New Zealand Highlights [ST-NZ40C] - About New Zealand
 
 
9 Days: New Zealand Highlights [ST-NZ40C]
Starting at
Please call...
Highlights & Inclusions
  • Accommodation - Auckland (2 Nights), Wellington (2), Queenstown (3)
  • US Domestic Flights are not included and may be added on at your request
  • International Flights - Los Angeles to Auckland (Return) (Not included, but can be included upon request)
  • New Zealand Domestic Flights - Wellington to Queenstown, Queenstown to Auckland
  • Shuttle Transfers - Auckland Airport to Accommodation, Auckland Accommodation to Train Depot, Wellington Train Depot to Accommodation, Wellington Accommodation to Airport, Queenstown Airport to Accommodation (Return)
  • Day Tours - Auckland: Auckland City Sights, Rotorua Geothermal & Waitomo Glow Worm Caves, Scenic Train from Auckland to Wellington; Wellington: Middle Earth Filming Locations Tour - Half Day
  • All other Day Tours listed are Optional (Not Included)
  • Visa Issuance for entry into Australia (additional US$15.00 per person)
  • F.I.T. (Free & Independent Travel, i.e. this is not an Organized Group Tour)
  • All Taxes and Fuel Levies (Except where noted)
  • Itinerary is flexible and can be tailored to suit your needs.
Itinerary Details
Day 1 - US Domestic Flight, Hometown to Los Angeles (Check quote for inclusion)

Travel by domestic air to your destination.

If you request US domestic air pricing, this inclusion will be reflected in your quote.

Day 1 - International Flight, Los Angeles to Auckland (Check quote for inclusion)

Shortly after departing Los Angeles you will be served dinner and you will be given breakfast before landing in Auckland.

Relax, watch some movies, and try to get some sleep!

Please confirm with the airline at check-in that they have all your Frequent Flyer information on record (if applicable).

Day 2 - Shuttle Transfer, Auckland Airport to Accommodation

Travel by shuttle from the Airport to your vacation accommodation in Auckland, New Zealand.

Please note: For airport transfers – 2 suitcases per person, extra pieces may be charged at $5.00 per piece. Surfboards, Bicycles etc – $5.00 each.

Days 2 to 4 - 2 Nights Accommodation in Auckland

Travel to your accommodation in Auckland, where you will be staying whilst on vacation for 2 nights.

Enjoy your stay in Auckland’s tallest residential building with breathtaking bold views. Stretch out in the suite life beside Albert Park and inhale the sea air. You will feel at home in a downtown haven full of freedom and convenience. Take time to pause for a moment of ‘Wow’ as you walk through the lobby, a sleek century-old courthouse transformed for an impressive arrival. Once climbed by legendary French Spiderman Alain Robert, your towering hotel takes the meaning of ‘home away from home’ to new heights. Above it all, slide into a contemporary vibe and discover Auckland from the city centre. You have got culture, entertainment and the great outdoors on your doorstep!

Day 2 - Day Tour, Auckland City Sights - Half Day

Discover first-hand why Auckland is regarded as one of the best places in the world to live, with a half-day tour of its scenic highlights.

Travel through the city centre, along Karangahape Road with its chequered past and eclectic vibe, past fashionable Ponsonby and over the Auckland Harbour Bridge, enjoying views of the Hauraki Gulf and city skyline. Visit the Viaduct Harbour and Auckland’s famous Queen Street before continuing to the Auckland Domain.

The Domain is the city’s oldest park and, at 75 hectares, one of its largest. Developed around an extinct volcano, it features tropical gardens, duck ponds and public art, and is also home to the Auckland War Memorial Museum.

After visiting the Domain, the tour continues to Parnell Village for afternoon tea stop. The historic buildings of Parnell have been transformed into a trendy shopping area featuring a range of boutiques, craft and specialty stores.

Our tour will then take you along the scenic waterfront route of Tamaki Drive to Michael Joseph Savage Memorial Park, above Mission Bay. Named after one of New Zealand’s most revered Prime Ministers, the park, with its formal gardens and tranquil atmosphere, offers a panoramic outlook over the picturesque Eastern Bays, Auckland city and the Waitemata Harbour.

Day 3 - Day Tour, Rotorua Geothermal & Waitomo Glow Worm Caves

On your vacation travel by deluxe luxury coach to the Waitomo Glow-Worm Caves and the spectacular geothermal regions of Rotorua, New Zealand.

