Documentation pack and support: We've got you covered!
When you touch down in New Zealand your detailed documentation pack will be hand-delivered by one of our trusted representatives. You'll find everything you need in one handy place: your personalised itinerary, clear instructions and maps, and reservation details for your accommodation and activities.
24 Hour Assistance: We’re just a free phone call away if you encounter any issues while you're on the road - at any time of day or night. Don’t waste your precious vacation time stressing - First Light Travel are here to help you quickly when every second counts.
What's also included?
|Dedicated Travel Consultant||Detailed Daily Itinerary and Vouchers|
|Full 24 Hour Support||50 Page Essential New Zealand Guide|
Welcome to Auckland!
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.
After checking into your hotel, relax, take a stroll around our beautiful city, explore the highly acclaimed Waterfront Restaurant Quarter or choose one of the many activities available to give a more in depth understanding of Auckland and the surrounding area.
Some Activities and sightseeing options if you have time:
|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
Auckland - Paihia - Waitangi - 'Hole in the Rock' Cruise
Waitangi Treaty Grounds
This is the location of the first signing of the Treaty of Waitangi, New Zealand’s founding document and the accord between Maori Chiefs and the British Crown in 1840. Gain a deeper understanding during a guided tour of Waitangi with one of the traditional guides and enjoy a high-quality cultural performance in the beautifully carved meeting house (Whare Rūnanga). Explore one of New Zealand’s oldest and most visited historic homes and learn about the treasures within, visit treasures such as the Treaty House, Meeting House, Flagstaff and Ceremonial War Canoe.
Hole in the Rock Cruise
Board the Hole in the Rock Dolphin Watching Cruise. Spot some dolphins and see the historic Cape Brett Lighthouse. Skip through the majestic Hole in the Rock and take in the Grand Cathedral Cave before returning to the inner islands of the Bay.
Accommodation Paihia - 2 Nights
Cape Reinga & Ninety Mile Beach
Take today a coach trip up to Cape Reinga - the very top of New Zealand, via idyllic Ninety Mile Beach. The driver will take the bus up Te Paki Stream towards the mountainous sand dunes. Enjoy New Zealand's varying and beautiful landscape. Visit the Puketi Kauri Forest and see the majestic giant kauri trees and native bush. Return to the Bay of Islands in the evening after an unforgettable journey.
Paihia at Leisure - Auckland
Enjoy some free time in the Bay of Islands this morning and then return by coach to Auckland in the afternoon.
Some recommended excursions available in the Bay of Islands:
|Historical Island Cruise||Diving Rainbow Warrior||4WD Adventure Cape Reinga|
|Sailing the Islands||Dolphin Swimming||Giant Kauri Forest Walk|
|Cultural Tour of Waitangi||Golf at Kauri Cliffs||Sea Kayaking the Bay|
Accommodation Auckland - 1 Night
Auckland - Hobbiton - Waitomo Caves - Rotorua
Depart Auckland this morning and travel through lush farmland to Matamata. Take a guided tour of the famous Hobbiton Movie Set, located on a picturesque 1,250 acre sheep and beef farm. Here, the village of Hobbiton was carefully created in amazing detail as a film location for the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movie trilogies.
During your guided tour you will see sights such as Hobbit holes, the Mill and the Green Dragon Inn, and you will learn how farmland was transformed into a living, breathing piece of Middle-earth. After exploring Hobbiton, enjoy a delicious lunch at the Green Dragon Inn.
At the world famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves, take a 45-minute guided tour through impressive underground caverns and learn how stalactites, stalagmites and other limestone structures were formed over millions of years. Your tour includes a boat ride through the Glowworm Grotto – glide silently along an underground river as you gaze at the twinkling glowworms overhead.
After visiting Waitomo and Hobbiton, continue to Rotorua, arriving in the early evening.
