17 Day New Zealand Uncovered

17 Day New Zealand Uncovered

Discover the best of New Zealand's North and South Island on AAT Kings' 17 day New Zealand Splendour. Highlights include touring a unique Māori culture experience with the Realm of Tane in Rotorua, cruising on Milford Sound, and plenty of free time to discover the Bay of Islands, Queenstown, Wellington, and historic Dunedin.

EXCLUSIVE SAVINGS! – Save up to 5%
Book an AAT Kings tour with Relaxing Journeys this month and SAVE!

Tour Info

Tour Type: Premium Coach Tour
From: Auckland to Christchurch
Departures: Apr 2020 to Mar 2021
Price: From (NZD) $6200 per person
Tour Operator: AAT Kings Tours
Duration: 15 Days
Tour Code: zaac

Inclusions

16 nights accommodation in superior hotels
16 fully cooked breakfasts (B), 2 lunches (L), and 11 dinners (D)
Discover New Zealand's horse-racing traditions, visiting a former famous jockey’s farm in the picturesque Hinuera Valley.
Cultural experience and hāngī feast at Tamaki Māori Village
Take your pick of a selection of included experiences in Rotorua, Dunedin, and Queenstown
Journey through the magnificent scenery of Tongariro National Park
Delve into New Zealand’s national identity, exploring an expansive collection related to this country's culture and history at Te Papa.
Savour a delicious Kiwi BBQ at Morelea Farm
Cruise on the TSS Earnslaw to Walter Peak Station
Travel past ancient glaciers, spectacular mountains and magical rainforest en route to Milford Sound
Taste Central Otago stone fruits at a local orchard
Discover fascinating Franz Josef Glacier
Visit a pounamu (jade) studio and marvel at artists at work
Walk around Punakaiki Pancake Rocks and Blowholes
Journey over the Southern Alps on the TranzAlpine train

EXCLUSIVE SAVINGS! – Save up to 15%
Book an AAT Kings tour with Relaxing Journeys this month and SAVE! – Discount has been applied to below prices.

* Single pricing also available with Exclusive Specials. Please enquire for Prices.

= Guaranteed Departures

Chat Request Callback

Day by Day Tour Itinerary

View Tour PDF
Day 1
Arrive Auckland

On arrival in Auckland you’ll have time at leisure to explore or relax. Tonight, enjoy a Welcome Reception and dinner with your Travel Director.

Stay: Stamford Plaza, Auckland (2 nights) (D)

Day 2
Auckland

After a city sights tour enjoy time at leisure. B

Day 3
Auckland - Tauranga

You’re invited to a Be My Guest lunch at the Red Barn on the Waikato farm of Lance and Bridgette O’Sullivan, New Zealand horse racing royalty. Later, travel to Tauranga, in the Bay of Plenty.

Stay: Trinity Wharf, Tauranga (B,L,D)

Day 4
Tauranga - Rotorua

Travel through Te Puke to visit Kiwifruit Country, then on to Rotorua for an orientation tour. This afternoon explore Te Puia Thermal Reserve. Then an evening of culture, history and a Hangi feast Highlight Dinner awaits you at the Tamaki Maori Village.

Stay: Millennium Hotel, Rotorua, (2 nights) (B,D)

Day 5
Rotorua (Included Choice)

Embark on one of your Included Choice sightseeing experiences. Glide through the Waitomo Glowworm Grotto, take an ancient forest zipline adventure with Canopy Tours, visit the Hobbiton Movie Set, or explore Rotorua and its lakes in an amphibious WWll-era Duck. (B)

Day 6
Rotorua - Wellington

Journey through forests and farmland to the turquoise torrent known as Huka Falls. The road unfolds in a broad panorama of stunning Lake Taupo. Continue south and along the Kapiti Coast to the capital city, Wellington.

Stay: James Cook Hotel Grand Chancellor, Wellington (B)

Day 7
Wellington - Blenheim

Explore Te Papa Museum of New Zealand. This afternoon cruise the Cook Strait into tranquil Queen Charlotte Sound. The village of Picton is next, then it’s on to Blenheim for a city sightseeing tour. Tonight, enjoy a 3-course Highlight Dinner celebrating local produce and the wines of the Marlborough region.

Stay: Chateau Marlborough, Blenheim. (B, D)

Day 8
Blenheim - Christchurch

Travel to Kaikoura, where sperm whales can often be seen not far from shore. Travel along the Pacific coast and across the Canterbury Plains to Christchurch.

Stay: Distinction Hotel, Christchurch (B)

Day 9
Christchurch - Twizel

This morning, join our Sustainable Tourism Commitment by planting a native tree in the Port Hills of Christchurch, an area recovering from wildfire. Next, visit the home of Angie and Stan Taylor at Lake Tekapo, for a Be My Guest afternoon tea and to learn about a lifetime spent farming. Later, view the little stone-hewn Church of the Good Shepherd on your way to Twizel.

