Fascination New Zealand - A stunnning self drive Holiday

19 Great Days – Fascination New Zealand – Self Drive Tour
The best of both islands – Tour Package Season 2024/2025

Our New Zealand Self Drive Tours 4.9/5

Experience a New Zealand that is magnificent, stunning and authentic.


Among nature lovers, New Zealand is considered one of the last adventure areas that has been largely spared from mass tourism. This great New Zealand Tour package is bookable from Auckland-Christchurch and from Christchurch-Auckland.


On the other side of the world, opposite Europe, New Zealand’s North and South Island extend over a length of 1600 kilometres. Endless beaches, fiords, fern forests and geysers, the magnificent mountain world of the Southern Alps, as well as endless pastures, open up a multitude of unique opportunities for nature lovers. Hardly any other part of our world offers so many different landscapes in a relatively small area. The spectacular landscapes and the species-rich flora and fauna are the focus of this journey.

The natural beauty of our National Parks is one of the most impressive experiences of this tour. A boat trip in Milford Sound will certainly remain unforgettable. Covering the best features of both islands you will travel in comfort and by your own paste. Your accommodation  is waiting for you. And it’s the perfect Honeymoon in New Zealand as well!

This tour package can be customized to suit your requirements precisely. All our self drive tours can also be booked with a chauffeur/tour guide as a private tour option! Please let us know your special requests.

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p.P. in Double Room or Twin Share from:

NZD 5,535.00


Upgrade/Downgrade options possible (accommodation category, length of tour, rental car, mentioned/additional activities)

New Zealand Tours Sepcialist Tour Operator DMC
New Zealand Tourism Board certified specialist

Please look at our other New Zealand self-drive tours and if you can’t find the right tour – no problem! We are happy to offer you the perfect and customized New Zealand tour.
Get in touch with us! Behind this website are real people who want to share their enthusiasm and expertise for this country. Enjoy New Zealand and we take care of the rest.

Included within this package:


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  • Standard Option 18 Nights
    • 1 Night at Auckland City Hotel, Hobson Street- 1 x Studio BB
    • 2 Nights at Allegra House – 1 x Island View BB
    • 1 Night at Farmstay Waikato – 1 x Double Room DBB
    • 2 Nights at Rotorua Views – 1 x Matipo Room BB
    • 1 Night at Skotel Alpine Resort – 1 x Superior Room BB
    • 1 Night at West Plaza Hotel – 1 x Standard Room BB
    • 1 Night at Punga Cove Resort – 1 x Fern Studio DBB
    • 1 Night at Quality Suites Kaikoura – 1 x Executive Studio BB
    • 1 Night at Beachfront Hotel Hokitika – 1 x Ocean View Room BB
    • 1 Night at Lake Matheson Motel – 1 x Studio Room (Breakfast at Lake Matheson Café)
    • 1 Night at Te Wanaka Lodge – Lodge Room BB
    • 1 Night at Te Anau Lodge – Chapter Room BB
    • 2 Nights at Blue Peaks Lodge & Apartments – 1 x Studio Kitchen Unit (Breakfast at CocoCabana by Frank)
    • 1 Night at MacKenzie Country Hotel – 1 x Valley View Lodge BB
    • 1 Night at The Muse Christchurch Art Hotel – 1 x Standard Room BB
  • Superior Option, 18 Nights
    • 1 Night at Airedale Boutique Suites – 1 x Signature Studio BB
    • 2 Nights at Allegra House – 1 x Top Suite BB
    • 1 Night at Farmstay Waikato – 1 x Double Room DBB
    • 2 Nights at Prince’s Gate Hotel – 1 x Designer Room BB
    • 1 Night at Powderhorn Chateau – 1 x Hotel Suite BB
    • 1 Night at Ohtel Wellington – 1 x Deluxe Room BB
    • 1 Night at Punga Cove Resort – 1 x Frond Suite DBB
    • 1 Night at Lemon Tree Lodge – 1 x Ocean View Suite BB
    • 1 Night at Teichelmanns Bed & Breakfast – 1 x The Carnegie Room, Double Room BB
    • 1 Night at Distinction Fox Glacier Te Weheka Boutique Hotel – 1 x Superior Room BB
    • 1 Night at Websters on Wanaka – Alpine Peak Apartment BB
    • 1 Night at Te Anau Lodge – 1 x Mother Superiors, Double Room BB
    • 2 Nights at Ramada Queenstown Central – 1 x Standard Room BB
    • 1 Night at MacKenzie Country Hotel – 1 x Deluxe Room BB
    • 1 Night at The Muse Christchurch Art Hotel – 1 x Superior Room BB
  • Meals:
    • 18x Daily Breakfast (cooked, continental, buffet or self-prepared)
    • 1x Lunch (Milford Sound Cruise)
    • 2x Dinner (Farmstay Waikato and Punga Cove Resort)
  • Rental car hire:
    • Vehicle according to the booked category
    • Rental car insurance: Fully inclusive with variable excess/deductible
    • unlimited kms, additional drivers
    • airport/ferry terminal fees
    • Digital travel documents
  • Tour & Activity Pack: (can be customized to suit you precisely)
    • Interislander Ferry crossing from Wellington to Picton for foot passengers & rental car
    • Real NZ – Milford Sound Cruise ex Te Anau
  • Transfers:
    • Cougar Line Watertaxi:
    • Picton Ferry Terminal-Punga Cove Resort return (max. 20kg luggage per person)
    • Shuttle Te Anau Accommodation – Milford Sound return
  • While in New Zealand 24 hour support
  • Tour Excludes:
    • Flights, Travel Insurance
    • Fuel and parking fees
    • Meals, unless otherwise specified
    • Optional activities

