On this epic adventure tour, you will embrace New Zealand's tremendous adventures while relaxing in some of the most luxurious stays in this country.
New Zealand offers adventure experiences as varied as the landscape, whether on land, in the sky above, underground, or in the sea. After a day full of action, you can relax in one of our most prestige lodges and boutique stays and enjoy gourmet dinners with some local wine.
Category: Adventure, Active
Location: North & South Island
Departing/Finishing: Auckland to Queenstown (Itinerary can be reversed)
Accommodation: 5* Premium Lodges
Next Departure: Departs Daily
Bay of Island - Kauri Cliffs: Located on 6,000 acres near Matauri Bay, The Lodge at Kauri Cliffs is Northland's premier luxury vacation destination. The Lodge affords spectacular 180-degree views of the Pacific Ocean. Enjoy exquisite Pacific Rim cuisine prepared by our talented chefs whilst taking in stunning panoramic views of Cape Brett and the offshore Cavalli Islands from the verandas, lounge, card and dining rooms. We are offering 22 guest suites and a two Bedroom Owner's Cottage. Every suite offers its private porch, bedroom with sitting area and open fireplace, walk-in wardrobe and ensuite. The cottages are nestled in a native forest overlooking the golf course and the Pacific Ocean.
Rotorua - Solitaire Lodge: Spectacular lakeside location with panoramic views of the glassy lake and magnificent volcano through great picture windows. Lodge amenities include the complimentary use of the Lodge's motorised dinghies and kayaks; lake walks along the shoreline of the Lodge grounds, trout fishing from the Lodge jetty and lake swimming from Solitaire's private beach. Renowned for its fine dining, Solitaire lodge serves contemporary New Zealand cuisine prepared with fresh local produce and complemented by superb wines from selected vineyards. Engage in lively conversation with fellow guests in the lodge's dining room, or choose an intimate dinner for two in your suite.
Or: Rotorua - Peppers on the Point: This restored two-storey mansion has a relaxed and tranquil ambience, with great features and fantastic views over Mokoia Island. Each suite has an inviting lounge area, ensuite bathroom and spa bath. Part of its charm is a large communal lounge with an open fireplace, a timber-panelled dining room and an elegant billiard room. You may join guests in the main dining room for a four-course d'hôte dinner. Reserve an elegant private dining room, or perhaps dine in your suite or on the terrace overlooking the lake on a warm evening.
Lake Taupo - The Point Villas: Located in an exclusive private estate, guests enjoy peace, privacy and all the spoils of a first-class stay in our luxury accommodation. Each self-catering villa features classic oak furniture, leather lounge suites and original local artwork. Their spacious living rooms are open to large private terraces, each with a Magna solar heated pool, barbecue and outdoor furniture. Available gas fireplaces and heat pumps ensure warmth and comfort indoors for winter. The beautifully appointed kitchens are equipped with the finest European appliances.
Or: Lake Taupo - Huka Lodge: Within 17 acres of magnificently manicured grounds, accommodation is available within just 25 suites. All nestling along the banks of the magnificent Waikato River, upstream from the mighty Huka Falls. Enter through Huka Lodge's gates and immediately leave the real world behind. As guests journey the length of the drive and encounter the park-like grounds, a feeling of peace and tranquillity begins to envelop them gently. Offering accommodation within 18 Junior Lodge Suites, one Lodge Suite, the four-bedroom Owner's Cottage and the two-bedroom Alan Pye Cottage – guests luxuriate in an exclusive hospitality experience.
Abel Tasman - Splitt Apple Retreat: The retreat, located near Nelson, is renowned for its gourmet Asian-Mediterranean fusion cuisine, where every ingredient has been selected for its positive contribution to health and wellness. Indulge in the spectacular setting, original art and antiques, and unparalleled service. With the Abel Tasman National Park at your doorstep, pristine nature presents a kaleidoscope of constantly changing colours and patterns.
Or: Golden Bay/Nelson - Westhaven Retreat: The 404.6-hectare (1000-acre) private peninsula is a natural wilderness sanctuary that borders the protected Marine and Wildlife Reserve and the Kahurangi National Park. Hiking along one of New Zealand's most dramatic coastlines, you will find secluded private beaches, incredible rock formations, and the largest Nikau Palm forest.
