New Zealand Self Drive Holiday Reviews

Driving to Paradise from Glenorchy

957 New Zealand Self Drive Holiday Reviews

4.7/5.0

4.7 out of 5 based on 957 user reviews.

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4
Budget Self Drive
10/09/2018
First night accommodation at Queenstown was average but the rest of the trip was very enjoyable. Thank you.
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5
Mid Range Self Drive
03/09/2018
We loved our holiday and the organisation was fantastic. We were met at the airport as promised and had a very helpful driver who gave us lots of 'tips'. All the hotels were good except The Copthorne Hotel and Apartments in Queenstown which was very old fashioned and definitely in need of some redecoration. All the other hotels were excellent and spot on. The travel consultant Mani was excellent, he was prompt, efficient and did a great job organising our tour. I would highly recommend their services and this tour in particular if you want to see the South Island.
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4
Budget Self Drive
22/08/2018
Marie was very helpful. She gave us a lot of tips and good customer service. Her suggestions was great especially those long drives where she gave us several detours which turned out to be awesome!
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5
Budget Self Drive
29/07/2018
We put together a custom tour, as we wanted to visit the Coromandel region as well as some inland scenery and Lord of the Rings filming locations. While browsing the online options, Relaxing Journeys popped up with a "can we help you" window, and it went from there. Relaxing Journeys proved to be the most helpful and quickest to respond of the tour companies that we checked out. Georgina was our coordinator and she was extremely prompt and helpful throughout, and very patient with all my chopping and changing. I'd mentioned the types of things we wanted to see, and she suggested tours and visits that I would never have even known about. I could never have arranged such an enjoyable and eventful holiday by just doing it all on my own. Upon arriving at our Auckland hotel, our package from Relaxing Journeys was there waiting for us, and included a detailed itinerary, book of vouchers for our tours and events, lots of brochures, and a generous road atlas. I spent a fair bit of time mapping out our routes and reminders for when we needed to phone ahead to confirm bookings. I didn't need to bother as it was all presented for us in our package. The vouchers were immediately recognised and accepted by all the tour/event operators and we never had any dramas. Our only out of pocket costs were for extras like food, fuel, and merchandise. Driving in New Zealand is a pleasure. New Zealanders are courteous drivers and are generally lovely people. We did struggle to find anywhere to park in Wellington, and anyone driving there in a camper or larger vehicle may wish to research this in advance. Our hotel (Distinction Century) let us leave our car there after checking out and before we drove to the airport, for a small additional fee, while we toured Wellington. This was a great help and much appreciated. Special highlights that we most enjoyed included: the glass bottom boat at Whitianga; the Te Puia cultural evening at Rotorua; the Hobbiton tour from Rotorua; Ohakune - everything about Ohakune but especially our drive out to Tawhai Falls and the Tongariro region; and Weta Studios and a Lord of the Rings filming locations tour at Wellington; and the tour to Edoras with Hassle Free Tours, which alone was worth flying to Christchurch for. Anyone visiting Wellington should also set aside half a day to visit the national museum, Te Papa, which was recommended to us by several locals. If we had more time, I would have included the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, and finish our trip in Queenstown, but those will have to wait until next time. I'm already thinking of next time! Thank you to Georgina and Relaxing Journeys for an excellent, well organised tour, and to New Zealand for your fantastic scenery, food, wine, culture, and people.
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5
Mid Range Self Drive
14/07/2018
Relaxing Journeys really planned the itinerary well. Pace was excellent, allowing us time to take in the view and explore off the beaten track. Jo, our tour consultant was impeccable. addressing all our queries and planning our add-ons. After sales service was also excellent! Due to weather constrains, one of our add-on activity had to be cancelled. Relaxing Journeys promptly initiated the refund. Overall a very good experience, will definitely be back for round 2.
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5
Premium Self Drive
20/06/2018
Our tour was excellent and whenever we needed assistance it was prompt and helpful. Excellent trip! My only suggestion to better a great trip and organization is to improve the GPS service, which often did not pickup destinations. Consequently, I think in the written, daily itinerary those destinations should better include sites/locales very close to the destinations to bring greater clarity to the drive(ing). Regardless, great trip and thank you!
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5
Mid Range Self Drive
29/05/2018
