New Zealand Self Drive Tour Reviews


To make your New Zealand travel dreams come true you need the right team in your corner.

That’s where we come in! We’ve been helping travellers enjoy the very best of New Zealand since 2001 and have learned plenty of tricks which will help you have a hassle-free and super fun NZ self drive holiday. Here’s what our guests have to say about First Light Travel.

We have over 900 five star online reviews - We are the highest rated New Zealand based travel agent.


Chris and Lorraine Lawler


Hi Michelle,

We made it home with only minor delays in Vancouver.

Thank you so much for making our trip so memorable. We had a great time. You and your team did a fantastic job especially when our ferry to South Island was cancelled. This could have ruined our vacation if not for your prompt adjustments to our schedule. The changes caused very minor disruption and in fact enhanced our trip. Lorraine very much enjoyed the Coastal Pacific rail journey.

All arrangements went without a hitch and accommodation was surprisingly good. All our excursions with your partners were excellent and the weather was very cooperative.

We are so glad we went with First Light Travel. Such a professional company with great staff. You made our trip.

Many thanks,

Chris and Lorraine, Canada

Lani & Stone USA


We had a fantastic honeymoon thanks to Michelle! She worked with us to personalize it to our wants within budget. Michelle, was also great about making sure all vendors knew we were on our honeymoon. Most of our hotels had champagne waiting for us. We will definitely be turning to FirstLight again in the future!

Lani & Stone USA

Annie and Neville Filar


We enjoyed our holiday very much overall and thank you very much for your efforts and making changes. It was very unfortunate that we couldn’t go to Napier but we had a great holiday nonetheless and it was great to meet you in Auckland.

We will have to plan a return visit to your beautiful country.

Annie and Neville Filar (UK)

Scott Kalish & John Budin


Perfect itinerary. Easy to work with our agent. Very accommodating. Very fair pricing.

Scott Kalish & John Budin, USA

Jack Phillips & Karen De Bord


As for First Light Travel’s performance – absolutely top notch! I give you six out of five stars! The accommodations you chose were excellent, and the tours you arranged were wonderful. Everything worked perfectly. I would have to say that our favorite lodging for the entire trip was Kamahi Cottage Farmstay, in Otorohanga. The Lodge at Lake Tekapo was also incredible (what a view!).

Many people have asked me what my favorite part of the trip was, and I cannot answer. There were many highlights, but they are all so different that I can’t choose just one experience and say “this was the best”. Certainly the Evening Banquet at Hobbiton was one of the top, as was the fly fishing from Queenstown. The Glow Worm caves were amazing, and apparently the tour you chose for us was much better than most of the tours. We heard people saying that the tour they took didn’t allow photography, so the tour company could sell you photographs. Our tour with Spellbound was very personal, friendly, informative and fascinating. The tour of the volcanic valley at Rotorua was interesting. The Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre was a bit different than I had expected, but was interesting nonetheless.

In short, you did an AMAZING JOB! Thank you so much for putting together the Trip of a Lifetime.

Jack & Karen, USA

Kim Gaumer


The primary reasons we used First Light Travel were our consultant and the ease of planning/booking. We all totally loved this trip and memories will remain a long long time! We enjoyed all the South Island adventures plus Rotorua fun..we got a tip to drive to and hike Mt. Manganui / bay of plenty on our drive from Rotorua to Auck - the amazingly beautiful big white sand beach and views from the top of the mtn (hike not for the unfit!) we’re truly amazing- .lavender and animal farm in Wanaka was a gem as were the pancake rocks. Nice hike along river in Paparoa park until we saw a 5 foot long black eel! travel distances are quite long driving so be prepared food and gas wise- very few services on south island..

Kim Gaumer - USA

Barbara & Tim O'Rourke


We booked a two week trip using First Light Travel with Michelle as our travel specialist. The experience exceeded our expectations.
The hotels and activities she booked for us were just perfect. We did a self drive from Queenstown to Marahau with a weekend on Waiheke Island. The sites were breathtaking and the excursions Michelle planned were just what we were looking for.

Michelle listened to what we wanted and planned an itinerary to a T. This was the second time we had First Light plan out travel and we will definitely have them book all our trips to New Zealand. Thanks so much Michelle for being so responsive to our questions and to your great suggestions.

Barbara & Tim O'Rourke, USA

Susan & Arthur Krohn


Our experience with First Light Travel, especially Kasey, was great. We had a wish list and a three week time frame and she provided us with most of what ewe asked for. The hotels we all lovely. The transportation, for the most part was safe, convenient and enjoyable.
New Zealand is full of beautiful places and lovely people. We were greeted with warm welcomes and sincere pleasure that we had come to visit. There were so many more places that we would love to visit and we will recommend First Light to all who are interested.

Susan & Arthur Krohn, USA

Tom & Jane Cross


We started working with First Light Travel back in spring of 2020. Due to the pandemic we were finally able to take our trip in 2023. The agents there always kept in touch and were very helpful, even when I kept adding items to the itinerary and adding more days. Once we arrived they were able to help with the minor snags that seem to come up in any travel and always went above and beyond! If we ever get the chance to go back, they will be my first phone call!

Tom & Jane Cross, USA

Lin Lee & Weng Fat


We had a relaxing, enjoyable and beautiful trip to NZ in Dec2022, thanks to First Light Travel. We were meeting some of our other family members from Sydney in NZ, hence we wanted a flexible trip and First light did an excellent job by optimizing our time table .This was our first self drive trip and we were worried if we could manage but Danielle put our mind at ease with her patience and valuable suggestions/ advice . Thank you for a memorable holiday!!

Lin Lee & Weng Fat, Malaysia

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