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APT ToursAPT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour

This is the ULTIMATE discovery of New Zealand.  Over twenty-four days, start by traversing Waiheke Island before taking your time discovering the Kauri forests and beautiful Hawke's Bay - New Zealand's Art Deco capital.  Eventually crossing over to the south, experience superb local wine regions, welcome precious marine life and embrace natural Kiwi beauty. Sharing this tour with a maximum of 19 others you will be sure to receive first class service and experiences.

 New Zealand small group tour
 Starts in Auckland, finishes in Queenstown
 24 days/ 23 nights
 Hotel 4 star
  Pre and post tour options? YES Enquire Enquire
 Viewed 21 times in the last 7 days

Included in this tour package

Tour map
South Island NZ
City lights

At a glance - APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour

Day 1: Arrive in Auckland. Accommodation: M Social Hotel Auckland

Day 2: Time to enjoy Auckland. Accommodation: M Social Hotel Auckland

Day 3: Auckland north to Hokianga. Accommodation: The Heads Luxury Villas

Day 4: Discover Hokianga. Accommodation: The Heads Luxury Villas

Day 5: Hokianga through the Bay of Islands and back to Auckland. Accommodation: M Social Hotel Auckland

Day 6: From Auckland to Rotorua, through the rolling hills and the home of the Hobbits.. Accommodation: The Princes Gate Hotel

Day 7: Explore in Rotorua. Accommodation: The Princes Gate Hotel

Day 8: Rotorua to Havelock North via Taupo and Napier. Accommodation: Porters Boutique Hotel

Day 9: Havelock North. Accommodation: Porters Boutique Hotel

Day 10: Head into the beautiful wine region township of Martinborough. Accommodation: Peppers Parehua, Martinborough

Day 11: Admire Martinborough possibly by bike or through your tastebuds. Accommodation: Peppers Parehua, Martinborough

Day 12: Head south to Wellington. Accommodation: QT Wellington

Day 13: Sightseeing in Wellington. Accommodation: QT Wellington

Day 14: Venture onto New Zealand's South Island, passing through Picton to Blenheim. Accommodation: Marlborough Vintners Hotel

Day 15: Relax in Blenheim. Accommodation: Marlborough Vintners Hotel

Day 16: Blenheim to the Kaikoura. Accommodation: The White Morph, Kaikoura

Day 17: Kaikoura to Christchurch. Accommodation: Rydges Latimer Christchurch

Day 18: Day trip from Christhurch to the beauiful Akaroa coast. Accommodation: Rydges Latimer Christchurch

Day 19: Head towards the West Coast on the TranzAlpine Scenic Railway. Accommodation: Te Waonui Forest Retreat

Day 20: Travel through the old gold mining town of Arrowtown before ending in Queenstown. Accommodation: Peppers Beacon, Queenstown

Day 21: Witness one of our famous glaciers in Franz Josef. Accommodation: Te Waonui Forest Retreat

Day 22: Discover New Zealand's adventure capital Queenstown. Accommodation: Peppers Beacon, Queenstown

Day 23: A leisure day in Queenstown. Accommodation: Peppers Beacon, Queenstown

Day 24: Depart Queenstown and farewell your new friends.

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APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Detailed Itinerary  

Day 1: Arrive in Auckland

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 1

Arrive into Christchurch

Your spectacular New Zealand journey begins upon arrival in Auckland. Here, you will be met by an APT tour director and be transferred to a premium hotel. At twilight, celebrate onboard a scenic cruise to Waiheke Island, where you will enjoy a wine tasting and a welcome dinner overlooking the city skyline.

Your Accommodation: M Social Hotel Auckland

A contemporary hotel for the curious, the explorers and those who thrive on new experiences. Functionally chic, this contemporary hotel overlooks the vibrant Princes Wharf that is home to a good array of dining, entertainment and shopping experiences.