Additional Information:

  • Before you travel to New Zealand – New Zealand travel tips – Good to know!
  • You can travel Auckland-Christchurch or Christchurch-Auckland.
  • This tour package can be customized to suit your requirements precisely!
  • Please let us know your special request or if you want to stay a bit longer. We will tailor your holiday.
  • Please note: All of our self-drive tours can be booked with a chauffeur/tour guide as a private tour option!
  • While in New Zealand we offer 24 hour support – details on how to contact us at any time will be well documented.
  • Bookings are essential even if the tours are operating daily. Please send us your dates for reservations.

We all know Terms and Conditions are really boring.


These are no exception. We fell asleep two times while we wrote them!

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BUT – we need them so that there is no misunderstanding if you decide to change or cancel anything. If you transact through this website then we will give you every chance to read these. Any quotes and bookings undertaken are done so on the understanding that you have read and agree to these terms. Please read here  our Terms & Conditions for payment options and cancellation policy.
We play fair and we know we play with people who play fair!

  • Our tours incl. all tax, fees and admissions
  • All prices are displayed/charged in NZ$ and may vary in your home currency depending on currency conversion rates.
  • This tour price is based on 2 people sharing one room and may vary depending on type of accommodation (Motel, Boutique Lodges, 3-5 Star Hotels). Of course, we can provide more options in type of car, accommodation, also in route and duration of your tour.

Please look at our other New Zealand self-drive tours and if you can’t find the right tour- no problem! We are happy to offer you the perfect New Zealand holiday.
Get in touch with us! Behind this website are real people who want to share their enthusiasm and expertise for this country. You enjoy New Zealand and your round trip, we take care of the rest.

  • Stunning and proven New Zealand itineraries

    Accommodations and meals | Activities package: All admissions, tours and activities marked as such in the tour itinerary | Detailed driving information, road maps, route book, and more.

  • Extras for your individual New Zealand Tour holiday

    Numerous additional options and individual tips possible | Tour price options (upgrade/downgrade) possible in Standard, Superior and Luxury categories (3-5 star hotels/motels, boutique lodges, rental car category, tour extension, etc.) | Personal "Meet & Greet" service possible (private shuttle/transport airport, city hotel, cruise terminal, etc.)

  • Rental car incl. all inclusive Insurance with GPS

    All-Inclusive rental insurance or with variable excess | GPS navigation | airport/ferry handling fees | unlimited mileage | additional drivers

  • Ideal prices thanks to daily currency conversion

    Perfect for you: We offer our tours in NZD$  (New Zealand Dollar). Experience has shown that this is often more favourable for our guests during the booking period than a fixed price in your local currency, which may include possible currency fluctuations at the time of travel.
    All prices in New Zealand Dollar (NZD) incl. 15% GST (New Zealand Goods and Services Tax) and incl. all taxes applicable in New Zealand.

  • 24-hours Support while you are in New Zealand

    Details on how you can reach us at any time during your New Zealand holiday - in your time zone - can be found in the travel documentation.

Your daily New Zealand tour details (Superior Option):

The following summary lists driving information for each major driving day of your itinerary. Times and distances are based on ideal conditions without stops. Plan to take longer to allow time to explore and enjoy some stops. While in New Zealand we offer 24 hour support – details on how to contact us at any time will be well documented.

Destination Auckland


Auckland with its suburbs has over 1 million inhabitants. It is the largest city in the country and spreads generously over a narrow isthmus between the Pacific Ocean and Tasman Sea. Over 60 extinct volcanic cones and craters characterize the landscape, while an endless procession of sails in the harbor is typical of the relaxed way of life here. Auckland was the state capital until 1865 and is today the economic center of New Zealand.

Day 1  Auckland

Airedale Boutique Suites • Auckland
Day Notes

Welcome to New Zealand! After your arrival you can pick up your rental car directly at the airport and make your way to ‘Auckland Central’. Afterwards you can either walk along the harbor of the “City of Sails”, as Auckland is aptly called, or stroll through the shopping centers of the city center. A visit to the War Memorial Museum or the Sky City Tower is also recommended.

