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Intrepid Travel

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed

Dramatic peaks, glittering glaciers and geothermal wonders await on a 17-day Premium adventure through New Zealand’s north and south islands. With a passionate local leader to guide the way, you’ll experience a landscape that has been shaped by the elements over thousands of years. Taste wine at picturesque cellar doors, set out in search of kiwis, explore the mythical world of Hobbiton and explore the volcanic landscapes of Tongariro. From the pure spectacle of Milford Sound to the simmering geysers of Rotorua, this adventure is sure to blow you away.

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Additional departure dates for this tour may be available - please chat with us if you don't see the dates you're looking for.
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Tour summary and feature

Quick Itinerary Details

New Zealand escorted tour

This suggested tour costs from NZD$11,365 per person (twin share, low season)

Starts in Auckland, finishes in Queenstown

17 days/16 nights

 Pre and post tour options? YES

 Viewed 29 times in the last 7 days

This tour also includes
West Coast Treetops Walkway
West Coast Wildlife Centre Visit with Ranger
Franz Josef Glacier Valley Walk
Aspiring Biodiversity Trust Lunch
Guided Walk to the Blue Pools with a Local Ornithologist
Criffel Station Foraging & Lunch Experience with Local Chef
Milford Sound Overnight Boat Cruise
Gibbston Valley Cheese & Wine Pairing
Shotover River Jetboat Experince
Return Ferry to Waiheke Island
Winery Visits and Tastings with Lunch
Hobbiton Movie Set Tour
Drink at The Green Dragon (Hobbiton)
Ruakuri Glow Worm Caves
Visit to Te Puia Geothermal Area with Local Guide and Hangi Lunch
Ahua Gallery and Kiwi Conservation Centre
Mt Ruapehu Sky Waka (Gondola)
Wellington Harbour Evening Cruise
Pounamu (Greenstone) Studio Visit
Monteiths Brewing Co. Tasting
16 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 4 dinners
Tour at a glance

Brief itinerary - 17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed

Day 1: Welcome to Auckland
Accommodation: Fable Auckland Hotel or similar

Day 2: Wineries of Waiheke
Accommodation: Fable Auckland Hotel or similar

Day 3: Glow Worms and Hobbits
Accommodation: Millennium Hotel Rotorua (or similar)

Day 4: A Geothermal Wonderland
Accommodation: Millennium Hotel Rotorua (or similar)

Day 5: A free day to explore Taupo and all it has to offer
Accommodation: Millennium Hotel or similar

Day 6: Volcanoes and Mountains
Accommodation: Powderhorn Chateau or similar

Day 7: Wellington exploration day
Accommodation: QT Hotel Wellington or similar

Day 8: Take the ferry to the South Island
Accommodation: Christchurch City Hotel or similar

Day 9: A journey through Arthur's Pass to the Wild West
Accommodation: Punakaiki Resort or similar

Day 10: Travel down the West Coast
Accommodation: Rainforest Retreat Deluxe Tree Hut or similar

Day 11: Explore 'Glacier Country'
Accommodation: Rainforest Retreat Deluxe Tree Hut or similar

Day 12: From glaciers to lakes
Accommodation: Wanaka Homestead or similar

Day 13: Explore Wanaka
Accommodation: Wanaka Homestead or similar

Day 14: Milford Sound via the spectacular Milford Road
Accommodation: Milford Sound Overnight Cruise or similar

Day 15: Milford to Queenstown, via Te Anau
Accommodation: Kamana Lakehouse Hotel or similar

Day 16: Discover quaint Arrowtown
Accommodation: Kamana Lakehouse Hotel or similar

Day 17: Farewell from Queenstown

Tour full itinerary
Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 - Welcome to Auckland

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 1
Auckland

Welcome to the North Island! Your adventure begins in Auckland, New Zealand’s most populated city, fringed with beaches, harbours, volcanoes and farmland. You’ll be collected from the airport and transferred to your hotel. A welcome meeting will take place here at 6pm, where you’ll meet your local leader and the other travellers joining you on this adventure. If you arrive in Auckland with time to spare, you may like to uncover the story of New Zealand rugby during an interactive All Blacks experience where you’ll learn about the heritage of the sport and find out what it takes to wear the famous black jersey. After your meeting, get to know your group over dinner at an atmospheric local bistro in the heart of the city, championing New Zealand producers.

