Trip Type : Group Tour
Exploring New Zealand featuring the North & South Islands tour
Auckland Christchurch Exploring New Zealand featuring the North & South Islands Trip
Dunedin Milford Sound Exploring New Zealand featuring the North & South Islands Trip

Exploring New Zealand featuring the North & South Islands

Collette Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
4.7 . Excellent
95%
Travel Style: You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level: Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level: 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards. Premium - 4 star
19 days
From: $ 4,599 $ 242 / day
Checking price

Overview

Highlights

  • Experience an authentic Hangi dinner and learn about Maori culture.
  • Enjoy a farewell dinner on the shores of stunning Lake Wakatipu.
  • Cruise through the Bay of Islands’ famous “Hole in the Rock.”
  • Visit spectacular Mt. Cook National Park where permanent ice fields and glaciers blanket the ragged peaks.
  • Visit a working, family-owned sheep farm and learn about daily life in New Zealand’s high country.
  • Explore Te Puia, a Maori cultural and geothermal experience.
  • Enjoy intimate wine tastings in the famous Marlborough wine region.
  • Relish a breathtaking cruise through Milford Sound fjord.

Short Description

The vibrant culture of the Pacific Islands welcomes you across the International Dateline. From geothermal landscape of Rotorua to the warm waters of the Bay of Islands, discover the magical, sweeping landscapes of New Zealand.

Groups are between 25-60 people, typically ~30-40. Usually there will be many opportunities to split off and enjoy meals and excursions in smaller groups. This is the most economical way to travel, saving up to 40% versus booking the same itinerary yourself.
Trip Type Group Tour
See all the highlights and popular spots on a classic tour.
Itinerary Focus Classic Highlights
3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards.
Lodging Level Premium - 4 star
Flights & Transport N/A
Start City N/A
End City N/A
Find your perfect trip
A vast selection of trips on every continent, for every style. Thousands of itineraries from hundreds of trusted travel companies.
Save time
Use simple search and comparison tools to easily find the best trip. Don't sweat the logistics -- travel providers plan for you.
Save money
Book directly with the operator. Find inclusive packages for the best value and get access to amazing deals.
Travel confidently
Read unbiased user reviews, pick the company that fits your style, and connect with them directly. No worries, just memories.

Itinerary

Day 1 Auckland, New Zealand - Tour Begins

Your tour opens in Auckland, the “City of Sails,” consistently rated one of the best places in the world to live. Auckland’s Polynesian population instills into its chic atmosphere the vibrant feel of the Pacific Islands. This evening, join your fellow travelers for a welcome dinner.

Day 9 Blenheim

The morning is yours to enjoy the town of Blenheim. Next, we continue our introduction to the world-famous wine region of Marlborough with a visit to another of the family-owned wineries in the region for a tasting and tour. The area is famous for its Chardonnays, Pinot Noirs, and late harvest Riesling wines, all of which you will taste today.

Day 2 Auckland - Bay of Islands

Come to know the best of Auckland during a panoramic city tour featuring the America’s Cup Village, the War Memorial, bustling Queen Street, and the Auckland Harbour Bridge. Next, depart Auckland and travel north to the Bay of Islands, your home for the next two nights. This sun-soaked region boasts more than 144 islands and warm waters with abundant marine life. Visit the Waitangi Treaty House where Maori and British leaders signed the 1840 treaty establishing New Zealand as a nation. Tonight, experience an authentic Hangi dinner celebration where you learn about the warm-hearted Maoris and their lives before European colonists arrived in Aotearoa (New Zealand) and since.

Day 3 Bay of Islands

Begin the day with a cruise that features the bay’s famous Hole in the Rock and a stop off at picturesque Urupukapuka Island. Relax on the beach or walk to a higher elevation to enjoy 360° views. Look out at the Cape Brett Lighthouse which stands nearly 500 feet above sea level at the edge of the Cape Brett Peninsula. The rest of the day is yours to independently explore Paihia – the quaint town known as “the jewel of the Bay of Islands.”

