Day 1 Arrive Auckland
On arrival at Auckland Airport private transfer to your hotel.
Day 2 Auckland – Rotorua (235 km)
This morning make your way to the rental car city depot where you will collect your rental car for your exclusive use. Travel through farmland, lake land and forest until the distinctive smell of sulphur and constant steam drifts let you know you are in tempestuous, geothermal Rotorua.
Day 3 Rotorua
Experience Māori culture at Te Puia and take a tour through a thermal valley full of forceful geysers and bubbling mud pools. View woodcarving and weaving schools and see how these ancient arts are being passed on to a new generation. Explore Rainbow Springs Kiwi Wildlife Park, where you can get up close to the native flora and fauna. Then see New Zealand’s agricultural industry in action at the Agrodome, a working farm where you can view a sheep shearing display and sheep dog trials. This evening enjoy a memorable night of culture, song and dance followed by dinner cooked the traditional Maori way on hot stones underground.
Day 4 Rotorua – Napier (219 km)
Travel south-east today towards Napier, known as the fruit bowl of New Zealand and a well known wine region.
Day 5 Napier
Day at leisure. New Zealand your way
Day 6 Napier – Wellington (315 km)
Make your way to Wellington – the capital city of New Zealand. Wellington is compact, cultured and full of character. Nestled between harbour and hills, the downtown area is ideal for explorations on foot. Wellington is noted for its live theatre, art galleries, restaurants and cultural activities. On the Waterfront is Te Papa Tongarewa, New Zealand’s National Museum, one of the best interactive museums in the world.
Day 7 Wellington – Picton – Blenheim (28 km)
Drop your car off at Ferry Terminal depot this morning before boarding the Interislander Ferry for your journey across Cook Strait to Picton. On arrival in Picton collect your rental car and make your way to Blenheim.
Day 8 Blenheim – Kaikoura – Christchurch (316 km)
Journey down the coast past the towns of Kaikoura (famous for whale watching) and to Christchurch.
Day 9 Christchurch – Aoraki, Mt Cook (332 km)
This morning travel to Aoraki, Mount Cook, New Zealand’s tallest mountain to explore the village and soak up the view. This afternoon’s tour includes an amazing encounter with Tasman Glacier and its terminal lake. Your guide will take you to the Tasman Valley for a 30 minute alpine walk through the National Park. Board your custom built MAC boat, and enjoy the ever changing scenery, viewing the Tasman Glacier ice face from a safe distance and icebergs of all shapes and sizes with the opportunity to touch and taste the 300-500 year old ice crystals.
Day 10 Mt Cook – Queenstown (262 km)
This morning travel south over the Lindis Pass and through the Kawarau Gorge to Queenstown.
Day 11 Queenstown
Day at leisure to enjoy the many sights and activities on offer.
Day 12 Queenstown – Dunedin (286 km)
Depart this morning through the Kawarau Gorge to Cromwell, following the Clutha River down through Alexandra via the rich farmlands of South Otago to Dunedin – the “Edinburgh of the South”. This afternoon in Dunedin time is available to explore – you may like to visit the Otago Peninsula – home of the Royal Albatross Colony, the Yellow Penguins or historic Larnach Castle.
Day 13 Dunedin – Christchurch (363 km)
Depart this morning, heading north to Moeraki to view the unique outdoor beach boulders. Continue via Oamaru and Timaru across the Canterbury Plains to Christchurch.
Day 14 Christchurch
Return your rental car to Christchurch Airport depot for your departure flight.