Your accommodation: Fable Auckland Hotel or similar

Located right on Queen Street the Fable Hotel Auckland is boutique and stylish property with an ideal location to enjoy and explore the vibrant heart of the 'City of Sails'.

Meals included: Dinner

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Day 2 - Wineries of Waiheke

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 2
Waiheke Island / Auckland

Leave the bustle of the big city behind and head offshore to Waiheke Island, famed for its sandy beaches and glorious wine. Board a ferry from Auckland – if you’re really lucky you may even see dolphins or orcas along the way. The day will be spent sipping your way around the island, stopping off at three unique wineries to learn about their production methods, and of course tasting the goods yourself. You’ll also enjoy an included lunch on the island, not to mention a few scenic drives with plenty of opportunities for beautiful photos. Return to Auckland in the late afternoon with an evening free for your own discoveries of the city.

Your accommodation: Fable Auckland Hotel or similar

Located right on Queen Street the Fable Hotel Auckland is boutique and stylish property with an ideal location to enjoy and explore the vibrant heart of the 'City of Sails'.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

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Day 3 - Glow Worms and Hobbits

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 3
Waitomo / Hobbiton / Rotorua

After breakfast this morning, hit the road and drive to the Waitomo Glow Worm Caves, an extensive underground network of tunnels and caverns decorated with stalactites, stalagmites and luminous glow worms. Join a local expert for an in-depth tour of the Ruakuri Cave, descending a spiral entrance to a magical world below. Discover fascinating limestone formations, hear the roar of subterranean waterfalls and learn about the glow worms that light up the caves. Continue to Hobbiton, where the epic Lord of the Rings movies were shot. Take a tour around the set with a local guide, hear stories about the production of these iconic films, explore Hobbit holes and enjoy a drink at the mythical Green Dragon Inn. Finally, travel to Rotorua, where you will spend the evening.

Your accommodation: Millennium Hotel Rotorua (or similar)

Millennium Hotel is Rotorua's largest 4-star deluxe hotel. Perfectly situated in the heart of the city overlooking Lake Rotorua. Five levels of accommodation offer guests a wide variety of scenic views.

Meals included: Breakfast

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Day 4 - A Geothermal Wonderland

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 4
Rotorua

Wake up in Rotorua to the unmistakable scent of sulphur coming off the town’s many geothermal pools. After breakfast, pay a visit to Te Puia, over 70 hectares of land within the Te Whakarewarewa Geothermal Valley, dotted with hot springs, mud pools and geysers. A local expert will take you on a walk to learn about these geothermal wonders, including Pohutu, the largest geyser in the southern hemisphere. Next experience the Kiwi Conservation Centre where you’ll have the chance to observe the beloved nocturnal bird in a darkened enclosure and learn about the sanctuary’s efforts to protect them. Swing by the Ahua Gallery and watch culturally significant Maori carving and weaving demonstrations. Lunch is a treat today - a traditional hangi feast cooked beneath the earth in traditional style. In the evening, perhaps consider an optional tour of the geysers by night.

Your accommodation: Millennium Hotel Rotorua (or similar)

Millennium Hotel is Rotorua's largest 4-star deluxe hotel. Perfectly situated in the heart of the city overlooking Lake Rotorua. Five levels of accommodation offer guests a wide variety of scenic views.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

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Day 5 - A free day to explore Taupo and all it has to offer

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 5
Taupo

Say goodbye to Rotorua and drive on to Taupo, sitting on the shores of Lake Taupo – the largest lake in New Zealand. The rest of the day is yours to discover all that this picturesque part of the country has to offer. One of the best ways to enjoy the lake is to get on its waters – speak to your leader to find out about the sustainable sailing and cruising options available to you this afternoon. You may like to try your hand at fishing, or perhaps take a flight over the spectacular Tongariro National Park.

