South Africa
8 days

New Zealand is one of those great all year round destinations, that make travelling at any time of the year a possibility, depending on what you want to do. Though temperatures in New Zealand are naturally higher in summer (December to February); for many people travelling at this time may not be the best choice, or may not be suitable due to other commitments.

New Zealand seasons and climate are very changeable and extremely mild year round. This means that even in summer, there will always be quite a few cool and wet days. Though it is naturally colder in winter (June to August), winter normally has plenty of sunny days too. If you look at the monthly rainfall, the South Island of New Zealand is generally a little drier and the North Island slightly wetter in winter. The amount of sunshine in winter is less than the rest of the year, though even in winter there are many sunny days. As a generalization, Fiordland and the West Coast of New Zealand have the highest rainfall year round; whilst regions such as Nelson, Marlborough, Hawkes Bay and the Bay of Plenty tend to have the highest amount of sunshine.  So as long as you come prepared for the cooler temperatures, travelling outside of the peak summer period can be an option.

DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION Auckland International Airport
DEPARTURE TIME Please arrive at least 4 hours before the flight.
Accommodations Sightseeing
Meal Professional guide
Local transportation
Entrance fees
Guide gratuity

Day 1

On arrival in Auckland, ‘The City of Sails’, seat in coach passengers will be met by our local representative and privately transferred to your hotel. Self drive passengers will collect your rental car at the airport and drive to your hotel.

Day 2

Travel south through the fertile Waikato region to arrive at Waitomo. Enjoy a guided tour of the world-famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves including an underground boat ride viewing the millions of glow worms on the cavern roof. On completion continue over the forested Mamaku Ranges to reach the ‘Thermal City’ of Rotorua. This evening enjoy an authentic Maori Hangi (feast) and Concert.

Day 3

This morning visit Te Puia Thermal Reserve to see boiling mudpools and roaring geysers. Following this, visit Rainbow Springs to see New Zealand’s trout, birds and wildlife before continuing to the Agrodome for a New Zealand farm show featuring sheep dog demonstrations, cow milking and an introduction to the stars of our sheep industry. This afternoon or this evening enjoy a relaxing soak in the tranquil setting of the Lake Spa Retreat at the Polynesian Spa.

Day 4

Depart on your domestic flight from Rotorua to Christchurch (airfare is NOT included).

Day 5

Travel across the fertile Canterbury Plains to Lake Tekapo and the ‘Church of the Good Shepherd’ before continuing on to New Zealand’s highest mountain – Mt Cook. Depart Mt Cook and follow the shores of Lake Pukaki south through the historic Central Otago region to the ‘Alpine Resort’ of Queenstown.

Day 6

A free day to explore the endless optional attractions available. Queenstown offers bungy jumping, jetboating, white water rafting, gondola rides and much more. Optional activities not included in the tour price.

Day 7

Departing Queenstown this morning, travel along the shores of Lakes Wanaka and Hawea to the Haast Pass, gateway to World Heritage Westland National Park. Continue up the West Coast past spectacular mountain ranges, native forests and lakes to the glacier region of Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers.

Day 8

Travel north to Greymouth today and board the TranzAlpine train (seat in coach passengers only). Ascend through lush beech forests past the alpine village of Arthur’s Pass before crossing the spectacular Southern Alps. Travel beside the Waimakariri River to Christchurch. 

Day 9

Your arrangements conclude today with a departure transfer or the return of your rental car. We trust you enjoyed your 99 Planet Holidays Vacation!

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