Accommodation Rotorua - 2 Nights
Rotorua Sightseeing Tour
Enjoy a sightseeing tour this morning in Rotorua. Experience the Maori Culture and the amazing Te Puia. You will continue on to the Rainbow Springs Nature Park where you can join the Kiwi Encounter and then head over to the Agrodome Sheep Show for a taste of 'very kiwi' farm tour.
Rotorua at leisure
This afternoon is your choice. Relax in the Polynesian Spa, ride the amphibious Rotorua Duck or take a scenic flight out over Lake Rotorua for a bird’s eye view of the region. You may even want to stop at the top of Mt Tarawera, the site of the largest eruption in New Zealand’s living memory!
Maori Cultural Experience Rotorua
This evening we visit the Tamaki Tribal Village for an evening of culture. You will experience a traditionally prepared Maori Hangi (feast) followed by a cultural performance featuring Maori songs, chants and dance including the famous haka - lots of fun!
Rotorua - Wellington
The capital city of New Zealand, Wellington is a compact city where funky shops, exciting galleries and great restaurants are within easy walking distance. The city has long been recognised as the cultural and arts capital (with festivals almost every month), and is home to our Symphony Orchestra, the Royal New Zealand Ballet, opera companies, theatre and a large number of art galleries, including the National Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.
Accommodation Wellington - 2 Night
Trails of Middle Earth Tour
Today you will see the best of the Middle Earth on your Lord of the Rings Movie Tour. Embark on a tour of Middle-earth magic.There is something for all the Lord of the Rings and movie fans alike, see world famous Lord of the Rings scenes, introduction to the movie-making industry and long visit to THE WETA CAVE included.
Let us show you where they filmed:
- Hobbiton Woods
- Frodo Tree
- Shortcut to Mushrooms
- "Get off the Road!"
- Race to the Ferry
and a couple more scenes if we have time...
We visit Miramar - the home of New Zealand's movie industry, including Stone Street Studios and Park Road Post. Then we spend over an hour at THE WETA CAVE, you have plenty of time to take pictures and purchase movie memorabilia or simply absorb the creativity within. You have the option of viewing Weta's documentary or upgrading to join the Weta Cave Workshop Tour.
Wellington 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. A number of new and exciting developments are popping up everywhere since an earthquake damaged the city a few years ago.
Some Suggested Activities in Christchurch:
|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 - 1 Night
Christchurch - Mt Cook
Leave the city today westwards through the Canterbury plains, you will find a superb location for some great photos at Lake Tekapo. Tekapo is one of three significant, neighboring lakes that border the Mackenzie Valley in New Zealand's South Island. Golden tussock grass carpets the surrounding hillside and roll away into the distance where the Southern Alps frame the horizon. The charming 'Church of the Good Shepherd' sits alone on its shores and the views to our highest mountain, Aoraki Mt Cook are remarkable.
Enjoy a Glacier Explorers Tour this afternoon in Mt Cook. Experience 500 year old icebergs up-close on the Mt Cook terminal Lake. This tour is existing only three times over the world and is the only one in New Zealand. See stunning towering ice cliffs, floating icebergs from the safety of a specially designed boat.
Accommodation Mt Cook - 1 Night
Mt Cook - Queenstown
This morning you will have free time to explore Mount Cook National Park. In the afternoon, head South from Mount Cook, pass through the high country towns of Twizel and Omarama before entering the beautiful Lindis Pass, the pass offers a unique mountain and tussock grassland scenery - Lindis Pass Scenic Reserve was formed in 1976 and was one of the first tussock reserves in New Zealand. Relax as you take in the spectacular scenery that changes from rugged ranges and mirror lakes to the winding Kawarau River Gorge before, emerging into the lush green farmland surrounding Queenstown. Your destination for the next five days.
Accommodation Queenstown - 4 Nights
Queenstown at Leisure
The surrounding area is known for its Pinot Noir and Chardonnay vineyards and the natural landscape with wild rivers, high peaks and deep canyons has allowed Queenstown to developed an exciting array of outdoor adventure activities - and there's plenty to choose from. But if you are just want to chill out then Queenstown's compact downtown area is relaxed during the day and huge fun at night. In any season, you can count on stylish designer shops and many trendy restaurants offering a kaleidoscope of dining experiences.