Depart Auckland: Travel the main Southern Highway through small rural townships steeped in early pioneer history. Your host serves morning tea during this sector.

Waikato: Travel through New Zealand’s largest dairy and sheep farming province. Travel the outskirts of Hamilton City via the small farming settlements towards the King Country, birthplace of the Maori Monarchy.

Waitomo Glowworm Caves: Join a guided tour through this world-famous cave formation, climaxed by drifting silently in a boat through a glow worm cavern lit up with thousands of tiny glow worm lights.

Light Lunch: Served on-board as we make our way to Rotorua through magnificent rural farmland with its vast numbers of grazing animals.

Rotorua: New Zealand’s highest city, 305 meters (1000 feet) above sea level, located inside the rim of a volcanic crater. An area of great geothermal activity. We visit the following attractions:

Agrodome Farm Tour: An introduction to New Zealand farming, with a 45-minute tour of an authentic working farm in all-weather, all-terrain vehicles. Watch a sheep being shorn and hand-feed the animals.

Lake Rotorua: Drive through the foreshore park past the hundreds of ducks and swans. Then through the beautiful historic Government Gardens.

Te Puia Insitute (Maori Arts & Crafts & Whakarewarewa Thermal Reserve): One of Rotorua’s most famous attractions. See woodcarving, weaving displays, Maori village and the thermal valley with the famous Pohutu Geyser, fumaroles, colourful silica deposits and boiling mud pools.

Return to Auckland: Your attraction-packed day concludes as the coach travels through the beautiful horse breeding district of Matamata and the pastureland of the Hauraki plains. A light snack is served on this sector.

Day 4 - Shuttle Transfer, Auckland Accommodation to Train Depot

Travel by shuttle from your vacation accommodation in Auckland, New Zealand, to the train depot.

Please note: 2 suitcases per person, extra pieces may be charged at $5.00 per piece. Surfboards, Bicycles etc – $5.00 each.

Day 4 - Day Tour, Scenic Train from Auckland to Wellington

Travel through the heart of New Zealand and experience the North Island’s extraordinary range of scenery in one journey.

The Northern Explorer takes you through rolling green farmland and virgin bush, past quaint country towns and along rocky coasts. The journey through Tongariro National Park, with its three spectacular volcanic mountains -Tongariro, Ngauruhoe and Ruapehu – is a highlight, a place of extremes and surprises, where snow-blanketed fields, ancient lava flows and dense beech forests can be seen side by side.

Photo Credit: KiwiRail Limited

Departs Auckland to Wellington on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays.

Day 4 - Shuttle Transfer, Wellington Train Depot to Accommodation

Travel by shuttle from the Wellington Train Station to your vacation accommodation.

Please note: 2 suitcases per person, extra pieces may be charged at $5.00 per piece. Surfboards, Bicycles etc – $5.00 each.

Days 4 to 6 - 2 Nights Accommodation in Wellington

Travel to your accommodation in Wellington, New Zealand, where you will be staying whilst on vacation for 2 nights.

Your 4 Star vacation accommodation is located conveniently in the heart of Wellington, New Zealand. It is a short walk from Westpac Stadium, Te Papa Museum and the waterfront. Your vacation hotel has a direct elevator to Lambton Quay via a shopping arcade. Travel to New Zealand’s top wine regions, Wairarapa and Marlborough, which are only a short drive away. Or participate in adventure activities such as mountain biking, sailing, bushwalking and much more.

Photo Credit: Tourism New Zealand

Day 5 - Middle Earth Lord of the Rings Filming Locations Tour - Half Day

An epic journey of Lord of the Rings filming locations all over Wellington. See Middle Earth come to life as you see the pristine rainforest of Rivendell, the Gardens of Isengard, the quarry of Helms Deep and many more. You will also visit Mount Victoria, the site that made Buckland come alive in the films. The peak of Mount Victoria has the best 360-degree views of Wellington City.

A half-day Lord of the Rings Middle Earth filming locations tour. You’ll see some Middle Earth favorites as you are guided by coach around Wellington. Be amazed by the New Zealand rainforest that brought Rivendell to life, the River Anduin that the Fellowship journeyed by canoe, the Gardens of Isengard, the quarry of Helms Deep and more. You will also be taken to Mount Victoria, home of the Buckland Forest. Atop Mount Victoria are spectacular, 360-degree views of Wellington City.

