New Zealand small group tour, 16 days
Description of New Zealand small group tour, 16 days
This New Zealand small group tour, 16 days, takes you on a leisurely tour through the North and South Islands. Travel in a comfy coach, with a maximum of 18 travellers, accompanied by a local kiwi guide and stay in carefully selected, superb accommodation that is full of character.
The tour begins in Auckland on the North Island and here you'll visit the beautiful Bay of Islands, where you can swim with dolphins or take a cruise. Walk through the volcanic Tongariro National Park and cross the Cook Straight on a scenic ferry ride to reach the South Island. Here, natural highlights come thick and fast, including the beautiful beaches of Abel Tasman National Park, Mount Cook and Fiordland's Milford Sound.
There is so much to enjoy on this 16 day holiday, from amazing landscapes to wildlife and history. Learn more about Maori culture at the Kauri Museum, Matakohe and visit the giant kauri tree in the Waipoua Forest accompanied by a Maori guide. You can find out more about the evolution of modern New Zealand, too, at the Waitangi Treaty House in the Bay of Islands.
You'll take to the water from time to time to admire the marine life, beaches and islands. Cruise around Hokianga Harbour to see its dramatic sand dunes, explore Milford Sound on a nature and wildlife cruise and perhaps choose the option of taking the helm of a luxury yacht on a cruise around Lake Rotoiti's beautiful bays and hot pools. All breakfasts are included, with two special lunches and one dinner, too, and you'll have the chance to try delicious wines in Marlborough, New Zealand's celebrated wine-growing region.
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PlanetWe are committed to operating environmentally sustainable tours. By nature small group touring using one vehicle to transport multiple clients is more environmentally friendly than usual modes of travel including rental car or campervan. We have monitoring systems in place to ensure our vehicles are serviced and driven in line with the manufacturer’s guidelines making the running of the fleet as efficient as possible.
On this tour we visit the heritage listed buildings and grounds of the Waitangi Treaty House contributing to their preservation. A local guide from the small community of Omapere will also helps us explore the Hokianga harbour and sand dunes and other local guides - one from thel Department of Conservation - will help us explore the ancient geothermal wonderland at Wai-O-Tapu. They know the area and so are the best to advise on environmental issues and how to travel responsibly through the area.
We are a Qualmark Approved Visitor Service which means we have been independently reviewed and deemed to operate in an ethical, professional and environmentally sustainable way. Wherever possible we select suppliers that are also Qualmark approved and therefore deemed to operate in an ethical, professional and environmentally sustainable way.
We pay an annual licence and have official accreditation to operate on Department of Conservation land which demonstrates our commitment to the environment and sustainability. Payment of the license fee funds the protection of New Zealand’s national parks.
Office: We work from several home offices saving on travel time and fossil fuel consumption. All printer cartridges and paper is recycled. Both home offices water supply is supplied by rain water.
PeopleWe are a sponsor of the Whangarei Native Bird Recovery Centre. From Morepork chicks to one-legged kiwi birds and talking tuis, the Whangarei Native Bird Recovery Centre works tirelessly to provide help, treatment and rehabilitation for ill and injured native New Zealand birds. This award-winning centre cares for over 1,200 birds per year and is part of the Department of Conservation's kiwi recovery program. We are proud to be a contributor to the conservation of New Zealand's native bird population, helping to ensure that our rare wildlife will be around for generations to come. Many of our favourite tours such as the Kiwi and Kakapo are named after our native birds.
Maori culture and customs are an integral part of the tour experience. All of the below experiences are inclusions on our tours. As these activities are owned and operated by indigenous Maori Iwi (Tribes) there are economic benefits for these communities:
Footprints Waipoua - we learn how Kauri trees are inter-twined with the lives of local Maori and the important role they play in the eco-system that is the Waipoua Forest.
Kawiti Glowworm Caves - The caves traditional Maori owners act as living links to the past and making history come alive with their rich local knowledge.
We also where possible visit local craftsmen, markets and restaurants further helping to support the local community.
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