Leisurely New Zealand
Visit the best of New Zealand
Jump across the ditch and experience the top destination visited by Australian travellers. A short flight. Safe. Great food. Even better wine. . . New Zealand really has it all!
Journey through New Zealand’s diverse landscapes, experiencing soaring geysers, dramatic glaciers, cultural treasures and natural wonders. This itinerary is designed to ensure longer stays in each city, which means there are no one or two nights stays. The main touring highlights have been included plus a free day at each destination allowing you to personally design your own holiday by choosing from a variety of optional tours to suit all interests.
- Queenstown Gondola with buffet dinner
- Full day Milford Sound tour with nature cruise
- Scenic drive through Mount Cook National Park with views of 5 of New Zealand’s largest glaciers
- 3 course lunch at the famous Hermitage Hotel in Mount Cook Village
- Christchurch morning sightseeing tour
- Visit Kerikeri – Kauri local handicrafts, sample homemade chocolates, Historic Stone Store & Kemp House
- Ferry cruise from Russell visiting Pompalier, Christ’s Church & Maritime Park Visitor Centre
- Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland – champagne pool, geysers, bubbling mud, steaming ground, volcanic craters and terraced formations
- Learn about the people, culture and volcanic landscapes at the Rotorua Museum with high-impact cinema experience
- Full day tour to Taupo visiting Huka Falls, nature walk & lake cruise
- Traditional Hangi feast & performance
- Waitomo Glowworm Caves guided tour & boat ride along the Waitomo River
- Auckland morning sightseeing tour
- Kiwi inspired farewell dinner at Orbit revolving restaurant in Auckland’s Sky Tower
- Return economy flights from Mackay or Brisbane to New Zealand with Virgin Australia with the option to upgrade (other departure ports available)
- Private airport transfers throughout
- Private touring of the North Island with shared scenic transfer from Queenstown to Christchurch
- Flight from Christchurch to Auckland
- 3 nights each in Queens town, Christchurch, Bay of Islands, Rotorua and Auckland
- All sightseeing, entrance fees & guided touring as per itinerary
- Services of an experienced tour host
- 15 breakfasts, 2 lunches & 3 dinner
Mon 09 October 2017 – HOME PORTOR BRISBANE – QUEENSTOWN
North Queensland travellers will meet our Host at the Mackay Airport and begin our journey to Queenstown. Upon arrival into Brisbane, we will meet our fellow travellers at the Brisbane International Airport, for our flight to Queenstown. Welcome to New Zealand! Upon arrival, we are transferred to our hotel. The remainder of the afternoon is at leisure to relax before we make our way to the Skyline Gondola for our welcome dinner with a view! Reputed to be the steepest lift in the Southern Hemisphere, the gondola carries visitors high above Queenstown to the Skyline complex located on Bob’s Peak. At the Skyline Restaurant, feast on South Island salmon, a variety of seafood, salads, roast meats and delicious desserts, all whilst taking in some of the most spectacular scenery in the country.
Tue 10 October 2017 – QUEENSTOWN
Today is free to take advantage of the many optional tours available to suit all interests. You might like to take a cruise from Queenstown Bay to Walter Peak High Country Farm whilst listening to interesting commentary with spectacular views. For the adventurous, there is the Shotover Jetboat Ride where your driver skilfully whips the boat past rocky outcrops and skims around crags and boulders. For the movie buffs, take a safari to see some of the filming locations of Lord of the Rings, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian and many more. For the first time tasters or wine connoisseurs an in-depth introduction to four Queenstown wineries and an underground wine cave tour might be just what you are looking for.
Wed 11 October 2017 – MILFORD SOUND DAY TRIP
From Queenstown we take a luxury glass roofed coach along the shores of Lake Wakatipu and through the rolling countryside to Te Anau. After a morning tea break (additional cost) we continue along the spectacular Milford Road. There is time for photo stops and short walks along the way. At Milford Sound, we board our boat for a leisurely 2.5 hour cruise and learn about the surrounding area from the on board nature guide. Delicious lunch options and complimentary tea and coffee are available during the cruise. There is plenty of time to explore points of interest and to view the stunning scenery, including waterfalls, rainforest and the towering peaks. Keep a look out for wildlife! Afterwards, we return to Queenstown.