Day 6 - Shuttle Transfer, Wellington Accommodation to Airport

Travel by shuttle from your vacation accommodation in Wellington to the Airport.

Please note: For airport transfers – 2 suitcases per person, extra pieces may be charged at $5.00 per piece. Surfboards, Bicycles etc – $5.00 each.

Day 6 - New Zealand Domestic Flight, Wellington to Queenstown

Travel within New Zealand by domestic air from Wellington to Queenstown.

Day 6 - Shuttle Transfer, Queenstown Airport to Accommodation

Travel by shuttle from the Airport to your vacation accommodation in Queenstown, New Zealand.

Please note: For airport transfers – 2 suitcases per person, extra pieces may be charged at $5.00 per piece. Surfboards, Bicycles etc – $5.00 each.

Days 6 to 9 - 3 Nights Accommodation in Queenstown

Travel to your accommodation in Queenstown, New Zealand, where you will be staying whilst on vacation for 3 nights.

It’s all about location! Your 4 star accommodations sits in a tranquil lakefront setting only a minute’s walk from the heart of Queenstown with shopping, restaurants, nightlife and activities all within easy reach. This fresh, modern hotel features rooms and facilities furnished with the finest comforts and conveniences. A place where you can relax with surperb uninterrupted views of the lake, mountains and adjoining gardens. Comfortable and serene you will surely enjoy your stay here!

Upgrades Available: Garden View Room, Lakeview Room

Days 7 to 8 - Free Days to Explore Queenstown

Spend a day to relax or explore dynamic Queenstown.

This region is renowned for its incedible adventure activities and spectacular outdoor terrain. You could try skiing, snowboarding, bungy jumping, paragliding, jetboating, sky diving and more! Or, if you want something a little more relaxed, you can choose from numerous family activities, nature experiences, tours and beauty spas. One hundred and forty years after our establishment as a gold mining camp, central Queenstown has transformed into a sophisticated cosmopolitan town, tucked into a picturesque bay on the shores of Lake Wakatipu, beneath majestic mountains. There’s a permanent buzz in downtown Queenstown, where you’ll find a fantastic choice of restaurants, a lively bar scene and excellent shopping.

Photo Credit: Tourism New Zealand

Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Doubtful Sound - Full Day

When you discover Doubtful Sound you will be struck by its silence, a silence broken only by birdsong, or maybe the rushing of a distant waterfall.


On boarding a luxury coach in Queenstown, travel along the shores of Lake Wakatipu and through the rolling countryside to Manapouri. Then cruise across the crystal waters of Lake Manapouri to West Arm before boarding a coach and crossing the alpine route of Wilmot Pass through some of Fiordland’s most dense rainforest. On reaching Deep Cove, board a modern catamaran vessel, the Patea Explorer for a three hour cruise exploring the waterways of this serene and isolated fiord.


There is plenty of time available to explore points of interest and view the spectacular alpine scenery including waterfalls, rainforest and mountains all the way out to the Tasman Sea. It is home to bottlenose dolphins and fur seals and when in season, the rare Fiordland crested penguin. An onboard nature guide with specialist knowledge of the region’s history, flora and fauna provides detailed interpretation in English with a roving microphone. On the return cruise, the vessel’s engines are turned off and passengers are treated to the ‘sound of silence’. There is also a visit included to the Manapouri Power Station by coach before returning to Queenstown. Manapouri Power Station is an impressively large underground hydroelectric power station on the western arm of Lake Manapouri in Fiordland National Park. Lunch options and complimentary tea and coffee are available on the vessel.

*A picnic lunch can be pre-ordered before your tour for an additional cost. There is also a selection of cafe food aboard the vessel for purchase.

Tour departs at approximately 7am and returns at approximately 8pm (seasonally adjusted). Photo Credit: Tourism Media

Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Dart River Safari - Half Day

This jet boat adventure offers your senses a feast of spectacular natural beauty on a journey into the wilderness of a World Heritage area.

Your day begins with 1.5 hour journey on a jet boat through the Dart’s river system. You’ll be surrounded by beautiful snow-covered peaks, hidden valleys & waterfalls. Your day includes a guided walk (30-40 minutes) along the ‘Heritage Trail’ at Paradise. Your guide will provide you with informative & entertaining commentary about the ancient native beech forest. The forests of this region sit within a World Heritage Area, one of the only natural sites of its kind that is accessible to the public.


