New Zealand Thermal Highlights [LH-NZS55d] - About New Zealand
 
 
11 Days: New Zealand Thermal Highlights [LH-NZS55d]
New Zealand Sale

Book By: April 11, 2024

Starting at
$2,969
Per Person
View Details
Highlights & Inclusions
  • Accommodation: Auckland (3 Nights), Rotorua (2), Queenstown (4)
  • US Domestic Flights Not Included.
  • International Flights - Dallas to Auckland via Los Angeles (or Houston), Queenstown to Dallas via Auckland and Los Angeles (or Houston) (Not included, but may be included upon request)
  • New Zealand Domestic Flights - Rotorua to Queenstown via Christchurch, Queenstown to Auckland
  • Shuttle Transfers - Auckland Airport to Accommodation, Rotorua Accomodation to Airport, Queenstown Airport to Accommodation (Return)
  • Day Tours Included - Auckland: City Sights Tour, Coach from Auckland to Rotorua via Waitomo Glowworm Caves & Hobbiton; Queenstown: Gondola Ride with Spectacular Views, Milford Sound Scenic Cruise
  • All other Day Tours listed are Optional (Not Included)
  • 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 - International Flight, Los Angeles to Auckland (can be included on request)

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 5 - 3 Nights Accommodation in Auckland

Travel to your accommodation in Auckland, New Zealand, where you will be staying whilst on vacation for 3 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 3 - Day Tour, Auckland City Revealed

This city tour showcases the highlights of Auckland and takes you on a journey to explore the Maori history, along with the legends and stories behind some of the famous local landmark names.

After your pickup from your city accommodation, you will travel up Queen St, through Auckland’s central business district, past Auckland University, and into the city park known as The Domain, where there is a great photo-stop opportunity.

You will continue through the picturesque suburb of Ponsonby, known for its historic buildings, before heading over the Harbour Bridge to the North Shore. Here you can stroll on a beautiful beach with views out across the Waitemata harbor to Rangitoto Island. There is also a small local cafe here if you want to try some local baking and coffee.

Next there is a short drive through historic Devonport to get to the panoramic views over Auckland that you can only get from Mount Victoria – often considered the best view of Auckland.

You will then travel back over the Harbour Bridge to stop at Westhaven Marina, one of the largest marinas in the Southern Hemisphere, with views through the yacht masts to the city skyline. This is and easy morning tour introducing you to the diverse city of Auckland. Finish your adventure with a ride back to your Auckland accommodation.

Operates
Daily
Departs 9:00am, Returns 12:00pm (approx.)
Tour does not operate Christmas and New Year’s Day

Includes
– 3-hour guided tour
– Pick up and drop off at inner city accommodation
– Multiple photo stops
– Stop by a beach and cafe (food and drink not included)

Need to Know
– Food and beverages are not included
– Please bring a water bottle, sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat
– Please wear comfortable walking shoes and weather appropriate clothing (lighter clothing in the warm months, heavier clothing in the cooler months)

Upgrades
– Private tours available

Day 4 - Free Day to Explore Auckland

Visit one of Auckland’s many attractions.

Fly a kite or throw a Frisbee in the beautifully landscaped Auckland Domain, the city’s oldest park. Critique a giant selection of both traditional and contemporary art at Auckland Art Gallery. Take a walking, swim or hike through any of Auckland’s 25 Regional Parks. Have a laugh at The Classic Comedy and Bar in Queen Street, New Zealand’s home of live comedy. Take the bus over to Eden Park, New Zealand’s largest stadium. In the evening you can join the dancing on K’Road and party on till the wee hours at one of the many nightclubs. Or maybe you would rather visit the trendy suburb of Ponsonby and enjoy delicious cuisine, superb lattes or cocktails if more to your taste. And if it is cafes, bars and restaurants you’re after, the Viaduct Harbour has a great selection.

