Arrive in Auckland – the “City of Sails” is New Zealand’s largest city, bordered by two stunning harbours. Make your way to your accommodation and explore the city.
Relax and explore Auckland today. The Auckland Museum, Auckland Zoo, and Sea Life Kelly Tarlton’s Aquarium are all popular options, or you may even like to do a spot of shopping. Auckland is a shopaholic’s paradise, with everything from top-end designers to open air street markets. Discover the diverse range of cafés and restaurants offering cuisine from around the globe and check out the buzzing nightlife of the central city. Favourite spots include Wynyard Quarter, Viaduct Harbour, the Britomart precinct and City Works Depot.
Stay 2 nights in Auckland.
Experience the best of Auckland’s city highlights with a half-day scenic tour, followed by a trip up the famous Auckland Sky Tower.
Travel around the city centre and over the Auckland Harbour Bridge with its stunning views of the harbour and city skyline. Visit the Viaduct Harbour and Auckland’s famous Queen Street, and enjoy the lush grounds of the Auckland Domain, the city’s oldest park.
Pause for morning tea (own expense) in charming Parnell Village, a historic suburb which has been transformed into a unique boutique shopping experience. The tour continues along the waterfront to the Michael Joseph Savage Memorial Park, named after a much-respected Prime Minister of New Zealand. With panoramic views of the harbour and beautiful formal gardens, it’s a great spot to take photos.
After a scenic trip back along Tamaki Drive to the city, arrive at Auckland’s Sky Tower, the tallest man-made structure in New Zealand at 328 metres high. Prepare yourself for breathtaking 360 degree views from the observation deck of this Auckland landmark. On a clear day, you’ll be able to gaze as far as 80 kilometres (50 miles) in all directions – it’s the perfect way to get to know the city of Auckland and its surroundings. Includes collection from your accommodation in the morning.
Enjoy the coach ride north to the Bay of Islands, renowned for its 144 islands and surreal maritime park, which is filled with an abundance of marine life including whales, penguins and dolphins.
Paihia is the perfect base if you would like to discover the coves and beaches of the Bay of Islands! Paihia is also of historic importance to New Zealand, as this is where the historic Treaty House on the Waitangi Treaty Grounds is located, which marks the beginning of New Zealand as a nation. Just west of Paihia is Haruru, where you’ll find an impressive waterfall and a boardwalk.
Stay 2 nights in Paihia.
Today, board the premium Discover the Bay Cruise and see for yourself the best of what the Bay of Islands has to offer. Journey to the Hole in the Rock and if weather permits, sail through it. See marine wildlife including Dolphins and stop off at Otehei Bay on Urupukapuka Island to have a swim, go for a walk and relax. This cruise includes a delicious BBQ lunch.
Relax in the Bay of Islands for the rest of the day.
Return to Auckland today and spend the afternoon exploring the city.
In the evening, you have the option to add on a harbour dinner cruise on the Waitemata Harbour.
Stay 1 night in Auckland.
Setting off from Auckland, travel through the lush farmland of the Waikato and King Country regions, enjoying your driver guide’s entertaining and informative commentary.
Take a guided tour of the famous Hobbiton Movie Set, located inside a picturesque 1,250 acre sheep and beef farm near Matamata. 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 of this amazing location, you’ll see sights like Hobbit holes, the Mill and the Green Dragon Inn, and learn how farmland was transformed into a living, breathing piece of Middle-Earth. After exploring Hobbiton, tuck into 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 Hobbiton and Waitomo, continue to Rotorua, arriving in the early evening.
Stay 3 nights in Rotorua.
Relax and explore Rotorua today, with the option to visit Hell’s Gate Geothermal Reserve for a relaxing sulphur spa and geothermal reserve walk.
In the evening, enjoy dinner at Rotorua’s most spectacular location – Skyline Restaurant. Sit back and relax as the views from the gondola unfold on your journey to the Skyline complex. The Skyline Restaurant will then serve you a mouthwatering taste of New Zealand, a buffet of legendary proportions. Feast on mouthwatering fresh soups, salads and seafood specialities such as mussels, queen scallops, sushi and sashimi. Enjoy carvery roasts of beef, lamb or pork with speciality sauces to match, with live cooking from your friendly chefs. Add to that a range of sumptuous desserts, and you’ve got yourself a unique dining experience not to be missed. Tiered seating guarantees stunning views from every table! After dinner, enjoy the scenic ride back down on the gondola. At the top of the gondola you also have the option to add on a thrilling Luge Ride, enjoy nature walks, and visit the Jelly Belly Shop and Volcanic Hills winery and tasting room.
Experience the best of Rotorua’s fantastic volcanic landscape today with a Rotorua Ultimate Riverjet Thermal Safari. You will be collected from your accommodation before embarking on the Ultimate Riverjet Thermal Safari, which takes you through the spectacular Tutukau Gorge. See abundant bird life, steaming volcanic river banks, and dramatic canyon walls.
After your Riverjet experience, enjoy the scenic drive to Rainbow Mountain, take a short bush-walk at Crater Lake, and visit a series of bubbling mud pools. This tour includes pick up and drop off at your accommodation.
Venture south today on a coach ride from Rotorua to Wellington. Pass by Lake Taupo, New Zealand’s largest lake, and marvel at the views of Tongariro National Park.
Arrive in Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city. For a large city, Wellington is extremely walkable, with a compact and attractive downtown that invites you to explore.
Stay 2 nights in Wellington.
Today, experience Wellington on a half-day Lord of the Rings tour! Follow in the Footsteps of Hobbits, Dwarfs, Elves and Men. You will cover a lot of ground on the tour, but there is enough time to explore; recreate scenes for yourself and work out how the movies were made. The scenery of Wellington mirrors that of Middle-Earth.
First, you will explore city locations, starting with Courtenay Place, the nightlife centre of New Zealand. Then it’s up Mount Victoria for fantastic views over the city.
After making your way through the city, you will spend 40min walking through the Outer Shire. This location includes the famous ‘get off the road’ scene, the ‘shortcut to mushrooms’ and the Black Rider scenes and many more. Then it’s off to the Weta Studios for an inside look at the Wellington film industry. Your visit to Weta will include the ‘Window into Workshop’ exhibition; which is a guided tour of the inner working of the Weta Studios.
Make your way to Wellington Airport and depart Wellington at your leisure.
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