Fantastical landscapes and vibrant culture will captivate you during your 12-day New Zealand highlights tour. The majesty of dramatic cliffs lining a pristine sound and caves shimmering glowworms will reveal the spirit of the North and South islands. You will have an immersive experience to the heart of Middle Earth and witness captivating blue glaciers as you venture into luxury and epic scenery on your New Zealand adventure.
Christchurch – Arrive in the Fascinating South Island City of Christchurch
Arrive in Christchurch and experience the majesty of the Garden City. The sweet scent of blossomed tulips adds a welcoming fragrance to the streets as Victorian architecture decorates the city. The hum of trolley cars rings through the city center and a gentle trickle emanates from the current of the Avon River as it meanders through the lush parks and around the bustling cobblestone streets.
Whether it’s venturing through the various gardens on foot or drifting along the Avon River with the soft scent of spring hovering in the air, Christchurch is the perfect city to welcome you to New Zealand and the splendors of the South Island. For the best introduction to Christchurch, you can take a gondola to the top of Mount Cavendish at more than 1,600 feet above sea level. The cable car will provide you with a fabulous 360-degree view of the city, the cobalt waters lapping against Banks Peninsula, and the sprawling greenery of the Canterbury Plains.
Christchurch – Explore Tradition, Gardens, and Design in Christchurch
Queenstown – Discover Mount Cook on a Heli-Hike en route to Queenstown
Queenstown – Indulge in the Thrill Ride during a Dart River Jetboat Safari
Queenstown – Revel the Majesty of Milford Sound on a Luxury Day Cruise
Queenstown – Traverse the Alpine Beauty of Queenstown at your Leisure
Rotorua – Travel to New Zealand’s North Island to the City of Rotorua
Rotorua – Enjoy a Tour of the Breathtaking Geothermal Fields of Rotorua
Rotorua – Wander the Glowing Waitomo Caves and Explore the Agrodome
Auckland – Embrace the Fantastical when Visiting the Town of Hobbiton
Auckland – Witness the Marvels of Land and Sea when Touring Auckland
Auckland – Depart for Home
- Explore the icy surface of Tasman Glacier on an exceptional heli-hike merging a scenic helicopter ride with a walk on the glacier
- Discover the erupting geysers and bubbling mud pools of New Zealand at Rotorua
- Uncover the mystery of a kaleidoscopic glow that lights the secluded grotto of the renowned Waitomo Caves
- Witness the majesty of towering cascades, soaring mountaintops, and active wildlife while cruising the untamed wilderness of Milford Sound
- Step into the magical world of Middle Earth when you visit the preserved movie set of Hobbiton, originally constructed for the Lord of the Rings trilogy
- Relish the thrills of speeding across the rushing waters of the Dart River in view of lush forests, stunning mountain peaks, and hanging glaciers
- Stroll down a tunnel passage surrounded by swarming sharks and swirling schools of fish when you visit Kelly Tarlton’s Underwater World in Auckland
- Embrace the Maori culture in Rotorua during a typical hangi feast accompanied by a performance of traditional Maori dances including the infamous haka
Your custom-tailored tour, 12-day tour of New Zealand will create the greatest memories by showcasing the natural wonders of the North and South. From the gardens of Christchurch to the serene waters of Milford Sound and the enrapturing chants of a Maori feast to the vibrant glow of the Waitomo Caves, you will witness a country celebrated for its magnificent scenery, fabulous culture, and a welcoming, adventurous spirit.
Your New Zealand vacation begins with your arrival in Christchurch. The city is surrounded by lush prairies and filled with vibrant greenery. Take your time wandering through the Garden City, as you explore the flowers and the cobblestone streets while you punt down the Avon River. Whether in the architecture of the Christchurch Cathedral or the shade of the Botanic Gardens, the beauty of the city shines bright no matter the season. On your way to Queenstown, you will witness the sensational heights of Mount Cook, which towers above Haast Pass, during a heli-hike to Tasman Glacier. Enjoy Queenstown’s surroundings on a jet boat safari along the Dart River, where the beech forests stand tall, the cool water splashes your skin, and the mountains tower over the riverbanks. Cruise through the breathtaking Milford Sound, where the serenity of the landscape is tangible, penguins often waddle along the shores, and waterfalls ring in the air.
Your final day in Queenstown will be yours to explore. With so much to offer, choosing one adventure is often the hardest decision when visiting Queenstown. Travel along the steepest gondola in the Southern Hemisphere to the top of Bob’s Peak where many walking paths and hikes take you around Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu, or into the valleys beyond.
The classic landscapes of New Zealand continue on the North Island with your arrival in Rotorua, located at the center of the geothermal region. In the evening you will hear the melodic chants of the Maori as you participate in a traditional feast and performance. You will wander across the smoldering earth and sizzling pools, in addition to visiting the Government Gardens and the Rotorua Museum to find the geological and cultural histories of the region. Then, stop and experience the sensational light of the glowworms illuminating the depths of the dark Waitomo Caves. On your way to Auckland, explore the pathways and flavors of Hobbiton where 44 hobbit holes create the ambiance of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle Earth. Once in Auckland, you will have a guided tour of the fabulous urban landscape to witness the City of Sails and the unforgettable highlights, from the Sky Tower and Parnell Village to Kelly Tarlton’s Underwater World.
$8,395 per person (excluding international flights)
Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.
- In-country transportation
- Some or all activities and tours
- Expert trip planning
- 24x7 support during your trip
Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.
Reviews of Zicasso's Referral Service
4.84 stars based on 1435 reviews.
Reviewed By Kristin B.
Reviewed By Linda B.
Reviewed By Laura D.
Reviewed By Erica B.
Reviewed By Steve S.
Reviewed By Barbara S.