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Sheep grazing at a vineyard in Blenheim

New Zealand's food & wine trail self-drive tour

21 days from £10,625pp

Sheep grazing at a vineyard in Blenheim
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Tour highlights

  • Explore the less famous wineries of the Central Otago region.

  • Visit Hawke's Bay, where you are sure to find an excellent Merlot, Cabernet or Syrah.

  • Spend time in Martinborough meeting some of the local producers.

  • Take a bike ride through the vines of Blenheim.

  • Relax on Waiheke Island, surrounded by beautiful beaches and simply excellent food and wine.

Price includes:

  • Scheduled international and domestic flights
  • Fully insured vehicle hire
  • All accommodation
  • 24-hour support while you travel
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Itinerary idea in detail

Includes international flights from a choice of UK airports, including London, Birmingham, Manchester, Newcastle, Edinburgh and Glasgow.

  • Today you begin your journey by boarding your international outbound flight to Auckland.

  • On-board your international outbound flight to Auckland.

  • You will be met upon arrival in Auckland and privately transferred to the domestic terminal for your flight to Dunedin on the South Island. Once here, you collect your car and make the short journey to your accommodation. Settle into the Kiwi relaxed way of life as you explore Dunedin this evening. Your hosts will be happy to recommend somewhere for you to eat.

  • Enjoy a day at leisure in Dunedin to recover from any jet lag. You may enjoy a trip to the Otago Peninsula to view some wildlife, but there is also a fantastic cafe culture here and great eating options around the city centre. Perhaps just a bit of people watching today!

  • You make your way inland today to the beautiful mountain and lake town of Wanaka. Stay three nights in Wanaka exploring this mountainous lake town.

  • Drive from Queenstown to Lake Wanaka and pass by Gibbston Valley to try the different wineries. Then head over the Crown Range to Wanaka where you will stay for the next two nights.

  • Today will be all about taking in the stunning scenery in the Wanaka area. Your guide will pick you up and take you in a 4x4 vehicle through a fully working station as well as some of the best places to enjoy a 360-degree view of the area. Over the course of your tour, you will see many of the station's farm animals grazing, ranging from red deer, alpaca, and, of course, sheep.

  • You make your way up the eastern edge of the Southern Alps today, first driving through the spectacular Lindis Pass before reaching the rolling hills around Lake Tekapo. Your hosts for the next two nights are food and wine experts. Alistair is a post-grad winemaker and viticulturist, and both have run their own restaurants. They are able to offer you a four-course dinner if pre-booked.

  • Spend today exploring stunning Lake Tekapo, visit the Church of the Good Shepherd and perhaps visit the Mount St John Observatory tonight to partake in some of the best stargazing in the world. If you are feeling adventurous you might like to drive into Mount Cook and take a scenic flight over Mount Cook and the glaciers.

  • Continue your journey today across the Canterbury Plains to Christchurch. Spend some time exploring, perhaps visiting Hagley Park and the Cathedral. This evening enjoy dinner in one of the city's many restaurants.

  • Today, you travel to Blenheim, in the heart of the Marlborough wine-producing region. This is a long drive as you must take the inland route via Hanmer Springs and Murchison so be sure to leave early. There are some lovely spots to stop along the way for coffee and lunch, perhaps even a dip in some hot springs! Your accommodation this evening is a beautiful old convent set in among stunning gardens and vineyards and has a superb restaurant on site.

  • Take a guided cycling half-day wine tour today and visit several of the region's best wineries, sampling some of the produce along the way. Then enjoy the rest of the day at leisure, perhaps enjoying dinner at one of the award-winning local vineyards such as Herzogs.

  • You leave your car on the South Island and take the ferry to the North Island today. On arrival, you collect another car and head out of Wellington to nearby Martinborough. We suggest stopping in at the local winery 'Poppies' on arrival — the owner and winemaker will dazzle you with her delicious wine and tasting platters. We advise pre-booking here as it is very popular.

  • Enjoy a private, personalised food and wine tour around Martinborough today. There are a number of vineyards close to each other, between them producing some fine pinots.

  • Continue to Hawke's Bay today, and Napier. Your accommodation tonight is owned and run by a chef who takes great pride in cooking evening meals in front of the guests, explaining the ingredients and process as he goes, and then serving it all with appropriately matched wines.

  • Today is at leisure to explore the Hawke's Bay region and Napier town — you might like to stroll around the Art Deco buildings or visit the gannet colony at Cape Kidnappers. This evening, you will experience a progressive dinner and winery tour; this is one of our favourites in all of New Zealand and comes very highly recommended.

  • Return your car to the airport as you fly to Auckland. From here you have a private transfer to the ferry terminal and travel by boat over to Waiheke Island. Dinner is included here tonight, so you needn't worry about finding somewhere after your journey. Waiheke is famous for its golden beaches and vineyards. Here you can really enjoy a couple of days relaxing and indulging in some simply excellent food and wine.

  • Today, you will be treated to a full-day wine tour of Waiheke Island, where you will explore the nooks and crannies of this beautiful island and the best wine it has to offer.

  • A last day at leisure to do as you please, you might like to relax on the beach or pop over to Auckland or Devonport on the ferry for some last-minute sightseeing. Dinner is not included tonight so that you can go out somewhere special for your last dinner in New Zealand.

  • Return to Auckland by ferry where you will be met and transferred to the airport for your onward flight.

  • Arrive home today to complete your journey.

Accommodation options

While the itinerary price reflects the suggested accommodation, Audley trips are 100% tailor-made, and a specialist can help you select the option best suited to your tastes and budget.

What our clients say about us

Audley Travel specialist Barbara
Contact a New Zealand specialist

The specialist who designs your trip to New Zealand will have explored the country many times and, in some cases, lived there. Their first-hand knowledge gives us the belief that no other travel company can match our expertise in helping you plan your trip.

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When to go

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Place Daily max temperature (°C) Monthly rainfall (mm)
Lake Wanaka
Lake Tekapo
Waiheke Island

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