their mark on the terrain. Travel under the mountains through the Homer Tunnel, a 1.2km passageway drilled into solid rock, then experience The Chasm, a short but impressive walk over footbridges spanning a series of powerful, swirling waterfalls and rapids. At Milford Sound, board your 1 hour 45 minute Southern Discoveries Scenic Cruise and set off to explore the region that Rudyard Kipling called the Eighth Wonder of the World. Travel the length of the fiord and out to the Tasman Sea, gliding past glacier-scarred rock walls and waterfalls that tumble through valleys and crash into the sea far below. Lush native forest clings to steep cliffs, while wildlife including seals, penguins and dolphins are regular visitors to the icy waters. Mountain ranges surround the fiord, including Mitre Peak which rises dramatically from the depths to a height of 1,692 metres above sea level. After your cruise, return to Queenstown by coach.
Includes: Coach transportation, guided commentary, Southern Discoveries Cruises on Milford Sound with buffet lunch.
Cost per person AED 790.00
Safari of the Scene - Glenorchy
Prepare to be amazed as you take part in this special 4WD adventure into the Glenorchy region, which contains some of the locations used in the Lord of the Rings film trilogy.
This 4WD tour takes you into the heart of New Zealands high country, the embodiment of the Middle-Earth of Tolkiens imagination. This tour of Glenorchy includes the sights of Isengard and Ithilien Camp, plus beech forests near those used for Lothlorien. You will also pass the area used to film the Seat of Seeing and the battle of Amon Hen. This scenic tour offers a little off-road action in the 12 Mile Delta, plus breathtaking mountain and forest views along the shores of Lake Wakatipu.
Includes: Hotel pickup, 4wd tour of the Glenorchy region, light refreshments and hotel drop off.
Cost per person AED 540.00
Te Anau Glowworm Caves Tour
Explore a mysterious underground world of rushing water before drifting in silent darkness beneath the luminous shimmer of thousands of glow worms.
Hidden beneath the mountains is an underground network of caves lit by thousands of glowworms. The crew will share stories about the natural history and early pioneers of the region. On arrival, join the specialist Nature Guide for the Te Anau Glowworm Caves experience. Above ground the Nature Guide will detail aspects of the caves and its various inhabitants in the visitor interpretation centre. Passengers can then experience a 15 minute guided walk into the forest behind Cavern House to view native flora and fauna. The track will also be lit in the evenings. Then below ground witness a twisting network of limestone passages and the roaring whirlpools and waterfalls of the Tunnel Burn Stream. By geological standards the caves are very young and are still being carved out by the force of this river. Follow the path deep underground before transferring into small boats to drift silently along the river below a display of glittering glowworms in the glowworm grotto. In the subterranean darkness, they produce a sparkling display that is nothing short of extraordinary. Retrace your steps out of the caves and return to Te Anau by catamaran. Suitable for passengers of all ages except infants.
Includes: Return luxury glass-roofed coach transport from Queenstown to Te Anau. A scenic cruise across beautiful Lake Te Anau on the luxury catamaran Luminosa to Cavern House on the lake's western shores to view glittering glowworms in an underground cave system. Complimentary tea and coffee is available at Cavern House.
Cost per person AED 460.00
Skyline Gondola, Kiwi Haka Show and Buffet Dinner
An authentic and powerful spiritual journey of Maori culture and customs with a Kiwi Haka performance followed by a lavish 'Taste of New Zealand' buffet with stunning view of Queenstown and surrounded mountains, complete with transfers by gondola.
Situated an easy five minute walk from central Queenstown, the gondola is an all weather tourist attraction in its own right. Sit back and relax as the views from the gondola unfold while you journey to the Skyline complex. Once at the top, you will first enjoy a unique 30 minutes live show performed by Queenstown's leading Kapa Haka group taking you on a journey through the mythical legends and into the world of Maori. Feel the spirit of their proud history celebrated in traditional song & dance. Experience the fearsome Haka and the stunning poi display. You will then proceed for a buffet dinner at the restaurant where you can feast on South Island salmon, seafood, salads, roast meats and delicious desserts - and feast your eyes on the most spectacular scenery in the country. Tiered seating guarantees stunning views from every table!