If you want to enjoy your dinner with spectacular panoramic views of New Zealand’s largest city, we recommend visiting the rotating Orbit Restaurant in the Sky Tower.

  • Pick up your rental car at Auckland Airport from Go Rentals
  • Sky Tower
  • Sky Tower Orbit 360° Dining
  • Auckland Museu & Domain Winter Gardens
  • Kelly Tarlton’s Seaworld & Antarctic Center
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Destination Paihia


Paihia is a tourist town in the Northland Region of New Zealand’s North Island. This popular hub is home to some great sights and attractions, as well as being an excellent gateway to the beaches and dive-sites of the area known as the Bay of Islands. Begin at the historic Waitangi Treaty Grounds, the site of the signing of New Zealand’s founding document, before heading out of town to visit the spectacular Haruru Falls or the towering Waipoua Kauri Forest. Finally, cruises depart the Paihia Wharf multiple times per day, giving visitors the chance to explore the Bay of Islands’ many attractions, including swimming with dolphins, sea kayaking, relaxing on beautiful beaches (such as Taiputuputu Pahi Beach) and visiting geological marvels such as Hole in the Rock.

Day 2  Auckland – Paihia (Bay of Islands)

Allegra House • Paihia
Day Notes

Today you will leave the big city of Auckland and drive over the harbor bridge along the hibiscus coast to Matakohe and can visit the popular Kauri and Pioneer Museum. In the afternoon you will reach the Waipoua Kauri Forest, where beside the typical tree ferns the gigantic Kauri trees can be found. These are not only among the mightiest conifers on earth, but also among the oldest in natural history.

Take a walk through the forest (Footprints Waipoua Meet Tane).Then continue via Opononi to the natural harbor of Hokianga. The strong westerly wind regularly leaves behind large masses of sand, which pile up into imposing dunes at the entrance to Hokianga Harbour.

Your journey continues to Paihia in the Bay of Islands. Once in Paihia, you can take an early evening ferry ride from Paihia to Russell. This charming town of Russell is the perfect starting point to explore the Bay of Islands.
It has the country’s first seaport, the first European settlement and New Zealand’s first capital in nearby Okiato. The city’s streets retained their original layout and names in 1843. Many of the historic buildings can still be seen today. New Zealand’s first licensed hotel, bar and restaurant, The Duke of Marlborough, is located on the waterfront in the historic village of Russell. Enjoy dinner here before the ferry takes you back to Paihia.

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • Footprints Waipoua meet Tane
  • Waipou Forest Tane Mahuta giant Kauri trees
  • Matakohe Kauri Museum
  • Sheepworld live Sheep Shearing and Sheep Dog Show
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Day 3  Paihia (Bay of Islands)

Allegra House • Paihia
Day Notes

Design today according to your wishes.

You can take a trip along the “Ninety Mile Beach” to Cape Reinga, the tip of the North Island.

Or you can take a boat trip through the islands of the Bay of Islands, New Zealand’s subtropical paradise. We recommend the “Dolphin Eco Experience”. This tour gives you the opportunity to swim and snorkel with dolphins in their natural environment. With a little luck you will encounter bottlenose dolphins among still other dolphin species, baleen whales, killer whales, seals, fish and penguins. You will also travel to some remote islands and gain an insight into this historically important region of New Zealand.

An interesting historical excursion is the visit to the Treaty House of Waitangi, where the peace treaty between Maoris and English was signed in 1840 and has great importance in the coexistence of both cultures until today.

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • Explore Dune Rider Cape Reinga
  • Waitangi Treaty Grounds
  • Fullers Bay of Islands Cruise – Hole in the Rock
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Destination Waikato


This region of upper North Island is named after the Waikato River, which has its catchment area here. Waikato’s largest town is Hamilton, with several charming smaller destinations situated on the east and west coasts. Worthy of special mention is the town of Raglan, renowned for its black volcanic sand beaches and great surfing. The rest of the area is largely pastoral and encompasses some of New Zealand’s finest wineries. Sublime eateries, thermal springs, hiking, climbing, horse riding and a full host of water sports are all on offer here, reflecting New Zealand’s diverse and exciting lifestyle options.

Day 4  Paihia – Waikato

Farmstay Waikato • Waikato
Day Notes

Via Whangarei and Auckland, you will travel to the fertile heart of the North Island with its distinctive dairy industry before reaching the Waitomo/Waikato district.

Nearby you will have the opportunity to visit the famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves. In a boat, you will glide through the glowworm grotto on the underground lake. Alternatively, you can take a more adventurous approach. Equipped with a wetsuit, helmet and pit lamp, you will float through the glowworm cave in car tires hooked together. Once the lamps are extinguished, the cave ceiling illuminates in thousands of tiny lights, almost like the Milky Way.

You will spend the evening in a rural style accommodation. Together with your New Zealand hosts you will enjoy a tasty dinner and let the evening end in a pleasant atmosphere.