Lake Hawea - Silverpine Lodge: Spacious, elegant, hosted wilderness retreat. It is poised on a mountain bluff overlooking Lake Hawea. Back-country New Zealand hospitality with acclaimed cuisine and wine list. The lodge is made of earth, stone, and native New Zealand timber. Surrounded by uninterrupted views of stunning New Zealand scenery, Silverpine Lodge offers an elegant, luxurious outdoor experience indoors. The guest rooms all enjoy exclusive stunning views overlooking Lake Hawea.
Or: Wanaka - Mahu Whenua: As a guest, you will enjoy total privacy, unforgettable experiences and exquisite food and wine in a setting that spans over 55,000 hectares (550sq km or 200sq miles) of majestic beauty – towering mountains, lush green valleys, native bush, forests and meandering rivers. Located in New Zealand's South Island, just 20 minutes drive from central Wanaka, the Ridgeline Homestead and Cottages at Mahu Whenua are easily accessible while giving you the feeling of seclusion and privacy on what is virtually your private national park. Mahu Whenua has four individual Ridgeline Suites, two Homestead Suites and two Cottage Suites.
Fiordland - Cabot Lodge: Located at the centre of Cathedral Peaks Station and bordering the Fiordland National Park, Cabot Lodge provides the luxury of seclusion. The Lodge accommodates ten guests focusing on authentic New Zealand experiences. Guests are provided with full farm-style breakfasts, pre-dinner drinks, and canapes daily. In addition, guests can request lunch hampers designed to be enjoyed while exploring Fiordland and can also arrange for dinner platters to be enjoyed on the property. 4 Suites, all with king-size beds. There are opportunities for guests to participate in daily on-farm activities with tours of our beehives, 4WD tours of the property, whip-cracking classes, and watching our top staff member, Sam the sheepdog, in action.
Or: Fiordland Lodge - The Lodge was constructed in 2002, sat on a superb rural site with rolling grasslands, and has commanding views across Lake Te Anau. Inside, the open architecture of the Lodge reflects the vastness of the Fiordland National Park, and echoes of the forest are found in the unique natural timber construction. In the lounge, a latticework of huge log trusses soar to over thirty-six feet above and surround a large open fire clad with local river stone.
Queenstown - Matakauri Lodge: Spectacularly located on the shores of Lake Wakatipu, Matakauri Lodge looks out to a mesmerizing panorama of the big three; The Remarkables, Cecil and Walter Peak. With clean lines in glass, stone and timber, Matakauri's take on luxury is understated and welcoming, embracing guests and championing the mountainscape. Four suites are classically located within the main lodge, with the remaining suites nestled on the banks of Lake Wakatipu overlooking the mountain panorama. Styled by acclaimed interior designer Virginia Fisher, you won't want to leave your sumptuous suite with its awe-inspiring views.
Or: Queenstown/Glenorchy - Blanket Bay: Nestled amidst rugged snow-capped peaks of the Southern Alps on Lake Wakatipu's shores, New Zealand's finest Lodge – Blanket Bay. Here we celebrate the art of pure relaxation. This is one of New Zealand Ultimate Alpine Escapes and has been voted one of the world's best luxury lodges. Wyuna Sation is a sheep, cattle and deer farm, historically a part of the original Rees station that occupied the entire eastern side of Lake Wakatipu and beyond.
The Bay of Islands is a subtropical micro-region known for its stunning beauty & history. For those that love beaches and water activities, it's paradise. The Bay of Islands encompasses 144 islands between Cape Brett and the Purerua Peninsula and includes the boutique towns of Opua, Paihia, Russell and Kerikeri. The year-round warm weather makes it a popular destination for big-game fishing and water sports, from kayaking to parasailing. There are many boat tours; you can even try swimming with the majestic bottlenose dolphin. The Bay of Islands is also home to several historical attractions, such as the Mission House and the Waiting Treaty grounds, the nation's birthplace.
