This 23 day Epic NZ Tour is the trip of a lifetime. The New Zealand adventure takes in the North & South Islands so you can experience all the highlights.
Over 23 unforgettable days (and 23 nights) on this epic NZ tour you’ll experience it all. Secluded beaches, jaw-dropping scenery, Māori culture, mountainous ranges, lush rainforests and more adventure activities than you could ever tick off your bucket list.
From the idyllic Bay of Islands, through a geothermal wonderland of bubbling mud, traversing mighty mountains and then hiking the blue glacial ice of the wild West Coast, you’ll soon see that New Zealand is filled with many different landscapes and opportunities for adventure!
This small-group guided New Zealand adventure of the North and South Island will visit Coromandel, Rotorua, Taupō, Wellington, Kaikōura, Wanaka, Queenstown, Tekapo (an International Dark Sky Reserve), the Bay of Islands, Abel Tasman National Park, Punakaiki and Franz Josef Glacier, with the option to visit Hobbiton, Waitomo, The Tongariro Crossing and Milford Sound along the way.
As with all our New Zealand land tours, we do include a few ‘must-do’ events, ranging from a Māori cultural night to learning to paddle a waka (Māori war canoe), and even a greenstone carving experience.
You’ll see a massive range of optional activities available to add, from bungy jumping and dolphin swimming to jet boating and scenic flights. None of these are compulsory; just add the ones you want. Book this New Zealand itinerary for 3 weeks of pure adventure!
Epic NZ Tour Tips:
Activities can also be purchased on the road – just let your tour guide know. We can’t always guarantee availability when booking on the road, so we suggest pre-booking any activities you especially want to do.
As this New Zealand adventure starts early in the morning, you can opt to book accommodation in Auckland with us the night before the tour – only having to walk downstairs on the day the tour starts makes for a stress-free morning!
The tour price includes dorm share accommodation (4–6 share) but if you would prefer your own space you have the option to upgrade to a private room for the duration of your tour. You can select this upgrade when you start building your tour online. Please note: private room upgrades are not available for one night on this tour: the cultural experience at Kohutapu Lodge in Murupara.
Plan for your New Zealand adventure taking in the North & South Islands.
Auckland to Paihia
- We start this epic NZ tour with a scenic drive to Northland, visiting ancient forests and giant sand dunes. At sunset, we'll treat you to a Kiwi-as feast of fish & chips!
- Spend your day exploring some of the 140 subtropical islands, or take a roadtrip to the northernmost tip of New Zealand where the Tasman sea and Pacific Ocean collide.
Paihia to Auckland
- At the Waitangi Treaty Grounds you'll get an unforgettable insight to Maori culture and the birth of our nation. We'll explore some waterfalls and walks before returning to Auckland.
Auckland to Coromandel
- Get your cameras and swimwear ready! The drive to the Coromandel - a paradise of beautiful beaches and rainforests
- is epic! Tonight we soak in the beachy lifestyle.
Coromandel to Rotorua
- Cathedral Cove is begging to be explored by foot or by kayak (look for dolphins!). You will get the chance to visit Hobbiton and we'll explore New Zealand's sulphur city: Rotorua!
- Today is a free day on this New Zealand adventure to explore Rotorua's geothermal wonders or choose your own adventure and cross off some bucket-list activities!
Rotorua to Murupara
- Today the epic NZ tour will discover why Rotorua is so unique to the world with its geothermal wonders and Maori culture, before our visit to a living Maori village.
Murupara to Taupo
- A volcanic eruption 70,000 years ago created Lake Taupo which is a similar size to Singapore! Skydive over it, sail on it, or skim its surface from a bungy leap.
- Get your pulses racing in Taupo! Or head to Spa Park and soak until your fingers are wrinkly. The impressive Tongariro Crossing day walk is an option today.
Taupo to Wellington
- Today's drive includes some unmissable mountain scenery. Film buffs can make a Weta Workshop pilgrimage and everyone will savour great food & drink in New Zealand's capital city.
Wellington to Kaikoura
- Famed for its coffee and infamous for its wind, we'll explore Wellington before taking a ferry journey across Cook Strait, through the Malborough Sounds to the South Island.
Kaikoura to Christchurch
- Oh! The sea critters you'll meet! Swim with playful dolphins, do a spot of whale watching and say g'day to some cute seals before we head to Christchurch.
Christchurch to MacKenzie Country
- We check out Christchurch before heading to the turquoise lake and majestic mountains of Tekapo. The tiny Church of the Good Shepherd on the lake shore is Instagram gold.
MacKenzie Country to Queenstown.
- After spending the night admiring the stars in an International Dark Sky Reserve, we head to the South Island's adventure playground for some action-packed days.
- Bungy-jumping, canyon swinging, jet boating, horse trekking, 4WD venturing: the question is what aren't you going to do in Queenstown! A trip to Milford Sounds is optional today.
Queenstown to Wanaka
- Cross the mountains into the slightly quieter but no less beautiful, lakeside town of Wanaka. Take a hike, bike ride or scenic flight to enjoy the best of Wanaka during this epic NZ tour.
Wanaka to Franz Josef
- Wake up with uninterrupted views of Lake Wanaka and the Southern Alps. Many Haka guides rate today's scenic drive to the UNESCO World Heritage Area as their favourite.
- Get ready to be wowed! Heli-hike the glacier or kayak glassy waters with panoramic views. Today you'll get to carve your own greenstone pendant which is something to remember this New Zealand adventure by.
Franz Josef to Punakaiki
- Behold incredible coastal vistas as we road trip up the wild West Coast. Catch an epic sunset then settle in for a night at a hidden rainforest retreat.
Punakaiki to Abel Tasman
- Behold! More epic scenery is on show on the way to the golden Abel Tasman National Park! We'll stop in artsy Nelson before our next remote hideaway.
- Fair warning: you may just fall in love today as this idyllic region is ready to woo you! Kayak, hike, go canyoning, or just relax at a golden beach.
Abel Tasman to Wellington
- Learn to paddle a traditional Maori canoe before we head to Picton. We'll sample the wares (including New Zealand mussels!) in wine country, then catch the evening ferry.