  • Breakfast at the accommodation
  • Dinner at the accommodation
  • Waitomo Glowworm Caves
  • Black Water Rafting
  • Abseiling
  • Glowworm Spellbound Tour
Expert Tip
  • Natural Bridge Walk
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Destination Rotorua


The city of Rotorua has been a spa town since the 1800s, thanks to the many geysers, hot springs and mud pools that can be found in what is one of the world’s most active geothermal fields. The Maori, who considered the region sacred, make up 35% of the population and a popular attraction is discovering their rich culture and traditions. Rotorua is surrounded by lakes, mountains, forests and other natural features that afford visitors the opportunity to try out a number of outdoor activities between relaxing sessions in the hot springs and pools.

Day 5  Waikato – Rotorua

Princes Gate Hotel • Rotorua
Day Notes

After breakfast you will say goodbye to your local hosts.

On your way to Rotorua we recommend a stopover in Matamata. During a 2-hour guided tour you will discover the real Middle Earth here and visit the movie set of the “Lord of the Rings” and the “Hobbit” trilogies, which might be better known to you as the “Shire”. During your tour you will see the Hobbit Caves, “The Green Dragon Inn” and many other highlights.

Rotorua is not only the center of Maori culture, but also famous for its geothermal activity. Geysers, steaming lakes and rivers, bubbling mud holes and multicolored hot mineral springs known for their healing properties can be admired here.

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • Hobbiton Movie Set Tour
  • Polynesian Spa
  • Redwoods Treewalk at night
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Day 6  Rotorua

Princes Gate Hotel • Rotorua
Day Notes

Today you will spend a free day in Rotorua, where there is no lack of excursion possibilities.

At Te Puia Thermal Reserve, for example, you can experience how thin the earth’s crust is here and how hot it is underneath. Use all your senses to experience colorful sinter terraces, eruptions of geysers, bubbling mud holes and the stinking fumes of sulfur fumaroles.

Alternatively, you can take the cable car to a panoramic mountain and enjoy the panorama of Rotorua.

In the evening we recommend a visit to a Maori village. Here you will be greeted traditionally at the gate of the marae and then experience the rituals of the Maori. Optionally you will be invited to “Hangi”, an earth oven dinner, after the concert at the Meeting House. The dinner is cooked in an earth cave on glowing stones. There are shuttles to pick you up from your accommodation in Rotorua and eventually bring you back.

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • Redwoods Treewalk at night
  • National Kiwi Hatchery
  • Agrodome Sheep Shearing  & Sheep dog live show
  • Polynesian Spa
  • Skyline Rotorua
  • Te Puia
  • Tamaki Maori Village
  • Rotorua Canopy Tour
  • White Water Rafting
  • Floatplane scenic flight
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Destination Ohakune


The small rural town Ohakune is blessed with magnificent scenery, as well as some of New Zealand’s best skiing and snowboarding on the slopes of nearby Mount Ruapehu. Sporty travellers will be in their element here, with kayaking, hiking and cycling also high on the list of local activities. Ohakune is the kick-off point for trips to Tongariro National Park, the country’s oldest wildlife reserve and a UNESCO Wold Heritage Site, known for its stunning glacial lakes with aquamarine waters, rugged volcanic peaks blanketed with snow, and rich Maori culture. The town also has plenty of great wining, dining, shopping and entertainment options.

Day 7  Rotorua – Ohakune

Powderhorn Chateau • Ohakune
Day Notes

On the onward journey today you can stop at Kerosene Creek at Kerosene Hot Springs. These natural, free hot springs consist of a creek, a 2m high waterfall and several hot pools in the middle of the forest (about 200m walk from the parking lot) about halfway between Rotorua and Taupo.

Afterwards, the drive continues to Lake Taupo, a crater lake larger than Lake Constance, which was formed by a massive volcanic eruption about 2000 years ago. Here a stop at the foaming Huka Waterfalls or at the geothermal park ‘Craters of the Moon’ is worthwhile.

Afterwards you drive along Lake Taupo to the Tongariro National Park.

This is defined by three sister volcanoes Ruapehu (2797 m), Tongariro (1967 m) and Ngauruhoe (2291 m), as well as a landscape of black ash, brown dust desert and the mountain streams lined with native beeches. Many Maori legends and tales surround the three mountains. In 1991, the national park was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and two years later, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Several scenes from the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy were filmed in Tongariro National Park. Mount Ngauruhoe is featured as the mountain of destiny in the film. 

You will stay here overlooking the volcanoes of the National Park, at the foot of Mt. Ruapehu.