Highly recommend!! Our tour was fantastic and an excellent value for the price. Marie was very helpful in helping us add on an additional stop on our self-driving tour, and gave us suggestions on when to leave to get to where we needed to be on time. She was also helpful in allowing us to book the rental car for a few days longer as our flight out was not actually at the end of our tour. The hotels were excellent and breakfasts at each place were wonderful (especially Princes Gate in Rotorua!). We ended up needing to rearrange a few things as we spent way to much time in one place to go to the third activity that day. It was very simple to call each place and rearrange our bookings a bit so everything worked out well. There was a small snafu getting the tour package from the rental car company but the company was very helpful and overnighted it to us in Rotorua and we had no issues along the way not having it. Driving through the North Island was a dream and much simpler than expected. Already thinking about when we can go back and what lovely trip Relaxing Journeys can help us with! Many thank yous!
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4
Budget Self Drive
21/05/2018
We rejigged this tour a bit to add some activities: we included a drive to Paihia for the day to visit the "Hole in the Rock", and a segway tour in Christchurch. The accommodation was a bit uneven...better in Auckland and Queenstown (but it wasn't bad anywhere.) Overall, although more expensive than an Asian type holiday, it was a good experience!
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5
Premium Self Drive
04/05/2018
Sky City accommodation 7/10. a bit tired, but the location 10/10. All other accommodation 10/10. Our only suggestion for improvement would to be accommodated near to the airport when leaving early the next morning. We commend Salt Air who offered us a 45min helecopter ride over the Bay of Islands instead of the Cape Reinga tour which was cancelled due to bad weather. Mani hopefully the South Island next year.
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4
Budget Self Drive
14/04/2018
My tour was organised and there were no problems with any of the bookings. Out of the 11 motels there were only 2 that I wouldn't stay at again, majority were excellent places. Changes to the tour were made with no issues or problems and in a very timely and friendly manner.
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5
Budget Self Drive
08/04/2018
Jointly planning this trip with Relaxing Journeys gave us the best of both worlds -- an independent tour with the benefit of the experience and connections of helpful professional tour planners.
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5
Budget Self Drive
07/04/2018
We did a lot of travel, met really nice people, saw lots of beautiful scenery and sampled some fantastic NZ wines (and food). The 40th wedding anniversary surprise was also very nice. There were only two minor set backs. 1) We couldn't get to Milford Sound because the road was closed due to snow. 2) The Monarch Wildlife cruise was difficult to find using Google and also with the GPS that I had brought, so we went to the address on the coupon where we found the office was open but unattended. We called them on their contact number and the boat was a further 20 minutes up the road. At this stage a huge storm had moved in. It was very windy and the sea was becoming extremely choppy. The weather looked like it was getting worse so, because of my wife's lack of sea legs, we called Monarch again and cancelled the cruise. They were very nice about it and offered a cruise for next day but we couldn't accept as we had to leave next morning. Other than these two hiccups, you have provided us with a wonderful experience. One that we shall always treasure and certainly recommend to others. Thank you Relaxing Journeys.
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5
Budget Self Drive
05/04/2018
We had the most amazing time in New Zealand thanks to the fabulous organisation of Toni. We couldn't have been happier with every aspect of trip.
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5
Budget Self Drive
03/04/2018
I initially was a bit hesitant in not using a local Australian travel agent, but after all my dealings with Relaxing Journeys and their rep Toni, I can now say that after the trip is over I can't praise the organising of it highly enough. Toni was extremely easy to deal with about a few changes to the initial itinerary as listed on the website. One thing to keep in mind when doing a driving holiday is that even though the trip should take "x" hours per day it was not unusual in our case to add 3 hours to this for the sightseeing and meals. I would also suggest that you have at least a two night stay in one place per week of travel to allow a bit of r&r. And don't forget that it is supposed to be a holiday so no need to get up at the crack of dawn and hit the road.
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4
Premium Self Drive
02/04/2018
Tour was very good and we enjoyed the included activities. Distances were quite reasonable and total driving time reasonable except day one where we scored large amounts of roadwork. All the B&Bs were good with great breakfasts and excellent informative hosts. Not sure about the Kruse. The commentary was great but GPS one of worst I have used and maps out of date with it not knowing where we were on several occasions including twice on SH1. Often reverted to Google Maps on phone.
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4