Accommodation: Bay of Island
The Bay of Islands offers many fishing options, from land-based saltwater fly to charter boat sports fishing. Our local charter vessels have been fishing the Bay of Islands and the North East coast of New Zealand for many years. Professional skippers provide all dishes with a knowledgeable crew. Many of our ships have won numerous fishing tournaments and are the Bay of Islands Swordfish Club members. Our local ships target Marlin, Tuna, Yellowtail Kingfish, Hapuku and Snapper. A range of boats is available for the fair-weather sailors and the avid fisherperson!
Or: Enjoy the private day charter sailing adventure you will never forget. Your experience can start from any pre-arranged beach or jetty near your accommodation. Trips are generally 6 hours long, but extra time can be arranged. For example, a two-hour stopover allows plenty of time to enjoy a delicious lunch and to participate in your preferred activities, such as kayaking, swimming or exploring our local islands and beaches. The Stand-Up Paddleboard (or SUP) is very popular too! Be sure to bring sunblock, swimming gear, a towel and perhaps a light jacket for cooler days. For your day charter, the skipper will choose a course to best take advantage of the day's weather and guests’ particular interests.
Accommodation: Bay of Island
Experience the Stunning and Unique Top of New Zealand. This truly subtropical slim finger of New Zealand is only 10km wide in parts, so there are three untrammelled coastlines to explore within easy commuting distance. Experience the wild west coast on 90 Mile Beach, a world of forest, sand & ocean. The beach is an almost never-ending paradise, where you can dig shellfish (tuatua), cast a line to catch a fish for dinner, or maybe take a hike and enjoy the solitude with only the seabirds for company.
You can go off-road with a quad bike and explore the vast white sands of Great Exhibition Bay, zoom along the incredibly long and wild 90 Mile Beach or the coral sands of Henderson Bay. Times and trips can be tailor-made to suit your needs for a unique experience.
Or: For the more experienced, horse trekking offers the opportunity to explore the Bay of Islands and surrounding areas. You may embark on a ride to the volcano, where you’ll enjoy breath-taking 360 views of the Pacific Ocean, the islands and the pine forest. Custom-tailored rides are also available, including swimming with your horse and treks up to the ridge line of the local volcano to take in the spectacular views.
Accommodation: Bay of Island
From crystal-clear streams and magical forests to epic biking trails and thermal mud pools, Rotorua has it all. The city offers a raft of attractions and experiences for everyone from adventure-seekers to those just looking to unwind. Sitting within the Pacific Rim of Fire, Rotorua is a geothermal wonderland with bubbling mud pools, clouds of steam, and natural hot springs perfect for bathing and relaxing in. After marvelling at the distinctive landscapes and volcanic activity within a geothermal park, enjoy a simple soak in a natural hot stream or indulge in a wellness getaway at a luxurious spa.
Or: Beautiful Lake Taupo is actually a huge volcano with a fiery history. Its most recent eruption, in 181 AD, was large enough to change the sky as far away as Europe and China. According to Maori legend, the lake is the pulsating heart of Maui's fish (New Zealand's North Island). The lakeside town of Taupo provides a base for visitors who love to fish for trout, ski Mount Ruapehu and explore the local geothermal phenomena. Popular Taupo experiences include Huka Falls, geothermal walks, a prawn farm, lake cruises, New Zealand's first public cable wakeboarding park and guided kayak expeditions to see the rock carvings at Mine Bay.
Accommodation: Rotorua or Taupo
Rotorua has the world's best mountain bike trails. That's not our boast. But that's what Australian Mountain Bike (AMB) magazine said when they recently visited. Rotorua City has become a mecca for mountain bikers from all over the world. With over 130km of purpose-built mountain biking trails, all a short 5-minute drive from the city centre, you would struggle to find anywhere better in the world. Allow 3-4 hours round trip with 2-3 hours riding, depending on your skill and fitness levels.
Or: The Ultimate Canopy Tour is higher, longer and more spectacular than the award-winning Original Canopy Tour. This journey takes you deeper into the New Zealand forest; this experience will show you the New Zealand you came to see. Not for the faint of heart, this experience is a step up in adventure level and incorporates some incredible new features that will blow you away. Your excellent kiwi guides will lead your small group on a personal and unforgettable adventure. They are highly trained to keep you safe, make you smile, teach you amazing things and create memories that last you a lifetime.
