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- Accommodation based on twin share room
- Airport transfers
- Baggage charge
- Daily breakfast
- Entrance tickets to sites on tour
- Escorted tour
- First class hotels
- Hotel taxes and service charges
- International flights from Australia
- Meals as per the itinerary
- Porterage (up to two bags per person)
- Small group tour
- Transport in air conditioned vehicles
- Any items or services not specified in the itinerary
- Gratuities for guides and drivers
- Medical and emergency insurance
- Optional tours and activities
- Personal expenses
On this premium escorted small group tour, you will get to the heart of New Zealand, visit places that other coach tours often miss and get to know the locals.
Travelling from Auckland on the North Island, to enjoying your final night at picturesque Te Anau on the South Island, so many unmissable highlights will be included in just under two weeks: glow worms in spectacular caves, geothermal wonders, a scenic TranzAlpine train ride, breathtaking glaciers, lush forests, UNESCO World Heritage Areas and pristine lakes.
This 13-day New Zealand small group tour includes special activities, such as sharing in a traditional Māori meal, wine tasting at world-class vineyards, visiting nature reserves that are working to protect native wildlife, take a culinary walking tour, experience life on a sheep farm, enjoy a fond farewell dinner with newfound friends and much more!
You’ll be looked after all the way be your expert tour manager and experienced local guides. First class hotels have been carefully chosen for their location and high levels of comfort. There are also many meals included, as well as that nice touch of having beer or wine with all dinners. If you’re getting the idea that this is a special, immersive small group tour that doesn’t scrimp on great experiences, then you’ve got it right!SEE THE BROCHURE
- Descend into the astonishing Waitomo Caves with its swirling rivers and glow worms
- Visit Wai-o-Tapu Thermal Park and admire its steaming geysers
- Home hosted dinner in a traditional New Zealand home
- Enjoy a traditionally prepared “Hangi” dinner, cooked in the steaming ground
- Discover delightful Christchurch, the “most-English” city in the country
- Take in the stunning landscape of the South Island aboard the TranzAlpine train
- Experience the dynamic environment at the Franz Josef Glacier
- Explore the dazzling city of Queenstown, the country’s adventure capital
- Tour a family-run working merino sheep farm
- Cruise on spectacular Milford Sound, surrounded by breathtaking scenery
- DAY 1
- DAY 2
- DAY 3
- DAY 4
- DAY 5
- DAY 6
- DAY 7
- DAY 8
- DAY 9
- DAY 10
- DAY 11
- DAY 12
- DAY 13
Fly to Auckland
Welcome to New Zealand! Arrive in Auckland, the country's largest city, often called the "City of Sails" because of its lovely harbourside location, and transfer to your hotel.
Free Day in Auckland
Enjoy a free day to explore Auckland at leisure. This evening, attend an orientation meeting at approximately 6 PM with your Tour Manager on the exciting adventure that awaits you in New Zealand, followed by a Welcome Dinner and drinks with your fellow travellers.
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Waitomo Caves, Rotorua
From Auckland, travel south through the fertile Waikato Plains to Waitomo. A unique experience is in store for you at the astonishing Waitomo Caves, home to swirling rivers, glow worms and rocks that flow into delicate shawl-like formations. After lunch, drive to Rotorua and check in to your hotel. Tonight, savour a home-hosted dinner with a local family and experience a unique opportunity to learn about their values and traditions
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Te Puia Thermal Reserve, "Hangi" Feast Dinner
Morning is at leisure for independent explorations in Rotorua, or join the optional Hobbiton tour. Travel through the spectacular North Island scenery to Matamata, home to the Hobbiton movie set. Take a guided tour around the set and view Hobbit holes, the Party Tree, the Mill, and the Green Dragon Inn. In the afternoon, journey to Te Puia, in Whakarewarewa Geothermal Valley, set amidst a landscape of erupting geothermal activity and thermal springs. Discover the unique lifestyle and traditions of the Maori and witness the phenomena of Mother Nature and how the Maori people live in harmony within this unique landscape and environment. You'll meet with a member of the local Maori tribe who shares the many aspects of traditional wood carving and its importance within the Maori culture. In the village observe the weaving demonstrations and traditional ways of creating piupiu (grass skirts). You’ll visit the kiwi house to view the nocturnal kiwi bird before continuing to the boiling mud pools and geysers. Then, attend a traditional Haka ceremony and Maori concert. Afterward, enjoy an authentically prepared Hangi dinner, cooked in the steaming ground and hot pools, ending with the most delectable steamed dessert. Tonight will indeed be a memorable and authentic Maori experience!