Includes: Gondola return transfer to the complex, Kiwi Haka Show (approx 30minutes) and buffet style dinner.
Cost per person AED 380.00
Day 4 Queenstown-Christchurch
After breakfast, check out at the hotel and your driver will be waiting for you to drop you to the airport for your onward flight to Christchurch. On arrival at Christchurch airport the driver will be waiting for you to drop you to the hotel.
Christchurch, known for its English heritage, is located on the east coast of New Zealand’s South Island. Flat-bottomed punts glide on the Avon River, which meanders through the city centre. On its banks are cycling paths, the green expanse of Hagley Park and Christchurch Botanic Gardens. In 2010 and 2011, earthquakes destroyed many of the historic centre's stone-built buildings.
Overnight in Christchurch
Day 5 Christchurch
Breakfast at the hotel. Today the driver will pick you up in your hotel and you will join a group for your Christchurch City Sights Half Day Tour . This half-day tour is the perfect opportunity to acquaint yourself with Christchurch, its historic sights and scenic views.The tour commences by covering the central city highlights including the botanical gardens, Museum and Art Centre, the Avon River, Bridge of Remembrance, the cities new pop up container mall and many other Christchurch inner city highlights. Then the tour travels to Mona Vale, an historic homestead and gardens, goes up to the Sign of the Takahe, an historic building providing spectacular view over the city, Canterbury Plains and the southern Alps, then continue to travel over the Port Hills to the Port of Lyttleton, through the harbour tunnel to the seaside suburb of Sumner and cave rock before returning to the central city where the tour will conclude.
Includes: Coach transportation, guided commentary, city sights and visit to Museum of Canterbury, Complimentary Hotel and Motel pick-up and drop-off.
Day 6 Christchurch
Breakfast at the hotel. Enjoy the day in your hotel or you will explore more of Christchurch by choosing our variety of OPTIONAL TOURS that you can choose from. Optional tours you can book with us
Akaroa Day Tour with harbour cruise and lunch
Just 75 kilometres from the city of Christchurch. Enjoy 2 hour cruise on picturesque Akaroa harbour to view dolphins, penguins and seals!!!
Visit the beautiful unspoilt old French whaling depot of Akaroa. Travel to Akaroa via Sign of Takahe, Sign of Kiwi, Governers bay, Gebbies Pass, Lake Forsyth and Little River, then you will stop at the Hill Top to experience panoramic views of Akaroa Harbour. Visit the cheese factory at Barry's Bay and sample fine New Zealand cheese. Lunch in the naturally picturesque setting of Akaroa Village. In the afternoon you will enjoy a 2 hour cruise on picturesque Akaroa harbour to view dolphins, penguins and seals.
Includes: Hotel pick up from/to your accommodation or a near by pick up/drop off point, coach transportation, guided commentary, visit cheese factory and sample fine New Zealand cheese, lunch, 2hours Akaroa harbour cruise on the Canterbury Cat.
Cost per person AED 700.00
Hanmer Springs Day Trip
Discover the picturesque village of Hanmer Springs on this full-day trip from Christchurch. Relax and rejuvenate in the hot thermal pools, ride a jet boat through Waiau Gorge and enjoy a cafe lunch in Hanmer Springs.
You'll be picked up from your centrally located Christchurch hotel to travel 90 minutes north to the tranquil setting of Hanmer Springs, nestled in a valley surrounded by mountains and forest-clad hills. After enjoying the excitement of a jet boat ride through Waiau Gorge at Thrillseekers Canyon, you will arrive in Hanmer Springs. Enjoy lunch at the Garden House Cafe, relax in the thermal pools & time to explore the village of Hanmer Springs at your own leisure. You'll arrive back at your Christchurch accommodation at approximately 6:00pm.
Includes: Coach transportation, guided commentary, lunch, Jet boating, entry to Hanmer Springs Thermal Pool & Spa and hotel drop off.