Your accommodation: Millennium Hotel or similar

Set on the shores of the country’s largest lake, this is one of Taupo luxury hotels with uninterrupted views of the magnificent lake and mountains. Many of Taupo’s famous attractions are just minutes away, including Huka Falls, water and snow skiing, hot mineral pools, golf courses, and lake cruises. The charming Edgewater Restaurant is a superb choice for savouring award-winning cuisine as swans gracefully swim by.

Meals included: Breakfast

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Day 6 - Volcanoes and Mountains

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 6
Tongariro National Park

Today will be spent uncovering the natural wonders of Tongariro National Park, as spiritually significant as it is spectacular. Your leader will guide you on a scenic two-hour walk to the Taranaki Falls, an impressive 20-metre cascade tumbling over volcanic cliffs. Then it’s time for a ride with a view – take the Sky Waka gondola up the top of Mt Ruapehu and be treated to some truly unforgettable scenes on the way. Later in the day, head to your Feature Stay accommodation at the Powderhorn Chateau and settle in. The chateau provides a stunning base for the evening, surrounded by the soaring peaks of Ruapehu, Ngauruhoe and Tongariro – the views are simply unbeatable.

Please note the Sky Waka Gondola is closed for maintenance in October and November.

Your accommodation: Powderhorn Chateau or similar

The Powderhorn Chateau is a fantastic retreat for all seasons, and for those traveling between Auckland and Wellington or visiting the Central Plateau it provides the perfect stop-over. Whether you’re seeking adventure, a family holiday or a romantic getaway, there is a variety of accommodation available to suit your needs.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

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Day 7 - Wellington exploration day

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 7
Wellington

This morning, make tracks for Wellington, New Zealand’s trendy capital city. After settling in, hop aboard a private catamaran and get to know the city on an evening cruise around Wellington Harbour. Return to land after an hour and join your group for dinner at a fantastic waterfront restaurant – the perfect chance to reminisce about your North Island adventure.

Your accommodation: QT Hotel Wellington or similar

Welcome to your private viewing where art meets soul. With abstract lines and playful patterns, we’re setting you up for eclectic dreams. Your Wellington hotel room is surrounded by urban hills and harbour views, landscapes of true visual indulgence. In a capital alive with expressive aesthetic, here you can let it soak in. This unusual accommodation in Wellington is your own creative hideaway.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

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Day 8 - Take the ferry to the South Island

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 8
Wellington to Christchurch

Start the day with a short drive to Wellington’s ferry terminal to board the ferry that will take you across the Cook Strait to Picton on New Zealand’s South Island. This ferry crossing can be utterly magical. With dolphins regularly joining the ship in a playful game of chase and the verdant green hills of the Marlborough Sound reaching down to the water’s edge, the three-and-a-half-hour ferry crossing itself is simply spectacular. In fact, it’s inspired many journalists to name this crossing as ‘one of the most scenic ferry rides in the world’.
Upon arrival at Picton board your private transfer and embark on the incredible drive south along the coastal road. It takes around five hours to drive from Picton to Christchurch, but you'll spend a little longer for you to see some of New Zealand’s most spectacular coastal scenery. Characterised by snow-capped peaks, giant glaciers, and shimmering lakes, there’s no denying that the South Island is one of the most beautiful spots in the world. Once in Christchurch, settle into your accommodation. A meeting will take place in the evening at 6pm to welcome any new travellers joining you for the next leg of your adventure, followed by dinner at a local restaurant which encapsulates the culinary culture of the region. Learn about the ethos behind this unique dining spot and enjoy a delicious three course meal that celebrates local producers.