Day 4 Bay of Islands - Rotorua

Leave the sparkling waters of the Bay of Islands behind and head to Matakohe in the heartland of the North Island. Make a stop at the Kauri Museum where you will come to know the stories surrounding the giant kauri tree that can live for 2,000 years. Discover how the early settlers used this abundant tree to build a life for themselves. Later, continue on to the town of Rotorua, known for geothermal activity and Maori culture.

Day 5 Rotorua

Today, find yourself amid the dramatic geothermal landscape of Rotorua. With over one-third of its population boasting Maori roots, this city is known as the Maori capital of New Zealand. Visit Te Puia, New Zealand's premier Maori cultural and geothermal experience. The National Carving School and National Weaving School are located here, passing on age-old customs by teaching the tribal youth these traditional skills. Enjoy the chance to view the Kiwi bird and learn what is being done in an effort to remove this marvelous creature from the endangered species list.

Day 6 Rotorua - Wellington

Travel through the rolling countryside of the North Island. The rural vistas and the rugged Rimutaka Range slowly give way to Wellington, New Zealand's capital city.

Day 7 Wellington

This morning we embark on a tour of Wellington. See the Beehive, New Zealand’s Parliament; historic St. Paul’s Church; and the Old Government Building – the largest wooden building in the Southern Hemisphere. Following the tour, visit the Te Papa Tongawera Museum, a fascinating center dedicated to art, history and the Maori culture. The remainder of your day is at leisure.

Day 8 Wellington - Picton - Blenheim, Marlborough

Board a ferry and sail across Cook Strait. This has been called “the most beautiful ferry ride in the world.” Arrive in Picton on the South Island where you will have free time for lunch. Next, drive along the coast to the picturesque village of Havelock where you will have leisure time to enjoy the quaint colonial buildings in a town that bills itself as the “green-lipped mussel capital of the world.” Upon arrival in Blenheim, relax at your hotel before heading to a local winery where you will see the vineyard, enjoy a tasting, and dine at the cellar door bistro.

Day 10 Blenheim - Christchurch

This morning depart Blenheim and travel to the historic city of Christchurch. Devastated by an earthquake in early 2011, see firsthand how the “Garden City” is recreating itself during a sightseeing tour that highlights the city’s magnificent gardens and elegant park district. Tonight, enjoy dinner in the region’s earliest home, Riccarton House.

Day 11 Christchurch - Mt. Cook Region

The Maori word for Mt. Cook is Aoraki, which means “cloud piercer.” Journey through New Zealand’s unspoiled wilderness and arrive at Mt. Cook National Park, where permanent ice fields and glaciers blanket the ragged peaks. This is where famed New Zealand mountaineer Sir Edmund Hillary honed his skills before conquering Everest. You may choose to take a nature walk, enjoy an optional glacier flightseeing tour (weather permitting) or simply meditate on the beauty of the Southern Alps.

Day 12 Mt. Cook - Dunedin

Travel to Dunedin, on the southeast coast of New Zealand. One of the earliest European settlements on the islands, Dunedin holds proudly to its Scottish heritage and traditions.

Day 13 Dunedin

This morning's panoramic drive reveals Larnach Castle as well as Baldwin Street, the world’s steepest public road. Later, visit the Royal Albatross Centre, the only mainland breeding location in the world for these magnificent birds. Their epic wingspan can reach nearly 10 feet!

Day 14 Dunedin - Queenstown

Set off today for one of the world’s prettiest towns. You may choose to embark on an optional trip on the spectacular Taieri Gorge Railway; this line was begun in 1879 to serve the inland region of Otago and includes 10 tunnels and 35 bridges. Before arriving in Queenstown, stop in the beautiful 19th century gold rush settlement of Arrowtown, and take some time to explore its quaint, historic streets.

