"New Zealand is a scenic stunner, an island nation defined by dramatic mountains, steep fjords and gently rolling hills."

Touring in New Zealand

New Zealand is a scenic stunner, an island nation defined by dramatic mountains, steep fjords and gently rolling hills. Fans of the great outdoors will love New Zealand’s big skies, deep lakes and long walks; this is a place where the air is cleaner, the water is clearer and the grass is greener. The temperate climate and verdant hills scattered with sheep are reminiscent of Britain, though the ancient Polynesian culture of the Maori adds another dimension to this fascinating country.

New Zealand’s laid-back cities are well worth getting to know, but you’ll be spending the majority of your time communing with nature. The incredible landscapes of Fiordland draw the biggest gasps, while Rotorua’s sulphurous springs and bubbling mud pools give clues to the geological forces still shaping the scenery. Walk in the footsteps of Frodo and Gandalf with a ‘Lord of the Rings’ tour, spot whales off the coast of Kaikoura or scale the icy heights of the Franz Josef Glacier. New Zealand isn’t all high-octane adventure, however, and a tour of the Marlborough winelands allows you to appreciate the natural beauty of the South Island with a chilled glass of Sauvignon blanc in hand.


Touring Highlights of New Zealand

  • The South Island’s spectacular Fiordland National Park wows visitors with some of New Zealand’s most iconic landscapes, including the dramatic Milford Sound.
  • Revered by the Maori as a sacred place, Rotorua is a geothermal wonderland where geysers explode from the earth and bubbling mud pools fill the air with the stink of sulphur.
  • The twin harbours of Auckland provide a wonderful natural setting for this cosmopolitan yet outdoorsy city, centred on the buzzing waterfront.
  • The arty town of Nelson is an excellent base for exploring the sunny Marlborough wine region, a must-visit for those who enjoy a crisp Sauvignon blanc.
  • Take a hiking tour of the Franz Josef Glacier to see this icy behemoth up close, or admire the view from on high with a scenic helicopter flight.
  • Wellington is New Zealand’s capital and arguably its most appealing city, enriched with cultural treasures such as the excellent Te Papa national museum.
  • The best way to get a feel for Maori culture is by visiting a marae, a tribal meeting ground, where you can hear traditional songs and marvel at the intricately carved meeting houses.
  • Take a Tolkienesque tour of the locations where Peter Jackson filmed his epic ‘Lord of the Rings’ trilogy, including Hobbiton, Rohan and Fangorn Forest.
  • Queenstown, on the shores of Lake Wakatipu, is the adventure capital of the world, where you can try adrenaline-pumping activities including bungee jumping, skydiving and white water rafting.
  • Christchurch is still recovering from the devastating earthquake of 2011, but the ongoing reconstruction of the city is an inspiring sight, and the friendly locals will be glad to see you.
  • Dunedin puts its Scottish heritage to the fore, a place where it’s not unusual to come across shops selling kilts and haggis, and where the sound of bagpipes often reverberates around the handsome Victorian streets.
  • The Bay of Islands is renowned for its natural beauty and abundant marine life, including several species of whale and dolphin.
  • Abel Tasman National Park is a top destination for hikers, with popular trails that wind through thick forest and along beautiful sandy beaches.
  • The South Island town of Kaikoura is renowned as a whale watching hotspot, and you’ll also find dolphins, fur seals and penguins frolicking amongst the waters off the coast.
  • Wild and wonderful Stewart Island, New Zealand’s third largest island, is one of the best places to see the iconic kiwi in the wild.
  • The Mackenzie Country is a stunning region of the South Island where you’ll find Mount Cook, New Zealand’s tallest mountain, and the beautiful glacial lakes of Pukaki, Ohau and Tekapo.
  • The town of Napier was struck by a catastrophic earthquake in 1931, and was rebuilt as a model Art Deco city which remains remarkably well preserved.
  • Akaroa was the only French settlement in New Zealand, and still has a discernible Gallic flavour, from the street names to the charming colonial architecture.
  • The splendid scenery of the Coromandel Peninsula makes it a popular getaway for Aucklanders. On the east coast you’ll find a string of lovely white sand beaches, while the west coast is littered with faded former gold rush towns.
  • New Zealand is all about the great outdoors, and there are nine Great Walks that pass through some of the country’s most awe-inspiring scenery, including Milford Sound, the Southern Alps and Te Urewera National Park.


Tour Types in New Zealand