This extensive itinerary is an ideal introduction to New Zealand for firsttime visitors looking to explore the country at their own pace. Travel the length of New Zealand to visit the main sights, with plenty of opportunities to explore each area further and excursions that can be tailored to your own preferences.
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On arrival, transfer to the M Social Auckland for 2 nights. Following day at leisure or take an optional excursion. (N)
Collect your car hire and drive north to the Bay of Islands. On arrival, stay 2 nights at Arcadia Lodge (or similar) in Russell. Suggested excursions include a cruise out on the Bay of Islands to spot dolphins or visits to the Waitangi Treaty Grounds and the historic town of Russell. (N)
Drive south to the volcanic town of Rotorua and stay 2 nights at the Peppers on the Point. This long journey can be broken up with a stop for lunch in the pleasant town of Cambridge, with tree-lined streets and many wellpreserved heritage buildings, or Matamata, home of the Hobbiton film set. Alternatively shorten your day’s drive by taking an overnight stay in Auckland, which is approximately the halfway point of this journey. (N)
Day at leisure to explore the volcanic attractions of Rotorua. (N)
Drive south to Wellington and stay at the Bolton Hotel for 2 nights. Following day at leisure to explore New Zealand’s capital city, with time to visit the National Museum Te Papa or join a guided walking tour. (N)
Drop off your car hire and board the Interislander ferry for the journey to South Island. On arrival in Picton, collect a new car and drive south through the Marlborough wine-growing region to Blenheim. Stay overnight at the Chateau Marlborough. (N)
Continue south this morning along the beautiful east coast to Kaikoura. Stay 1 night at Fyffe Country Lodge. Afternoon whalewatching cruise off the Kaikoura coast. (N)
Drive south to Christchurch and stay 2 nights at the The George. The following day is at leisure for you to explore Christchurch. (N)
Drive to Aoraki / Mount Cook National Park and stay overnight at the Hermitage Aoraki Mount Cook Hotel. Spend the afternoon walking in the park or visit the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre. Option to extend your stay and explore further. (N)
Drive to the lakeside town of Te Anau and stay overnight at Dock Bay Lodge(or similar). (N)
Drive to Milford Sound, where you will board the Milford Mariner† for an overnight cruise in this spectacular fiord. (D)
Drive to Queenstown and stay at The Rees (or similar) for 2 nights. Following day is at leisure to enjoy one of the many outdoor activities available. (B, N)
Drive north through the Mount Aspiring National Park to the small town of Franz Josef. Stay 1 night at the Te Waonui Forest Retreat. Optional guided walk to the face of the Franz Josef glacier, or take a scenic flight for an aerial view. (N)
Drive north up the rugged west coast to Greymouth, drop off your car hire and board
the TranzAlpine train for a journey through the Southern Alps to Christchurch. On arrival, you will be transferred to the Commodore Airport Hotel for 1 night. (B)
Transfer to the airport to fly home or continue your holiday. (N)
As per itinerary – B: Breakfast, L: Lunch, D: Dinner, N: No meals.
This tour is based in 4- and 5-star accommodation.
International flights are not included with this itinerary.
This cruise does not operate between mid-May and mid-September, however we are able to tailor your itinerary should you wish to travel during this period.
For a price quote based on alternative accommodation standards, to discuss flight options, or to tailor this itinerary, please call 020 3930 5042 or email Info@CoxandKings.co.uk.
The Arcadia Lodge is a large two-storey historic bed & breakfast situated close to the Matauwhi Bay and a 10-minute walk from Russell village centre. The lodge has a large decking area for relaxing with scenic views across the bay. The property's garden is abundant and provides the jam served at breakfast and the herbs used in the kitchen. Guestrooms are an eclectic mix of contemporary and antique furnishings with a mixture of western, Pasifika and Maori art on display.
Features: 5 rooms, a common guest area, decking, library, car parking.
Room amenities: Tea & coffee facilities, hairdryer, Wi-Fi.
Please note: guests must be 15 years old and...
An elegant apartment-style hotel in the centre of Wellington, the Bolton Hotel is an all-suite property and Wellington's only 5-star hotel. The 142 suites each have a lounge, kitchen and views of the city. Facilities include an indoor swimming pool, complimentary wireless internet access, a fully equipped gym, a restaurant, a cafe and a...
The boutique Chateau Marlborough offers 4-star accommodation just a short walk from the centre of Blenheim town. The property has 40 rooms, all with air conditioning and modern amenities. Facilities include car parking, an outdoor swimming pool and a...
The Commodore Airport Hotel is located beside Christchurch airport and just 10 minutes' drive from the centre of Christchurch. The property sits on seven acres of land in award-winning native gardens and the on-site restaurant serves contemporary food which has European, Asian and Pacific influences.
Features: 157 rooms, restaurant, bar, fitness centre, pool, spa, Wi-Fi.
Room amenities: Television, minibar, refrigerator, coffee...
The Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas is located on the lakefront in the village of Te Anau, beside New Zealand’s second largest lake. The property has 112 rooms and suites, each with views of either the gardens or lake. Hotel facilities include a restaurant, bar, outdoor swimming pool (for use in summer months), spa and...
Located 5km south of Kaikoura, Fyffe Country Lodge is a luxury bed and breakfast property with just six rooms. Each of the guestrooms has individual decor, fine furnishings and modern amenities. Facilities include car parking and a restaurant. Stays include breakfast...
