New Zealand holiday, land and sea tour

“A 20 day self drive adventure through New Zealand, exploring this compact country’s diverse landscapes, from coast to volcanic lake, geyser to glacier. ”

Highlights

Auckland | Rangitoto Island | Tauranga | boat trip to White Island | Rotorua | Lake Taupo | Maori cultural evening | drive the Desert Road to Ohakune | hike the Tongariro Alpine Crossing | drive the Forgotten World Highway to New Plymouth | Mount Egmont National Park | Wellington | ferry to Picton | Nelson | seals and beaches trip in the Abel Tasman National Park | Punakaiki and the Pancake Rocks | Glacier Country | Queenstown via the Haast Pass | overnight trip on Doubtful Sound | Te Anau | glow worm caves | Arrowtown

Description of New Zealand holiday, land and sea tour

This New Zealand holiday, land and sea tour, takes you from Auckland on the North Island, right down to Queenstown on the South Island. Explore this small country’s hugely diverse landscapes and geology, from glaciers and sandy beaches, to volcanoes and geysers, discovering its wealth of contrasting scenery and how it has been formed over millennia.

In the North Island, you’ll find unique landscapes formed by geothermal activity. On Rangitoto Island and Tongariro National Park discover solid lava flows and take a boat out to White Island, New Zealand’s only live marine volcano. See the bubbling mud and spouting Lady Knox geyser in Rotorua and enjoy a boat ride on Lake Taupo, the country’s largest lake, created by a volcanic eruption thousands of years back.

A ferry ride takes you over to the South Island, where you’ll follow the west coast, seeing a landscape shaped by hundreds of years of glacial and water erosion. This is a self drive trip and you’ll be driving along beautiful roads, through impressive valleys including the Buller Gorge and the Haast Past, with free days for hiking and exploring on foot in beautiful places such as the Abel Tasman National Park. See how the rough Tasman Sea has battered and shaped the coast in Punakaiki and then travel inland to visit the twin glaciers of Franz Josef and Fox. The trips winds up with an overnight boat trip on Doubtful Sound, a dramatic fjord formed by a glacier and boasting some of the most beautiful scenery in this impressive country.

To be sure of enjoying all the activities included in this itinerary, it’s best to avoid New Zealand during the winter months of June, July and August. Late spring and summer are wonderful here –November until the end of April. February can be busy with visitors, but the weather’s great.

Hello. If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. Rosy & team.

01273 823 700

Departure information

Available all year. This suggested itinerary can be modified entirely to your personal wishes including departure date, duration, accommodation used and how long you spend in each destination
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: New Zealand holiday, land and sea tour

Green Globe 21: Several of the properties and excursions mentioned in this itinerary are members of Green Globe 21, the worldwide benchmarking and certification programme which facilitates sustainable travel and tourism for consumers, companies and communities. It is based on Agenda 21 and Principles for Sustainable Development endorsed by 182 governments at the United Nations Rio de Janeiro Earth Summit in 1992.

Accommodation: In general, New Zealand is a very environmentally friendly country, but certain properties have excelled in their eco-friendly approach. The Langham Hotel in Auckland achieved Green Globe 21 accreditation in 2007 and has more recently won a Green Globe Sustainability Award at the New Zealand Tourism Awards. Chalet Eiger in Taupo is also Green Globe accredited, as is Remarkable Lodge in Queenstown, both being very much committed to further improving their environmental practices.

New Zealand excels in its small, family-run bed and breakfast properties, where visitors experience true kiwi hospitality as well as often learning more about the area they are staying in and meeting the people who live there. This itinerary includes a variety of such properties, many of which are buildings of historic interest and are in stunning locations, a wonderful contrast to the impersonal, international hotel chains.

Excursions: By carefully choosing which operators we recommend in New Zealand, visitors can get up close to the scenery and wildlife in its natural environment without causing any disturbance. All of our suppliers are committed to the environment and some in particular have excellent environmental policies.

White Island tours achieved Green Globe certification in 2007 and are committed to ensuring their tours have a minimal impact on the environment. They offer visitors the opportunity to see New Zealand’s only live marine volcano as well as observing other aspects of the natural environment and local wildlife.

Real Journeys won the Conservation in Action award at the New Zealand tourism in 2007 and has a very strong conservation ethos. They support a number of ongoing conservation projects in the areas in which they operate and are actively committed to best environmental practice. Staff and visitors are encouraged to get involved in conservation initiatives where possible and they have on-board naturalists and geologist on the cruises so that guest have the maximum opportunity to learn more about the local environment.

Local Culture: The Maori heritage is an inherent part of New Zealand life, and there are countless opportunities to experience Maori traditions, crafts, food and dance. Wairakei Terraces in Taupo is locally owned and uses local Maori guides, giving visitors the chance to immerse themselves in Maori cultural heritage and learn about the lives of the local people, their activities and their land. As a relatively small operation it offers a much more personal and authentic experience.

We also highly recommend a visit to the excellent Te Papa museum which has a comprehensive range of information in the form of displays, performances and interactive activities about the history of New Zealand culture and environment.

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