Sublime scenery and secluded luxury will create your perfect 14-day romantic New Zealand vacation. You can reach isolated mountainscapes by helicopter for a private picnic and sample delicious wines on celebrated vineyards. An opulent cruise will take you along the sparkling waters of Milford Sound while the charming waters provide exceptional views passing whale pods. You will experience the opulence of New Zealand’s South Island for passionate and spirited couples.
Queenstown – Boutique City Indulgence beneath the Mountains
A lodge will stand isolated along the shores of Lake Wakatipu, as you gaze across the water to the Remarkables. These mountains will reflect peacefully in the lake’s surface as you settle into your suite. Here, you will be deep in nature, but you will still have a private hot tub and room service. It is a peaceful place that is surrounded by mountains and the twinkling blue of Wakatipu. It is also a quiet place for getting over the jet lag, with endless vistas from the room, and meals that can be had at any time. So, you will check in to your lodge and will begin to enjoy each other’s company. If you want to go anywhere other than your suite, then it will be only a 15-minute ride into Queenstown.
Queenstown – Picnic on the Peak Private Helicopter Tour
Abundant mountains and unexplored peaks will stretch out all around Queenstown. Much of it hardly ever sees people, especially where you are going today. You cannot even walk there. The only way to reach your destination is by helicopter. This will be a remarkable and scenic flight that will bring dazzling views over the Remarkables and Queenstown. You will walk a little once you touch down and take in all the spectacular views. The helicopter will take takes off again, and it will be just the two of you and a champagne picnic in a place that is cut off from civilization. You will have three hours, so breathe in the alpine air, appreciate the company of your partner, and bask in the exclusivity before the helicopter returns.
Queenstown – Adventures on the Water and Private Onsen Hot Pools
With hands gripped tightly together, you will zoom on Shotover River, whizzing across the glacial water as the pilot turns a full 360 degrees and takes you extremely close to the cliff wall. This is speed boating, which is similar to a theme park ride. Your adrenaline will pump during this exciting venture, and finally you will experience peace once more. After the boat ride, you will spend an hour in a private Onsen hot pool, luxuriating in nature’s pristine water. They do not add anything to the water here, so it will be pure alpine melt that will be heated to body temperature. Even when it is snowing, you can stay warm here, looking down to admire the river and the mountains.
Milford Sound – New Zealand’s Most Romantic Destination
Your tour of Milford Sound will not be private but will be as close to private as you can get. After a sublime road journey across the mountains, you will set off through the famous fjord, watching the scenery through the panoramic suite windows. On the Upper Deck, you might spot dolphins playing in the wake, and down at the front, you can be splashed by waterfalls that tumble hundreds of meters from the cliffs. The boat will anchor, and you can explore on the water, either in a double kayak or on a small boat. Both of these experiences will help you appreciate the true size of the fjord. Milford Sound was even one of the finalists for the new seven wonders of the world. It will be peaceful after dark, and you can relax on your deck or retire to your room that will be deep within the atmosphere of nature.
Christchurch – A Change of Scenery in the City
Today, you will wake up to a tranquil scene. Mist will swirl, clouds will gather moodily, and waves will crash noisily in the distance. It is all part of the Milford Sound mystique. Sometimes you can only see ten meters from the boat. If this is to happen, then that means you are extremely lucky, because watching Milford Sound emerge from its gray cover is the most iconic experience to be had in New Zealand, and it can only be possible if you have spent the night on the fjord. By mid-morning, you can grasp how enormous the fjord is, and your boat will still be the only one out on the water. There will be time for another kayak should you wish before returning to the harbor and then Queenstown, where you will take a late-afternoon flight to Christchurch.
Christchurch – Hot Air Ballooning above the Canterbury Plains
A patchwork will glow golden in the morning light, and it will seem like there is every shade of green down below. You will be in a hot air balloon, gliding slowly across the landscape and marveling at how different it all is from yesterday morning. You will touch down to a glass of bubbles and a spot of brunch before the rest of today will be at your leisure in Christchurch. This is a charming town that is dominated by colorful street murals, innovative makeshift architecture, and the ruined remains that were created by an earthquake. Of all New Zealand’s urban centers, this is the most interesting, and there is plenty to keep you occupied, from boutique stores to a host of small bars and cafés.
Kaikoura – Cruising with Whales on the Eastern Coast
Humpback whales will crash into the water, breaching with incredible force. The Kaikoura waters are rich with life and nutrients, and attract some of the world’s largest mammals. Blue whales can also be seen here, although you will need a lot of fortune to encounter one during your whale watching tour. After a two-hour transfer from Christchurch, you will have lunch at the harbor and go looking for ocean giants. Your lodge will be out of the town and perched on the coast, which is another private place for wiling an afternoon and evening away.
Kaikoura – Swimming with Dolphins and Snorkeling with Seals
Dusky dolphins will jump from the water, somersaulting before splashing back into the water. They will pirouette towards the sky and dance to a melodic ocean rhythm. These are not captive or trained dolphins. They are wild oceanic creatures who love to play. They are very friendly, so you can jump into the water and swim in their vicinity. Squeaks and tweets can be heard in the water as if the dolphins are narrating their next dance move.
After lunch back in the harbor, you will have another chance to swim with playful ocean creatures. This time, it will be seals, and they love to emulate swimmers. The seals may come close, corkscrewing around like a child looking for a friend to play with. They will cajole and charm you, but if you do not swim with the seals, then they will usually head off looking for somebody else. Although encounters with wild animals can never be 100% guaranteed, Kaikoura is a wonderful base to experience how these creatures really live as they swim free in the Pacific.