Your guide details the fascinating history of this area from the days of Gondwanaland, to quests by Maori for prized pounamu, to the present day efforts of New Zealand’s department of conservation for the preservation of the area. The day ends with a 4WD coach drive along a scenic back road. You will be entertained with stories of the countryside. On the ride home you will stop to view the scenery made famous by Peter Jackson in ‘The Lord of the Rings’ trilogies.

Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Gondola Ride

One of the first sights to captivate visitors to Queenstown is the distinctive outline of the Skyline complex high above town.


Located an easy 5 minute walk from central Queenstown and exclusively accessed by scenic gondola, Skyline Gondola, Restaurant & Luge is a must-see attraction during your visit to Queenstown, New Zealand. The best views in the region are found here spread out in a spectacular 220 degree panorama, with breathtaking views of Coronet Peak, The Remarkables mountain range and across Lake Wakatipu to Cecil and Walter Peaks. It’s truly magnificent and awe-inspiring!


Of course there’s more to do than just admire the view! Enjoy a dinner or relax in the bar in the Skyline Restaurant. Casual dining is also available during the day in the Cafe. Thrillseekers can hurtle down the winding downhill Skyline Luge – it`s the fastest fun on wheels! or maybe take in the challenge of AJ Hackett`s Ledge Bungy or Swing, or take off on a tandem parapente flight. Various walking tracks can also be accessed from Skyline, from an easy 30 minute walk to a full day hike. Skyline was also a finalist in the `Best Visitor Attraction` in the New Zealand Tourism Awards in 1999 and 2001.

Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Walter Peak Farm & BBQ Lunch Excursion - Half Day

Enjoy a quintessential Kiwi experience – a delicious gourmet BBQ lunch and a farm tour in a stunning lakeside setting.



Your lunch starts with a cruise aboard the historic TSS Earnslaw across to Walter Peak High Country Farm. Once there, you can sit back on the lakeside terrace of the Colonel’s Homestead Restaurant and savour the delicious aromas as our chef has the best of local produce, sizzling away on the grill. Our lunch menu has been refreshed with the introduction of our new executive chef.



You’ll have a plenty to choose from our seasonal summer menu – salads, vegetables, succulent meat cooked on the outdoor rotisserie or grill. If you’re vegetarian, don’t worry, you are well catered for too. Then finish your meal with a scrumptious dessert.

After your lunch, you can join an entertaining farm demonstration or explore the beautiful lakeside gardens.

Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Gondola Ride to Zip Lining over Queenstown

Join in on an exhilarating Moa zipline (flying fox) adventure above spectacular Queenstown! Ride up the Skyline Gondola and then glide through the treetops on a series of four flying foxes.




Your experienced Guides will deliver an interpretive tour as you “Zzziiiiiip” from tree to tree. Breath in some pristine mountain air as you venture on a carefully crafted journey that combines exhilaration, adventure, and ecological exploration.




Offering spectacular views of the surroundings, this tour offers a thrilling eco-adventure experience, while also providing the opportunity to learn about what this breathtaking place has to offer.

Closed toe footwear is essential. Open rain or shine 365 days a year.

Day 9 - Shuttle Transfer, Queenstown Accommodation to Airport

Travel by shuttle from your vacation accommodation in Queenstown, New Zealand, to the Airport.

Please note: For airport transfers – 2 suitcases per person, extra pieces may be charged at $5.00 per piece. Surfboards, Bicycles etc – $5.00 each.

Day 9 - New Zealand Domestic Flight, Queenstown to Auckland (Check quote for inclusion)

Travel within New Zealand by domestic air from Queenstown to Auckland (North Island).

Day 9 - International Flight, Auckland to Los Angeles

Today depart Auckland and fly to the USA. Enjoy an in-flight dinner and movie with arrival in the USA. Note: you will be traveling back across the International Date Line. Gain that day back you lost on the way over, you actually arrive in the USA on the same day you leave Auckland.

Note: Flight may include a stop over in Australia.

Day 9 - US Domestic Flight, Los Angeles to Hometown (Check quote for inclusion)

Travel by domestic air to your destination.

If you request US domestic air pricing, this inclusion will be reflected in your quote.

Packages by About New Zealand, a subsidiary of About Australia, a fully bonded and ARC Accredited travel company.