18
days

Kakariki Tour - Premium New Zealand Touring Experience

The Kakariki Tour offers the perfect mix of exciting excursions and plenty of relaxing free time. Discover spectacular alpine scenery and the warmth of Rotorua’s Maori Culture and have close encounters with rare native wildlife on this unforgettable kiwi holiday.

Dolphin Cruise 'Bay of Islands', Maori Guided Forest Tour, Glowworm Caves, Thermal Springs, Sailing Cruise Rotoiti, Private Art Deco Napier, Marlborough Wine, Fur Seals Kaikoura, Milford Sound Cruise, Alpine Scenic Flight.

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Itinerary

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1
welcome to Auckland New Zealand!

Relax! You are now officially on holiday. Everything has been taken care of, we will meet you at the airport and transfer you to your accommodation - Enjoy Auckland.

Enjoy a relaxed day of exploration around this pretty harbour side city, also known as the ‘City of Sails’. Browse the central shopping district, head up the Sky Tower for panoramic views or learn more about the culture and history of New Zealand at the Auckland War Memorial Museum. Later on, enjoy exquisite dining on the edge of the Viaduct Harbour.

Some Activities and Sightseeing Options Available are:

Explore Waiheke Island Island Kayaking Adventure America’s Cup Sailing
Auckland's Sky Tower Relax on the Beach Rangitoto Island Cruise & Walk
West Coast Wine Tour Whale and Dolphin Safari Muriwai Surf Beach

Accommodation Auckland - 1 night

2
The West Coasts Sacred WAIPOUA Kauri FOREST

We begin the morning by travelling to Auckland’s rugged West Coast and on to Muriwai Beach, a beautiful coastline of black sands and a fascinating gannet colony. Continuing north, we drive the edge of the Kaipara Harbour before stopping at Matakohe Kauri Museum. We then enter the primeval forest of Waipoua and are accompanied by Footprints Waipoua for a guided tour of this special place. We marvel at the magnificent Tane Mahuta, God of the forest, and gain a deeper understanding of the importance of the forest to local Maori. Later on in the evening we dine at our hotel on the water’s edge.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Accommodation Hokianga - 1 night

3
Tranquil BAY OF ISLANDS

This morning we take a cruise out onto the Hokianga Harbour and across to the sand dunes on the other side. If you’re feeling adventurous, you have the opportunity to ride a body board down the dunes. We visit Rawene and Kohukohu before continuing along the scenic road to Matauri Bay, enjoying stunning views out towards the Cavalli Islands, the resting place of Greenpeace ship the Rainbow Warrior. We visit the arty, creative town of Kerikeri, known for its citrus fruit orchards before arriving in Waitangi, our final destination for the day.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation Bay of Islands - 2 nights

4
Islands and Dolphin Viewing CRUISE - BAY OF ISLANDS

Today we explore the emerald isles of the Bay of Islands on a dolphin cruise. We pass Cape Brett and the ‘Hole in the Rock’ and stop at Otehi Bay on Urapukapuka Island. The boat is purpose-built for dolphin viewing and swimming – if conditions are right, you can put on the provided mask, snorkel, fins and wetsuit and jump in! Swimming is optional. Returning to the quaint historical town of Russell - New Zealand’s first capital - in the early afternoon, we drive up Flagstaff Hill for panoramic views of the Bay of Islands before returning to Waitangi via vehicular ferry.

Meals: Breakfast

5
Galaxies of Glowworms & the City of Sails

This morning we visit one of New Zealand’s most important historical sites, the Waitangi Treaty House, where the treaty was signed that made New Zealand a British colony. Enjoy the expansive views out over the Bay of Islands from Waitangi’s lawns. Later we visit the magical Kawiti Glow worm Caves – an underground wonderland of twinkling glow worm lights. Afterwards, we drive through the small city of Whangarei and over the Brynderwyn Hills to reach Auckland, our destination for the night. Explore this vibrant city from your harbour side hotel.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation Auckland - 1 night