Meals included: Dinner

M Social Hotel Auckland

Day 2: Time to enjoy Auckland

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 2

Auckland

On your first full morning in New Zealand, discover the "City of Sails" on a city sights tour of Auckland. Visit Ponsonby, Parnell Village and the Rose Gardens. You will also see other iconic sites including Auckland University, Viaduct Basin and The Strand.  This afternoon, you have a choice of sightseeing. Perhaps experience the true and untamed New Zealand with a guided exploration, where you'll venture through lush rainforest and rare black sand beaches. Alternatively, feel the thrill of sailing an authentic America's Cup yacht with a hands-on adventure on Waitemata Harbour.  Here, take the helm to help steer on a course or work hard on the grinders to hoist the mainsail.

Your Accommodation: M Social Hotel Auckland

A contemporary hotel for the curious, the explorers and those who thrive on new experiences. Functionally chic, this contemporary hotel overlooks the vibrant Princes Wharf that is home to a good array of dining, entertainment and shopping experiences.

Meals included: Breakfast

M Social Hotel Auckland

Day 3: Auckland north to Hokianga

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 3

Auckland to Hokianga

Wave goodbye to Auckland today, as you depart for the Hokianga region. Along the way, stop in at the Kauri Museum for a visit, which details the story of pioneering settlers of the Kauri industry, as well as the legacy of Kauri forests. Later, be welcomed by the friendly staff at The Heads Omapere, situated on the beautiful shores of Hokianga Harbour.

Your Accommodation: The Heads Luxury Villas

At The Heads, the region's untouched beauty is on your doorstep. Walk where ancestors once roamed and soak up the sun on the golden sands of Omapere beach. You can explore the Waipoua Forest, brimming with scenic walks and home to the mighty Tāne Mahuta, estimated at more than 2500 years old and the largest Kauri known to stand today.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

The Heads Luxury Villas

Day 4: Discover Hokianga

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 4

Hokianga

Today, discover Hokianga your own way. Perhaps learn the Maori art of flax weaving with an interactive workshop, or delight in a scenic coastal walk. Perhaps embark on a Footprints Waipoua tour, where you will experience the affinity that early Maori had with the surrounding forests, as well as the fauna that inhabits this pristine area.

Your Accommodation: The Heads Luxury Villas

At The Heads, the region's untouched beauty is on your doorstep. Walk where ancestors once roamed and soak up the sun on the golden sands of Omapere beach. You can explore the Waipoua Forest, brimming with scenic walks and home to the mighty Tāne Mahuta, estimated at more than 2500 years old and the largest Kauri known to stand today.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

The Heads Luxury Villas

Day 5: Hokianga through the Bay of Islands and back to Auckland

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 5

Hokianga to Auckland

Today, explore the Bay of Islands on a dolphin-watching cruise to Cape Brett and the famous Hole in the Rock. Meander through the inner islands, admiring the beaches and rocky outcrops. Later, return to Auckland and be checked into the M Social Auckland. 

Your Accommodation: M Social Hotel Auckland

A contemporary hotel for the curious, the explorers and those who thrive on new experiences. Functionally chic, this contemporary hotel overlooks the vibrant Princes Wharf that is home to a good array of dining, entertainment and shopping experiences.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

M Social Hotel Auckland

Day 6: From Auckland to Rotorua, through the rolling hills and the home of the Hobbits.

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 6

Auckland, Matamata to Rotorua

Head to Matamata and experience Middle-earth during a tour of the Hobbiton Movie Set, which explores the making of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, as well as lunch at the Green Dragon Inn.  Later, arrive in Rotorua.

