We had such an amazing trip!!
Our travel company initially proposed an amazing trip packed full of experiences. We worked with them to scale back a bit because it was our honeymoon and they recognized we wanted to have some downtime to relax and explore on our own a bit too. We ended up with a perfect balance of activities / adventure and unplanned time to explore.
What impressed us most was the travel company's reaction to the fall 2016 earthquake in Christchurch. Our itinerary had us taking a train to Christchurch and spending some time there, but the earthquake knocked out the train tracks and the company contacted us immediately to start working through alternatives, as the repairs were not expected to be made before our visit. We very much appreciated this proactivity, as we likely would've discovered this while we were in NZ if we'd planned the trip on our own. Our agent and her team were great!
Definitely the Walnut Block Cottage stay in Blenheim and the Doubtful Sound cruise. Two things we probably would not have done if we had planned the trip on our own.
We would've skipped the detour to Waitomo. The glow worms were cool, but since we had a chance to see them again in Te Anau, it was a lot of extra driving and neither of us thought the rafting experience itself was great (mostly tubing, lots of walking through cold knee deep water). By the time we got to Rotorua that night and saw how beautiful it was, we wished we'd had the extra half day to spend relaxing and exploring there.
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