Day 15 Queenstown - Milford Sound - Queenstown

En route to Milford Sound, enjoy the rugged grandeur of the Hollyford Valley. You’ll travel through ancient beech forest via the Homer Tunnel. During a cruise of the breathtakingly beautiful Milford Sound you will see why this fjord is one of the most visited sights on the South Island. With rock faces that rise nearly 4,000 feet on either side, the scenery will take your breath away.

Day 16 Queenstown

Journey into the heart of New Zealand’s high country to visit an authentic, family-owned merino sheep farm. En route, enjoy the spectacular scenery of the Remarkables, Cecil Peak, Bob’s Cove and Mt. Earnslaw as you cruise across spectacular Lake Wakatipu to Mt. Nicholas High Country Farm. During your exclusive, behind-the-scenes visit, follow the journey of merino wool from mustering sheep through the creation of modern wool garments. Enjoy a freshly prepared farmer’s lunch before sailing back to Queenstown. Later this afternoon, it’s your choice! You may go bird watching at the Kiwi Birdlife Park -OR- take a gondola to the top of Bob’s Peak for stunning panoramic views of the region. Gather for a farewell dinner overlooking Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkable Mountains.

Day 17 Queenstown - Tour Ends

Your adventure comes to a close today, leaving you with many pleasant memories of a wonderful trip.

Availability

Checking price
Price From $ 4,599
Price Per Day: $ 242 per day
Check Availability
Checking price
Start DateFinish DateTriple Share (Price per person)Double Share (Price per person)Single StandardDeparture GuaranteedAvailability 
Jun-22-2019Jul-10-2019$ 4,599$ 4,699$ 6,399 Reserve
Aug-24-2019Sep-11-2019$ 4,599$ 4,699$ 6,399YesAvailable Reserve
Oct-12-2019Oct-30-2019$ 5,399$ 5,499$ 7,499YesAvailable Reserve
Nov-02-2019Nov-20-2019$ 5,499$ 5,599$ 7,599YesAvailable Reserve
Jan-11-2020Jan-29-2020$ 5,699$ 5,799$ 7,699YesAvailable Reserve
Jan-18-2020Feb-05-2020$ 5,699$ 5,799$ 7,699YesAvailable Reserve
Feb-08-2020Feb-26-2020$ 5,699$ 5,799$ 7,699YesAvailable Reserve
Feb-22-2020Mar-11-2020$ 5,699$ 5,799$ 7,699YesAvailable Reserve
Mar-14-2020Apr-01-2020$ 5,499$ 5,599$ 7,599YesAvailable Reserve
Apr-18-2020May-06-2020$ 5,099$ 5,199$ 6,899YesAvailable Reserve
See more

Check Current Availability, prices, specials with Collette.

Prices may vary due to local taxes and trip seasonality. Click "Request Info" to inquire directly with the tour operator for the final trip price.

Ask Our Destination Experts

Clark Norton
Email Us

Stride Featured in

Stride Feature In

39 Collette Travel Reviews & Ratings

95%
4.7 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 35
Great 1
Average 1
Disappointing 1
Terrible 1
Value
4.7
Guide
4.8
Activities
4.7
Lodging
4.8
Transportation
4.8
Meals
4.8

Exploring New Zealand featuring the North & South Islands

Write a Review
No reviews yet for this trip. Be the first one to write a review

Company Reviews

Wonderful Tour

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Wonderful tour of Greece and its Islands. Especially recommended for those who want a broad sampler of what Greece has to offer, so you know where you want to return to.

outstanding!

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Recently did the Shades of Ireland Tour...tour guide John Fitzgibbon was excellent...itinerary was outstanding!

Best tour of Italy ever

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Everything--planning and organization of the best tour of Italy ever, for example. Extremely qualified tour managers who are very knowledgeable about the country being toured, its culture, and customs. Every aspect of the tour is planned with the clients' pleasure as the primary focus.
Read more

Collette has great customer service.

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
We are on the Shades of Ireland tour guided by John Fitzgibbon...the best guide and great trip. Collette has great customer service.