Day 9 - 10
Blenheim – Hand in Hand through the Marlborough Vineyards
Two more hours along the coast, and the last of the snowy mountains will fade away and will be replaced by tropical colors and great swathes of vines. Welcome to wine country, and the world’s most famous Sauvignon Blanc producing region. You will be staying on a vineyard that is tucked away beside the grapes. Tasting will be offered upon arrival, and you will work your way through the estate’s wines before a decadent lunch that will have you uncorking an older vintage wine. Then, the afternoon of day nine and the whole of day ten will be at your leisure with many options to explore dependent on how you feel and how much you intend to drink.
You can walk hand in hand through the vines, taking a back route across the farm to a neighboring farm where you can indulge on more local Sauvignon Blanc. Cycling trails will help you go a little further, so you can visit two or three farms before heading back.
Abel Tasman National Park – Iconic Coastal Experiences on the South Island
Dolphins and seals will continue to enhance your journey as you travel along the coast. You will make a stop in Picton and take a sightseeing cruise through Marlborough Sounds, comparing the tropical landscape to your experience in Milford Sound. The boat will be a bit larger than your last one, so you can settle in on one of the decks and watch how the mountains and cliffs roll out across the South Island. There are some excellent hikes around Picton as well. The day’s journey will take you over a mountain pass and all the way around to Abel Tasman National Park, which is a place of privacy and space to end your trip.
Day 12 - 13
Abel Tasman National Park – An Escape in Nature Made Just for Two
Today, you will wake up in one of the leading eco-lodges of the world. You can stretch your arms and take coffee on the verandah as you look across at a richly tropical scene. Indigenous forests will cascade towards rich, blue waters, and small tracks will lead through the trees. If you follow these tracks, you will find near-deserted coves and beaches for you to spend a private moment. It will be easy to go a whole day without seeing or hearing anything other than the birds and lodge staff, so settle into the privacy and call for breakfast whenever you are ready.
There are plenty of adventures in nature that can be had here. Coastal tracks will take you across narrow suspension bridges and then up through forests to yet more beaches and coves. In a double person kayak, you can paddle beneath sculptured granite cliffs, perhaps spotting manta rays on the sandy ocean bottom. A small boat tour will take you to tropical tidal coves where the cliffs are exposed, and nature takes on a stunning silence. For these two days, you can relax at the lodge, create your own adventure, dance beneath the southern sky, and bring your romantic two weeks in New Zealand to a close.
Christchurch – Departure
After a leisurely breakfast, you will transfer to Nelson where you will board a domestic flight to Christchurch. Here, you will connect to your international flight.
- Fly to a remote mountain above Queenstown by helicopter and then indulge on a private picnic
- Escape to Abel Tasman National Park and one of the leading ecolodges of the world
- Spend 24 hours exploring Milford Sound, the most romantic setting of all New Zealand
- Drift across the Canterbury Plains in a hot air balloon and then touch down to a champagne brunch
- Swim together with wild dolphins and try snorkeling with seals
- Cycle or walk hand in hand through the Marlborough vineyards, with plenty of tasting to be had
- Zoom down the Shotover River in a speed boat and then rest up in a private Onsen hot pool
- Go whale watching in Kaikoura, kayaking in Abel Tasman, cruise through Marlborough Sounds, and find yourself on deserted beaches
On a sheltered mountain plateau, you will gaze across Lake Wakatipu. Your helicopter is not coming to pick you up for two hours, so you can open another bottle and dive back into the picnic. Amid the mist and drama of Milford Sound, you can explore by kayak and then get comfy on an overnight cruise deep in Fiordland. In Marlborough, the landscapes are green where you will walk hand in hand through the vineyards, perhaps even taking a little cycle as well. In Kaikoura, you can jump into the water together and swim with dolphins and seals. Feel the adrenaline rise on a speed boat ride down Shotover River and then relax in private Onsen hot pools along the river.
New Zealand’s South Island is home to an incredible variation of romantic activities, many of which are impossible to find elsewhere. From hot air ballooning over the Canterbury Plains to whale watching and wine tasting, this is a vacation where every day will give you something to remember. Vast wilderness stretches out in all directions, and there is always space and privacy. Just traveling around the island will create a sense of exclusivity, as there will be nothing but the two of you and the great expanses of nature. Unique activities may elevate your stay, and they are not all guided. While you obviously need to be with a pilot for the hot air balloon, in places like Abel Tasman National Park you can walk and kayak without a guide, finding deserted beaches and so many places get away.
Handcrafted to include the island’s most romantic and exclusive experiences, this luxury tour is enhanced further by a selection of boutique lodges and hotels. Drift off on the shores of Lake Wakatipu, stay at a world-leading ecolodge in Abel Tasman, and sleep amid the vineyards near Blenheim. Each is chosen for its privacy, as well as its quality, with most providing romantic extras like champagne and other amenities upon arrival.
Touch down in Queenstown where you will spend three nights along the lake, with the helicopter picnic and Onsen hot pools on days two and three. Day four will take you to Milford Sound. After the overnight cruise, you will return to Queenstown and fly to Christchurch, which is a surprisingly romantic city. You will hot air balloon on day six before the water wildlife adventures in Kaikoura. Days nine and ten will be spent at the Marlborough vineyards, and then the final three nights you will be in Abel Tasman, where the atmosphere is calming and the days will be at your leisure. Finally, you will fly back to Christchurch from Nelson, where there will be an effortless connection to your outbound flight. Interested in learning more by seeing some of our travelers’ New Zealand vacation tour reviews? Click here for more.
$9,795 per person (excluding international flights)
- 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.
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