Your Accommodation: The Princes Gate Hotel

The most famous hotel in Rotorua built in 1897 this 107 year old beautiful hotel is privately owned and operated. The Prince's Gate Hotel is not just a hotel but also an attraction and proudly deserves the phrase 'a hotel so good; they built the City around it.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

The Princes Gate Hotel

Day 7: Explore in Rotorua

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 7

Rotorua

After breakfast this morning, it's time to explore Rotorua on one of your included selected sightseeing activities. Perhaps experience the icons of Rotorua at the famed Agrodome Farm Show, complete with a live sheep shearing demonstration, then make your way to Rainbow Springs Nature Park. Here you will visit a kiwi nursery and learn about the conservation endeavours to protect these extraordinary and endangered birds.  Alternatively, be driven through a unique mix of forest and farmland to visit New Zealand's largest boiling mud pool and a series of colourful hot springs at the calming Wai-O-Tapu. Tonight, be welcomed in the wonderful home of a local as you are treated to an authentic Maori dinner to gain a fascinating insight into the Maori culture. Afterwards, embark on a magnificent guided Redwood Treewalk with a  local guide.

Your Accommodation: The Princes Gate Hotel

The most famous hotel in Rotorua built in 1897 this 107 year old beautiful hotel is privately owned and operated. The Prince's Gate Hotel is not just a hotel but also an attraction and proudly deserves the phrase 'a hotel so good; they built the City around it.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

The Princes Gate Hotel

Day 8: Rotorua to Havelock North via Taupo and Napier

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 8

Rotorua to Havelock North

After breakfast, you'll follow the Thermal Explorer Highway to the heart of New Zealand's North Island with a stop at Lake Taupo. Enter the Hawkes Bay wine region, with a stop in Napier on the way to Havelock North. This evening, savour an inspired menu at Malo Restaurant at your hotel, showcasing New Zealand's freshest cuisine, accompanied by some of the finest New Zealand wines.

Your Accommodation: Porters Boutique Hotel

Porters Boutique Hotel offers luxury accommodation located in the heart of Havelock North village, nestled at the foot of Te Mata Peak. This is a thriving hub of cafes, restaurants, wineries and boutique shopping.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Porters Boutique Hotel

Day 9: Havelock North

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 9

Havelock North

Today, perhaps explore the coastline of the pristine Gannet Beach, or alternatively, enjoy the traditional Art Deco architecture of Napier on a guided tour.

Your Accommodation: Porters Boutique Hotel

Porters Boutique Hotel offers luxury accommodation located in the heart of Havelock North village, nestled at the foot of Te Mata Peak. This is a thriving hub of cafes, restaurants, wineries and boutique shopping.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Porters Boutique Hotel

Day 10: Head into the beautiful wine region township of Martinborough

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 10

Havelock North to Martinborough

Welcome to the picturesque wine village of Martinborough today. Here, delight in a stay at a country estate set amongst vineyards, with sweeping gardens and panoramic views.

Your Accommodation: Peppers Parehua, Martinborough

On the edge of Martinborough lies Peppers Parehua – a meticulous sprawling country estate, with large sweeping gardens, luxury accommodation and panoramic views. Each unique cottage has been individually designed with attention to detail that has to be seen to be believed.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Peppers Parehua, Martinborough

Day 11: Admire Martinborough possibly by bike or through your tastebuds

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 11

Martinborough

Should you be feeling active, enjoy a bike ride through the vineyards, then savour a picnic lunch, Alternatively, browse the charming village of Greytown.

Your Accommodation: Peppers Parehua, Martinborough

On the edge of Martinborough lies Peppers Parehua – a meticulous sprawling country estate, with large sweeping gardens, luxury accommodation and panoramic views. Each unique cottage has been individually designed with attention to detail that has to be seen to be believed.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Peppers Parehua, Martinborough

Day 12: Head south to Wellington

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 12

Martinborough to Wellington

Once in Wellington, drop into New Zealand's National Museum, Te Papa Tongarewa, renowned for its interactivity. Later, visit the Weta Workshop, the design studio behind The Lord of the Rings trilogy and Avatar. Tonight, a delicious farewell dinner awaits.

