New Zealand Discovery
New Zealand could have been made for travelling around in a motorhome, with each journey being an experience all in itself. The diversity of the country means even a short drive finds you in a new and wonderful destination. From snow-capped mountains and volcanoes to stunning coastlines and the unique Maori culture, there is so much waiting to be discovered.
Complete this escorted tour in a motorhome from November to April - prices start from £4,999pp.
At a glance
- 36 day escorted tour
- Prices start from £4,999pp
- Departs November to April 2018/19
- Return international flights included
- Motorhome hire and accommodation included
- Led by an experienced New Zealand tour leader
For more information call us on 01580 214089
What to expect
On this relaxed 36 day holiday, you'll be able to discover New Zealand at your own pace, with everything taken care of for you and help and support on hand. Enjoy the best that Aotearoa, the Maori name for the country, has to offer.
As part of the trip, you'll receive return international flights from the UK, 2 nights at the start of the tour in a Christchurch in a 4-star hotel plus 2 nights at the end in Auckland, also in a 4-star hotel. Also included is a Traditional Maori hangi (feast), InterIslander ferry crossing, Skyline Gondola & Restaurant and a Milford Sound Nature cruise.
You'll have free use of the motorhome for 29 nights (suitable for your party size) and nights on pre-booked campsites, with unlimited mileage and motorhome insurance so you can explore New Zealand hassle-free.
Your vehicle kit will include cutlery and crockery plus sleeping bags, towels and pillows, and a personalised road book with travel tips and a day-to-day driving itinerary with local area information and full driving instructions suitable for motorhomes.
Christchurch to Te Anau
- Make your way to Lake Tekapo and Mt Cook National Park
- Travel through the Waitaki Valley to Dunedin
- Explore the diverse wildlife of the Otago Peninsula
- Spend a few days exploring Te Anau, the gateway to the Fiordland National Park
Days 1 - 4: London to Christchurch
Board your flight from London to Christchurch. On arrival in New Zealand on the morning of day 3, due to the international time zones, you will be met and transferred to your Christchurch hotel for a 2 night stay. You have the opportunity to explore the city at your leisure, with the opportunity to meet your fellow travellers at a welcome dinner.
Days 5 - 6: Lake Takepo & Mt Cook National Park
Distance: 274km / 170 miles
Your motorhome adventure starts today! In the morning you’ll be transferred to the depot to pick-up your vehicle, with an orientation session included to help you familiarise yourself with the motorhome. Once you’re ready you’ll head south out of Christchurch across the Rakai River on the longest bridge in New Zealand. Drive across the Canterbury Plains towards Lake Tekapo. Be sure to stop and view the tiny Church of the Good Shepherd, a photographer’s favourite. Head towards Lake Pukaki in the Mount Cook National Park, where you will stay for 2 nights.
Take the opportunity to explore World Heritage listed Mount Cook National Park. Covering over 70,000 hectares of breath-taking alpine scenery, the park is home to glacial lakes and New Zealand’s two highest peaks, Mount Tasman and, of course, Mount Cook.
Days 7 - 8: Dunedin
Distance: 266 km / 165 miles
Heading towards Dunedin you’ll travel south through the Waitaki Valley. As you follow the coast be sure to stop at the mysterious Moeraki Boulders. Continue onto to Dunedin, affectionately known as ‘the Edinburgh of the South’ and is gateway to the diverse wildlife of the Otago Peninsula. Half or full day cruises and tours of the Otago Peninsula are available, taking in the regions wildlife, scenery and historic buildings including Lanarch Castle, the Royal Albatross Centre and Penguin Place.
Days 9 - 10: Te Anau & Milford Sound
Distance: 291 km / 180 miles
Cross the rich farmlands of Central Otago as you make your way to Te Anau, the gateway to the Fiordland National Park. You can go via Gore, set on the Mataura River, or you may like to take the slightly longer route which takes you south via the Catlins with its rugged coastline, hidden lakes and magical waterfalls. Once in Te Anau, options here include an exhilarating jetboat ride, stopping at 3 of the actual film locations featured in the Lord of the Rings films or you can visit the Te Anau Glowworm Caves where a mystical underground world of waterfalls and incredible rock formations awaits.