Photo Credit: Tourism New Zealand – Julian Apse

Optional Day Tour (Not Included), Waiheke Experience - Half Day

This stunning island just off the Auckland coast boasts 92 square kms of beautiful beaches, vineyards, olive groves, native bush and laid back seaside villages. It’s a great day out from Auckland as well as a superb holiday destination or a weekend getaway.

Be introduced to Waiheke on the Waiheke Explorer Tour, a picturesque 40-minute boat trip followed by a 1.5 hour scenic highlights tour of Waiheke’s stunning locations. Cruise to Waiheke through the glorious Hauraki Gulf and on arrival you’ll be met by an experienced guide who will give you a taste of the views, culture and history that make up the diverse island of Waiheke.

On conclusion of the tour, take advantage of the complimentary All Day Bus Pass allowing you to either return to a destination visited on the tour, or discover the island further on scheduled public bus services.

Photo Credit: Tourism New Zealand

Optional Day Tour (Not Included), Bay of Islands Tour

Marvel at spectacular coastal scenery including the Hole in the Rock, Cathedral Cave and the inner islands while aboard a luxury catamaran. Also see the historic Waitangi Treaty House and a ‘waka’ (Maori war canoe).

Travel north over the Auckland Harbour Bridge and enjoy spectacular rural & coastal scenery enroute to the Bay of Islands via Hibiscus Coast and Whangarei. Bay of Islands is one of the most picturesque and popular vacation sites in New Zealand and was the site of the earliest contact between the indigenous population and European settlers. Take a trip into the past and visit such historical places as the Waitangi Treaty House, see a traditional Maori Meeting House and a huge ‘waka’ (war canoe), Captain Cook Memorial Museum, Flagstaff Hill and the oldest building in the country (Kemp House) along with the oldest Church. In the early afternoon at Cape Brett, board a luxury catamaran for your cruising adventure through game fishing waters as you cruise past the Cape Brett lighthouse to the famous ‘Hole in the Rock’. The excitement grows as you make a passage through the Hole and then continue on to the majestic Grand Cathedral Cave. On your return journey relax and enjoy subtropical paradise views with your favourite drink as you meander through the inner islands back to Cape Brett which are world renowned deep sea fishing grounds where porpoise (dolphins) and schools of fish are frequently seen. With the Bay of Islands’ combination of great fishing, diving, sailing and other water sports with some of New Zealand’s most significant historic sites you will be sure to have fun!

Includes: Pickups from accommodations, admission to Waitangi Treaty House, a Cape Brett cruise and boxed lunch.

Photo Credit: Destination Northland

Day 5 - Day Tour, Deluxe Coach to Rotorua via Hobbiton & Waitomo

Travel from Auckland to Rotorua on a full day sightseeing tour, taking in the underground wonders of the Waitomo Caves and the silver screen magic of the Hobbiton Movie Set.

Leaving Auckland in the morning, journey by luxury coach through the lush farmland of the Waikato and King Country regions. Hear about the history of the region from your local driver guide as you pass sites of interest, including Rangiriri, the location of a major battle in the Maori Land Wars in 1863.

Your first stop is at the small town of Waitomo, where you’ll enjoy a 45-minute guided tour through the world famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves. Travel through these underground limestone caverns, discovered in 1887, and hear how the amazing stalactites, stalagmites, and other weird and wonderful rock formations were formed over a period of 30 million years. Finish off your subterranean tour with a short but magical boat ride through the Glowworm Grotto, a spectacular cavern illuminated by thousands of tiny glowworms.

A picnic-style lunch is served on board the coach as we cross the Central North Island and enter Middle-earth! Just outside the rural township of Matamata is the private farm that was transformed into The Shire for Sir Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies. Visit Hobbiton, home to Bilbo, Frodo and friends, and find out how the sets were created with a guided tour. You’ll get the chance to see Hobbit holes, the Mill, the Green Dragon Inn and many other structures created for the films. After your Hobbiton movie set tour, your tour continues to Rotorua.

