Arrive in Christchurch
When you arrive in Christchurch you’ll be transferred to your hotel, then in the evening you’ll meet your tour guide and have a welcome reception and dinner with your tour group.
Overnight: Ibis Hotel, Christchurch
Today you’ll board your coach and take a look around Christchurch. The city is enjoyed a prolonged period of renewal after damage caused by the earthquake in 2011. Later on you’ll visit Lake Tekapo and Pukaki, before enjoying a trip to the Church of the Good Shepherd. Finally you’ll take in some of the scenery in Mount Cook National Park.
Overnight: Heritage Gateway, Omarama
On day three you’ll travel down to Dunedin for a tour of the city. As a part of the tour you’ll see the stunning Railway Station as well as New Zealand’s only castle, Larnach Castle.
Overnight: Kingsgate Hotel, Dunedin
Today you’ll head from some of New Zealand’s most startling natural beauty as you enter the Fiordland National Park. Here you’ll find ancient glaciers, towering mountains and verdant forests. You’ll take an overnight cruise on the Milford Sound which will take you past Bowen Falls and Mitre Peak. Note that between June and early September there is no overnight cruise – instead you’ll take a day cruise followed by hotel accommodation in Te Anau.
On day five you’ll reach Queenstown, the adventure sports capital of the world visiting the Te Anau Glow Worm Caves on the way. You’ll stay in Queenstown for three nights enjoying a multitude of activities including everything from bungee jumping and skydiving to jet-skiing and windsurfing.
Overnight: Mercure Hotel, Queenstown
Today you’ll visit the gold mining town of Arrowtown and taste some lovely stone fruits at Cromwell. Afterwards you’ll head on to three beautiful lakes: Dunstan, Hawea and Wanaka before sampling the stunning beauty of Haast Pass and the jaw-dropping Thunder Creek Falls before heading on to Franz Josef Glacier.
You’ll start today with a viewing Franz Josef Glacier, either taking a hike or an optional flight to see the scenery from above. Afterwards you’ll visit Hokitika, home to the native greenstone before seeing the Pancake Rocks at Punakaiki.
Overnight: Punakaiki Resort, Punakaiki
On day 10 you’ll drive through Buller Gorge and on to sunny Nelson. Here you’ll stay two nights to explore the city taking in the World of Wearable Art and Collectable Cars and browsing the range of craft shops and boutiques. On day 11 you can choose to visit Abel Tasman National Park or just relax in the city.
Overnight: Grand Mercure Monaco, Nelson
On day 12 you’ll reach New Zealand’s capital Wellington, stopping off at Picton and cruising on the Queen Charlotte Sound along the way. Take a guided sightseeing tour before a look around Te Papa, the Museum of New Zealand. Day 13 is a day at leisure where you could take a tour of Parliament, go on a Lord of the Rings movie tour or take a more relaxed approach to your day.
Overnight: Travelodge, Wellington
Today you’ll pass through the dairy farm land of Manawatu and heading on to Napier. Here you’ll learn the history of the city and understand how it was rebuilt after the famous earthquake of 1931.
Overnight: Hotel Te Pania, Napier
On day 15 you’ll travel past Lake Taupo and the Huka Falls before arriving in Rotorua. On arriving you’ll take a tour of the city with features lovely views of Lake Rotorua. In the evening you’ll enjoy a traditional Maori Hangi feast and concert. Staying for two nights, on day 16 you’ll have plenty of leisure time to enjoy some of the other sights in the area including Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland and the famous Lady Knox Geyser.
Overnight: Ibis Hotel, Rotorua
Early today you’ll head to the Agrodome Sheep Show for an interesting look at agriculture in New Zealand with demonstrations including sheep dog and shearing. Afterwards you’ll head to Matamata for further insights into farming. Enjoy a lunch at Longlands Farm and then head on to the impressive city of Auckland. Take in a city sights tour to see Bastion Point, Viaduct Harbor and Auckland Harbor Bridge.
Overnight: Mercure Hotel, Auckland
Bay of Islands
On day 18 you’ll depart Auckland and head along the stunning Hibiscus Coast. Stop off to walk among the Kauri trees in Parry Kauri Park and then carry on to Whangarei, New Zealand’s most northerly city. Later you’ll visit Paihia in the lovely Bay of Islands and then take a scenic cruise to Cape Brett to see the famous Hole in the Rock. Day 19 is free to explore the rest of the Bay of Islands.
Overnight: Copthorne Hotel & Resort, Bay of Islands
In the morning you’ll travel to the Waitangi Treaty Reserve where New Zealand’s founding papers were signed. Later on you’ll return to Auckland for a relaxed farewell dinner with your tour group.
Overnight: Mercure Hotel, Auckland
Today you’ll transfer to Auckland airport for your flight home.
Internal travel: Coach; Cruise
Hotel (20 nights)
20 breakfasts, 1 lunch and 14 dinners included
Visit to the Church of the Good Shepherd; Overnight cruise on Milford Sound; Cruise through the Glow Worm Caves; Visit Franz Josef Glacier; Traditional Maori hangi feast; Visit to Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland; Visit to Bay of Islands; Maori cultural experience
Tour guide throughout