On day 10 we’ll take you on a full day excursion to Milford Sound where you get to take an extended nature cruise along the entire length of the Sound out to the Tasman Sea. Milford Sound is famous for the towering peaks that rise up almost vertically from the water as well as spectacular waterfalls, rainforests and towering mountains.
Queenstown to Blenheim
- Travel through to Queenstown and Lake Wanaka
- Explore Abel Tasman National Park on foot, by kayak or on a leisurely boat cruise
- Explore Blenheim in the Marlborough wine region before taking the Interislander ferry to the North Island
Days 11 - 13: Queenstown & Lake Wanaka
Distance: 173 km / 107 miles & 67 km / 42 miles
Skirt the shores of Lake Wakatipu as you make your way to Queenstown. During your stay here you’ll enjoy a trip on the gondola to the top of Bob’s Peak for a sumptuous dinner overlooking Lake Wakatipu & the Remarkable Mountains. On day 13 travel via the amazing Crown Range, a stunningly scenic drive through mountains and valleys, to Lake Wanaka with its breath-taking mountain & lake views and spend the night here to take it all in.
Days 14 - 15: Fox & Franz Josef Glaciers
Distance: 286 km / 178 miles
View incredible scenery as you travel past the untouched native forests and pristine lakes of the World Heritage Westland National Park to the west coast of New Zealand’s South Island. We recommend a guided walk onto the Fox & Franz Josef glaciers to appreciate the scale of it close up. After, take a walk through the rain forest trail around Lake Matheson, near Fox, for fantastic mirror lake views of the Southern Alps or you might prefer to relax in the Franz Josef Glacier hot pools, nestled in lush rainforest beneath mature 30m tall trees.
Days 16 - 18: Westport and Nelson & Abel Tasman NP
Distance: 273 km / 170 miles & 222 km / 138 miles
With the Tasman Sea on one side and the Southern Alps mountain range rising up on the other, take it slowly and enjoy this scenic drive. Be sure to stop at Punakaiki and marvel at the bizarre limestone landscapes and powerful vents of ‘Pancake Rocks’, formed millions of years ago. Then make your way to Westport for an overnight stay.
On day 17 continue onto the Nelson region, an area of diverse beauty that enjoys a Mediterranean-type climate. The stunning coastal forest and shoreline of nearby Abel Tasman National Park can be explored on foot, by kayak or on a leisurely cruise by boat. A popular option is the Kaiteriteri kayak excursion to Split Apple Rock, ideal for beginners and departing right from the beach, or you can go dolphin spotting and cruise up the beautiful coast of the Abel Tasman National Park on the Abel Tasman Sea Shuttle.
Days 19 - 20: Blenheim
Distance: 115 km / 72 miles
From Nelson it’s a short drive to Blenheim, situated in the heart of the Marlborough wine region. Marlborough has a range of activities on offer including bush walks, scenic cruises and fishing and of course you can visit one or two of the local wineries which produce award winning Sauvignon Blancs, Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs.
Wellington to Lake Taupo
- Drive north from Lake Taupo to Wellington, the nation’s capital
- Explore the rural heartland of the Wairarapa region
- Discover the volcanic and geothermal wonders of Rotorua
Days 21 - 22: Interislander Ferry & Wellington
Distance: 28 km / 18 miles
Enjoy the scenic InterIslander ferry that takes you from the picturesque fishing village of Picton across the Cook Strait to New Zealand’s North Island. As the ferry leaves Picton you’ll sail through, picturesque Queen Charlotte Sound, making the journey between the two islands an experience in itself. Wellington is the nation’s capital and options here include a visit to the Te Papa museum to learn about the history of New Zealand and its Maori heritage or take a ride on the famous Wellington Cable Car to the top of Mt Victoria for spectacular panoramic views over the city and harbour.