Thu 12 October 2017 – QUEENSTOWN – CHRISTCHURCH
Experience the beauty and grandeur of the Southern Alps on our scenic drive from Queenstown to Christchurch via Mount Cook. Travel through the South Island’s stunning scenery to Aoraki (Mount Cook), New Zealand’s tallest mountain at 3,754 metres high and an important landmark in Māori mythology. Journey through the rugged Mackenzie Basin and past Lake Pukaki on our way to Mount Cook National Park, a World Heritage park containing soaring mountain peaks and five of New Zealand’s largest glaciers. Enjoy a three-course lunch at the famous Hermitage Hotel in Mount Cook
Village. Afterwards we’ll have time to explore and soak up the view, or take off on a scenic flight (book direct with your driver) for incredible views of mountain peaks and glaciers (additional cost, weather permitting).
Fri 13 October 2017 – CHRISTCHURCH
Take in the city’s main highlights on our morning city tour including Lyttleton, Evans Pass, Sumner and Mount Pleasant. Other areas of interest that we will see are the Museum, Botanical Gardens, Arts Centre, Upper Worcester Boulevard, and the Bridge of Remembrance. Mona Vale Gardens, Antigua Boat Sheds and Hagley Park are on the outer edge of the CBD and are included before moving through to Riccarton House, Riccarton Bush, and the University of Canterbury. We then travel to the Sign of the Takahe, a historic building providing spectacular views over the city, Canterbury Plains and to the Southern Alps. Afterwards we are transferred back to our hotel or you might like to stay in the city for a little further exploring on your own or perhaps some shopping. This afternoon and evening is at leisure.
Sat 14 October 2017 – CHRISTCHURCH
Today is free to select another optional activity of interest. You might like to take a full day tour to Hanmer Springs Thermal Reserve or take a cruise on Akaroa Harbour. Jump on board New Zealand’s only Open Top Double Decker Bus for a tour around the city or for the food and wine lovers, take a wine trail tour to four of North Canterbury’s boutique vineyards.
Sun 15 October 2017 – CHRISTCHURCH – AUCKLAND – BAY OF ISLANDS
We are transferred to the airport for our flight to Auckland, where we are collected and transferred to the scenic and historic Bay of Islands.
Mon 16 October 2017 – BAY OF ISLANDS
During our tour to Kerikeri, we have the opportunity to interact with local artists as they create amazing work made from local materials. Here we can enjoy the crafted Kauri products at the Kauri Workshop and sample handmade chocolates at Makana Chocolates. Then take a step back in time and learn about the history that makes this area famous, such as the Historic Stone Store and Kemp House. This afternoon, we take an interesting one hour boat tour from Russell Wharf and visit areas not easily covered by foot. Major sights include Pompalier, Christ’s Church, the Maritime Park Visitor Centre and the views from Flagstaff Hill.
Tue 17 October 2017 – BAY OF ISLANDS
Today is free to select an optional tour to discover more of this beautiful area. You might like to explore more magnificent natural wonders during a tour to Cape Reinga and Ninety Mile Beach or perhaps a Dolphin Cruise by catamaran to the Hole in the Rock.
Wed 18 October 2017 – BAY OF ISLANDS – ROTORUA
We make our way by coach from the beautiful Bay of Islands to Rotorua, the cultural centre for the indigenous Maori people and well known for its nearby geysers and thermal mud pools fuelled by the area’s geothermal activity.
Thu 19 October 2017 – ROTORUA
Enjoy a morning tour to Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland. Absorb the unique features including the world famous champagne pool, geysers, bubbling mud, steaming ground, expansive vistas, huge volcanic craters and sinter terrace formations during our leisurely paced walk. The natural bush setting adds another dimension to the experience as does the guaranteed daily eruption of the Lady Knox Geyser at 10.15am. Afterwards, discover the essence of Rotorua, its people, culture and volcanic landscape, at the museum including the high impact cinema experience ‘Rotorua Stories’. This afternoon is at leisure.
Fri 20 October 2017 – TAUPO DAY TRIP
Spend the full day exploring Taupo and its surrounding area. Along the way, we view Huka Falls with time for a short nature walk or jet boat ride (additional cost). We continue to Taupo township where we have time for a bite to eat (own expense) before we board our boat. Our relaxing 1.5 hour lake cruise takes us to the Maori rock carvings to learn about the cultural and volcanic history of Lake Taupo. Enjoy complimentary tea or coffee and a homemade muffin before stopping at Jerusalem Bay for a fishing demonstration. You are welcome to join in with the purchase of a fishing license. There is free time for lunch (own expense) before returning to Rotorua late afternoon. This evening we are in for a treat – experience an evening of ceremonial ritual, amazing re-enactment, powerful cultural performance, storytelling & hangi feasting as we relive significant events within New Zealand’s Pre-European history.