Budget Self Drive
30/03/2018
Great organisation and support. Tour was right mix of activity and downtime.
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4
Budget Self Drive
28/03/2018
Every thing went according to plan. All cars, motels and activities were as requested smooth no hassle.
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5
Premium Self Drive
26/03/2018
Marie did an excellent job with her suggestions and planning for our trip to New Zealand. The accommodations were very good and the route was excellent. We arrived in Auckland and for three weeks we traveled down to Queenstown experiencing the culture, wine, and beauty New Zealand had to offer. The Kruze GPS was a wonderful tool that was very informative and enjoyable with the Maori history. We had one glitch with the GPS freezing but Kruze was very prompt with helping us correct the problem. Depending on what time of year you are going you might want to forgo Mt. Cook because the weather is very "iffy". The trip was everything we expected and I would highly recommend using Relaxing Journeys to plan your trip to New Zealand!
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4
Mid Range Self Drive
25/03/2018
I found the 5-day north island tour very good. Although alot was packed in, I got a very good overview of the best bits and I will definitely be back to see more. The activities you can do are excellent. I found the Maori Cultural evening excellent and a must for any traveller. Mani was very helpful and even added on my trip to Hobbiton with a couple days notice. I would highly recommend this self-drive tour as you see alot of the fantastic scenery and the option of Kruse GPS was helpful as gave good local history to areas you drive through. Thank you for all your work into making my trip such a fantastic one that has left me wanting to return and discover more that New Zealand has to offer.
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4
Budget Self Drive
24/03/2018
Another wonderful NZ holiday - thanks again Mani - tour was great with so many inclusions. Accommodation was good - one exception being New Plymouth - old and very tired. We'll be back!
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4
Premium Self Drive
18/03/2018
It was wonderful, you have a beautiful country. The Kruze navigation system taught us so much as we drove.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
Premium Self Drive
13/03/2018
The entire trip was wonderful and flawless. We purposely planned a leisurely trip and it was worth it. The accommodations (Bed & Breakfasts) were great. One of the best parts of the trip was meeting many wonderful people from New Zealand as well as from all over the world. We thoroughly enjoyed the New Zealand trip and highly recommend Relaxing Journeys. Good job, Toni!
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5
Mid Range Self Drive
10/03/2018
The choice of lodgings was fine and we especially liked The Breakers B&B. Of course, New Zealand is nature at its finest and my husband and I are so happy to have been there. One thing that would have been nice would have been a choice between the Glow Worm Caves and Hobbiton in the Rotorua area. A couple of other ideas would be these: It would be helpful for travelers to know ahead of time when they will be staying in a place with kitchen facilities, (pots, pans and stove). This way they could pick up some groceries on the way to the hotel and cook dinner a couple of nights. One other thing would have been a choice between a full breakfast on a few of the days and lunch vouchers. Overall, we were amazed and pleased with the sightseeing locations. Even though we had 16 days neither one of us wanted to leave New Zealand!
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5
Mid Range Self Drive
10/03/2018
Your country is very beautiful and we enjoyed it very much. Everything went well except for the glitch with the missing return flight from Christchurch to Auckland to get us home. One suggestion would be to flag opportunities in the itinerary where an extra day might be beneficial to consider. For example, it would have been nice to stop in Hobbitton on the way to Rotorua, but we had to be in Rotorua for the Maori evening gig by 5PM, so there was not time. The Toyota Corolla was the perfect car to tour around in for two people. It was a good size for going through the mountain switchbacks and in the city and got good petrol mileage. Especially when having to adjust to driving on the left, which was fine after a couple of days. Thanks for getting back to us right away regarding the flight costs. I would sure like to go back at some point to see some things we missed this time around.
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4
Budget Self Drive
06/03/2018
We really enjoyed the tour. Well organized and efficient. Chelsea was terrific. We found it a bit too long to be in the car on certain days and might have enjoyed one extra day in the Queenstown area as it took us well over 8 hours to drive there from Franz Josef glacier. Perhaps a better description/warning of the winding roads, one lane bridges and construction would have helped prepare us. Accommodation was good with the exception of the Rydges hotel in Queenstown. Franky, our room was a dump and given we had paid extra to stay in better hotels, it was disappointing (the hotel lobby/restaurant area and location were good).
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