6
SAILING LAKE ROTOITI, NATURAL HOT POOLS & ROTORUA

We head southeast through the lush dairy farmlands of the Waikato. Touring New Zealand’s dramatic Karangahake Gorge we take a stroll alongside the Ohinemuri River through native bush to the relics and ruins of this region's gold-mining past. We pass through Te Puke, the Kiwifruit capital of the world, the landscape dotted with Kiwifruit orchards before continuing on to the geothermal wonderland of Rotorua. Along the way, at Okawa Bay, we board "Tiua", a 53ft catamaran for a relaxing sail on serene Lake Rotoiti to secluded coves and natural hot pools reached only by boat - a great way to finish your day.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation Rotorua - 2 nights

7
ROTORUA AT LEISURE | LODGE DINNER

This morning there’s time to enjoy one of Rotorua’s many unique attractions before driving out to beautiful Pounamu Lodge above Lake Tarawera. Share your experiences over an exclusive lunch with hosts David and Karen, Rotorua locals, who have many stories to tell of their historic links to this region. 

Recommended excursions in and around Rotorua:

See Geysers & Boiling Mud Polynesian Hot Springs Whirinaki Forest Walk
Thermally Active Golf Biking the Mighty Forests Flight to Volcanic Island
Museum of Art & History Evening Cultural Experience White Water Rafting

Meals: Breakfast & Dinner 

8
GEOTHERMAL WONDER | TONGARIRO NATIONAL PARK

Today we visit the surreal, geothermal reserve, Wai-O-Tapu. The bubbling mud pools and incredibly colourful silica terraces are unforgettable. 

On the road to Lake Taupo we view the turbulent Huka Falls where the Waikato River thunders through a narrow chasm. From Taupo there are magnificent views across the lake to the three active volcanoes - Tongariro, Ngauruhoe and Ruapehu (2,797 metres), the highest mountain in the North Island.These mountains of the volcanic plateau are our next destination, the World Heritage Tongariro National Park. Take a walk in the park this afternoon.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Accommodation National Park - 1 Night

9
Hawkes Bay - Art Deco & wineries

From Taupo, look out towards the three active volcanoes of Tongariro, Ngauruhoe and Ruapehu, all standing sentinel over a desolate landscape. Winding over the ranges we drive the Taupo – Napier road, arriving in the seaside town of Napier, here we wine taste at a premier vineyard in this acclaimed wine region before a guide joins our coach to take us on a tour of the Art Deco Tour.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation Napier - 1 night

10
WELLINGTON - The Coolest Little Capital

Leaving Napier we drive through the countryside of farmland and vineyards then pass through the small farming towns of Norsewood and Dannevirke before heading down the Wairarapa Plains to historic, arty Greytown. Its picturesque main street is lined with antique, craft and gift shops. It's also at the centre of the Wairarapa's premium wine-growing region. We continue south to the quirky capital city of Wellington where you can enjoy the city’s bustling food and wine scene.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation Wellington - 1 night

11
COOK STRAIT CRUISE | WINE COUNTRY

This morning’s three-hour cruise across the Cook Strait and into the beautiful Marlborough Sounds is magical. From here, we explore the ‘Sauvignon Blanc capital of the world’ that is Marlborough – don’t miss tasting a glass or two of the local drop during the vineyard tour. We ascend gradually to St Arnaud village and Lake Rotoiti, a scenic gem nestled in the beech forested mountain range of the stunning Nelson Lakes National Park. We visit the Department of Conservation Centre before driving down to Nelson, the sunshine capital of New Zealand and gateway to the Abel Tasman National Park.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation Nelson - 2 Nights

12
Abel Tasman National Park

Today you have a choice of a full scenic cruise or a cruise and walk from Marahau along the stunning Abel Tasman coastline. Abel Tasman National Park is our country's smallest national park. It protects 23,000 hectares of the most natural stretch of easily accessible coastline in New Zealand. The coastline is characterised by islands just offshore, sheltered waters, estuaries and golden, sandy beaches. Lie on a beach, or even go for a swim if the weather is warm. The park is sheltered from ocean swells, and enjoys a mild climate. After your cruise or walk we return to Nelson.