Stay: Mackenzie Country Inn, Twizel (B, L, D)

Day 10
Twizel - Dunedin (Included Choice)

Journey along the Waitaki River, with a photo stop at the Waitaki Hydro Power Scheme and Benmore Dam. Travel through to Oamaru and on to Dunedin. Choose an Included Choice sightseeing experience. Take a wildlife cruise out to Otago Peninsula, visit the famous Speight’s Brewery or ride the historic Taieri Gorge Railway.

Stay: Scenic Hotel Southern Cross, Dunedin (B, D)

Day 11
Dunedin - Te Anau

After free time, travel through lush sheepfarming land. Then the rolling, grassy hills turn back into forested, rugged mountains, as you meander your way up into Fiordland National

Stay: Distinction Te Anau Hotel and Villas (B, D)

Day 12
Te Anau - Milford Sound - Queenstown

You will be awestruck by the magnificence of the World Heritage-listed Fiordland National Park. Amazing photo opportunities await you today as you see rainforest, ancient glaciers, mountain ranges and the handmade Homer Tunnel. Pass the Mirror Lake, Pop’s Lookout, Cleddau Valley and the Chasm. Your cruise on Milford Sound will take you past Bowen Falls and Mitre Peak. Afterwards, travel along the shores of Lake Wakatipu on your way to Queenstown, where an orientation tour finishes this highlight day.

Stay: Millennium Hotel, Queenstown (2 nights) (B)

Day 13
Queenstown (Included Choice)

Choose an Included Choice sightseeing experience. Ride the Shotover Jet, take a gondola to Bob’s Peak and visit Kiwi Birdlife Park or a minibus tour through Skippers Canyon. This evening, cruise across Lake Wakatipu aboard TSS Earnslaw to Walter Peak High Country Farm for a gourmet barbecue Highlight Dinner. (B, D)

Day 14
Queenstown - Franz Josef Glacier

Visit the gold mining settlement of Arrowtown. From here you will travel to Cromwell to taste delicious stone fruit at a local orchard. It is a day of gorgeous lakes, as you travel further into Central Otago. Cross over the Haast Pass as the landscape changes from alpine scenery to the rainforest marvels of the wild West Coast. Your destination is the extraordinary Franz Josef Glacier.

Stay: Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier, (Douglas Wing) (B, D)

Day 15
Franz Josef - Punakaiki

Visit Hokitika, home of the native greenstone for a factory visit and jewellery demonstration. Later, travel to Punakaiki to view the Pancake Rocks and Blowholes. You’ll spend the night in an eco-friendly resort right on the waterfront.

Stay: Punakaiki Resort (B, D)

Day 16
Punakaiki - TranzAlpine - Christchurch

Travel to Greymouth to visit the iconic Monteith’s Brewery and taste some of their innovative brews before a pub-style lunch. Later you will journey aboard the TranzAlpine train to Christchurch. This evening, join your Travel Director and new-found friends for a Farewell Dinner.

Stay: Distinction Hotel, Christchurch (B,L,D)

Day 17
Depart Christchurch

Say farewell to your fellow travellers when your holiday concludes after breakfast. (B)

4.6/5.0

There are 20 reviews of this tour from past clients of Relaxing Journeys, averaging 4.6 out of 5.

Overall Tour Rating
Value For Money
Accommodation
Tour Pace
Relaxing Journeys Experience