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • Wai-O-Tapu Geothermal Wonderland
  • Orakei Korako Geothermal Park & Cave
  • Riverjet ‘The Squeeze’
Expert Tips
  • Huka Falls Taupo
  • Tama Lakes
  • If you wish to do the breath-taking Tongariro Crossing, we recommend spending an extra night in the National Park. You will climb the impressive volcanic massif on a trail that has become one of the most popular hiking trails due to the constantly changing, partly moon-like landscape and the spectacular views. You will look from Mt. Tongariro (1967 m) to its sister volcanoes Mt. Ngauruhoe (2291 m) and Mt. Ruapehu (2796 m).  You will cross several craters, pass fumaroles and hot springs and admire the bright turquoise “Emerald Lakes”. The strenuous alpine traverse opens up almost all vegetation forms of the national park. Solidified lava flows and bizarre rock formations give a feeling of “moonscape”, while minerals color the crater lakes garishly.  An incredible experience!
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Destination Wellington


Located on the south-western tip of North Island on the Cook Strait, Wellington is the constitutional and cultural capital of New Zealand – dubbed ‘the coolest little capital in the world’. With its diverse architecture, world-class museums, cultural attractions and award-winning restaurants, Wellington is a popular destination for both local and international travellers. Due to its location in the ‘Roaring Forties’ the city experiences its fair share of wind and as a result, sailing is a popular activity here – with charters offering the visitors the experience of a relaxed cruise with beautiful views of the city and the surrounding bays.

Day 8  Ohakune – Wellington

Ohtel Wellington • Wellington
Day Notes

The three partly still active volcanoes of the Tongariro National Park form the backdrop of your drive along the Desert Road. The drive through barren steppe country, surrounded by peaks up to 2700 m, brings you to the green, fertile farm areas of Rangitikei and Manawatu. The journey continues along the Kapiti Coast to Wellington, the capital of New Zealand.

Here you can visit the parliament, stroll along the promenade or explore the national museum “Te Papa” (entrance free of charge). The funicular will take you to the Observatory, Botanical Gardens and lookout point over the harbor, while you can enjoy a magnificent view of New Zealand’s capital from the lookout mountain Mt. Victoria.

In the evening we recommend a visit to Zealandia, a bird sanctuary so close to the center of the capital. With a local guide you will take a short hike through the park and see various animals, which become active only in the evening hours. With a bit of luck you may even see the Kiwi bird, an endangered flightless bird and also the national symbol of New Zealand.

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • Zealandia
  • Wellington Cable Car
Expert Tips
  • Mt Victoria incredible views
  • Museum of New Zealand Te Papa (entry free of charge)
  • Wellington’s hidden culinary street is called Leeds Street. Could this former shoe factory be the most delicious little alley in the world? Visit the Leeds Street Bakery, founded by the popularity of a cookie. But not just any cookie, a salted caramel cookie that has become one of the most popular treats in Wellington. Leeds Street Bakery in Hannahs Laneway is one of the most celebrated artisan producers in this culinary hotspot.
  • It’s definitely worth spending 2 nights in Windy Welly. There is so much to discover with such a wide variety of people, stores, cafes, bars, restaurants….
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Destination Marlborough Sounds


Rising from the cerulean waters of Pacific Ocean, the Marlborough Sounds are a sinuous network of partially submerged valleys, islands and winding waterways that lie on the northern end of South Island, New Zealand. The Sounds are comprised of the Queen Charlotte Sound, the Kenepuru Sound and the Pelorus Sound and boast pristine forest, stunning beaches, bays, coves and inlets that beckon to travellers. This collection offers endless opportunities for boating, fishing, diving, hiking and wildlife viewing. Visitors can also enjoy the array of cafes, restaurants, galleries and speciality shops in the charming port town of Picton. The iconic Queen Charlotte Track is a 70-kilometre trail that stretches between Queen Charlotte and Kenepuru Sound and provides jaw-dropping coastal views, lush landscape, and historical landmarks.

Day 9  Welington – Marlborough Sounds

Punga Cove Resort • Marlborough Sounds
Day Notes

In the morning you board the Interislander ferry, including your rental car, to Picton on the South Island. You will drive across the Cook Strait and through the Marlborough Sounds, an area of “drowned” valleys formed by the geological subsidence of a low mountain range. Steep ridges still bear witness to the original mountains, which today protrude as narrow peninsulas between deep inlets.

From Picton Harbour you will be taken by boat transfer ‘Cougar Line’ to your idyllic accommodation in the Marlborough Sounds. Located directly on the water, you will discover a world without roads and everyday noise, which guarantees pure relaxation.

In this unique atmosphere you will enjoy an unforgettable dinner at the end of the day.

  • Breakfast in accommodation
  • Interislander ferry from Wellington to Picton x2 adults, x1 car
  • Boat transfer ‘Cougar Line’, Picton Harbour-Punga Cove Accommodation
  • Dinner at accommodation
Expert Tips
  • Another night in the Marlborough Sounds, so away from people, roads and cars, is our tip here.
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Destination Kaikoura


On the rugged east coast of New Zealand’s South Island, the seaside settlement of Kaikoura is located on a rocky peninsula, protruding from lush farmland beneath the mountains. This little hamlet has become a popular tourist destination, primarily due to its famous wildlife watching opportunities. Few places can boast such a wide range of accessible wildlife. With whales, dolphins, fur seals, penguins and albatrosses frequently spotted, this area is truly a nature lovers dream. Visitors can join the Art Trail to witness the skilled local artisans at work in their own studios and galleries or visit the town’s first home which was built in 1842, remains remarkably well-preserved and, interestingly, was built using whale bone as its foundation. So, if you are looking for a bit of history, a touch of crafty culture and a whole heap of outdoor adventure, Kaikoura won’t fail to impress.