Cost per person AED 850.00
Kaikoura Whale Watch
Discover Kaikoura's history before our memorable whale-watching cruise.
Travel through the rich farmland of North Canterbury to the historic coastal township of Kaikoura. Here you will experience Kaikoura's European beginnings, moulded by the whaling industry of the 19th century. Kaikoura's oldest house was built in 1860 on foundations of whale vertebrae. The nearby old wharf built in 1882 still accommodates the try pots in which whale blubber was rendered down. Kaikoura is the centre for a crayfishing industry, testament to the Maori name Kai - meal of koura - crayfish. Weather and sea conditions permitting, a purpose built vessel will take you in search of the sperm whales. On return from the whale watch, we visit the Kaikoura seal colony before complimentary wine tasting at Canterbury House. Lunch at Flukes Cafe at the Whale Watch Station (optional Add-on).
Includes: Hotel pick up from/to your accommodation or a near by pick up/drop off point, Coach transportation, guided commentary, Whale watch cruise (weather permitting), visit to seal colony and visit to winery and wine tasting. Lunch at Flukes Cafe at the Whale Watch Station (optional Add-on).
Cost per person AED 1,050.00
Day 7 Christchurch- Auckland
After breakfast, check out at the hotel and your driver will be waiting for you to drop you to the airport for your onward flight to Auckland. On arrival at Christchurch airport the driver will be waiting for you to drop you to the hotel.
Auckland, based around 2 large harbours, is a major city in the north of New Zealand’s North Island. In the centre, the iconic Sky Tower has views of Viaduct Harbour, which is full of superyachts and lined with bars and cafes. Auckland Domain, the city’s oldest park, is based around an extinct volcano and home to the formal Wintergardens. Near Downtown, Mission Bay Beach has a seaside promenade.
Overnight in Auckland
Day 8 Auckland
After breakfast at the hotel. You will make you way to the meeting point and join the group on a full tour in Auckland. Spend the morning exploring Auckland city on a small group tour then taste some of New Zealand's best wine, eat local food and drink the dramatic scenery of Auckland's west coast.
The morning tour is designed to not only show you the history, sights and sounds but also see how Aucklanders live and play. Known as the City of Sails, it's New Zealand's largest and busiest city. A 30 minute drive from downtown Auckland brings you to the Kumeu Wine Country. Your first tasting is at award-winning Soljans Vineyard. Enjoy lunch at Soljans Winery restaurant which has been built with sunshine in mind and serves Mediterranean-style food with a New Zealand twist, showcasing fresh seasonal produce from around the region. Your journey then takes you to one of the few mainland gannet nesting sites in the world situated on the cliff-tops overlooking the Tasman Sea where you have the chance to see one of the world's largest seabirds in their natural environment. Here you get a close-up of gannet behaviour without disturbing their environment. The views extend for miles along the wild, black, iron sand beach of Muriwai. Next to tempt the taste buds is Matua Valley Wines who offer an extensive range of wines for every unique taste and occasion. Your final tasting is at West Brook Winery. The West Brook cellar door looks across an idyllic duck pond and terraced picnic area to row after row of vines. The wines reflect true varietal character and their unique regional origins.
Includes: Knowledgable English-speaking driver/guide, Auckland city tour, Wine tastings at 3 vineyards, Vineyard lunch with a glass of wine, Muriwai Beach, Viewing of gannet colony (Aug-Apr),
Day 9 Auckland
Breakfast at the hotel. Enjoy the day in your hotel or you will explore more of Auckland by choosing our variety of OPTIONAL TOURS that you can choose from. Optional tours you can book with us
Fullers Harbour Cruise
Relax on this 1.5 hour tour and and get a free return trip to Devonport.