Sat 21 October 2017 – ROTORUA – AUCKLAND VIA WAITOMO
As we make our way from Rotorua to Auckland, we make a stop at the famous Waitomo Caves. Our guided journey takes us through over 250 metres of stunning underground scenery commencing with the impressive Cathedral. The acoustics in this particular cavern are world-renowned. Learn about the formations and the history of the area and take an interesting boat trip through the spectacular Glowworm Grotto. Marvel at Mother Nature’s light display as we glide silently through the starry wonderland. As we enter this galaxy of tiny living lights, we’ll immediately experience a serene ambience and be fascinated and intrigued by tiny glowworms that light our way. Afterwards, we continue to Auckland with the evening at leisure.
Sun 22 October 2017 – AUCKLAND
Get to know the City of Sails with a half-day tour taking in its scenic highlights. Starting in the city centre, travel along Auckland’s famous Queen Street, to eclectic and historic Karangahape Road and through fashionable Ponsonby Village. Cross over the famous Auckland Harbour Bridge, enjoying views of the Hauraki Gulf and city skyline. Returning to the city, we visit the Viaduct Harbour before continuing to the Auckland Domain – the city’s oldest park and one of its largest. Situated on a 62,000 year-old volcano, it features vast open spaces, tropical gardens, ponds and public art. Explore Parnell Village where historic buildings have been transformed into trendy boutiques and specialty shops. After a morning tea break (own expense) we travel along the scenic waterfront route of Tamaki Drive to Michael Joseph Savage Memorial Park, and take in panoramic views of the picturesque Eastern Bays, Auckland city and the Waitemata Harbour before returning to downtown Auckland. The remainder of the day is at leisure.
Mon 23 October 2017 – AUCKLAND
Today is free to explore the city at your own pace or take advantage of an optional tour. You might like to take a Fullers Harbour Cruise offering the best views of the three major Auckland Icons – the Harbour Bridge, Rangitoto Island and the Sky Tower. Or perhaps you would prefer to escape the city and take a drive into the wilderness to experience breathtaking views, black sandy beaches and lush rainforest. This evening we take a short walk to Skycity for our farewell dinner. Soaring high above Auckland we’ll discover Orbit, a truly iconic New Zealand Restaurant offering sensational views and food to match. Situated at the top of Auckland’s Sky Tower, the dining room rotates once every hour providing a truly unique experience with amazing 360 degree panoramas of the city, Hauraki Gulf and beyond.
Tue 24 October 2017 – AUCKLAND – BRISBANE – (OR ONWARD DESTINATION)
Sadly our tour comes to an end as we are transferred to the airport for our flights home.Upon arrival into Brisbane, we complete Immigration, collect our luggage and go through Customs. Here we will say our goodbyes to the travellers finishing their journey in Brisbane. Travellers meeting a domestic connection in Brisbane will transfer to the Domestic Airport, for their onward journey. Our Host will continue onto Mackay, with our North Queensland travellers.
Below are some exciting optional tours and activities you may choose to do in your free time. We recommend you pre book these to avoid disappointment. Please tick the activities you would like to do and return to your consultant. Payment would be required no later than Monday 7 August 2017.
TSS Earnslaw Lake Cruise – $70 per person
Cruise from Queenstown Bay to Walter Peak High Country Farm and return. On board the TSS Earnslaw, the Captain provides interesting commentary as you enjoy spectacular views of Cecil and Walter Peaks and the western shores of Lake Wakatipu. The original steam engines can be seen in operation from the open viewing area. The ships pianist entertains with a variety of old favourites and you are welcome to join in the sing-along around the piano. Guided tours of the ship are available and passengers are welcome to visit the Focsle Gallery to view the historic displays. Tea and coffee and delicious cafe style food can be purchased on board. Departs: 10am, 12pm, 2pm & 4pm. Duration: 1.5hrs. Hotel pick up and drop off not available.