Days 5 to 7 - 2 Nights Accommodation in Rotorua

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

Located on the shores of Lake Rotorua your accommodation is only a short walk to the city centre, convention centre, cafes and restaurants. Here in the heartland of New Zealand’s Maori culture you’ll experience an enveloping warmth, proud spirit, deep sense of history and a quick humour. Picturesque cobbled and lantern lined streetways and striking Tudor architecture celebrates New Zealand’s significant colonial history. Travel the region by mountain bike or participate in local bush walks.

Upgrade Available (extra cost):
Lake View Room

Day 6 - Free Day to Explore Rotorua

Enjoy some free time in Rotorua to explore this historic city!

Rotorua is a geothermal wonderland filled with a plethora of activities and attractions to check out. The region’s unique location is filled with hot pools, geysers, mud pools and geothermal activity.

Visit Waiotapu, where there are many sights to explore. Experience the Champagne Pool and waterfall filled with rich vibrant colours of the mineral salts, bubbling mud pools, craters, and Lady Knox Geyser when you visit. Arrive in the morning to see the Lady Knox Geyser at 10:15 am. For a full day of relaxation, visit the hot mineral pools and treat yourself to a relaxing Polynesian spa treatment that uses the local products (like a Rotorua mud wrap or manuka honey facial). Go Zorbing! Roll down a hill in an inflatable globe in this truly unique experience. There are different tracks to roll down with up to three people in the globe. You can choose to roll down with water in the globe for a fun time splashing around. For the adventure seekers, try Skydiving, the adrenaline rush of the jump will have you accelerating at 200 kilometres/hour. All the great views of Rotorua are best seen from 15,000 feet above.

Photo Credit: Tourism Rotorua

Optional Day Tour (Not Included), Geothermal Wonderland - Half Day

This is an amazing half day, guided tour around two of Rotorua’s best known thermal attractions – Waimangu Volcanic Valley and Waiotapu.

Your tour includes transport, the hosting of an experienced guide and admission fees to these two most diverse and beautiful geothermal activity parks of the Rotorua region.

Waimangu Volcanic Valley was created only ‘yesterday’, as a direct result of the 1886 Tarawera Volcanic Eruption. It features huge hot water lakes, beautiful sinter terraces, hot springs and a diverse, specialised native forest growing down to the very edge of hot water lakes.

Ancient Waiotapu is 70,000 years old. A well-known visitor attraction and home to bubbling mud pools, hot springs, collapsed craters and the famous Lady Knox Geyser.

The Geothermal Wonderland Guided Tour includes: Pick up from your Rotorua accommodation; Waimangu Volcanic Valley walk; Waiotapu Geothermal Wonderland walk; Return to your Rotorua accommodation

Please Note: Departs Rotorua accommodation daily between 8:00 and 8:15, returning at 1:00

Optional Evening Event (Not Included), Te Po Indigenous Evening Experience

Te Po is an authentic, one-of-a-kind evening event. It is a feast of storytelling, entertainment and Maori cuisine like no other you’ll ever experience.

The Te Po  Indigenous Experience begins with a mouth-watering buffet at the world famous Pataka Kai Restaurant, Bar and Cafe. With locally sourced cuisine and an authentic Maori twist in each dish, it is guaranteed to be a favorite with your group.

Following this, you will be led to view an exhilarating cultural performance which takes place in the beautifully carved meeting house, Te Aronui a Rua. It will include a Pohiri (Traditional Maori Welcome), Waiata (Song), Moteatea (traditional chant), Poi and Haka.

Afterwards, enter the geothermal valley on a waka (people moving vehicle) and discover one of New Zealand’s most magnificent geothermal wonderlands – featuring dramatic geysers, bubbling mud, and beautiful native bush. For generations Te Puia has welcomed manuhiri (visitors) from all over the world to explore the magic hidden within Te Whakarewarewa Thermal Valley. During this experience, you will be viewing the valley afterhours and resting with a hot chocolate upon naturally heated rock seating beneath the powerful Pohutu Geyser.

Operates:
Daily 5:30pm-8:30pm

Includes:
– Return transfers from your Rotorua CBD accommodation
– Buffet dinner
– Maori cultural performance
– Hot chocolate
– Guided tour of the geothermal valley

Need to know:
Please advise of dietary requirements.