Escape the city and cruise the sparkling waters of Auckland's beautiful harbour. Sit back, relax and let the Fullers crew look after you with full commentary during this one and a half hour harbour cruise. Visit the Viaduct Basin, see the harbour highlights including historic Devonport, the Auckland Harbour Bridge, Bean Rock Lighthouse, and the Devonport Naval Base. You will also have the opportunity to stop at Rangitoto Island (weather permitting), and experience its unique volcanic terrain firsthand. For those who have a tight itinerary, the Fullers Harbour Cruise is the best way to experience Auckland, the City of Sails, taking in the best views of the three major Auckland icons - the Harbour Bridge, Rangitoto Island, and the Sky Tower. The cruise includes full onboard commentary, morning or afternoon tea and a FREE return ferry ticket to Devonport, so passengers can visit this wonderful seaside village at their leisure.
Includes: 1.5 hour cruise of Auckland Harbour (Waitemata Harbour), English commentary by your skipper, Morning or afternoon tea, FREE Return ferry ticket to Devonport village.
Cost per person AED 150.00
Auckland - Coast and Rainforest Walk
Enjoy this highly recommended eco-tour with experienced nature guide.
This full day excursion first visits at the Arataki Visitor Centre with the breathtaking panoramic views from the Tasman Sea to the Pacific Ocean. Continue further to the wild and rugged west coast. Your guide takes you through the Auckland's coastal rainforest with its giant tree ferns growing alongside picturesque streams. Stroll on an awe-inspiring and unique black sand beach and feel clear ocean breeze. A kiwi-style picnic lunch will be provided at a scenic location. You will also see some of mature 1000 year old kauri trees. New Zealand has existed for millions of years separate from the rest of the world so has evolved in isolation to produce its own flora and fauna - 70% of our native plants are found nowhere else in the world.
Includes: Visit to Arataki Information Centre, Waitakere Rainforest, West Coast beaches, picnic lunch and refreshment, English commentary by nature guide, return inner city hotel transfer
Cost per person AED 910.00
Auckland Maori Luxury Tour and Cultural Performance
Maori culture is a unique point of difference for those wanting to experience the real New Zealand. During this small group tour, you will learn about Maori history as well as aspects of modern life, which integrates many of the traditions of the past into today's New Zealand way of life.
Experience Auckland on a personal small group tour by exploring some important historic sites and learn more about the fascinating Maori culture and history along the way. Also included in the tour price is entry to Auckland Museum with its Maori & Polynesian Gallery, plus entry to the Maori Cultural Performance, which showcases Maori performing art and the famous Maori postural war dance , the haka! This special tour provides an insight into how this unique 'living culture' is an integral part of showcasing what Auckland and New Zealand have to offer. This luxury tour features Auckland's well known cityscapes with its numerous volcanoes, as well as the amazing West Coast. We delivers an unforgettable cultural tour by helping visitors gain a sense of place where Maori culture is integrated into the tour with you and your interest levels at the centre of experience. This tour gives you the chance to experience Auckland like a local through the eyes of a passionate guide, who can share their cultural knowledge and upbringing along with special aspects of the Maori culture.
Cost per person AED 950.00
Day 10 Auckland
Bay of Island Discover Tour
Head North to the birthplace of our nation and a marine playgound.
Discover the beautiful and historic Bay of Islands region and enjoy a dolphin watching cruise on a full day return tour from Auckland. Travel through Northland's spectacular scenery of rural countryside and sub-tropical bush en route to Paihia, where you'll board the catamaran Dolphin Seeker for a cruise around the Bay of Islands. Dolphin Seeker is licensed for dolphin and whale viewing and has large outdoor viewing decks to help you see more of this stunning part of New Zealand. Keep an eye out for common and bottlenose dolphins, whales and other marine life, and have your camera ready as our experienced local crew get you up close to the action. Cruise out through the sheltered waters of the Bay to the Cape Brett Lighthouse and see the majestic Hole in the Rock on Motukokako Island. Admire the rock walls towering above you as the skipper navigates through the narrow space (conditions permitting), before heading back towards the inner islands of the Bay. Experience a guided tour of the historical Waitangi Treaty Grounds where in 1840, the Treaty of Waitangi was signed. Uncover the history that played a significant part in shaping our nation. Rejoin your coach for the return journey to Auckland.
Includes: Coach transportation, Informative driver commentary in English, Hole In the Rock Dolphine Cruise, Picnic Lunch, Waitangi Treaty Grounds guided tour. Free WiFi available on board coach.
