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Wine & Scenic Highlights of New Zealand Tour

The Wine & Scenic Highlights Tour of New Zealand has been designed for the discerning traveler to experience New Zealand at a relaxed pace while enjoying wine tasting, exploring New Zealand's rich cultural heritage and visiting our most dramatic landscapes seen through-out the North and South Islands. 

Wine Connoisseurs Tour, Maori Cultural Evening, Thermal Activity Experience, Harbour Cruise Akaroa, Star Gazing Mt Cook, Tasman Glacier, Milford Sound Flight & Cruise, Otago Wine Tour.

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Itinerary

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1
Welcome to Auckland, New Zealand!

Welcome to Auckland, situated amongst a cluster of extinct volcanic cones, next to a large harbour that bustles with life, both on water and on land. The Auckland isthmus straddles a slim piece of land with coastline facing both the Pacific Ocean, and, on the wild West Coast, the Tasman Sea. Relax you are on holiday, take time to stroll around the Viaduct Harbour, sit in a cafe and enjoy your surroundings - this is a friendly easygoing city.

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 - 2 nights

2
Wine on Waiheke Island

Just 35 minutes by ferry from Auckland, across the beautiful Hauraki Gulf is a tranquil little paradise. Since the late 1970's Waiheke Islands benign climate has seen the growth of a flourishing wine industry. A "small is beautiful" philosophy yields low quantities of extremely high quality fruit, which is made into international award-winning wines. 

On this connoisseurs tour, we offer an exclusive behind the scenes to three of the Island's premier wine producers. You can choose from various vineyards, and finish with a superb lunch at any one of the delightful vineyard restaurants.  At each vineyard you will taste a selection of premium wines and enjoy an in-depth discussion with the winemaker. Barrel tastings at one vineyard can also be arranged depending on seasonal availability.

3
Travel to Rotorua

Three and half hours easy drive from Auckland, sitting squarely on the Pacific Ring of Fire - Rotorua is a geothermal wonderland. Giant geysers rocket into the air and colourful sulphur terraces hiss and boil. Enjoy a day soaking up this magical place, followed by an evening meal and concert with a Maori Cultural Experience

Approximate Distance: 225 kms | 140 miles  Total Driving Time: 2 hours 50 mins

Accommodation Rotorua - 2 nights

4
Thermal & Cultural Full Day Guided Tour

This morning tour visits Rotorua's most natural and popular geothermal parks Wai-O-Tapu, Waimangu Volcanic Valley, Rainbow Mt and boiling mud-fields.

Alternative excursions in and around Rotorua are:

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

 

Spend an afternoon gaining an appreciation of New Zealand’s Maori culture with visits to settlement sites and living villages. Sites visited include Te Puia Cultural Centre, Ohinemute Village and Lake Okareka, the Blue and Green lakes with your knowledgable guide on hand at all locations.

5
Fly to Christchurch

New Zealand’s second-largest city and the gateway to the South Island, Christchurch sits on the very edge of the Canterbury Plains and is bordered by the Pacific Ocean. The city itself has bounced back after a series of major earthquakes, and has shown its resilience with a number of new and exciting developments popping up everywhere.

Some suggested activities to help you to get to know the region

Easygoing Cycling Tour Punting the Avon River Lyttelton Harbour Wildlife Cruise
Māori Cultural Evening French Akaroa Tour Southern Alps Ballooning
Christchurch Gondola Clearwater Golf Arthur's Pass TranzAlpine Hike

Accommodation Christchurch - 2 nights

6
Akaroa Village Harbour Cruise and Dolphin Spotting/ Swimming

Akaroa is Christchurch's most loved day tour destination. You will enjoy today an exceptional scenic experience of Banks Peninsula, including Lyttelton and Akaroa Harbours, and the historical seaside village of Akaroa.  Join the Akaroa Harbour Cruise to view the majestic scenery and wildlife. Packed with highlights the cruise should feature sightings of the rare, native dolphin - the Hector's Dolphin, as well as seals, penguins and other birdlife. Explore the historic and picturesque village of Akaroa, with its notable cottages and buildings, gardens, museum, craft shops, and galleries.

Approximate Distance: 162 kms | 102 miles  Total Driving Time: 2 hours 40 mins

7
Christchurch to Mt Cook via Lake Tekapo

Leaving the city via the Canterbury plains, you will reach Lake Tekapo which is approximately halfway between Christchurch and Queenstown Continue on to Mount Cook National Park - A Fantasy Land of Ice and Rock. Mt Cook National Park, known for its exquisite alpine beauty and is home to the highest mountain in New Zealand, Mt Cook. Its Maori name, ‘Aoraki’ means ‘cloud piercer’ and at 12,016ft (3,755m) it towers above the surrounding snow-covered peaks in the park. Tonight enjoy a Star Gazing Tour - this area also has World Heritage status as a SkyPark for the purity and lack of light pollution.

Approximate Distance: 359 kms | 223 miles  Total Driving Time: 4 hrs 45 mins 

Accommodation Mt Cook - 1 night

8
Glacier Boat Tour then onwards to Queenstown

A unique guided experience to get along side an iceberg!. Transfer by bus to the beautiful Tasman Valley for a short walk before boarding a MAC boat for a Glacier Expedition to the Tasman Glacier Terminal Lake. This tour is 4 hours duration with plenty of time left to travel via the Lindis Pass and Gibbston Valley to Queenstown. We've all heard the endless hype about it being the adventure capital of the world, and there are certainly enough crazy activities here to challenge the strongest, but Queenstown offers much more besides. 

Approximate Distance: 265 kms | 165 miles  Total Driving Time: 3 hours 10 mins

Accommodation Queenstown - 3 nights

9
Return Scenic Flight and Cruise the Beautiful Milford Sound

Today, board a twin engine aircraft for your scenic 35 minute flight to Milford Sound. During your flight there are panoramic views of the spectacular alpine scenery including glaciers, rivers, lakes and rainforest.  On reaching Milford Sound, enjoy a full length cruise of the fiord in modern, purpose built vessels. The vessels offer excellent viewing of waterfalls, rainforest, mountains and wildlife with large windows, spacious decks and comfortable lounges. At the completion of your cruise, return to Queenstown by plane.  Transfers are provided to and from your accommodation to Queenstown airport.

10
Boutique Wine Tour of Central Otago

Central Otago wine is so much more than a taste experience. You’ll see the real drama in the scenery, hear the pristine silence of the high country, savour the scent of pure clean air and feel the pulse of the heart of Central Otago. Taste wines at four of the best vineyards in the Gibbston, Bannockburn and Cromwell regions whilst enjoying the Scenery of Kawarau Gorge, the Otago Goldfields, Historic Old Cromwell Town and Lake Dunstan and then enjoy a delightful gourmet platter lunch at the award winning Carrick Winery Restaurant. 

11
Homeward Bound

Enjoy a final leisurely breakfast, before an afternoon departure from Queenstown Airport, connecting with your flight home. You may have time for an activity or to just relax in one of the many waterfront cafes.

Recommended excursions in and around 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
 

Haere rā and Bon Voyage!

We are sure you will enjoy the Wine & Scenic Highlights of New Zealand and 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. 

Ready to find out more? Talk to us here in New Zealand about the Wine & Scenic Highlights of New Zealand Tour - We Guarantee you it will be the Holiday of a Lifetime!