Meals: Breakfast

13
EXPLORE THE KAIKOURA COAST

From Nelson we drive to Pelorus Bridge, Havelock and Blenheim then down the spectacular Kaikoura coastline where big seas pound the rocks. Kaikoura is a small hamlet beside the ocean and beneath the towering Kaikoura Mountains. Seafood, especially crayfish, is a specialty. We stay right on the waterfront. Enjoy relaxing for the afternoon in Kaikours. Take an optional boat cruise or scenic flight to view whales, or stroll along the coastline for encounters with the cheeky fur seals that live here.

Suggested Wildlife Encounters in Kaikoura

Whale Watching Cruise Swim with the Seals in Kaikoura
Whale Watching Flight Kaikoura Dusky Dolphin Viewing or Swimming
Kayaking with Fur Seals Albatross & Pelagic Bird Watching Kaikoura

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation Kaikoura - 1 Night

14
FARM HOMESTEAD Lunch | MT COOK National Park

This morning we head to beautiful Mount Cook National Park. From Kaikours we follow the highway down the coast and over the hills, dropping down to the Canterbury Plains. Lunch today is a very special experience. We enjoy an exclusive meal at Akanui Farm homestead where we enjoy the warm hospitality of hosts Di and Ian Mackenzie, lunching on fresh produce from their bountiful veggie garden and learning about kiwi farming life. Later in the afternoon we drive past fields of golden tussock, towards the foothills of the Southern Alps and on to our accommodation for the night.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Accommodation Mt. Cook - 1 night

15
The Alpine Resort of QUEENSTOWN

Rise early for a stroll in the pretty valley on the doorstep of our accommodation before we begin the scenic journey to Queenstown. The mountain rimmed Mackenzie Basin, the golden tussock of the Lindis Pass and the rocky Kawarau Gorge make the views on this part of the journey stunning. Arriving in Queenstown, we ride the Skyline Gondola to the top of Bob’s Peak for panoramic views of this resort town. Your accommodation is minutes away from the city centre and looks out to Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkables Mountains. This evening, enjoy Queenstown’s delicious dining options – your driver/guide will give you some great recommendations. 

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation Queenstown - 3 nights

16
MILFORD SOUND CRUISE & SCENIC FLIGHT

Today you’ll experience some of the most dramatic scenery the country has to offer. Travel alongside the shores of Lake Wakatipu and on to Te Anau and the Milford Road. Deep in the heart of Fiordland National Park, this road is an impressive collection of soaring mountains, mirror lakes, waterfalls and deep, glacier-carved valleys. Arriving in Milford Sound we board a boat cruise, exploring the Sound’s inky waters and sheer cliffs. Return to Queenstown on a stunning scenic flight over the scenery of Fiordland, topping off a magnificent day in the New Zealand outdoors.

Meals: Breakfast

17
AT LEISURE IN QUEENSTOWN

Today is your opportunity to experience Queenstown exactly as you want to. Whether you’re after extreme adventure or more relaxing activities, your driver/guide will assist you in your plans.

Recommended excursions in Queenstown:

Routeburn Track Guided Day Walk Explore Historic Arrowtown Highest Bungy Jump
Wine Tasting Tour Central Otago Biking Skippers Canyon Round at Millbrook Golf Resort
TSS Earnslaw Steamboat Cruise Dart River Jetboat Safari Gibbston Valley Wine Trail
 

Fot somethings a little more relaxing the Botanic Gardens and lakeside walkways offer plenty of places for relaxing strolls, or browse the boutique shops for New Zealand classics like merino clothing.

Meals: Breakfast

18
Homeward Bound

Homeward Bound"Haere rā" Goodbye! and Bon Voyage!

Enjoy breakfast before catching your transfer to the airport for your flight home. If there is time, you might like to catch up on last-minute shopping in the boutique duty free stores in Queenstown.

Our promise is to make your travels through New Zealand as hassle-free and hospitable as possible - ensuring that today you leave with a memory card full of photos, and huge smiles on your faces when recalling your time in New Zealand! Have a great homeward journey, farewell and hope to see you again soon in Aotearoa, New Zealand.

Meals: Breakfast