Cost per person AED 890.00
Hobbiton and Waitomo
Travel from Auckland to Rotorua, taking in the Hobbiton Movie Set and the amazing Waitomo Caves!
Take a journey into the heart of the Central North Island, taking in the Waitomo Caves and Hobbiton Movie Set on a full-day sightseeing tour. Setting off from Auckland, travel through the lush farmland of the Waikato and King Country regions, enjoying your driver guide's entertaining and informative commentary. Take a guided tour of the famous Hobbiton Movie Set, located inside a picturesque 1,250 acre sheep and beef farm near Matamata. Here, the village of Hobbiton was carefully created in amazing detail as a film location for the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movie trilogies. During your guided tour of this amazing location you'll see sights like Hobbit holes, the Mill and the Green Dragon Inn, and learn how farmland was transformed into a living, breathing piece of Middle-earth. After exploring Hobbiton, tuck into a delicious lunch at the Green Dragon Inn. At the world famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves, take a 45-minute guided tour through impressive underground caverns and learn how stalactites, stalagmites and other limestone structures were formed over millions of years. Your tour includes a boat ride through the Glowworm Grotto - glide silently along an underground river as you gaze at the twinkling glowworms overhead. After visiting Waitomo and Hobbiton, continue to Rotorua, arriving in the early evening.
Includes: Scenic coach travel and commentary in English, Guided tour of Waitomo Caves, Lunch at the Green Dragon Inn and Guided tour of Hobbiton Movie set.
Cost per person AED 940.00
Day 11 Auckland/End of trip
After breakfast. The day is free until checkout time. The driver will pick you up and drop you to the airport for your onward flight.
AED 13890/- Per person, Prices are based on twin sharing.
Duration: 11 Days / 10 Nights.
Destinations: Queenstown, Glenorchy, Skyline Gondola, Christchurch, Auckland
The rates are subject to availability at the time of booking request. In the event if there are rate changes due to increase in Govt taxes, or hotel charges a surcharge, or BAR rates (Best available rates), we reserve the right to amend the rates without notice. The exchange rate is subject to change. Please ensure that you have secured the relevant visa / entry permits & valid passport. The best source of visa information is the embassy of the country itself.
If you are interested in going ahead with this booking, we would require deposits or payments as follows either in the form of cash or cheque:
Please ensure that the names given to us for reservations match the names in your passport, as hotels, sightseeing tour companies are very particular about name changes. Mismatched names may result in heavy amendment penalties. We strongly recommend travel insurance as part of your package – we have excellent rates with the world’s best companies – please let us know if you wish us to add this to your package.
Return economy class airfare from Dubai / Queenstown / Auckland / Dubai.
Internal Flight: Economy class airfare from Queenstown / Christchurch / Auckland
3 nights accommodation in Queenstown based on double room occupancy.
3 nights accommodation in Christchurch based on double room occupancy.
4 nights accommodation in Auckland based on double room occupancy.
Return transfers in in Queenstown, Christchurch & Auckland on private car.
Sightseeing tours Queenstown, Christchurch & Auckland on seat in coach.
Complimentary travel insurance.
All airline and hotel taxes.
New Zealand- is a country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean consisting of 2 main islands, both marked by volcanoes and glaciation. Capital Wellington, on the North Island, is home to Te Papa Tongarewa, the expansive national museum. Wellington’s dramatic Mt. Victoria, along with the South Island’s Fiordland and Southern Lakes, stood in for mythical Middle Earth in Peter Jackson’s "Lord of the Rings" films.
New Zealand is the adventure capital of the world. Hiking, skydiving, caving, bungy jumping, skiing — everything here is geared towards getting you outside and doing something incredible. As a popular destination for backpackers and budget travelers, New Zealand is really affordable and offers many ways to save money. I loved my time in New Zealand — the people were friendly, the country was beautiful (I can see why the shot Lord of the Rings there), and you meet a lot of great travelers there. It’s one of the best countries in the world and a place not to be missed. I’ve never heard anyone not love their time in the country. Most people don’t want to leave! I didn’t. You really can’t go wrong with this majestic country. It’s one of my top ten countries in the world! Use this guide to plan the adventure of the lifetime on a budget!