Day 10  Marlborough Sounds – Kaikoura

Lemon Tree Lodge • Kaikoura
Day Notes

Waking up in the middle of the Marlborough Sounds must be like a morning in paradise. Enjoy your breakfast there before a boat transfer takes you back to Picton to the harbor.

You will then continue south along the east coast. You will first reach Blenheim in the Marlborough Plain. Viticulture in this region started in the 70’s when “Montana Wines” was looking for new land. The composition of the soil, high sunshine duration, a long autumn and cold winter are excellent conditions for a first class wine, especially for Sauvignon Blanc. We recommend a visit to the idyllic winery ‘Cloudy Bay’. Of course, a wine tasting is not to be missed here.

Your journey continues along the wild and romantic coast to Kaikoura. Sperm whales are not rare at the coast of Kaikoura, attracted by the rich food supply of the warm ocean currents. You can also observe fur seals lying on the rocks here along the highway, and with a bit of luck even dolphins acrobatically jump out of the water.

  • Breakfast at the accommodation
  • Boat transfer ‘Cougar Line’ – Punga Cove Accommodation-Picton Harbour
  • Cloudy Bay WInery Wine Tasting:
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Destination Hokitika


Hokitika or “Hoki” as locals have affectionately named this little town, is idyllically located on a stunning, driftwood-strewn beach on the West Coast of New Zealand’s South Island. Presided over by the towering Mount Cook and the Southern Alps this idyllic little town functions primarily as a gateway to the South Westland World Heritage National Park, however, the town itself offers plenty to keep you blissfully engaged. Hokitika is well-known for its excellent local crafts and has developed a prolific artistic community with an array of open studios and galleries displaying skilful artisans in the process of, among other things, weaving, greenstone carving or blowing glass. It’s a place of simple pleasures: scout the craft galleries, enjoy the fabulously fresh local seafood, or simply have a relaxing picnic on the banks of the picturesque Lake Kaniere surrounded exquisite snow-capped mountains. Hokitika is a great place to get away from the bustle of the city to engage in some wonderfully relaxing self-indulgence.

Day 11 Kaikoura – Hokitika

Teichelmann’s Bed and Breakfast • Hokitika
Day Notes

In the morning you will have the opportunity to participate in a whale watching tour.

The journey continues into the hinterland, over the alpine Lewis Pass and dense southern beech forests to the west coast. On your way you will pass through the port town of Greymouth and a landscape characterized by grazing and forestry, as well as historic gold panning areas.

On the way from Greymouth to Hokitika, somewhat inland, you will find Shantytown. This Heritage Park was built to give the young and young at heart a taste of the history of the area and its gold rush. You will then reach your destination for the day, Hokitika, located at the mouth of the river of the same name. The town is mainly the center of the processing of greenstone, the very hard New Zealand jade, which is transformed into beautiful pieces of jewelry here.

Being located on the west coast, Hokitika is known for beautiful sunsets, which you can marvel at if you are lucky.

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • Whale Watch Kaikours
  • Wings over Whales
Expert Tips
  • If you feel like it, you can take a small detour north along the west coast to Punakaiki to the Pancake Rocks.
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Destination Fox Glacier


The South Island’s West Coast is a unique 600 km coast with the wild mountain world of the Southern Alps. This low populated region has sixteen different glaciers, many peaceful lakes and untamed rivers. The “Coasters” are proud of living in good harmony with the wild and original nature at their doorsteps. The lifestyle of the pioneer era is still omnipresent here – more than anywhere else in New Zealand. The West Coast rains have created an almost fairy-tale rain forest. Moss clad trees and fern trees are typical. We make a stop at Hokitika for the famous Jade manufactory.

Next we continue our tour to Franz Josef, reaching the Southern Alps. There are not many areas in the world where one can watch seals and penguins at the beach, wander through the dense rain forest and walk on the eternal ice of the glaciers – all in one day. The Westland National Park offers these contrasts. The ice streams of the Franz Josef and the Fox glaciers start at approximately 3000 meters altitude and reach into the rain forests on a level of 300 meters. This makes both glaciers unique in the world.

Day 12  Hokitika – Fax Glacier

Distinction Fox Glacier Te Weheka Hotel • Fox Glacier
Day Notes

In the morning we recommend the ‘Treetops Walk Hokitika’. From there you can see the majestic trees and the sea from a completely different perspective.

Your journey continues to Ross, a forgotten old gold mining village. Ross is said to be sitting on $700 million in gold. One more reason why this area has always attracted numerous adventurers.