Shotover Jetboat Ride – $138 per person
It’s an adrenaline rush you’ll never forget! From the moment the accelerator hits the floor, your adrenaline hits the roof as you power through the Shotover River and deep into the canyons! It’s an amazing ride, as the Shotover Canyon walls tower over you, and your driver skillfully whips the boat past rocky outcrops, and skims around crags and boulders. Ensure to wear warm clothing. Lifejackets and spray jackets are provided. Complimentary transfers depart “The Station” every 15 minutes. Duration 1hr 15 minutes return. Hotel pick up and drop off not available.
Safari of the Scenes – Glenorchy – $199 per person
Visit the filming locations for Isengard, the Ithilien Camp, Lothlorien forest and the Seat of Seeing/ Battle of Amon Hen, plus yet-to-be-revealed filming locations from The Hobbit trilogy! For Lord of the Rings fans, this is the trip where Nomad Safaris really does take you There and Back again. Beyond Glenorchy, we travel up the Dart Valley to the filming location for Isengard, set amongst snow-capped mountains beside the turquoise waters of the Dart River. This setting offers views of Mt Earnslaw and it’s hanging glacier, used in the first installment of The Hobbit trilogy. Explore the Paradise Forest, the location for the Forest of Lothlorien. Leaving Glenorchy and returning towards Queenstown, we stop at 12 Mile Delta to explore the location of the Ithilien Camp. The tour also includes locations from X-men Origins: Wolverine, The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian and many more. Departs: 8.15am and 1.30pm, Duration: 4hrs 15 minutes. Hotel pick up and drop off included.
Queenstown Wine Trail – $187 per person
For the first time tasters or wine connoisseurs this tour offers an in-depth introduction to four of Queenstown’s wineries and an underground wine cave tour. Friendly, knowledgeable guides offer an understanding of the unique Central Otago wine growing conditions and wines offered. Travelling time is kept to a minimum, the pace is relaxed and wine always superb. Tour includes pick up from your hotel or central Queenstown, tastings at the four wineries visited including wine tasting in the unique underground wine cave. Time for optional lunch (own expense) at Gibbston Valley Winery. Departs: 12.30pm daily. Duration: 5 hours. Hotel pick up & drop off is included.
Akaroa, Harbour Cruise & lunch – $285 per person
Travel to Akaroa via the following landmarks: Sign of Takahe, Sign of Kiwi, Governers Bay, Gebbies Pass, Lake Forsyth and Little River. Stop at the Hill Top for panoramic views of Akaroa Harbour. Visit the cheese factory at Barry’s Bay and sample some fine New Zealand cheese. Lunch is included at Bully Hayes, a popular restaurant on the water front. Afterwards, enjoy a two hour cruise on the Canterbury Cat. On the return journey to Christchurch, stop at Birdling Flat on the Kaitorete Spit. This stony beach provides a commanding view of the southern facing cliffs of Banks Peninsula. An interesting selection of pebbles and semi-precious stones can be found on the beach. Departs: 8:30am, Returns: 5:45pm. Hotel pick up & drop off is included.
Hanmer Springs Day Tour & lunch – $340 per person
Nestled in the magnificent South Island high country, about 2 hours drive from Christchurch, is Hanmer Springs, a charming alpine village & spa resort. For 125 years, Hanmer Springs has attracted visitors seeking the benefits of its natural mineral waters and clean, clear, alpine air. During the tour you can choose between jet boating, a 30 minute neck massage or 9 holes of golf. (one option included). There is also the option to bungy jump or go rafting (both optional extras are to be paid direct). Upon return to Christchurch, stops are made at Waipara Springs vineyard for a tour and wine tasting and at a farm for a sheep shearing demonstration and dog trial. IMPORTANT: Tour choices (jet boat, massage or golf) need to be pre-booked. Included in your tour cost is: hotel pickup & drop off, return transport, tea/coffee, lunch, admission to the Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools and a towel & locker for your belongings. Your admission includes: use of all outdoor thermal pools, freshwater lap pool and family activity pool. Departs 8:30am, Returns 6pm. Duration: 9.5 hours.
Afternoon Wine Trail with lunch – $165 per person
This tour explores four of North Canterbury’s boutique vineyards, Mud House, Pegasus Bay, Torlesse and Waipara Springs all producing a fine selection of both white and red wines. All wineries are located in the Waipara area which is well known for its warm dry climate and limestone rich soils, both ideal for quality wine production. Tour includes lunch, wine tastings and transport. Departs: 12pm, Returns: 5pm. Duration: 5hrs. Hotel pick up & drop off is included.