Trip Planning: The planning stage of your trip can be instrumental in its success and an enjoyable part of the experience itself. You have a world of options...and plenty to consider.
Entry and Exit formalities: Visitors must hold a passport valid for at least six months & beyond at the time of entering the Schengen countries. Some nationalities can obtain visa on arrival and for nationalities who requires visa please refer to New Zealand consulate website: www.vfsglobal.com/NewZealand/UAE/
Transportation: Figuring out how to get around is one of your biggest pre-trip decisions. Get our holiday expert best advice on deciding between your options. Based on your trip itinerary, our experts will help you choose wisely. You'll also find a wealth of practical travel tips.
Money: Use your money wisely. Know the best time to use cash or card — and how to avoid unnecessary fees either way — as well as tipping etiquette, and how shoppers can take advantage of VAT refunds.
Phones and Technology: Phones and other smart devices can be huge time-savers...or expensive distractions. Get our tips for making the best use of technology during your trip, and for calling home with or without your own phone.
Packing Light: On your trip you'll meet two kinds of travelers: those who pack light and those who wish they had.
Sleeping and Eating: Your hotel and restaurant choices can be a matter-of-face chore…or they can provide rich opportunities to connect with locals and their culture.
Health & Hygiene: Take comfort: Doctors, hospitals, launderettes, and bathrooms aren’t that different. Dealing with them can even be part of the fun of travel.
Sightseeing & Activities: Once you're on the ground, the real fun begins…but it pays to have a thoughtful plan. Our experts will help you get oriented to your surroundings, use your sightseeing hours wisely, and find your way off the beaten path.
Things to see & do:
Christchurch-known for its English heritage, is located on the east coast of New Zealand’s South Island. Flat-bottomed punts glide on the Avon River, which meanders through the city centre. On its banks are cycling paths, the green expanse of Hagley Park and Christchurch Botanic Gardens. In 2010 and 2011, earthquakes destroyed many of the historic centre's stone-built buildings.
Auckland-based around 2 large harbours, is a major city in the north of New Zealand’s North Island. In the centre, the iconic Sky Tower has views of Viaduct Harbour, which is full of superyachts and lined with bars and cafes. Auckland Domain, the city’s oldest park, is based around an extinct volcano and home to the formal Wintergardens. Near Downtown, Mission Bay Beach has a seaside promenade.
Queenstown -The action capital of the country, this is one of the most fun cities I’ve ever visited. There’s a lot of outdoor activities and sports (bungee jumping is the most popular) to do in the area, amazing restaurants, and the best nightlife in New Zealand. Everyone who comes ends up staying longer than planned. Don’t skip Fergburger either — they have the best burgers in the country!
Hamilton-is a city in the Waikato region of New Zealand’s North Island. Hamilton Gardens, a sprawling public park, features elaborate themed gardens ranging from Italian Renaissance to Japanese and traditional Maori styles. The Waikato Museum displays Maori art and artefacts. Next door, ArtsPost gallery focuses on local art. In the busy city centre, Victoria Street is lined with restaurants, cafes and bars.
Wellington-the capital of New Zealand, sits near the North Island’s southernmost point on the Cook Strait. A compact city, it encompasses a waterfront promenade, sandy beaches, a working harbour and colourful timber houses on surrounding hills. From Lambton Quay, the iconic red Wellington Cable Car heads to the Wellington Botanic Gardens. Strong winds through the Cook Strait give it the nickname "Windy Wellington.
Dunedin-is a city in New Zealand, at the head of Otago Harbour on the South Island’s southeast coast. It's known for its Scottish and Maori heritage, Victorian and Edwardian architecture, and a large student population. Hiking and cycling trails crisscross the dramatic landscape of the adjoining Otago Peninsula, home to colonies of albatross, sea lions and rare yellow-eyed penguins.