You will then continue into the glacial region of the Southern Alps, whose highest peaks abruptly rise to an altitude of 3500m south of Hokitika. As a natural weather barrier, the high mountain ridge is responsible for one of the most extreme precipitation regimes. Above the snow line, large ice masses accumulate, forming fast-flowing valley glaciers. The Franz Josef Glacier and the Fox Glacier – unique in temperate latitudes – push down to a height of 300 m above sea level.

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • Hokitika Treetop Walk
  • Helicopter Line Frany Josef Scenic Flight & Snow Landing
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Destination Wanaka


Wanaka is a town located on the southern bank of Lake Wanaka on the South Island of New Zealand. This resort is known for being a prime access-point to the unique Southern Alps’ Mount Aspiring National Park – featuring rich birdlife, enormous mountains and many astounding glaciers – and which forms part of the UNESCO World Heritage Area of Te Wahipounamu. However, besides being near the famous park, Wanaka also offers an abundance of outdoor activities. When it’s warm, enjoy water sports like kayaking and canoeing on Lake Wanaka, as well as hiking, rock climbing and 4×4 routes; while, in winter, you can go skiing and snowboarding on the white peaks of Snow Farm, Treble Cone or Cardonia (all within a 40-minute drive from Wanaka), and extreme sports enthusiasts even have the opportunity to heli-ski.

Day 13  Fox Glacier – Wanaka

Websters on Wanaka • Wanaka
Day Notes

Especially unforgettable is certainly a helicopter flight over the glaciers, also a hike on the glacier is offered.

Today you can take a morning hike to Lake Matheson near the village of Fox. This lake is also known as “Mirror Lake”, because in good weather the highest mountain in New Zealand, Mount Cook, is reflected in the water. The journey continues through the Westland National Park, which has been declared a “Natural Heritage of Humanity”. Over the Haast Pass, climate and watershed of the Southern Alps, past the high mountains of the Aspiring National Park and the deep glacial lakes of Wanaka and Hawea, you will reach the beautifully situated resort of Wanaka.

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • Helicopter Line Frany Josef Scenic Flight & Snow Landing
  • Helicopter Line Heli Hike
  • Eco Wanaka Adventures
  • Rob Roy Glacier
Expert Tips
  • The impressive nature around Wanaka can best be absorbed on hikes like the ‘Roys Peak Track’ or the ‘Rob Roy Glacier Trail’.This may require an extra day in Wanaka.
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Destination Te Anau


Te Anau is situated in the southern region of New Zealand’s South Island, on the eastern bank of Lake Te Anau (the largest lake on South Island). The town is the perfect gateway to the unique and awe-inspiring geographical attractions of Milford Sound (boasting rich marine life and spectacular views), and the Fiordland National Park (offering the excellent Kepler, Routeburn, and Milford hiking and biking trails among astonishing landscapes). However, beautiful Te Anau has plenty to offer in its own right. Active travellers can enjoy water sports on the lake, such as kayaking, canoeing, sailing, and trout fishing, while gentle boat cruises provide a more leisurely option. Make sure to visit the incredible Te Anau Caves to see other-worldly displays of glowworms and an impressive underground waterfall, and visit the beautiful native birds at the Punanga Manu o Te Anau aviary.

Day 14  Wanaka – Te Anau

Te Anau Lodge • Te Anau
Day Notes

Via Queenstown, the journey takes you to Te Anau, the gateway to the Fjordland National Park, New Zealand’s largest and also most developed national park. Hardly any landscape embodies the concept of wilderness better than the Fjordland. In the west, 14 fjords penetrate deep into the primeval forests of a rugged alpine world like overlong ocean tongues. Not far, snow-capped mountain peaks rise above alpine grass mats to 2700 meters.

You now have the opportunity to visit the glowworm caves in Te Anau. (optional)

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • Glowworm Caves
  • Bird Life Sanctuary
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Destination Queenstown


Queenstown is situated on the shores of Lake Wakatipu and has stunning views of the surrounding alpine peaks. Considered by many as one of the world’s adventure capitals, it offers visitors a wide selection of adrenaline-boosting activities to choose from, such as bungee jumping, white water rafting, zip lining, skiing and skydiving. Queenstown also has a lively bar and restaurant scene, and for those who prefer the quieter things in life there are vineyards, golf courses, spas and wellness centres.

Day 15  Te Anau – Queenstown

Ramada Queenstown Central • Queenstown
Day Notes

Today you will take a trip to the famous Milford Sound. A shuttle will pick you up in Te Anau.

Milford Sound is the most developed of the fjords and has been called the eighth wonder of the world. You will first drive along the spectacular Milford Road. At the Homer Tunnel you often see the cheeky Keas, the only mountain parrots in the world.

Once in Milford, you will board an excursion boat that will take you on a trip into Milford Sound. The ship follows the course of the fjord and glides out to the Tasman Sea . Enjoy the wild romantic scenery, which is determined by almost vertical mountain walls.