Optional: Hobbiton Movie Set Tour (AM) Cost $119 per person.
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Park, Napier, Wine Tasting
Visit the geothermal wonderland of the Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Park, New Zealand's most colourful geothermal attraction, with its steaming geysers and bubbling hot springs. Then, journey through breathtaking scenery to the coastal city of Napier. Begin the drive heading south through rolling sheep-dotted hills and farmland. Marvel at picture-perfect views of Lake Taupo before continuing southeast along the Thermal Explorer Highway. The road leads into dramatic tree-covered mountains, rugged hills and at times alongside rushing rivers. On the descent through farmland and orchards, get your first glimpse of beautiful Hawkes Bay before arriving at Napier. This lovely city is famous for its wines and Art Deco architecture. The area is known as the fruit bowl of New Zealand with perfect conditions for world-class wine and produce. Tonight, taste some of the finest wines of the area and savour a delectable dinner
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Dannevirke, Pukaha Mount Bruce National Reserve, Wellington
After breakfast, depart Napier and drive through Wairarapa district to Wellington, the capital city of New Zealand, located at the southern end of the North Island. Stop on the way for tea at Dannevirke, a town well-known for its Scandinavian heritage. Continue to Pukaha Mount Bruce National Reserve, housing rare birds in an area of protected forest. Take a guided walk in the forest and gain knowledge about New Zealand's unique flora and fauna. Learn about the reserve's work to restore the forest and bring endangered birds back into the countryside. Continue to Wellington. Arrive and check in to your hotel. Later, share highlights of today's experiences during dinner at a local restaurant.
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Morning at Leisure, Culinary Walking Tour
Morning is at leisure for independent explorations in Wellington, including a ticket to ride on the historic Wellington cable car, providing panoramic views over the city. In the afternoon, embark on a culinary adventure around Wellington City and sample a range of delicious local food and drinks. During this walking tour, you’ll gain insights into the city’s history, its unique culinary scene, chat with local artisans and hear their stories. At the conclusion of the tour, return to the hotel and spend the evening at leisure.
Flight to Christchurch and Walking Tour
Transfer to the airport this morning, for your flight to Christchurch, in the South Island. The city, is the second largest in New Zealand. Often referred to as the most English of New Zealand's cities, it is also known as the "Garden City", because of its majestic trees and extensive parks and gardens, including expansive Hagley Park in the heart of the city. Arrive in Christchurch and transfer to the hotel. Afterward, take an orientation walking tour of the city. Balance of the day is at leisure for independent explorations.
TranzAlpine Scenic Train to Greymouth, Kiwi Hatchery, Franz Josef
This morning, board the most scenic train ride in New Zealand, and one of the most scenic train journeys in the world. Traveling west crossing the farmland of the Canterbury Plains, ascend through spectacular gorges and river valleys towards the Southern Alps. Arrive at the village of Arthurs Pass for a short break before descending through the Otira Tunnel and lush beech rainforests to Greymouth in the West Coast of New Zealand's South Island. Drive to Franz Josef and visit a kiwi hatching facility, home to a hatching program of the world’s rarest kiwi, the rowi. Learn more about this rare flightless bird from an expert ranger. Then, check in to your hotel overlooking some of New Zealand’s tallest peaks. Dinner is at the hotel tonight
Overnight: Franz Josef
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Franz Josef Glacier Walk, Queenstown
Embark on a thrilling adventure. Your experienced and knowledgeable guide will lead you on an adventurous walk in the Franz Josef Glacier Valley. The famous glacier, discovered by Europeans in 1865, is named after the Austrian emperor. Although the glacier has retreated considerably, its frozen past is still visible in the present landscape. Learn more about the role of the glacier in shaping this remarkable landscape as you continue through the regenerating rainforest and along the glacier valley up to the receding terminal face of the glacier. Later, drive to Queenstown, named for Queen Victoria, surrounded by majestic mountains and nestled on the shores of crystal clear Lake Wakatipu. Queenstown's stunning scenery is inspiring and revitalizing. The city is acclaimed by international travellers and "kiwis" alike as New Zealand's adventure capital. Check in to your hotel before dinner at a local restaurant.
