16 Day Ultimate New Zealand Highlights
ULTIMATE SMALL GROUP ESCORTED TOUR
CHRISTCHURCH | MOUNT COOK | DUNEDIN | TE ANAU | MILFORD SOUND | QUEENSTOWN | FOX GLACIER | WELLINGTON | ROTORUA | BAY OF ISLANDS | AUCKLAND
Commencing in Christchurch you will experience the stunning majesty of Mount Cook, the icy blue of the Fox Glacier, the alpine village of Queenstown overlooking the shores of Lake Wakatipu and the unbelievable scenery of the Fiordland National Park. Explore New Zealand’s oldest city, Dunedin, visit historic Larnach Castle and explore the Otago Peninsula; cross the Alps on one of the world’s most scenic rail journeys, the TranzAlpine, and cruise the Cook Strait to the capital city of Wellington. Enjoy the natural beauty of the Bay of Islands before returning to Auckland, the “City of Sails”.
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16 Day Ultimate New Zealand Highlights
Day 1 : Arrive Christchurch (D)
On arrival into Christchurch you will be met by a Grand Pacific Tours representative and transferred to your hotel. This evening enjoy a complimentary pre-dinner drink as you meet your travelling companions.
Hotel: The George
Day 2 : Christchurch - Mt Cook (B,D)
After an introductory city sights tour depart Christchurch and travel through the southern Canterbury Plains to Lake Tekapo. See the brilliant turquoise water, The Church of the Good Shepherd and the Sheep Dog Statue. Marvel at the spectacular mountain ranges including Mt Cook, New Zealand’s highest peak. The opportunity is available to enjoy a scenic flight (optional, weather permitting) over the Southern Alps.
Hotel: The Hermitage Hotel (Aoraki Wing)
Day 3 : Mt Cook - Dunedin (B,D)
Depart Mt Cook, see Lake Benmore and follow the Waitaki River to Oamaru. Continue south to Dunedin, enjoy a city tour followed by free time. You might be interested in a tour to see local wildlife in their natural habitat (optional).
Hotel: Distinction Dunedin Hotel
Day 4 : Dunedin - Te Anau (B,D)
This morning travel along the Otago Peninsula to Larnach Castle where you will hear of the tragic and scandalous history on a guided tour. Enjoy time to wander around this Garden of International Significance followed by an Ultimate High Tea in the Grand Ballroom. Farewell Dunedin and travel through Balclutha and Gore to Te Anau, gateway to Fiordland and your overnight stay. Today you may like to visit the Te Anau Glowworm Caves (optional).
Hotel: Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas
Day 5 : Te Anau - Milford Sound - Queenstown (B,L)
Depart Te Anau for a fascinating drive to Milford Sound where you board your launch for a cruise on this magnificent fiord. See the spectacular Bowen Falls and towering Mitre Peak as you enjoy a picnic lunch. This afternoon travel to Queenstown, overlooking magical Lake Wakatipu. Spend the next two nights at this year-round resort which offers a wide range of activities and attractions. This evening is at leisure, you may choose to dine at one of the many fine restaurants.
Hotel: Millennium Hotel Queenstown (2 nights)
Day 6 : Queenstown (Free Day) (B,SD)
Today is a free day for you to explore Queenstown with many optional activities available. You may wish to enjoy the thrill of a jet boat ride or a heritage tour of the scenic Skippers Canyon. This evening board the vintage steamship TSS Earnslaw and cruise across Lake Wakatipu to Walter Peak Station. Sit back, relax and enjoy a delicious gourmet barbecue dinner featuring a menu of seasonal, fresh and locally sourced food at the Colonel’s Homestead. After dinner enjoy a short farm tour then reboard the TSS Earnslaw for a sing along by the piano as you cruise back to Queenstown.