Day 7 - New Zealand Domestic Flight, Rotorua to Christchurch

Travel within New Zealand by domestic air from Rotorua to Christchurch (South Island).

Day 7 - Shuttle Transfer, Rotorua Accommodation to Airport

Travel by shuttle from your vacation accommodation in Rotorua, 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 7 - New Zealand Domestic Flight, Christchurch to Queenstown

Travel within New Zealand by domestic air from Christchurch to Queenstown (South Island).

Day 7 - 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 7 to 11 - 4 Nights Accommodation in Queenstown

Travel to your accommodation in Queenstown, New Zealand, where you will be staying whilst on vacation for 4 nights.

Your vacation accommodation is located near the shores of Lake Wakatipu, and only 3 minutes drive from the centre of town. The hotel features rooms most of which have spectacular views over the lake and the remarkable mountain range. Facilities include a range of hotel amenities that invite those who want to relax from their travel. These include an outdoor swimming pool, spa, sauna, gymnasium, restaurant, bar, conference rooms and a ski and boot drying room. A convenient shuttle service to the town centre is also available at own expense. Travel and explore the surroundings by visiting New Zealand’s Milford Sound, Central Otago Wineries. For the nature lover, maybe enjoy a nice stroll on walking trails that meander along the lakes shores. In the evening perhaps dine whilst enjoying a Maori Concert and see powerful performances of The Haka and other songs of New Zealand custom.

Upgrade Available (extra cost):
Lake View Room

Day 8 - Day Tour, Gondola Ride with Spectacular Views

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. The best views in the region are found here, spread out in a spectacular 220 degree panorama, with breathtaking views of Coronet Peak, The Remarkable 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! For an additional cost you can:

  • Enjoy a dinner or relax in the bar in the Skyline Stratosfare Restaurant. Casual dining is also available during the day in the Cafe.
  • Thrill seekers can hurtle down the winding downhill Skyline Luge. Purpose built Luge carts put you in complete control as you take on a half-mile of banked corners, tunnels and dippers. Once you’ve conquered the course, hop on the chairlift and do it all again, and again, and again! Gentle and leisurely or steep and adventurous, you’ll be hooked.
  • Explore the southern night sky of Queenstown with a guided tour of the galaxy and learn about the stars, nebulae and planets that make up our solar system and beyond.

Ask your Destination Specialist about available combo packages to make your day at Skyline more enjoyable.

Various walking tracks can also be accessed from Skyline, from an easy 30 minute walk to a full day hike.

Operates
Daily. Stratosfare Restaurant closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Gondola rides operate from 9:30am to 8:30pm Monday, Thursday, Friday & Sunday. Gondola rides operate from 9:30am to 6:30pm Tuesday & Wednesday. Saturday operation hours are 8:50am to 8:30pm.

Includes
– Gondola ride

Need to Know
Gondola ride is approximately 7-10 minutes one way.

Upgrades
– Add a thrilling luge ride to your Gondola experience.
– Add the Taste of New Zealand buffet at Stratosfare Restaurant
– Stargazing evening event

Day 9 - Free Day 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), Mt Nicholas Farm Experience

Relax in tranquility on a real working farm with breathtaking views of middle earth.

Spirit of Queenstown offers a premium cruising experience on Lake Wakatipu – cruise further and see more. Board the vessel and enjoy a return cruise to Mt Nicholas High Country Farm on the western shores of the lake on a modern, spacious, purpose-built catamaran. Stop at Bob’s Cove and view flora and fauna up close, and enjoy spectacular views towards Glenorchy, Mt Earnslaw, the Southern Alps and Remarkables mountain range. Disembark the vessel and join the farm guide on a walking tour of this truly authentic, working high country merino sheep farm. Watch the farm guide round up sheep, meet working farm animals used on the farm, and get up close to merino sheep whose wool is provided directly to Icebreaker clothing company. Then sit back and watch the landscape unfold as you get off the beaten track to spectacular vantage points by 4WD vehicle. Enjoy a morning or afternoon tea of freshly baked pikelets/pancakes/scones with jam and cream and a light Kiwi BBQ (summer) or soup and bread roll (winter) at the woolshed before boarding the vessel for the return cruise to Queenstown.

