18 days in New Zealand Itinerary

18 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Created using Inspirock New Zealand trip itinerary maker
Make it your trip
Fly
1
Paihia
— 1 night
Fly
2
Rotorua
— 2 nights
Drive
3
Napier
— 2 nights
Fly
4
Dunedin
— 3 nights
Drive
5
Te Anau
— 2 nights
Drive
6
Wanaka
— 3 nights
Bus
7
Queenstown
— 4 nights
Fly

S M T W T F S
26
27
28
29
30
31
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
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10
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14
15

Paihia — 1 night

The main tourist town in the Bay of Islands area, Paihia gives visitors a good range of accommodations, a convenient town center, long sandy beaches, and interesting architecture.
Kick off your visit on the 29th (Wed): relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas, see some colorful creatures with She's a Lady Sailing Adventures, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Tapeka Point Track.

For where to stay, more things to do, ratings, and more tourist information, go to the Paihia itinerary planner.

Melbourne, Australia to Paihia is an approximately 9-hour flight. The time zone difference when traveling from Melbourne to Paihia is 2 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Wed) to allow enough time to fly to Rotorua.
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Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Spas
Side Trips
Find places to stay Mar 28 — 29:

Rotorua — 2 nights

Surrounded by lakes and featuring impressive areas of geothermal landscape, the city of Rotorua offers an otherwordly landscape and a welcoming, peaceful environment, with the culture of the native Maori people very much in the foreground.
Kick off your visit on the 30th (Thu): steep yourself in history at Buried Village of Te Wairoa, relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, and then take a pleasant ride with a tour on horseback. On the 31st (Fri), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: contemplate the geological forces at Waimangu Volcanic Valley, then witness a stunning natural landmark at Orakei Korako Geothermal Park & Cave, and then explore the striking landscape of Waiotapu Boardwalk/ Mud Pool.

To find photos, where to stay, other places to visit, and more tourist information, you can read our Rotorua trip planner.

Fly from Paihia to Rotorua in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In March, daytime highs in Rotorua are 26°C, while nighttime lows are 18°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 31st (Fri) to allow time to drive to Napier.
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Parks · Wildlife · Nature · Outdoors
Side Trips
Find places to stay Mar 29 — 31:

Napier — 2 nights

Enjoy the atmosphere and architecture of 1930s design in Napier, one of the best-preserved Art Deco cities in the world.
On the 1st (Sat), do a tasting at Linden Estate Winery, then stop by Two Crafts, then indulge your senses at some of the top wineries in the area, and finally make a trip to Marine Parade. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 2nd (Sun): take an exotic tour of Gannet Safaris Overland and then get great views at Bluff Hill Lookout.

To find ratings, photos, where to stay, and tourist information, refer to the Napier trip itinerary builder.

Getting from Rotorua to Napier by car takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Sun) so you can catch the flight to Dunedin.
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Tours · Wineries · Outdoors · Wildlife
Side Trip
Find places to stay Mar 31 — Apr 2:

Dunedin — 3 nights

With its history proudly stemming from the Scottish settlers who came here during the colonial era, Dunedin's streets are lined with well-preserved examples of Victorian and Edwardian architecture, while a new culture of nightlife and fine dining takes hold around them.
Discover out-of-the-way places like Penguin Place and Tunnel Beach Track. There's still lots to do: take in nature's colorful creations at Dunedin Chinese Garden, see the interesting displays at Toitu Otago Settlers Museum, don't miss a visit to The World's Steepest Street, and tour the old-fashioned way with a train tour.

For other places to visit, photos, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Dunedin day trip planning site.

Traveling by flight from Napier to Dunedin takes 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car and ferry; or do a combination of bus and ferry. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Wed) to allow enough time to travel to Te Anau.
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Parks · Wildlife · Nature · Tours
Find places to stay Apr 2 — 5:

Te Anau — 2 nights

Set among the picturesque peaks and glacially carved fiords of Fiordland National Park, Te Anau offers those wishing to explore the park a great place to stay and enjoy the relaxing atmosphere of a small town in an enviable location.
Start off your visit on the 6th (Thu): identify plant and animal life at Doubtful Sound. On the next day, explore the activities along Lake Te Anau and then explore the fascinating underground world of Te Anau Glowworm Caves.

For where to stay, ratings, other places to visit, and tourist information, refer to the Te Anau road trip planner.

Explore your travel options from Dunedin to Te Anau with the Route module. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Fri) to allow enough time to travel to Wanaka.
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Parks · Nature · Wildlife
Find places to stay Apr 5 — 7:

Wanaka — 3 nights

Situated on the shores of Lake Wanaka in the Otago region, Wanaka has become a popular ski and summer resort area, owing to its extensive views of the lake and its proximity to some of the best slopes in the country.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Roys Peak Track and Helicopter Tours. Next up on the itinerary: fly like a bird with a parasailing or paragliding tour, explore the activities along Lake Wanaka, and hit the slopes at Wanaka.

For other places to visit, ratings, and tourist information, use the Wanaka vacation builder tool.

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Te Anau to Wanaka. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Mon) to allow time to take a bus to Queenstown.
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Parks · Outdoors · Nature · Trails
Find places to stay Apr 7 — 10:

Queenstown — 4 nights

Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Arrowtown Chinese Settlement and Moke Lake. The adventure continues: grab your bike and head to Queenstown Trail, relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, learn about winemaking at Chard Farm Winery, and trek along Ben Lomond Track.

For maps, other places to visit, reviews, and other tourist information, go to the Queenstown journey planner.

You can take a bus from Wanaka to Queenstown in 3 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 14th (Fri) early enough to fly back home.
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Outdoors · Parks · Trails · Historic Sites
Side Trip
Find places to stay Apr 10 — 14:

New Zealand travel guide

4.5
Specialty Museums · Landmarks · Hiking Trails
Land of the Long White Cloud
Far-flung New Zealand has become known for its astounding topography, singular biodiversity, varied climate, and for marrying native Maori and post-colonial European cultures on its two main islands and the multitude of smaller landmasses dotted around them. Free-spirited New Zealanders cultivate a love of sports, sustainability, and the outdoors. Far from other landmasses, the islands existed for millions of years before being inhabited by humans, so an abundance of species have come to thrive in the thick, wild rainforest, vast and rugged backland, and extensive surrounding marine areas. While much of New Zealand tourism centers around adventures through this spectacular scenery, take time to explore the nation's rich cultural heritage as well. The traditions and history of the Maoris, and the industry and internationalism of the descendents of the first European settlers endure in fascinating attractions, ranging from museums, to farms, to places of worship.
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