Day 7 : Queenstown - Fox Glacier (B,D)
Travel to Arrowtown, an old goldmining village and visit the Lakes District Museum. Continue via the Haast Pass to the West Coast, an area of stunning beauty. See the snow-capped peaks of the Southern Alps as you travel north to the township of Fox Glacier. Time is available to experience a scenic flight (optional, weather permitting) over the spectacular glaciers before arriving at your hotel.
Hotel: Distinction Fox Glacier
Day 8 : Fox Glacier - Arthur’s Pass - Christchurch (B,D)
Travel to Hokitika and visit the Greenstone Factory. Continue to Arthur’s Pass and board the TranzAlpine, renowned as one of the great train journeys of the world. View rivers and valleys as you travel through the Waimakariri Basin, over massive viaducts and through the patchwork farmlands of the Canterbury Plains. On arrival into the elegant city of Christchurch, your Ultimate Coach will be waiting to transfer you to your hotel.
Hotel: The George
Day 9 : Christchurch - Picton - Wellington (B,D)
Travel along the East Coast to the seaside village of Kaikõura. Enjoy the spectacular scenery as you travel through Marlborough Country, famous for its food and wine. Continue to Picton, where you will board the Interislander Ferry for your journey through the Marlborough Sounds and across Cook Strait to Wellington.
Hotel: InterContinental Wellington (Premium Room for 2 nights)
Day 10 : Wellington (B)
A highlight this morning will be time to explore Gallipoli: A Scale of War exhibition at Te Papa, New Zealand’s National Museum. Cutting edge technology brings these stories to life through the eyes of New Zealanders who found themselves in extraordinary circumstances. Reboard your coach for an extensive city tour which showcases the history and culture on show. Enjoy free time this afternoon and this evening is also free to choose your own dining arrangements.
Day 11 : Wellington - Taupo - Rotorua (B,D)
Depart Wellington and view the snow-capped peaks of Mt Ruapehu and Mt Tongariro as you travel to Lake Taupo. Visit the spectacular Huka Falls then travel along the Thermal Explorer Highway to the geothermal wonderland of Rotorua.
Hotel: Regent of Rotorua (2 nights)
Day 12 : Rotorua (B,SD)
Today begins with a gondola ride and breakfast at Skyline Rotorua where spectacular views are on offer. There is also time for a thrilling luge ride! Next stop is the Agrodome for an action-packed hour of farming entertainment and education that is unlike anything you’ve seen before. Free time is available this afternoon before travelling to Te Puia to see the boiling mud pools and awesome geysers that Rotorua is famous for. This evening experience an entertaining Mãori Hãngi and Concert.
Day 13 : Rotorua - Auckland - Bay of Islands (B,D)
This morning depart Rotorua and travel north via Auckland to the Parry Kauri Park to see a magnificent example of a Kauri Tree. Continue through Whangarei to the Bay of Islands. This afternoon enjoy a guided tour of the Waitangi Treaty Grounds, the location of the signing of the treaty between the Mãori tribes and the British.
Hotel: Scenic Hotel Bay of Islands (2 nights)
Day 14 : Bay of Islands (B)
This morning you will explore the scenic beauty of the Bay of Islands including an island visit aboard a luxury catamaran. Cruise to Cape Brett and the famous ‘Hole in the Rock’, keep an eye out for dolphins and other marine life. On return to Paihia, enjoy a free afternoon where a range of optional activities are available, or you may choose to relax and enjoy the pleasant atmosphere of the waterfront. This evening is also at leisure, you may like to enjoy a relaxing dinner cruise (optional).
Day 15 : Bay of Islands - Auckland (B,SD)
Depart the Bay of Islands this morning and travel via Whangarei and Dargaville to Matakohe. Enjoy a visit and informative talk at the Kauri Museum before continuing to Auckland for a city sights tour. This evening enjoy a farewell dinner including selected beverages with your newfound friends.
Hotel: The Grand by SkyCity
Day 16 : Depart Auckland (B)
Time to say goodbye. You will be transferred to the airport for your flight home after a memorable New Zealand holiday.