Your Accommodation: QT Wellington

The QT Wellington is superbly situated opposite Te Papa, Museum of New Zealand and Wellington's waterfront. The luxury rooms are just a few minutes walk from the cafes restaurants, theatres, galleries and shopping of the vibrant Courtenay Quarter.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

QT Wellington

Day 13: Sightseeing in Wellington

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 13

Wellington

Once in Wellington, drop into New Zealand's National Museum, Te Papa Tongarewa, renowned for its interactivity. Later, visit the Weta Workshop, the design studio behind The Lord of the Rings trilogy and Avatar.

Your Accommodation: QT Wellington

The QT Wellington is superbly situated opposite Te Papa, Museum of New Zealand and Wellington's waterfront. The luxury rooms are just a few minutes walk from the cafes restaurants, theatres, galleries and shopping of the vibrant Courtenay Quarter.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

QT Wellington

Day 14: Venture onto New Zealand's South Island, passing through Picton to Blenheim

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 14

Wellington to Blenheim

Today, step abroad the Interislander ferry to cruise across Cook Strait. Say goodbye to the north island and continue to Blenheim, this evening you'll savour a degustation dinner with matching wines.

Your Accommodation: Marlborough Vintners Hotel

A luxury resort experience in the heart of the Marlborough's farm vineyards. Open plan well equipped rooms with individual private patios.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Marlborough Vintners Hotel

Day 15: Relax in Blenheim

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 15

Blenheim

Today, explore Blenheim. Perhaps immerse yourself in this world-renowned wine region with a guided winery tour, enjoy the sheer beauty of Marlborough Sounds during a green shell mussel cruise, or embark on a tour of the Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre.

Your Accommodation: Marlborough Vintners Hotel

A luxury resort experience in the heart of the Marlborough's farm vineyards. Open plan well equipped rooms with individual private patios.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Marlborough Vintners Hotel

Day 16: Blenheim to the Kaikoura

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 16

Blenheim to Kaikoura

After breakfast this morning prepare to explore the coastal town of Kaikoura, which presents a perfect opportunity for marine spotting.  Embark on a whale-watching cruise, where you might experience an encounter with a Giant Sperm Whale.  You may also have the chance to see New Zealand Fur Seals, pods of Dusky Dolphins and endangered Wandering Albatross.

Your Accommodation: The White Morph, Kaikoura

The White Morph sits on the sea front close to restaurants and shops. A great range of accommodation from Superior Studios to Luxury Spa rooms all very well equipped including kitchenettes.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

The White Morph, Kaikoura

Day 17: Kaikoura to Christchurch

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 17

Kaikoura to Christchurch

Today head toward Christchurch. Proudly known for its English heritage and botanic attractions the city has rebuilt itself since an earthquake in 2011 and hosts some of the most innovative architecture seen in New Zealand. 

Your Accommodation: Rydges Latimer Christchurch

Rydges Latimer Christchurch is located just 2 minutes walking distance from the city’s CBD and overlooks scenic Latimer Square, an iconic New Zealand green space with ample room for travellers to enjoy.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Rydges Latimer Christchurch

Day 18: Day trip from Christhurch to the beauiful Akaroa coast

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 18

Akaroa from Christchurch, return

Embark on a city sights tour, where you will see the Canterbury Museum, Cathedral Square and Riccarton House and Bush.  Afterwards be transferred to Akaroa, where you will board a cruise to get up close with friendly dolphins.

Your Accommodation: Rydges Latimer Christchurch

Rydges Latimer Christchurch is located just 2 minutes walking distance from the city’s CBD and overlooks scenic Latimer Square, an iconic New Zealand green space with ample room for travellers to enjoy.

Meals included: Breakfast

Rydges Latimer Christchurch

Day 19: Head towards the West Coast on the TranzAlpine Scenic Railway

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 19

Christchurch to Franz Josef including the TranzAlpine train

Board one of the world's greatest rail adventures this morning, the TranzAlpine Scenic Train, disembark at Arthur's Pass and travel to Hokitika, where you will see pounamu (jade) being carved into pieces of jewellery.  Arrive later at your luxury eco-resort for a four-course degustation dinner.

