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Pohutu geyser, Rotorua

Scenic New Zealand for non-drivers

13 days from $7,995pp

Pohutu geyser, Rotorua
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Tour highlights

  • Explore the filming site of Lord of the Rings, Hobbiton.

  • Experience a traditional Māori cultural performance and hangi dinner.

  • Sample Pinot Noirs and Sauvignon Blancs in the Marlborough Sounds.

  • Time on the country’s well-known train journeys, the Coastal Pacific and TranzAlpine.

  • Cruise down the Milford Sound taking in the cascading waterfalls and temperate rainforest.

Price includes:

  • In-destination transfers
  • Activities and excursions as detailed
  • All accommodations
  • 24-hour support while you travel
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Itinerary idea in detail

Ask us if you would also like us to arrange your international flights at our preferred rates.

  • Arrive in Auckland, also known as ‘The City of Sails.’ After passing through customs and immigration, you’ll be met by a private driver who will take you into Auckland where you can spend the rest of the day exploring the city. We recommend spending time around Britomart, a walkway with designer boutiques, restaurants, cafés, and bars. Alternatively, you can take a ferry to Waiheke Island to explore the vineyards on this small island. Alternatively, you can take a ferry to Waiheke Island to explore the vineyards on this small island.

  • Today you’ll be collected from your accommodation and begin a private tour of the city. Some attractions you’re likely to visit historic mansions and One Tree Hill, before heading to the west coast to experience the temperate rainforest and black sand beaches. You’ll be dropped back at your accommodation late in the afternoon and will have the evening in the city. We recommend visiting the night markets that have a selection of snacks and delicacies, or heading to the Sky Tower to appreciate 360 degree views of the city.

  • Depart Auckland on a shared coach tour this morning that will take you from Auckland’s cityscape to Rotorua’s geothermal center. You’ll drive toward the lush green fields of the Waikato region, where you’re likely to see more sheep than people. Stopping among the rolling hills of Matamata, explore the filming site of Lord of the Rings, Hobbiton. You’ll be transported into a fantasy world as you peek into the small doors and walk through the lush pastures of the Shire. From here, continue onto Rotorua and you’ll see the old volcanic fields rise on the horizon. This is the most active geothermal field in New Zealand and provides a smelly but colorful adventure into the Pacific Rim of Fire. Spend the afternoon relaxing or exploring Rotorua.

  • Rotorua boasts geothermal wonders like boiling pools and mud baths. But that’s not all—explore lush forests and immerse yourself in Māori culture today. You’ll embark on a half-day tour with a group today that encompasses Waimangu Volcanic Valley and Wai-O-Tapu, where you can witness geothermal wonders like boiling pools and the Lady Knox Geyser, and walk through native vegetation. This evening, immerse yourself in Māori culture as you witness a traditional performance, listen to music, and taste a three-course hangi dinner.

  • This morning, you will be collected from your accommodation and transported to the Rotorua airport in time for your flight to Wellington, the capital of New Zealand. Here you can spend time peeking into the eccentric art galleries, smelling the hydrangea gardens, or absorbing Māori culture and history at the National Museum of Te Papa. As night descends on the city, head to the Zealandia eco-sanctuary to venture around to spot the elusive but adorable kiwi, New Zealand’s iconic national flightless bird.

  • You’ll be met by your private driver and taken to the ferry terminal this morning in time for your ferry that travels through the Marlborough Sounds between the North and South Island of New Zealand. You may be lucky to see dusky dolphins playing off the bow of the ferry, as you enter the small sailing town of Picton. Here, you’ll hear the water lapping the side of the boats, buoys clanging, and foghorns blasting before meeting your driver who will take you to your accommodation in the wine region of Marlborough.

  • You have the morning to relax at your accommodation before taking a stroll down to the local cafe to enjoy some lunch while you take in the surrounding scenery. This afternoon you’ll meet your guide and the rest of your group for a tour of the Marlborough wine region. Learn about different grape varieties as you visit local vineyards, with the chance to sample wine too.

  • Spend the morning relaxing or stop by the Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre to explore its excellent WWI and WWII aircraft collections. In the early afternoon, you’ll board the Coastal Pacific train and head south along the Pacific Ocean to the small town of Kaikoura. After making your way to your accommodation, we recommend walking along the Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway for a chance to spot New Zealand fur seal colonies, and learn about the history, geology, and wildlife of the region.

  • This morning you’ll board a boat and head out to sea to spot dolphins, and have the chance to go swimming with them. This area of the ocean is where you’ll find sperm whales and bottlenose dolphins feeding in the nutrient-rich waters. In the afternoon, you’ll board the Coastal Pacific again and travel south to Christchurch. Disembark the train and make your way to your central accommodation before experiencing the vibrancy of the city’s nightlife.

  • This morning you’ll board the TranzAlpine train and travel west across the agricultural land of the Canterbury Plains to Arthur’s Pass. Here you’ll disembark and explore the area by foot, navigating through native beech forest and the alpine landscape.

  • Today you’ll be driven from your accommodation to the domestic airport in time to fly from Christchurch to Queenstown, the self-proclaimed ‘adventure capital of the world’. Spend the rest of the day soaking up the city’s vibrant restaurant and bar atmosphere, or relaxing at your accommodation.

  • Today you’ll meet your group and be driven to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Milford Sound by your guide who will share knowledge along the way. You’ll board a boat and begin the cruise down the Milford Sound, viewing cascading waterfalls, the breathtaking fjord, and temperate rainforest surrounding you. If you are lucky you will get to see seals, dolphins or Fiordland crested penguins. After the cruise, and if weather conditions permit, you’ll soar over the mountains in a light aircraft allowing you to witness a variety of glaciers and peaks from a different angle. Land back in Queenstown and rest this evening.

  • On your final day in New Zealand, you can choose from a plethora of activities like jetboat rides, mountain hikes, Victorian-era steamboats, and some wine tasting in Otago’s finest vineyards, or you can relax and explore the food and drink scene of Queenstown.

Accommodation options

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

Audley specialist Haley
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

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