Your accommodation: Christchurch City Hotel or similar

Located in the heart of the city centre, Christchurch City Hotel offers chic accommodation, matched with stunning city views and amazing panoramic vistas of the Port Hills and iconic Cathedral Square.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

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Day 9 - A journey through Arthur's Pass to the Wild West

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 9
Christchurch / Greymouth / Punakaiki

Take a morning stroll with your leader around some of the landmarks of Christchurch. Next set off for Punakaiki, driving through Arthur’s Pass and Castle Hill – the spectacular mountain scenery may look familiar, as parts of The Chronicles of Narnia movie were filmed against this dramatic backdrop. After lunch in Moana, enjoy a short walk at Lake Brunner, the largest lake in the northwestern South Island of New Zealand. Spend the afternoon in Greymouth, stopping into a boutique studio to learn about the prized west coast jade known locally as Pounamu (Greenstone). Then continue to Monteith's Brewery, considered the original home of New Zealand craft brewing, for a tour and tasting. Arrive at Punakaiki Resort by late afternoon. Situated in Paparoa National Park, the resort is adjacent to the beautiful Punakaiki beach and the magnificent Pancake Rocks and Blowholes - the perfect spot to reflect and relax.

Your accommodation: Punakaiki Resort or similar

The Punakaiki Resort is a modern, award-winning hotel complex, architecturally designed to harmonise with the local environment. Nestled in the foothills of Papaproa National Park the resort has spectacular views of the Wild West Coast beaches while all rooms have rainforest and/or ocean views.

Meals included: Breakfast

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Day 10 - Travel down the West Coast

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 10
Hokitika / Franz Josef

After breakfast, explore the Punakaiki Rocks and Blowhole before the drive to Franz Josef. Along the way, stretch your legs at the charming west coast town of Hokitika, and enjoy an exhilarating treetop adventure on a walk through the ancient Rimu and Kamahi tree canopy. In the afternoon, take a private ranger-guided tour of the West Coast Wildlife Centre, home of the official breeding programme for the world's rarest kiwi, the Rowi. Also keep an eye out for tuatara, a reptile endemic to New Zealand. Arrive at your Franz Josef accommodation by evening.

Your accommodation: Rainforest Retreat Deluxe Tree Hut or similar

Charming and stylish studio Deluxe Tree Huts, privately nestled amongst the lush rainforest canopy with a deck area to take in the incredible scenery from.

Meals included: Breakfast

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Day 11 - Explore 'Glacier Country'

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 11
Franz Josef

Join your leader for a guided walk to see the icy wonderland created by the Franz Josef Glacier, one of the steepest glaciers in New Zealand. If you’re feeling more adventurous, you may like to join an optional heli-hiking tour and get even closer to this incredible glacier. Other optional activities include kayaking, a scenic cruise on Lake Mapourika or a soak in the hot tubs at Franz Josef.

Your accommodation: Rainforest Retreat Deluxe Tree Hut or similar

Charming and stylish studio Deluxe Tree Huts, privately nestled amongst the lush rainforest canopy with a deck area to take in the incredible scenery from.

Meals included: Breakfast

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Day 12 - From glaciers to lakes

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 12
Makarora / Wanaka

Depart Franz Josef for the picturesque resort town of Wanaka, the gateway to Mount Aspiring National Park, located in the Otago region. Stop along the way at Makorora and visit the Aspiring Biodiversity Trust, an organisation which strives to protect and restore indigenous biodiversity. After lunch, take a guided walk with a local ornithologist and ecologist to enjoy the vibrant hue of the aptly named Blue Pools that feed the Makarora River. Keep an eye out for endangered birds as you learn about how the Aspiring Biodiversity Trust is working to reduce predators and save some of New Zealand’s rarest species. Arrive in Wanaka by later afternoon, and settle in to your home for the next two nights - a homestead built on the site of a former sheep station. Located next to the resplendent Wanaka Station Park on the shores of Lake Wanaka, and a short stroll from Wanaka township, you'll be perfectly placed to enjoy all this charming town has to offer.

Your accommodation: Wanaka Homestead or similar

Relaxed, luxury, and homely charm that is Wanaka Homestead. Privately owned and welcoming just 21 guests, the hospitality is warm & attentive, yet discreet.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

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Day 13 - Explore Wanaka

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 13
Wanaka

Enjoy a sleep in or perhaps start your day with a hike up Mt Iron for a view over Lake Wanaka and the surrounding peaks. Today's experience is one of the real highlight's of your trip. Central Otago is a region well known for food and wine, and today you will visit the spectacular Criffel Station for a chef-guided tasting and foraging tour, followed by a delicious lunch, washed down with some excellent Central Otago wines.