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Mt Nicholas Farm Experience
Enjoy a cruise across Lake Wakatipu to Mt Nicholas High Country Farm on board Spirit of Queenstown for an exclusive, behind-the-scenes visit to an authentic, family-run merino sheep farm. Tour the farm, that is home to 30,000 merino sheep, view the working animals and learn about raising sheep and producing merino wool. Afterward, savour a freshly prepared farmers platter for lunch. Soak in the surrounding panoramic views in one of New Zealand’s most rugged and remote high country farms before returning on a catamaran cruise to Queenstown. The balance of the day is at leisure to discover picturesque Queenstown on your own.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Milford Sound, Te Anau
Depart Queenstown for picturesque Te Anau, gateway to Milford Sound. Nestled on the lake's edge, it's the perfect base from which to discover the spectacular glacier-carved wilderness of Fiordland National Park. Follow the glacier-hewn Eglinton River Valley into a magnificent beech forest before descending into the precipitous Hollyford Valley. Tussock and scrub replace the bush as the road climbs steadily up the Hollyford to the gigantic cirque where sheer rock faces dwarf the Homer Tunnel portal beneath. Beyond the tunnel, you descend into the Cleddau Canyon, between towering, rugged mountains and forests, until the road comes out into the open at spectacular Milford Sound. After lunch, board your cruise on Milford Sound and be surrounded by astonishing scenery from atop the viewing decks. An informative commentary on the natural history and wildlife follows you as you stop at waterfalls and points of interest along the way. Afterward, check in to your hotel in Te Anau. Tonight, share wonderful memories together on your last night in New Zealand. Bid goodbye to your Tour Manager and newfound friends at a Farewell Dinner in the hotel
Overnight: Te Anau
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Depart New Zealand
After breakfast, drive to the airport in Queenstown for your departure flight. Please select flights that depart no earlier than 1 PM.
More about New Zealand
My Travel Experience Review
This fantastic small group tour is an immersive New Zealand experience with loads of inclusions. You'll be looked after throughout by an experienced tour manager on this highly rated coach tour that only takes a maximum of 22 people on each departure.
More about this tour
See the brochure
CLICK HERE to view, download or print a copy of this travel brochure.
The brochure includes details of the inclusions and other relevant travel information. Information contained in the brochure is subject to change and at the time of booking you will be provided with an updated copy that includes the current details for your reservation.
Price and details are valid at time of publication on 16 May 2021.
This small group tour departs Thursdays from Australia between the below dates:
2022 - 01 February to 12 May and 01 September to 20 November
2023 - 01 February to 11 May
Please ask us for your preferred departure date and we will advise availability.
Tour start time
You will be advised of the flight details and check-in times when your booking is confirmed.
Important to remember...
The day-by-day itinerary is intended as an indicative guide only. Travel by nature is unpredictable. Weather patterns, road conditions, public holidays, travel restrictions and a multitude of other factors may necessitate itinerary changes that are ultimately for the client's benefit. It is essential that travellers are flexible and open minded in this regard.
Speak to a travel specialist
The My Travel Experience team are travel experts and we're here to help you enjoy the best holiday - from the time you start to plan your trip until the day you return home. We are only a phone call or email away whenever you need us, so please contact us today with any questions.
Email [email protected]. Phone 1300 168 910 (in Australia) or +61 400 226 454 (from overseas or via mobile).
New safety measures, more flexibility and greater peace of mind.
The wellbeing and safety of our passengers and staff is always a priority, especially as we adjust to a new world for travellers. My Travel Experience is committed to ensuring your peace of mind with customer-friendly booking practices and enhanced health and safety standards on our trips.
We work closely with tour operators that have received the Safe Travels stamp by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), which enables travellers to recognise companies around the world that have adopted health and hygiene global standardised protocols.
To help you book with confidence, we will assist you if any unexpected situations arise and My Travel Experience also offers clients as much flexibility as possible when making bookings.
Flexible Change Policy:
All new reservations in 2021 are eligible for one (1) free change prior to final payment due date. This includes change of travel date and/or destination. Travellers may elect to convert their deposit and subsequent payments prior to final payment into a Future Travel Credit, valid for travel through the end of 2022. If the rebooked package is priced higher than the original booking, passengers will be responsible for the difference in cost. Promotional discounts are not transferrable towards future bookings.
Please see our standard Booking Terms & Conditions for additional information.