Would Recommend

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Went to Italy with Collette in May. Our guide, Daniel Boghen, was spectacular! Our driver, Antonio, was a joy! Knowledgeable, organized, responsive. Hotels were lovely, food delicious. Saw many things that I don't think I would have known about if not for the experience of the guide. It was quite busy, a lot of walking, but that allowed us to see so much! Trip went from Rome to Pompeii, sorrento, Pisa, Verona, Venice, Florence and Lucano, Switzerland...with stops along the way to a vineyard for lunch, dinner with opera singers in Rome, dinner on an island in Lake Maggiore, the catacombs in Rome, gondola ride -- with musicians in Venice...would recommend this trip! Can't wait to return!
Read more

Great experiences and places

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Always great times traveling with Collette and Nice staff. great experiences and places to visit. Love it and , see you in 2019

Details

Optional Activities


Cruise Lake Wakatipu to Dinner - $130

Queenstown
All aboard! Board a Fiordlander and cruise across Lake Wakatipu to Walter Peak Country Farm. Enjoy the hospitality of the Colonel’s Homestead at an impressive buffet where you can indulge in the best of New Zealand meats and seafood, fresh vegetables and garden salads. You are sure to find the house dessert specialties hard to resist! An after-dinner visit to the farm provides an entertaining glimpse into farming life in the high country. Cruise back to Queenstown, relaxing or joining in the revelry of the lively sing-along. Duration approximately 4 hour(s). Transportation is not included A minimum of 1 passenger(s) is required to operate this option. This option is only available from May 11 through July 2 while the TSS Earnslaw is undergoing yearly scheduled maintenance.

Mt. Cook Glacier Flight - $350

Mount Cook
Fly over the pristine wilderness of Mt. Cook National Park for once in a lifetime views of the mountain range surrounding Mt. Cook – named Aoraki by the Maoris. New Zealand’s highest peak, Mt. Cook soars to 12,316 feet. Nineteen peaks in the park climb to over 9,800 feet and 40% of its surface is covered by glacial ice. The ski plane carries you over the Tasman Glacier and gently lands on the ice field. Experience the magical silence of the remote ice field and capture remarkable photos of this extreme environment. Spectacular! Duration approximately 1 hour(s). Transportation is included. A minimum of 1 passenger(s) is required to operate this option. Flight Time: 40 minutes (including 10 minute glacier landing). This option is only available to purchase while on tour through your Tour Manager. Flights are weather dependent. This option does have a weight restriction which your Tour Manager will advise as it varies by aircraft type.

Taieri Gorge Railway - $80

Dunedin
Begin your journey at the historic Dunedin Railway Station, the country’s busiest station during its early years. Board your train and become immersed in breathtaking and spectacular scenery. Travel along the Taieri Gorge, carved by the Taieri River which flows far below you. Photo stops will allow these memories to last forever! Onboard commentary will provide further insight into the railway’s origin and the surrounding areas. Experience the history of the railway firsthand as you pass through hand-carved tunnels dating back over 100 years. End your journey at the Pukerangi Railway Station. Duration approximately 4 hour(s). Transportation is included. A minimum of 15 passenger(s) is required to operate this option.



Flight from Milford Sound to Queenstown - $310

Queenstown
Soar over the plunging cliffs, snowfields and alpine lakes of the pristine Southern Alps on a flightseeing plane that carries you back from Milford Sound to Queenstown. Seeing Milford Sound and Fiordland National Park from the air will give you a whole new perspective on the overwhelming beauty of this region. You’ll be captivated by 9,000 foot peaks and frozen lakes that can only be seen from above. Enjoy amazing views and skip the lengthy return coach ride to Queenstown. A truly spectacular trip! Transportation is included. A minimum of 1 passenger(s) is required to operate this option. Availability for flightseeing is limited. This option is only available to purchase while on tour through your Tour Manager. This option operates on a weather permitting basis only. Duration: 40 minutes. This option does have a weight restriction, which your Tour Manager will advise as it varies by aircraft type.