The shuttle brings you back to Te Anau. Afterwards you drive to Queenstown, often called the “St Moritz of the South Seas”. Due to its beautiful mountain location on the shore of Lake Wakatipu, the small vacation resort has developed into the popular tourist center of the South Island.

  • Breakfast at accommodation
  • Shuttle Te Anau accommodation-Milford Sound and back
  • Real NZ – Milford Sound Cruise
  • Packed lunch on Milford Sound Cruise
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Day 16  Queenstown

Ramada Queenstown Central • Queenstown
Day Notes

There is much to experience and discover in Queenstown, the adventure city of New Zealand. Today is at your leisure.

Take a ride on the steamship “TSS Earnslaw” and cross Lake Wakatipu to Walter Peak Station. Here you can also get a barbecued lunch if you wish and join a farm tour.

Alternatively, explore Queenstown’s wild backcountry by jeep, with an experienced off-road driver. Learn about the gold rush past as you drive over hill and dale through the rough terrain of Skippers Canyon, the “Grand Canyon of New Zealand.” Lord of the Rings tours to filming locations are also available.

Other recommended activities: Skyline Gondola, Shotover Jet, and Dart River Safari.

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • TSS Earnslaw historic steamship & Walter Peak Sheep Farm BBQ Gourmet Dining
  • Nomad Safaris
  • Dart River Safari
  • Shotover Jet
  • Skyline Queenstown
  • AJ Hackett Bungy
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Destination Twizel


Twizel is set in the highlands of the Mackenzie district, amidst a magnificent setting of turquoise glacial lakes, sienna plains, and rugged snow-capped mountains. Thrill-seekers and outdoor enthusiasts will be in their element here, with the region’s natural assets lending themselves to a wide array of adventure activities including trekking, mountain biking, and helicopter rides, to horse riding, canoeing, fly fishing, and SUPping. The town offers a fantastic ongoing market and enticing shops, cafes, and restaurants. Twizel is also the gateway to excursions through the popular Aoraki Mount Cook National Park, known for its spectacular scenery and multitude of hiking trails, and the wider UNESCO Dark Sky Reserve, renowned for the beauty of its star-studded skies. Make sure to play a game of mini-golf at the Twizel-themed miniature golf course, which features holes named after local farms.

Day 17  Queenstown – Twizel

MacKenzie Country Hotel • Twizel
Day Notes

From Lake Wakatipu your journey continues over the Lindis Pass (971 m) through the McKenzie Country to Twizel. At Lake Pukaki you will have the opportunity to admire the magnificent glacier world of Mount Cook, weather permitting. The Maori call this mountain “Aoraki”, the “cloud piercer”.

We recommend a day trip to Mount Cook.

Here you should definitely do the Hooker Valley hike. It is perhaps one of the most famous in New Zealand. The easy hike leads you through the fantastic mountain landscape to the glacial lake, from where you can enjoy the breathtaking view of Mount Cook.

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • Optional: Stargazing experience
Expert Tip
  • Hooker Valley
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Destination Christchurch


Despite the devastating earthquakes of 2010 and 2011, Christchurch was placed second on The New York Times’ list of 52 ‘Places to Go’ in 2014. This speaks volumes of the spirit of this city and its people, whose collective creativity has seen a number of restorative art projects developed on the empty lots and buildings the disasters left behind. The city also offers a fabulous array of activities, including punting down the Avon River, helicopter tours, hot-air ballooning and whale and dolphin watching. Or stroll around the Botanic Gardens.

Day 18  Twizel – Christchurch

The Muse Christchurch Art Hotel • Christchurch
Day Notes

Today you will continue to Lake Tekapo. Here you will find the Church of the Good Shepherd, which has been defying the harsh climate of this area since about 1930. Built with local materials, it is meant to symbolize durability and strength. The picturesque view from the window behind the altar is particularly impressive.

Today you will leave the three-thousand-meter peaks of the Southern Alps and again experience a spectacular change of vegetation. You will first reach highland farms, which are different from lowland farms in terms of livestock. The drive then continues through the Canterbury, the fertile heart of the South Island, where vast farmlands stretch like a patchwork quilt. Final destination is Christchurch, the largest city in the South Island.

Here you can take a walk through the beautiful botanical gardens and visit the Art Gallery. In the evening we recommend the “Tram Dinner”. Here you dine in style in the restored historic streetcar, in an air-conditioned carriage while you get to know the city on a sightseeing tour.

  • Breakfast in the accommodation
  • Optional: Tram Dinner
Expert Tip
  • Lake Tekapo, Church of the good shepherd
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End of Itinerary

Day 19  Christchurch

Day Notes

Unfortunately, today is already the last morning of your surely unforgettable New Zealand trip. Drive to the airport in Christchurch and drop off your rental car here. Have an entertaining onward or home journey. We wish you a good flight – Safe travels!

  • Breakfast in accommodation
  • Christchurch Airport car rental return
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