Or: Helicopter to and land on New Zealand's only permanently active volcano White Island. Arriving overhead, the volcano enjoys aerial views of the active crater before landing on this lunar-like surface. Here embark upon a leisurely guided tour of the island's crater floor to view active steam vents' fumaroles', hot streams, vibrant sulphur formations and the steaming crater. This landscape constantly changes as the active forms new features and removes old ones. In addition, the Crater Lake varies in depth and temperature so that the landscape is different from one day to the next,
Accommodation: Rotorua or Taupo
Under the green hills of Waitomo lies a labyrinth of caves, sinkholes and underground rivers. The area's name comes from the Maori words wai (water) and tomo (hole). The caves were carved by underground streams pushing through soft limestone over thousands of years. Many have impressive stalactites growing down from the ceiling and stalagmites growing up from the cave floor, pointy cones of layered rock formed over centuries by dripping water. The cave walls are also decorated with galaxies of native glow worms. If you’re into adventure, try the unique experience of blackwater rafting - you'll crawl, swim and float through the caves on a rubber tube.
Or: Imagine free-hanging (abseiling) in this massive void bouncing a bit & turning because of the sheer length of the rope. Look around into the upper levels of the cave and giant spagatites (like big green hands growing out of the walls). Weird plants struggle to cling to the sheer walls while the roar of the Mangapu river echoes up from caverns far below. Once down, catch your breath because this is just the beginning - there’s a lot more to do and see, and you explore the massive vaults - See excellent glow-worms, gigantic flowstone formations, and colossal caverns and s.
Accommodation: Rotorua or Taupo
Nelson is a lifestyle; that's the best way to describe it. Situated at the top northwest of the South Island, it is the sunniest region in New Zealand. Nelson's diverse geography captures everything from the long golden beaches to untouched forests and rugged mountains. Perhaps it's the sun or the location, but Nelson has long been a magnet for creative people. More than 350 working artists and craftspeople live in the area, traditional, contemporary and Maori. Visit their studios and find a unique piece to take home with you. Sit in the sun, sip a wine from one of the local vineyards, and dine on the famous Nelson Bay scallops.
Or: Top of the South Helicopter Tour. Flying north along the coast, you get a bird's-eye view of the world-famous Abel Tasman National Park with its beautiful golden beaches, lush native bush, and clear blue waters. Our first stop is at Awaroa Lodge for coffee and a beach walk. Leaving Awaroa, we head over to Golden Bay and Farewell Spit, taking in the sights of the rugged West Coast with a beach landing. We then fly south for photo opportunities on Mt Olympus, one of the Lord of the Rings film sites, and head back to Nelson via the Kahurangi National Park.
Accommodation: Nelson or Able Tasman
A day-long boat trip into the Abel Tasman National Park with kayaking around Tonga Island's seal colony, a walk to a headland, excellent lunch, and drop off at a romantic golden-sanded beach can be organized for you. If you're lucky, you may get to see blue penguins, dolphins, or even orcas. Learn about New Zealand's flora and fauna and local stories about the characters of the Abel Tasman. Then, you kayak, travelling past beautiful beaches, islands, sea caves, reefs, and tidal lagoons. After a full day of sightseeing, you can retreat to your luxury lodge for dinner.
Or: Our most popular and most spectacular hike and walk, featuring a scenic helicopter flight across the rugged expanse of Kahurangi National Park, our second largest, landing on a high, broad mountain ridge near the centre of the park, and also at beautiful Boulder Lake, before flying down to hike on the stunning subtropical lower Heaphy river and the wild sea coast trail of the last day of the Heaphy track. Many consider the Heaphy Track the greatest of New Zealand's nine Great Walks, combining alpine environments and a primaeval, palm-fringed coastline.