Nelson-is a city on the South Island of New Zealand, facing Tasman Bay. It's known for local arts and crafts stores, and art galleries. It's also a popular base for nearby caving sites, vineyards and Abel Tasman National Park. Established by English settlers in 1841, the city's history is showcased at Founders Heritage Park, a living museum with a vintage railway.
Franz Josef Glacier – Hiking these glaciers is pretty amazing. Be sure to crawl through the glacier tunnels, they’re pretty cool! Franz Josef / Waiau is a small town in the West Coast region of the South Island of New Zealand. Whataroa is 32 kilometres to the north-east, and the township of Fox Glacier is 23 kilometres to the south-west. State Highway 6 runs through the town.
Tongariro Alpine Crossing – Labeled the best one-day hike in New Zealand, this walk takes you through where they filmed Mordor in Lord of the Rings. You walk through volcanic terrain, near high peaks, and sulfur lakes before finishing off in a dense forest. The walk takes a full day and is actually quite challenging. Your legs will probably be sore for a few days afterward but it will be worth the sense of accomplishment that comes with completing the hike.
Bay of Islands – North of Auckland, this area has some of the best opportunities for dolphin and whale watching, relaxing on the beach, swimming, boating, and eating seafood. The area is very low key and is a popular summer and weekend getaway destination for Aucklanders.
Bungy jump – Any adrenaline seeker worth their salt will do the 500 foot Nevis Bungy Jump outside of Queenstown. If that’s too high, there are smaller ones in Auckland and Queenstown.
Skydive – Another popular adventure activity in New Zealand is skydiving. The best place for this is over Lake Taupo. It provides a stunning backdrop as you plunge to Earth from 15,000ft. A jump from 12,000ft will cost you around 300 NZD, while a jump from 15,000ft that includes a video, photos, and t-shirt is 550 NZD.
Abel Tasman National Park – Located in the south island, this national park looks like something out of Asia with its turquoise blue water, dense jungles, and warm temperatures. There are many multi-day hiking trails and beautiful sea kayaking throughout the park.
Wellington – New Zealand’s capital has great architecture, character, fantastic nightlife, restaurants, and cultural activities. I found it to be the most “artsy” city in New Zealand. There’s a lot of cultural activities to do here so don’t be like other travelers and rush through — it’s worth a few days!
Waitomo Glowworm Caves – Explore these caves in sheer darkness with nothing but the glow of glowworms to guide your way. It’s an exciting activity as you float down rivers and jump over waterfalls and watch the “starry sky” in the cave. You can also tube and rappel through the caves too. It was one of the highlights of my time in the country.
Maori cultural show – Maori culture is important to understanding life in this country. You find Maori symbols and words throughout the country. See a cultural show while you are there to get a better understanding of the life and history of the country’s native population (the most popular ones are in Rotorua).
Dolphin and Whale watching – Whether you go from the Bay of Islands, Auckland, or down in the south island, the country is the migratory route for many of these creatures and you’re bound to see lots of them no matter when you go.
Go skiing – During the winter months, the south island, especially the are around Queenstown, has snow covered mountains that offer some of the best skiing in the southern hemisphere.
Rotorua – Rotorua is famous for its Maori cultural shows and for its sulfur smell. All around the city are sulfur mud pits that give the city a unique odor. But the upside is that there are a tone of thermal spas in the area to relax in!
Kaikoura – This is a coastal town several miles north of Christchurch. It is set in a peninsula, which makes it an awesome place to enjoy the mountain scenery while watching for whales or dolphins. Additionally, there are is an interesting museum, a handful of historical sights, and the Maori Leap limestone cave.
Wellington Botanic Gardens – Of all the beautiful gardens throughout the country, this is perhaps the most popular. There is a vast tract of native forest, in addition to an international plant collection, a rose garden, and a landscaped area — complete with duck pond, playground, sculptures, a café, and more.
Ride the gondola – If you are in Christchurch, the gondola ride is highly recommended and a pretty fundamental experience. The ride starts on the Heathcote Valley floor and takes you up the side of Mount Vaendish. There is a nice restaurant at the top that allows you to peer out over the landscape as you eat. Many people cycle or walk back down.