Best of New Zealand 2014

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Wai-O-Tapu Geothermal Wonderland, New ZealandWellington, New ZealandFranz Josef Glacier, New Zealand
Wai-O-Tapu Geothermal Wonderland, New Zealand
Wellington, New Zealand
Franz Josef Glacier, New Zealand
  • Duration: 20 Days
  • Rating: Read Reviews
  • Brochure: Australia and New Zealand 2014
  • Style: Discovery
  • Description: From Cape Brett in the Bay of Islands in the North to Dunedin in the South Island, you will see the best New Zealand has to offer on this unforgettable holiday. Tour through the Waitomo Glow Worm Grotto, experience Maori culture at the Tamaki Family Marae and sample a taste of country life on a local farm. View magnificent Franz Josef Glacier and enjoy a mystical Milford Sound cruise. You’ll dine at the top of the tallest structure in the Southern Hemisphere, Auckland's Sky Tower and journey on the world-famous TranzAlpine train.

Guest Experiences

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Trip Itinerary

  • Day 1 to Day 2


    You will fly over the international date line on your way to Auckland, New Zealand.

  • Day 3


    On arrival in Auckland you will be transferred to your hotel (flights to arrive prior to 4pm). You’re free to explore Auckland before an evening Welcome Reception with your Travel Director and fellow travellers.

    Meal(s): (Welcome Reception)

    Hotel: Langham (D)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 4


    Depart Auckland over the Harbour Bridge then through Orewa and the Hibiscus Coast. Walk among the Kauri trees at Parry Kauri Park. Explore Whangarei, the northern-most city in New Zealand, and then it’s off to the Bay of Islands.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner)

    Hotel: Copthorne Resort (F)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 5


    Today choose one from a range of Included Choice sightseeing experiences. Cruise to the 'Hole in the Rock', discover Kerikeri's local arts and crafts scene or take a tour to historic Russell. Perhaps go sailing on a tall ship or dolphin-watching on the bay. Maybe play a round of golf or enjoy a dinner cruise down the Waitangi River.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast)

  • Day 6


    See the historic Waitangi Treaty Reserve. You’ll have the opportunity to visit and take in highlights such as the Maori War Canoe (Waka) and Meeting House (Marae). Tonight in Auckland you’ll dine at the top of the tallest structure in the Southern Hemisphere, Auckland’s Skytower at Orbit, a revolving restaurant with 360 degree views of the city.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner)

    Hotel: SKYCITY Grand Hotel (D)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 7


    After a sightseeing tour of Auckland, head south to trace New Zealand’s longest river, the Waikato, to the Waitomo Caves to visit the amazing Glow Worm Grotto. A Local Expert will lead you through the grotto by boat and you’ll walk in the limestone caves. Your journey continues to Rotorua with an orientation tour on arrival. Tonight experience a Be My Guest Maori Hangi feast and concert at the Tamaki Family Marae.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Be My Guest Dining)

    Hotel: Millennium (MD)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 8


    Today choose one from a range of Included Choice sightseeing experiences. Join the Kiwi Encounter at Rainbow Springs Nature Park, discover Maori culture at Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, see the Agrodome Sheep Show, relax in the seclusion of your own hot mineral pool or unwind with a facial treatment in the Lake Spa Retreat at the Polynesian Spa. Maybe ride the amphibious Rotorua Duck or the luge at Rotorua Skyline.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast)

  • Day 9


    Travelling from the mountains to the sea, you’ll view Huka Falls and drive along the shores of Lake Taupo. Discover the alpine scenery of Mt. Ruapehu, Tongariro National Park and the dairy farms of Manawatu. Continue along the Kapiti Coast to Wellington. See the city from Mt. Victoria on your sightseeing tour.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner)

    Hotel: James Cook Grand Chancellor (SF)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 10


    Visit Te Papa, the Museum of New Zealand, with time to discover a Unique Insight into Maori culture. Later, cruise the Cook Strait into tranquil Queen Charlotte Sound. The seaside village of Picton is next, then Blenheim for a city tour.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner)

    Hotel: Scenic Hotel Marlborough (SF)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 11


    En route to the whale-watching haven of Kaikoura, you’ll pass the Grassmere Salt Works and see New Zealand fur seals up close at Ohau Point. Travel to Christchurch and see the extensive work carried out to rebuild the city after the earthquake of February 2011.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast)

    Hotel: Novotel (SF)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 12


    Join us for a taste of country life at a Be My Guest barbecue lunch on Morelea Farm, a typical working sheep farm. You’ll be welcomed into the home of Angie and Stan Taylor and their 600 acre garden. Later visit the Church of the Good Shepherd and soak up the alpine scenery of Mount Cook National Park.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Be My Guest Dining / Dinner)

    Hotel: MacKenzie Country Inn (ST)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 13


    Start your day with a drive along the Waitaki River. View the Waitaki Hydro Power Scheme and Benmore Dam. Travel through Oamaru, with its famous white limestone buildings, to Dunedin for a tour of the city. The afternoon is free to do as you choose.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner)

    Hotel: Scenic Hotel Southern Cross (SF)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 14