Discover Christchurch by Double Decker Bus – 1hr $40 or 3hr $75 per person
Join us on our classic 1960’s London Open Top Double Decker buses for a fun &informative tour. Learn about Christchurch’s fascinating history and how it has recovered from the devastating earthquakes. View some of the areas affected, see how Christchurch is preserving some of its iconic heritage buildings and hear about the exciting vision to rebuild and restore the inner city. Choose from a 1 hour tour around central Christchurchin the Open Top Double Decker or a 3 hour tour on a closed top Double Decker visiting places of interest in greater Christchurch. Hotel pick up & drop off not available.
BAY OF ISLANDS
Cape Reinga, Ninety Mile Beach with lunch – $140 per person
Spend time enjoying the magnificent natural wonders of the North. Discover the grandeur of the mighty Kauri trees, the expanse of Ninety Mile Beach and the mystique of Cape Reinga. This tour includes stops for scenic highlights and activities starting with an easy twenty minute boardwalk through the Puketi Kauri Forest. Then thunder along Ninety Mile Beach to the top of New Zealand and wander out to the lighthouse. See the picturesque village of Mangonui. Your tour guides knowledge and informative commentary will make this trip one to remember. Lunch includes either fish and chips or falafel. Departs: 7:15am, Returns: 6:15pm. Hotel pick up and drop off is included.
Dolphin Cruise to the Hole in the Rock – $90 per person
Board a luxury catamaran for the most popular cruise in the Bay of Islands. The high speed vessel will whisk you on a comfortable journey out through game fishing waters to the Cape Brett Lighthouse. Next is Motukokako Island and the famous “Hole in the Rock”. The excitement grows as we make a passage through the Hole and on to the majestic Grand Cathedral Cave. View sandy beaches, beautiful bays and marine wildlife as your skipper gives an informative commentary. Includes an island stopover on beautiful Urupukapuka Island where there are numerous activities including scenic walks and swimming. Departs: 1:30pm, Returns 5.30pm. Duration 4 hours. (no meals included) Hotel pick up & drop off not available.
Huka Falls Jet Boat Ride – $135 per person
The exhilarating power of the Huka Falls Jet is an experience you will never forget. Marvel at the incredible water level views of the spectacular Huka Falls as you slide past cliffs and trees at an incredible 80km an hour. Things to bring: We recommend bringing some warm clothes (hat gloves and a change of clothes may be handy). Sunglasses are recommended and still cameras are welcome at your own risk. We will provide you with a spray jacket and life jacket. The best time for us to do it is around 11am, so we have enough time to get to our cruise. The coach will be there waiting for those who wish to take this optional tour.
Auckland Harbour Cruise – $57 per person
The Fullers Harbour Cruise is the best way to experience Auckland, taking in the best views of the three major Auckland Icons: the Harbour Bridge, Rangitoto Island and the Sky Tower. The cruise includes on board commentary, morning or afternoon tea and a free ferry ticket from Auckland to Devonport and back on any of the scheduled Fullers sailings, so passengers can visit this wonderful seaside village at their leisure. Departure times: Daily at 10.30am & 1.30pm. Duration 1.5 hrs Hotel pick up & drop off not available.
Wilderness Experience – Half Day – $182 per person
A 30 minute drive from Auckland brings you to the Arataki Centre, perched high in the Waitakere Ranges, a fringe of hills separating Auckland from its surf fringed west coast. Absorb the local history and admire the magnificent traditional Maori carvings that stand guard there. Head further west and experience the power of the wild and rugged west coast. Feel the soft, black sand beneath your feet as you stroll along some of the most awe-inspiring beaches the world has to offer. With your knowledgeable and experienced guide, your eco-tour continues with an easy walk in the lush rainforest where you hear native birdsong as you walk the easy bush tracks amongst New Zealand’s famous kauri trees and giant tree ferns. Seventy percent of our native plants are found nowhere else in the world. Refreshments provided. Departs: 12:30pm, Returns: 5:30pm. Duration: 5 hours. Hotel pick up & drop is included.
All Prices are additional to the main tour price.
We would like to invite you to join us on this tailor made holiday to New Zealand and together we will discover the stunning landscapes, learn about their interesting culture and visit many of the must see highlights. Plus, there are many options to further enhance your holiday by choosing optional tours and activities along the way to suit your interests.