Tour Reviews

4
19/03/2019
Excellent management of tour. However an extra night in Dunedin would have been welcome. All arrangements like hotels, meals, and "comfort stops" was well taken care of. Our driver, Monika, was a rock star.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
05/03/2019
Our New Zealand Splendour Tour with AAT Kings was terrific! Our Tour Director Hope and our driver Mark were awesome! They were a great team and their knowledge and insights enhanced the grandeur and cultural richness of this fabulous land of the Kiwis. Their passion was contagious! Our expectations were exceeded. We only wish that we had chosen a longer tour that would have given us the opportunity to visit some additional places and to spend multiple nights in more of the places we did visit. Would highly recommend this tour to anyone visiting New Zealand. Mani and Marie Sarmon with Relaxing Journeys were the best. They were very helpful and guided us through the entire booking and trip preparation process. They kept us fully informed all along the way and answered all of our questions, of which there were many. Will definitely recommend Relaxing Journeys to others thinking about a trip down under.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
18/12/2018
Excellent tour if you want to see both North and South Island but haven't retired yet and don't have a month to spare for this. The tour was well organized and tour director and driver were par excellent. I would recommend this tour.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
21/11/2017
Some hotels were very good while others were just about average. As for vegetarian food, much improvement is needed. The sit-down dinner at the hotel in Blenheim was excellent even for vegetarians. The quality of the meals at Cordis were also very good, and a wide selection was available for vegetarians.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience
4
10/10/2017
The overall coach trip was really good. The tour director and driver were excellent. The hotel rooms were impressive but in some instances lacked a bath. I felt that it would be relaxing after a long day to have a bath.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
28/03/2017
The best for us: Waitomo Glowworm Caves, Rotorua in general, Queenstown (gondola and vintage steamship 1912), Moeraki Boulders and Pancake Rocks of Punakaiki.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
26/01/2016
Our trip was wonderful. We would like to give special thanks to our tour guide, Tania Simpson, and our driver, Monica Bulgari. Nobody could have done a better job then they did. Both of them were courteous, knowledgeable, and professional. A few years ago we had taken a tour with Trafalgar that was not very good and made us consider never taking another, but the AAT Kings tour turned out to be much better than we had hoped. There were a couple of minor things that could have been better about some of the hotels such as screens and fans when there was no air conditioning, but the coach was comfortable, the meals were good, and the sites were great. The hidden gems they showed us were beautiful. Trafalgar is lucky to have AAT Kings as a partner. We found New Zealand to have gorgeous scenery, friendly people, and was very clean. Too bad New Zealand is so far away or we would probably visit again.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
27/10/2015
NZ tour was great...Mel, tour guide, was funny, patient and a wealth of NZ information. Itinerary suited us perfectly and gave us a variety of NZ places to experience. Loved the 'included choices', as well as the opportunity to do more through the 'optional choices'. Hotels were very good and overall, we thoroughly enjoyed our tour. My only suggestion would be to try to limit the number of people on tour to 35 or less. Our group had 42 at one point and it was sometimes a little confusing with that many.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience
4
10/02/2015
We had an excellent time on our tour and saw some amazing sights. Our tour guide Mel and driver Mark were a kick, we always had a good time with them. When our Wellington Ferry kept getting delayed, Mel jumped right in and got us booked on another ferry so we made it to Picton later that day and on schedule. Our slight modification of rating stemmed from 2 things. 1) the tour pace - we wish we had more time to shop during our lunch stops which might not have been helped because we were covering so much land. 2) we weren't huge fans of the Millennium Hotel chain or any of the hotels that wanted to charge for wifi service at what seemed like pretty steep pricing, plus husband found dirty socks in room upon arrival at the Millennium in Queenstown. We were great fans of New Zealand owned and operated Scenic Hotel chain! Important to note that all hotels were really great locations and some of the smaller ones like Distinction Te Anau greeted us with drinks while Punikaiki Resort was right on the beach and Mackenzie Country Inn was a country inn with big heart!

Highlights included: Langham Hotel dinner, Waitomo Glow Worm Caves, Tamaki Family Maori Hangi Feast and village walk thru, Hobbiton, Shenandoah, Christchurch Botanical Gardens, Larnarch Castle and Speights Brewery Tour in Dunedin, in Queenstown, it was the shot over jet TSS Earnslaw ferry to Walter Peak Station for amazing dinner, and visit to Remarkable Wines, Milford Sound Cruise was a definite highlight, Franz Josef glacier walk not to mention upgraded hotel in Franz Josef to the stunning Te waonui Forest Retreat (also owned by Scenic I believe). Just too much to mention with the beautiful lakes and scenery. New Zealanders are the nicest people, just strike up a conversation.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
18/11/2014
The tour was well managed by Mark & backed up by his Driver Paul. Mark has a wealth of information on New Zealand & his anecdotes on local area events & history was very much appreciated. A couple of days were quiet long but had numerous stops to enable toilet breaks & to stretch one's legs to counter this. Paul, far from being just the Driver, had a number of tales to tell as well. Both did an excellent job & I would recommend them to anyone thinking of touring New Zealand as we did.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience

Enquire about our 17 Day New Zealand Uncovered

17 Day New Zealand Uncovered
Premium Coach Tour
Tour Code: zaac
From (NZD) $6200 per person
Save (NZD) $1095 per person
Enquire Now
Departures: Apr 2020 to Mar 2021
Rating:
20 reviews (4.6/5)

Discover the best of New Zealand's North and South Island on AAT Kings' 17 day New Zealand Splendour. Highlights include touring a unique Māori cultu... Read More

Itinerary Map

Click to view a larger image.

Regions Visited

Click on each area to view more information.

Like this tour?

Upgrade this tour by adding one of our carefully selected optional tours & activities or go ahead and request a quote to guarantee your spot.

Custom Itinerary

You can also create your dream holiday by using our custom itinerary planner.
Create your Custom Itinerary