New Zealand In Depth
This four week in-depth tour showcases all of the sights of both the North and South Islands and has several free days to allow you time to relax and explore. Included is one of New Zealands famed rail journeys, the TranzAlpine, which allows you to take a break from driving, so sit back and relax as you experience delightful rail travel through some of the most stunning scenery on earth.
This is an epic trip ideal for first time travellers to New Zealand, and encompasses virtually everything on the tick list!
Itinerary in Brief
- Bay Of Islands
- West Coast Glaciers
- Milford Sound
- Te Anau
- Lake Takapo
- 26 nights accommodation as shown, based on two sharing
- Hole in the Rock Cruise
- Waitomo Caves Guided Tour
- Rotorua Sightseeing
- Rotorua Hangi and Concert
- Ferry Crossing
- Whale Watching Cruise at Kaikoura
- TranzAlpine Rail Journey
- Milford Sound Cruise
- Doubtful Sound Cruise
- Group B all inclusive car rental
- New Zealand road atlas and one way fees
Day 1: Arrive Auckland
Arrive into Auckland and transfer independently to your hotel. The remainder of the day is free.
2 night stay at the Stamford Hotel Auckland
Day 2: Auckland
Collect your rental vehicle this morning and explore Auckland, the ‘City of Sails’.
Day 3: Auckland – Bay of Islands (240 kms)
Drive north over Aucklands Harbour Bridge, through the northern suburbs and past the beaches of the Hibiscus Coast to Paihia and the Bay of Islands. Stay for 2 nights at the Copthorne Bay of Islands Hotel.
Day 4: Bay of Islands
Explore the Bay of Islands on a fantastic dolphin watching cruise to Cape Brett and the Hole in the Rock. The rest of the day is free.
Day 5 Paihia – Hokianga (100 kms)
Depart Paihia and head towards the coastal town of Opononi and Omapere. This evening travel south to Waipoua Kauri Forest and enjoy a guided tour, viewing some of New Zealand’s largest Kauri Trees.
Day 6: Hokianga – Auckland (262 kms)
Travel south to the Hibiscus Coast resort of Orewa and continue back to Auckland. Stay at the Stamford Plaza.
Day 7: Auckland – Rotorua (370 kms)
This morning travel south towards Rotorua. Included en route is a guided tour of the unique Waitomo Caves. Then on past Lake Karapiro to Rotorua. Stay for 2 nights at the Sudima Hotel Rotorua.
Day 8: Rotorua
Enjoy a day of sightseeing incorporating Rotoruas best attractions. A guided tour of Te Puia and the Maori Arts and Crafts Institute to see roaring geysers and boiling mud pools, Rainbow Springs Kiwi Wildlife Park, the Agrodome Leisure Park famous for its entertaining sheep show, a gondola cable car to the Skyline complex and Polynesian Spa, New Zealands leading international day spa and hot mineral baths. This evening attend a traditional Maori Hangi meal and Cultural Show.
Day 9: Rotorua – Napier (225 kms)
Head to Taupo then continue into the Kaimanawa Ranges, and on to the fertile Hawkes Bay Province and the city of Napier. Spend this afternoon in Hawkes Bay. Stay overnight at the Scenic Scenic Te Pania Hotel.
Day 10: Napier
Today is free. Explore the regions many cafes and wineries.
Day 11: Napier – Martinborough (280 kms)
Travel south to Martinborough, famed for its international award-winning Pinot Noir. En route visit historic Greytown. Stay overnight at the Martinborough Hotel.
Day 12: Martinborough – Wellington (90 kms)
This morning travel the short distance to Wellington, New Zealands Capital, a truly energetic, cosmopolitan city set around the shores of a pretty harbour. Stay overnight at the Rydges Hotel.
Day 13: Wellington – Nelson (3½ hour ferry and 110 kms drive)
Return your car this morning and cross the Cook Strait to Picton and collect your car. Journey through vineyards and farming countryside to Nelson. Stay for 2 nights at the Grand Mercure Monaco Hotel.
Day 14: Abel Tasman National Park
Drive to Kaiteriteri Beach this morning. Choose from a full day cruise giving you the opportunity to see beautiful stretches of coastline which are not always visible from the walking track or a shorter cruise with time for a leisurely walk along part of the walking track from Torrent Bay to Bark Bay. Lunch is included today.
Day 15: Nelson – Kaikoura (250 kms)
Travel over the Richmond Range to the fertile Wairau Valley then on to Blenheim and Kaikoura. Stay overnight at the White Morph Inn.
Day 16: Kaikoura – Christchurch (190 kms)
This morning enjoy a whale-watch cruise, you may also see dolphins, albatross and New Zealand seals. Then head south to Christchurch. Stay overnight at the Rydges Latimer Hotel.
Day 17: Christchurch – Franz Josef (train + 190 kms)
Board the TranzAlpine, New Zealands premier alpine rail journey. Travel across the Canterbury Plains, following rivers and skirting lakes descend through lush beech forest to Greymouth. On arrival at Greymouth collect your car and make your way south through Hokitika to Franz Josef. Stay for 2 nights at the Franz Josef Hotel.
Day 18: Franz Josef
Today is free for you to relax or explore. Optional activities include rainforest walks, guided glacier walks, scenic flights or relaxing in the Franz Josef Hot Pools.
Day 19: Franz Josef – Queenstown (410kms)
Journey past the shores of Lake Wanaka and on through the spectacular Kawarau Gorge to Queenstown. Stay for 2 nights at the Novotel Queenstown Lakeside Hotel.
Day 20: Queenstown
Today is free to explore this alpine resort. We have included a ride on the Skyline Gondola.
Day 21: Queenstown – Milford Sound – Te Anau (430 kms)
Travel south to Te Anau, the gateway to the Fiordland National Park. Enjoy a cruise on Milford Sound and experience up close the uniqueness of sheer rock faces rising from the sea with numerous waterfalls and marine life. Return to Te Anau following your cruise. Stay for 2 nights at the Distinction Luxmore Hotel.
Day 22: Te Anau
Today you will enjoy an excursion to the secluded Doubtful Sound for a 3 hour cruise. Bottlenose dolphins are often seen alongside the vessel, fur seals on the rocks and at times rare penguins may be observed.
Day 23: Te Anau – Dunedin (290 kms)
From Te Anau drive through farmland to Balclutha where you will cross the Clutha River, famous for its alluvial gold. Drive through Milton and cross the Taieri River to the city of Dunedin. Stay for 2 nights at the Scenic Hotel Southern Cross.
Day 24: Dunedin
Today is free to explore Dunedin.
Day 25: Dunedin – Lake Tekapo/Mount Cook (290kms)
Drive north though Oamaru and follow the Waitaki River inland to the aqua blue Lake Tekapo. Stay overnight at the Peppers Bluewater Resort
Day 26: Lake Tekapo – Christchurch (320kms)
Travel over Burkes Pass to the small farming villages of Fairlie and Geraldine, then cross the Canterbury Plains to the city of Christchurch. Stay overnight at the Rydges Latimer.
Day 27: Depart Christchurch
Sadly your tour ends today with the check out of your hotel and the return of your rental vehicle.