Dinner with the Maori - $90

Rotorua
Tonight, immerse yourself in the fascinating culture of the Maori as you travel to a traditional village nestled in the rainforest. Learn about the warm-hearted Maoris and their lives before European colonists arrived in Aotearoa (New Zealand) and since. Enjoy an in-depth experience featuring authentic Maori entertainment such as the poi dance and the famous “Haka” war challenge. Finish your evening with an authentic Hangi dinner, pulled from the cooking pits right before your eyes. Come away with an appreciation of a unique culture, thousands of years in the making. Duration approximately 4.5 hour(s). Transportation is included. A minimum of 1 passenger(s) is required to operate this option.



Take a Steamship to Dinner - $130

Queenstown
Step back in time when you board the TSS Earnslaw, the beloved steamship that has been transporting goods and people on Lake Wakatipu since 1912. Nicknamed "The Lady of the Lake," she is the only coal-fired steamship still in operation in the southern hemisphere. Embark on a leisurely cruise across the pristine waters to Walter Peak High Country Farm. Enjoy the hospitality of the Colonel’s Homestead at an impressive buffet where you can indulge in the best of New Zealand meats and seafood, fresh vegetables and garden salads. You are sure to find the house dessert specialties hard to resist! An after-dinner visit to the farm provides an entertaining glimpse into farming life in the high country. Cruise back to Queenstown, relaxing or joining in the revelry of the lively sing-along. Duration approximately 4 hour(s). Transportation is included. A minimum of 1 passenger(s) is required to operate this option. This option is only available from July through April as it is drydocked during the other months of the year. When the TSS Earnslaw is undergoing maintenance, the Cruise Lake Wakatipu to Dinner option will be made available to purchase.

Trip ID#:

collette-11500

Trip Excludes

The land price does not include air travel, airline fees, airport or departure taxes, transfers, visas, customary end-of-trip gratuities for your Tour Manager, driver, local guides, hotel housekeepers, cruise ship waitstaff, and any incidental charges.

Meals Included:

26
×
Great Choice!

Now, Unlock Member Savings

Our Stride Select trips allow you and your travel companions to save up to $700. You wouldn’t want to miss that, right?

or
or
Provide email and password

With your FREE membership you get to:

  • Save up to $700 per person!*
  • Access private deals and offers
  • See personalized trip recommendations
  • Save favorite trips
*See Member Savings Program details
Already a member?

We respect your privacy and take great care to protect your information. By joining you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

×
×
Sign in to Save Trips
Welcome back! We're so happy to see you. ? Forgot Password?
Don't have an account? Join
  • Bookmark trips you like
  • Share with your travel companions
  • Track price changes
  • Access private discounts on trips you save
×
Sign in to see your results

TripFinder is a member-only feature. Don’t worry, it’s free!

With a membership you:

  • Save up to $700 per person!*
  • Access private deals and offers
  • See personalized trip recommendations
  • Save favorite trips
*See Member Savings Program details
×
Activate your free Stride membership

Just use the email address and password provided in the email we sent.

? Forgot Password?

With your free membership you:

  • Save up to $700 per person!*
  • Access private deals and offers
  • See personalized trip recommendations
  • Save favorite trips
*See Member Savings Program details
×
To Follow, sign in or sign up (it's free) ? Forgot Password?
Don't have an account? Join
member benefits
First name is required!
Last name is required!
First name is not valid!
Last name is not valid!
This is not an email address!
Email address is required!
This email is already registered!
Please enter valid email address
Password is required!
Enter a valid password!
Please enter 6 or more characters!
Please enter 16 or less characters!
Passwords are not the same!
Terms and Conditions are required!
Email or Password is wrong!
Please select the captcha checkbox!
Please select the valid captcha!
Something went wrong! Try again later!

x
x
Download your brochure

Enter your email to get the "" brochure.

x
Brochure successfully sent!

We've sent the "" brochure to . Check your inbox!