    This morning choose one from a range of Included Choice sightseeing experiences. Tour Larnach Castle, ride the historic Taieri Gorge Railway or take the Monarch Wildlife Cruise. You could tour Cadbury World or Speight's Brewery. Later, cross rich fertile sheep-filled farming land to Te Anau.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner)

    Hotel: Distinction (SF)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 15


    You’ll be awe-struck by the magnificence of the World Heritage Fiordland National Park. Your cruise on mystical Milford Sound will take you past Bowen Falls and Mitre Peak. Afterwards, travel over the Devil’s Staircase, along the shores of Lake Wakatipu on your way to Queenstown.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast)

    Hotel: Millennium (MD)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 16


    Today choose one from a range of Included Choice sightseeing experiences. Ride the Thunder Jet on Lake Wakatipu, join a wine tour, play 9 holes of golf or take a gondola to the Skyline Restaurant for dinner. Perhaps take a 4WD minibus through Skippers Canyon, relax with a spa treatment at Millbrook Resort, go horse riding or explore Queenstown on a Segway. This evening cruise across Lake Wakatipu aboard New Zealand’s oldest steamship, the TSS Earnslaw, to Walter Peak Station for a carvery Highlight Dinner at the Colonel’s Homestead. An entertaining after-dinner farm show provides a glimpse into high-country farm life.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Highlight Dinner)

  • Day 17


    Visit the historic gold mining village of Arrowtown on the Arrow River. Enjoy the tastes of delicious stone fruit at Cromwell, the stone fruit capital, a Local Speciality. See a trio of lakes, Dunstan, Hawea and Wanaka. Travel over the Haast Pass and on to Franz Josef Glacier, the world’s most accessible glacier.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner)

    Hotel: Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier (SF)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 18


    There is time this morning to explore Franz Josef Glacier. Depart for Hokitika, home of the native greenstone (jade), for a factory visit and jewellery demonstration, a Local Speciality. Later, travel to Punakaiki for a night in your Authentic Accommodation right on the waterfront.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner)

    Hotel: Punakaiki Resort (SF)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 19


    At Arthur’s Pass you’ll board the TranzAlpine train to travel through the Southern Alps to Christchurch. Celebrate your trip with a Farewell Dinner.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Farewell Dinner)

    Hotel: Novotel (SF)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 20


    Your holiday concludes this morning after breakfast. You will be transferred to Christchurch Airport for your onward flight (flights anytime).

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast)

What's Included

Insider Experiences

  • Be My Guest Enjoy a Maori Hangi dinner at the Tamaki Family Marae in Rotorua.
  • Be My Guest Sample a taste of country life with a barbecue lunch on a working farm in Canterbury.
  • Hidden Treasure Enjoy at least one surprise Hidden Treasure experience, unique to your itinerary, courtesy of your expert Travel Director.
  • Local Speciality Watch skilled artisans carving greenstone (jade) in Hokitika.
  • Local Speciality Taste the sumptuous stone fruit at Mrs. Jones’ Orchard at Cromwell.
  • Local Expert Tour the Glow Worm Grotto at the Waitomo Caves.
  • Local Expert Explore Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland in Rotorua.
  • Unique Insight Explore New Zealand’s nature, art, history and cultural heritage at Te Papa.
  • Authentic Accommodation Stay at an exclusive resort on the waterfront at Punakaiki with the Tasman Sea before you and the National Park behind.

Sightseeing Highlights

  • Cape BrettCruise through the Hole in the Rock.
  • Waitomo CavesGuided tour through the Glow Worm Grotto.
  • Wai-O-Tapu Thermal WonderlandGuided tour through the thermal reserve.
  • Te PapaVisit the Museum of New Zealand.
  • Mt. CookSee the tallest mountain in the southern Hemisphere.
  • Milford SoundCruise on this natural wonder.
  • Franz Josef GlacierView the magnificent glacier.
  • TranzAlpine TrainJourney through the Southern Alps.
  • PunakaikiSee the Pancake Rocks and Blowholes.


  • 17 hot buffet breakfasts
  • Welcome Reception with your Travel Director in Auckland.
  • 12 evening meals:
    • 9 three-course dinners.
    • 1 Highlight Dinner in Queenstown.
    • Be My Guest Dinner with local wine in Rotorua.
    • Farewell Dinner in Christchurch.

Travel Highlights

  • All hotel service charges and tips, baggage handling fees and local taxes included.
  • Travel by luxury air-conditioned coach with reclining seats and an on-board restroom.
  • First Class hotel accommodation featuring twin rooms and private facilities.
  • Audio Headsets provided throughout your holiday to enhance your included sightseeing experiences.
  • Complimentary keepsake photo and map.
  • The services of a professional Travel Director throughout your journey.

Airport Transfers

  • For full details on transfers, please click here.
  • These prices are LAND-ONLY and are correct at the time of the website going live, however prices are subject to confirmation at the time
    of booking.
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  • Hotels are subject to change.
  • * For single travellers purchasing the twin-share option, please note that there is a no smoking policy in all shared rooms. Solo travel is not accepted on guided Family Experiences holidays unless travelling as part of a family group. 
  • ^Twin-share option not available for trips to South America., Costa Rica, Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii or for any holiday & cruise combination, or in Asia and Eastern Mediterranean except Highlights of Turkey (without cruise) & Best of Turkey.

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