Days 23 - 24: Napier
Distance: 322 km / 200 miles
Drive north through the rural heartland of the Wairarapa region as you make your way to Napier, on the east coast of North Island, often referred to as the Art-Deco capital of the world. Napier is in the Hawke’s Bay region which is famous for its many vineyards that serve gourmet food to accompany award-winning wines. Alternatively you might enjoy the chance to view the world’s largest mainland gannet colony at Cape Kidnappers.
Days 25 - 26: Lake Taupo & Rotorua
Distance: 222 km / 138 miles
On your way north today be sure to stop at the popular lakeside resort of Taupo, in the centre of the North Island. Nearby is the mighty Huka Falls, where the full force of the Waikato river flows from the lake and is squeezed through a canyon only 15 metres across. Continue on to the geothermal city of Rotorua where you will enjoy a traditional Maori hangi (feast) & cultural performance. The region around Rotorua is a geothermal ‘hot spot’ featuring volcanoes, geysers, improbably colourful mineral lakes, hot springs and thermal vents, where you can see and hear the earth’s heat escaping from the surface.
Visit Wai-o-Tapu, with its ‘Champagne pool’ and Lady Knox geyser or perhaps Te Puia Thermal Reserve in the historic Te Whakarewarewa valley with its boiling mud pools, silica terraces, steaming vents and Pohutu geyser. You can also visit Hobbiton, the movie set used in the award-winning Lord of the Rings & Hobbit movies.
Bay of Plenty to Auckland
- Drive along the volcanic plateau of the Bay of Plenty
- Visit the Coromandel Peninsula and Hot Water Beach
- Head north along the Hibiscus Coast to Paihia in the Bay of Islands
- Explore the city of Auckland at your leisure
Days 27 - 28: Bay of Plenty & Coromandel Peninsula
Distance: 243 km / 151 miles
Drive across the volcanic plateau and along the Bay of Plenty coastline to the popular beachside towns of Mount Maunganui & Tauranga. You might like to stretch your legs and climb ‘The Mount’ for picturesque views along the coastline. Head to your next destination, the Coromandel Peninsula, a beautiful rugged area fringed with dozens of attractive beaches.
You can dig out your very own hot pool metres from the Pacific Ocean at world-famous Hot Water Beach, or head for Cathedral Cove where a huge arched cavern passes through the headland, joining up two secluded coves. Relax in the cafes and enjoy the art galleries or just taking in the wonderful scenery.
Days 29 - 32: Orewa & the Bay of Islands
Distance: 225 km / 140 miles & 229 km / 142 miles
Travel north today, heading for the coastal town of Orewa situated just north of Auckland. With its 3km long beach, looking out onto the Pacific Ocean, it's ideal for an overnight stop. On the morning of day 30 you might like to visit the Kauri museum which tells the stories and legacy of the Kauri tree which supported the early settlers.
Head north to Paihia in the Bay of Islands, a National Maritime Park. The scenic Bay of Islands is home to 144 islands and is the perfect place to relax and enjoy the views with a 3 night stay. Alternatively you might enjoy a boat trip out into the bay, or how about heading to the most northerly point of New Zealand and Cape Reinga, where the Pacific Ocean and the Tasman Sea converge.
Days 33 - 34: Auckland
Distance: 258 km / 160 miles
Auckland is a harbour city and the locals love nothing more than getting out on the water. You have the opportunity to explore the city at your leisure be it on land or water. A visit to Waiheke Island is a recommended and enjoyable experience that offers spectacular views of the city across the water. The Sky Tower is unmistakeable and offers an alternative view of the city.
Days 35 - 36: Return flight to the UK
Time to bid farewell to new found friends, leaving New Zealand with treasured memories that will last a lifetime.