The trip was wonderful and the service provided by our travel agency was a big part of the reason why. We'd never been to New Zealand, and with the time zone differentials, telephone contact was impractical. So we mapped our a basic itinerary and let our agent do the rest.
The choices of hotels ranged from perfect to just OK, but its unlikely that we would have done better, and probably much worse on our own. Similarly, the tours that he arranged were mostly excellent, with one that only fair. Flight connections and transfers were seamless.
We made the planning task somewhat challenging with our midrange price limit, and the hotels were generally just OK, although the hotel in Queenstown was exceptional-a resort setting on the lake a short water taxi ride from the city center. The tours of the Lord of the Rings sites were very well done, with convenient connections. The Guided Lake Walk in Christchurch, and the Milford Sound cruise and tour were very enjoyable.
All in all a great experience and value.
Spend one less day in Christchurch, and do the jet boat in Queenstown instead.
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