If you want to enjoy spectacular scenic views, you can sit back and relax in the Skyline Queenstown Gondola. The steepest cable car lift in the Southern Hemisphere and one of the must-do activities in Queenstown.
Other recommended excursions around Queenstown:
|Routeburn Day Walk||Highest Bungey Jump||Explore Arrowtown|
|Biking Skippers Canyon||Round at Millbrook Golf Resort|
|Earnslaw Steamboat Cruise||Dart River Jetboat Safari|
Milford Sound Nature Cruise
The Road to Milford is one of New Zealand’s most scenic drives. The first part is relatively mild farmland, then you’ll ease into beech forest near the entrance to the Fiordland National Park. Look for the Avenue of the Disappearing Mountain and the Mirror Lakes. The rough hewn Homer Tunnel brings you into Milford Sound, an amazing 22km-long fiord dominated by Mitre Peak. A cruise on Milford Sound will be an essential component of your time in Fiordland, or you can get up close and personal in a sea kayak. Tall waterfalls, vertical rock faces and seals are some of the things you’ll remember. The underwater observatory is an option with most cruises.
Glenorchy - the Heart of Middle Earth
The Queenstown area featured prominently in the filming of the incredibly popular Lord of the Rings trilogy.This scenic Glenorchy safari offers breathtaking mountain and forest views along the shore of Lake Wakatipu towards Glenorchy and the Paradise Valley. Visit the filming locations for Isengard, the Ithilien Camp, Lothlorien & Fanghorn forest and the Seat of Seeing/ Battle of Amon Hen, and many more.
Queenstown - Franz Josef Glacier
Travel along the rugged West Coast Road and over the Haast Pass. Discover the rich alpine rainforest as you journey through this historic region. Through the Gates of Haast is a lost world that’s so spectacular and remote UNESCO designated it a World Heritage area.
This afternoon there’s free time to explore Franz Josef township. The magnificent Franz Josef Glacier is widely regarded as the gem of New Zealand’s West Coast glaciers. Take the opportunity to experience the most spectacular glacier environment anywhere in the world, offering a range of glacier hiking options.
Accommodation Franz Josef - 1 Night
Franz Josef - Greymouth - Christchurch
This morning you will travel by coach to Greymouth. Then you will board the Tranzalpine to Christchurch. The TranzAlpine Train, renowned as one of the great train journeys of the world. Descend through spectacular gorges, river valleys and over massive viaducts before completing your journey at Christchurch.
Accommodation Christchurch - 1 Night
"Haere rā" Goodbye! and Bon Voyage! Today we say farewell. We take care of your transfer to Christchurch Airport where you will board your onward flight, taking with you the magical memories of a truly exceptional New Zealand holiday.
What is an Independent Coach Tour?
- 4 Star Accommodation
- Experienced Driver Guides
- Detailed and informative commentary
- Travel in an air-conditioned coach
- Waitangi Treaty Grounds Tour
- Hole in the Rock Cruise
- Cape Reinga & Ninety Mile Beach Tour
- Waitomo Glowworm Caves
- Cultural Evening Experience Rotorua
- Hobbiton Movie Set Tour
- Rotorua Sightseeing Tour
- Middle Earth Film Locations Half Day Tour
- Glacier Explorer Mt Cook Boat Tour
- Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre Explorer Pass
- Milford Sound Day Cruise
- TSS Earnslaw Cruise incl BBQ Dinner
- Glacier Valley Shuttle - Franz Josef
- TranzAlpine Rail Journey
- 24 Hour Assistance
- Return airport transfers- flight details to be provided 14 days prior to travel
What Tracy says about this tour: We put a lot of time into the planning and booking of all the elements of this trip - so that all your connections, check-ins and day trips go exactly to the prepared plan. We are in country to give you peace of mind while on the trip so you can make the most of 'Hobbit Fever' while you are here.Enquire Now