Opened in 2017, M Social Auckland is located directly on Auckland's waterfront, providing a grandstand view of the sparkling Waitemata harbour. This designer hotel is in a superb location with the Viaduct Basin and Britomart's designer shops as well as some excellent restaurants nearby. Cruises and ferries to Waiheke island are also within a short stroll.
Features: 190 rooms & 8 suites, restaurant, bar, Wi-Fi.
Room amenities: Television, air conditioning, coffee & tea facilities, hairdryer,...
The Milford Mariner provides a very special dinner, bed and breakfast experience, when the daytime visitors depart and a silence descends on the Sound. The vessel has been purpose built to accommodate passengers in 30 private cabins with en suite bathrooms. It has a spacious dining room, observation lounge and large open deck areas for viewing the scenery of Milford Sound.
The Fiordland's scenery never fails to impress. Waterfalls tumble hundreds of metres; ancient rainforests cover the mountains; lakes shimmer and granite peaks look just like they did a thousand years ago. Milford is by far the best known of all of the fjords.
Departing from the Milford Wharf, cruise the full length of Milford Sound to the Tasman Sea. Leisurely explore many points of interest and view waterfalls, rainforest, mountains and wildlife with the experienced nature guide on board....
Set on the shores of Lake Rotorua, just 5 minutes' drive from the centre of Rotorua town, the 5-star boutique Peppers on the Point enjoys panoramic views and a stunning location. Steeped in history, this luxury retreat is a former 1930s mansion filled with antiques, offering seven individually styled suites, each with a separate lounge area. Facilities at the property include in-house dining, complimentary wireless internet, a guest lounge, gym and car parking. Breakfast is included for all...
Te Waonui Forest Retreat is a 5 star hotel
located amongst the native west coast rainforest
at Franz Josef. Designed to be sensitive to the
surrounding environment, guests at the property
are encircled by rainforest and accommodated
in natural and sustainable luxury. The retreat has
100 rooms, a restaurant and...
Offering warm, personalised service, The George is a boutique hotel located beside the beautiful Hagley Park and Avon river. A member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World, The George offers chic and spacious rooms and suites, all comfortably furnished and elegantly decorated. The hotel's two restaurants serve award-winning cuisine with seasonal menus.
Features: 53 rooms, 2 restaurants, bar, coffee shop, sitting room.
Room amenities: Television, minibar, bathrobes, hairdryer, coffee & tea...
Originally opened to adventurous travellers in 1884, the Hermitage Hotel has since been rebuilt, modernised and refurbished to offer a range of comfortable accommodation options in a world heritage wilderness playground. With the Aoraki Mount Cook National Park as its alpine backdrop, the onsite restaurant offers buffet meals, with each seat providing a view of New Zealand's tallest mountain.
Features: 164 rooms & 20 chalets, restaurant, cafe, lounge, Wi-Fi.
Room amenities: Television, fridge, tea & coffee...
The Rees Hotel is located on the edge of Lake Wakatipu, just a short drive from the centre of Queenstown. The property offers a range of accommodation, including one-,two-,three- and four-bedroom self-contained apartments, each with a fully equipped kitchen, lounge and bathroom. Complimentary transfers to Queenstown town centre are available at set times of day. The Rees emphasises local history and culture, and encompasses a gallery displaying a selection of original paintings and historic prints featuring life in Central Otago, and a library with more than 250 rare books and maps depicting the settlement and development of the region.
Features: 150 rooms, restaurant, wine lounge & extensive wine cellar, Wi-Fi, spa, library;, gym, observatory, private jetty, art gallery.
Room amenities: Lounge, balcony, super-king bed, television, iPod docking station, spacious bathrooms with...
Regional air connections are available from within the UK. Please contact your travel consultant for current prices from your nearest city.
We can also arrange flights from overseas, simply give us a call to find out more.
If you choose to take the tour without flights arranged through Cox & Kings, please contact one of our travel consultants prior to booking the flights to ensure that you are aware of the tour timings and all the implications of not booking through us. We strongly advise you not to book flights independently of Cox & Kings if significant charges would apply in case of cancellation.
Flight details may be subject to change prior to departure.
This tour can be booked / reserved online by clicking on one of the coloured links below.
AOT2018: 19 Nights
Many memorable moments but the best has to be the overnight cruise on Milford Sound on the Milford Mariner. It rained on the way to Milford Sound but it had stopped by mid afternoon and by early evening the weather was perfect. We went out on the tender in Harrison Cove and communed with the penguins on the shoreline as the sun went down - then back to the boat for an excellent dinner. The staff were friendly, knowledgeable and good fun. The scenery was, of course, spectacular.Ms Ann Abraham
Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city, is poised between two large harbours...
Blenheim is situated in the heart of wine-growing Marlborough. It is one of...
The South Island’s largest city, Christchurch is an entertaining mixture of refined lifestyle and cultural excitement. The tranquil...
Kaikoura is a base for wildlife experiences of all kinds. It is also a great...
Rotorua Located on North Island's volcanic plateau, the town of Rotorua is the...
The village is the gateway to the Franz Josef Glacier. This glacier was first documented by Abel Tasman in 1642...
New Zealand's capital city, Wellington is set on a magnificent harbour...
The resort town of Queenstown is sophisticated and fantastically scenic. Its lake and mountain landscape is suited...