Your accommodation: Wanaka Homestead or similar

Relaxed, luxury, and homely charm that is Wanaka Homestead. Privately owned and welcoming just 21 guests, the hospitality is warm & attentive, yet discreet.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

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Day 14 - Milford Sound via the spectacular Milford Road

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 14
Milford Sound

Depart Wanaka for the drive to Te Anau. Along the way, take in a spectacular scenic drive across the Crown Range and by the shores of Lake Wakatipu. After lunch, continue on to your embarkation point for your Feature Stay, an overnight cruise surrounded by the spectacular beauty of Milford Sound, also known by its Te Reo (Maori) name Piopiotahi. Aboard your purpose-built vessel, enjoy a full length journey of the fjord out to the Tasman Sea, with the possibility to see wildlife such as seals, penguins and dolphins. You will also have access to a specialist guide with information on the fjord's history and natural environment. For those who are keen, kayaking and/or small boat tours allow a truly immersive experience of this special place. Finish your day with a delicious three-course dinner before settling down in your cosy cabin.

If you have booked a single supplement please be advised that tonight's accommodation aboard the cruise ship is a single supplement exception and you will be accommodated in twin share cabins.

Your accommodation: Milford Sound Overnight Cruise or similar

Spend the night aboard and wake up to dawn in one of the most beautiful places on earth. The cruise style is relaxed, allowing plenty of time to view the fiord’s spectacular waterfalls, rainforest, mountains and wildlife. It’s the ultimate Milford Sound experience!

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

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Day 15 - Milford to Queenstown, via Te Anau

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 15
Milford Sound / Te Anau / Queenstown

After a leisurely onboard breakfast surrounded by some of New Zealand’s most spectacular scenery, you’ll disembark and travel to Queenstown with plenty of opportunities to stretch your legs along the way. After another stop in pretty Te Anau for lunch, you’ll arrive in plenty of time to check into your boutique hotel in Queenstown.

Your accommodation: Kamana Lakehouse Hotel or similar

A high altitude, inspiring place of elegant comfort, and the perfect setting to immerse yourself in iconic views

Meals included: Breakfast

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Day 16 - Discover quaint Arrowtown

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 16
Arrowtown / Queenstown

Today is the grand finale of your trip. In the morning, take an exhilarating jetboat ride on the Kimi Akau (Shotover River), deep into the spectacular Shotover Canyons. Speeding over water as shallow as 10cm, this is an amazing white water experience, operated by the Ngai Tahu, Maori people who have a centuries-old connection with this land. Continue on for a leader-led walk through historical Arrowtown, then enjoy a wine and cheese pairing at Gibbston Valley. Toast the end of your journey with a New Zealand-inspired gin & tonic or glass of Otago wine at a bar & restaurant with arguably the most spectacular views in all of Queenstown.

Your accommodation: Kamana Lakehouse Hotel or similar

A high altitude, inspiring place of elegant comfort, and the perfect setting to immerse yourself in iconic views

Meals included: Breakfast

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Day 17 - Farewell from Queenstown

17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed - Day 17
Queenstown

Your New Zealand adventure ends this morning after breakfast. As this trip spends very little time in Queenstown, we recommend you spend an extra day or two here if you want to experience all the town has to offer. Your booking agent will be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability).cular views in all of Queenstown.

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17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed
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See all dates & prices for: 17 Day Intrepid Premium New Zealand Encompassed
This tour has 3 departure dates.
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Starts Status Twin/Double (2 people sharing) Single occupancy You save  
Jan 26, 2023
(Thursday)
NZD$11,530
NZD$14,900
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Mar 23, 2023
(Thursday)
NZD$11,365
NZD$14,735
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May 18, 2023
(Thursday)
NZD$11,570
NZD$14,940
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