Your Accommodation: Te Waonui Forest Retreat

Nestled amongst native West Coast rainforest at Franz Josef is a very special five-star retreat. Designed with utmost care of its precious environment, guests at Te Waonui Forest Retreat will find themselves encircled by rainforest and accommodated in natural and sustainable luxury.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Te Waonui Forest Retreat

Day 20: Travel through the old gold mining town of Arrowtown before ending in Queenstown

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 20

Franz Josef

This morning, choose your included sightseeing activity. Perhaps embark on a hike along an ancient path where a glacier once stood: as you encounter lush rainforest and pristine waterfalls. You also have the option to upgrade to a heli-hike, which includes a scenic helicopter flight over Franz Josef (additional cost and subject to weather, availability and minimum numbers). Alternatively, immerse yourself in the Glacier Hot Pools for a hot springs experience, plus visit the West Coast Wildlife Centre to get up close to unique wildlife. Tonight, enjoy an authentic New Zealand dinner.

Your Accommodation: Peppers Beacon, Queenstown

Situated on the pristine shores of Lake Wakatipu, with superb lake and mountain views, Peppers Beacon Queenstown offers the perfect accommodation base for exploring this exciting year-round destination or simply relishing in the finer things in life.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Peppers Beacon, Queenstown

Day 21: Witness one of our famous glaciers in Franz Josef

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 21

Franz Josef to Queenstown via Arrowtown

Enjoy a day of breathtaking scenery travelling along the Haast River Valley as you venture into the Central Otago region. You will also enjoy a stop in the gold mining destination of Arrowtown on your way to Queenstown, your home for the next three nights. This evening, you will have a choice of dining at some of Queenstown's best restaurants.

Your Accommodation: Te Waonui Forest Retreat

Nestled amongst native West Coast rainforest at Franz Josef is a very special five-star retreat. Designed with utmost care of its precious environment, guests at Te Waonui Forest Retreat will find themselves encircled by rainforest and accommodated in natural and sustainable luxury.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Te Waonui Forest Retreat

Day 22: Discover New Zealand's adventure capital Queenstown

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 22

Adventure day in Queenstown

Enjoy an undisturbed day to experience all that Queenstown with its majestic natural surrounds and lively city centre has to offer.  Immerse yourself in the beautiful city as you enjoy exploring at your leisure. You may like to use this time to stroll along the lightning bolt shaped shores of Lake Wakatipu or perhaps you'll spend it browsing through the stores in this bustling central shopping district.

Your Accommodation: Peppers Beacon, Queenstown

Situated on the pristine shores of Lake Wakatipu, with superb lake and mountain views, Peppers Beacon Queenstown offers the perfect accommodation base for exploring this exciting year-round destination or simply relishing in the finer things in life.

Meals included: Breakfast

Peppers Beacon, Queenstown

Day 23: A leisure day in Queenstown

APT Tours 24 day New Zealand Explorer Small Group Tour - Day 23

Adventure day in Queenstown

Today is up to you.  There is so much to see and do in Queenstown and your tour director can assist you with any activity booking you wish to make.  Whether you would like to enjoy a bird walk through the wilderness, a visit to some of the Lord of the Rings filming locations or even a trip on the gondola to Bob's peak you'll be sure to find something you love.  Tonight dinner is an option of 3 locations in Queenstown. Seafood lovers may be tempted by Finz while the panoramic views from the Skyline gondola may suit others, the final option includes a cruise on a vintage steamer as you head out to Walter Peak to dine at the High country station.

Your Accommodation: Peppers Beacon, Queenstown

Situated on the pristine shores of Lake Wakatipu, with superb lake and mountain views, Peppers Beacon Queenstown offers the perfect accommodation base for exploring this exciting year-round destination or simply relishing in the finer things in life.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Peppers Beacon, Queenstown

Day 24: Depart Queenstown and farewell your new friends

Depart Christchurch

Today your New Zealand adventure comes to an end.  After a delicious breakfast at your hotel, check out and transfer to the airport for your onward flight.

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