Optional Day Tour (Not Included), Spirit of Queenstown Scenic Cruise

Cruise into untouched wilderness on Spirit of Queenstown Scenic Cruise to discover Lake Wakatipu’s hidden gem – Mt Nicholas.

Stop at Bob’s Cove and view flora and fauna up close, and enjoy spectacular views towards Glenorchy, Mt Earnslaw, the Southern Alps and Remarkables mountain range. The vessel design ensures unobstructed views out either side of the vessel, large tall viewing windows and spacious outdoor decks. An informative commentary is provided, and the wheelhouse is open to join and speak with the skipper. There’s an onboard café with a selection of hot and cold beverages and snacks available for purchase.

(Day 10) Day Tour, Milford Sound Scenic Cruise Experience - Full Day

Visit one of New Zealand’s unmissable destinations with a day trip to Milford Sound, and a magical cruise on the fiord.

You will depart Queenstown and pass through some of the most beautiful natural scenery in the world – gaze out at panoramic views of the mountains, valleys and waterfalls of Fiordland National Park as you travel in our glass-roof coach and hear entertaining commentary from your local driver guide. Keep your camera at the ready as your guide will stop along the way at some truly stunning photo opportunities.

There are so many things you will see during your Milford Sound cruise – landmarks of Milford Sound include Mitre Peak, waterfalls that hurtle through native bush into the fiord, and sheer cliffs created by ancient glaciers. Wildlife in Milford Sound can include seals, penguins and even dolphins, so keep an eye out during your cruise.

After your cruise, step back on board your coach for the return journey to Queenstown.

Departs: 7:20 am
Returns: 7:45 pm

Day 11 - 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 11 - New Zealand Domestic Flight, Queenstown to Auckland

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

Day 11 - International Flight, Auckland to Los Angeles (can be included on request)

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.

 
Detailed Pricing
Approximate Pricing Double Occupancy Sole Occupancy Permitted USA Departure Dates & Fare Rules
Land Content Only $2,969 $3,721 International return flights from the USA are not included. Please see detailed itinerary (above) for more information on inclusions. Itinerary can commence any day (subject to availability).
Special (Economy Class) $4,387 $5,139 Feb 17 2024 - Nov 28 2024
USA Departures: 17FEB - 28JUN; 24JUL-17SEP or 16OCT-28NOV24. Expires 11 APR 24
International Return Flights from the USA (Los Angeles) are included. Non-Refundable, Non-Changeable. Other Dates may also apply. For details phone Toll-Free: (888)359 2877
Basic (Economy Class) $5,060 $5,812 Basic: May 1 - Jun 8 & Jul 24 - Sep 21, 2022. International Return Flights from the USA (Los Angeles) are included. Non-Refundable. Changeable (Fees Apply). Subject to Availability.
Shoulder (Economy Class) $5,267 $6,019 Shoulder: Feb 1 - Apr 30, Jun 9 - Jul 23 & Sep 22 - Dec 8, 2022. International Return Flights from the USA (Los Angeles) are included. Non-Refundable. Changeable (Fees Apply). Subject to Availability.
Peak (Economy Class) $5,785 $6,536 Peak: Dec 9, 2022 - Jan 31, 2023. International Return Flights from the USA (Los Angeles) are included. Non-Refundable. Changeable (Fees Apply. Subject to Availability.
Premium (Economy Class) $8,037 $8,789 Premium Economy Class International Return Flights from the USA (Los Angeles) are included. Change and Cancellation Fees Apply. Subject to Availability.
Business Class $9,751 $10,503 Business Class International Return Flights from the USA (Los Angeles) are included. Subject to Availability.
First Class $29,514 $30,266 First Class International Return Flights from the USA (Los Angeles) are included. Subject to Availability.

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