Accommodation: Nelson or Abel Tasman
Canyoning is a combination of lots of fun stuff all bunched into one exciting activity. You jump off cliffs into deep pools below slide down polished water chutes and abseils beside or sometimes even through showering waterfalls. Most of the time, you'll be surrounded by steep walls, and escaping is impossible. And, your guides will ensure you know exactly what to do. Going on a canyoning trip is the only way anyone can see these stunning places and experience all the fun stuff Mother Nature throws at you. Torrent River is a popular canyoning trip simply because it has it all. Jumps, slides, floats, abseils, you name it…… Torrent's got it. All this exciting stuff takes place in a gorgeous granite canyon filled with some of the purest water you can find and wrapped in the mind-blowing, unspoiled rainforest.
Or: The Tasman Great Taste Trail is an easy cycling trail that takes a leisurely tour of Nelson/Tasman's most beautiful coastal and inland areas. Riders will pass vineyards, breweries, orchards and no end of places to stop and enjoy some quality cuisine. The trail is 174km long as a loop, but it can easily be broken down into bite-sized portions just right for short morning rides and gentle afternoon cruises. It is one of New Zealand's Great Rides.
Accommodation: Nelson or Abel Tasman
Queenstown is one of New Zealand’s top visitor destinations; if you come to the region, you’ll understand why. Queenstown sits on the shore of crystal clear Lake Wakatipu among dramatic alpine ranges; it’s rumoured that gold prospectors - captivated by the majestic beauty of the surrounding mountains and rivers - gave this now cosmopolitan town its name.
Central Otago is New Zealand’s fastest-growing wine region and most scenic. Take the time to explore these incredible vineyards set in small micro-climates in a landscape dominated by high snow-capped mountains and tussock-clad slopes. At some stage of the wine tour, we suggest a stop for a relaxing lunch at one of the wineries. Then, drive through the famous Kawarau valley and gorge.
Stop at what is widely regarded as a safe spectator attraction, the famous Kawarau Gorge Bungy Jumping exhibition. As you shuffle out to the edge of the bridge, heart pounding and mind racing, remember this – you’ve found yourself at the World Home of Bungy in Kawarau Gorge. This is the original. Many people have come and gone on a mission to push the limits and test themselves—time for you to make the same leap of faith.
Or: It takes a certain kind of person to skydive from 15,000ft. It takes courage. You step out of that aircraft door, and for some 60 seconds, you freefall at 200km/hour. The personal challenge is immense! Expect sensory overload as your mind, body and soul fight against every natural self-preserving urge. The challenge is enormous. Harnessed by space-age materials to an experienced qualified Jumpmaster, you step out of that aircraft door and, for some 60 seconds, plummet toward the ground at 200 kph - terminal velocity!
Alternative: Stay at Lake Wanaka, the visitor from around the world are drawn to the Wanaka region by its outstanding beauty. The stunning mountain and lakeside setting and proximity to Mt. Aspiring National Park make it the ultimate base for outdoor activities.
Accommodation: Queenstown or Wanaka
Take a flight/cruise excursion into the Milford Sound. You are heading for the spectacular Milford Sound, described by Rudyard Kipling as the 'eighth wonder of the world", which was carved out during successive ice ages and, at its deepest point off Mitre Peak, plunges to a depth of 265 meters. The extraordinary splendour of this region is unsurpassed anywhere else in the world, a bold claim in a country that offers excellent beauty around every corner. You will enjoy spectacular views of the mountains, lakes and inlets of the Fiordland National Park. At Milford Sound, your launch cruise travels the entire length of Milford Sound.
Or: South out of Central as you helicopter over Mavora Lakes, you will see large-scale farmland, New Zealand native forest to Manapouri. Into Fiordland National park, over into Doubtful Sound, which is the second largest Fiordland, view Deep Cove, the Browne Waterfalls, and Campbell's Kingdom. Experience a remote beach landing before returning to Queenstown over Te Anau, with an alpine landing in the Eyre mountains to conclude your experience.
Or: Helicopter and fly North West to a remote valley on a private High Country farm. Here we will land, and you will experience silence, flora and fauna on your hike. New Zealand's magnificent Southern Alps provide excellent photo opportunities, seeing spectacular ice shelves and many small glaciers before flying over the Fiordland and Mt Aspiring National Parks to a pristine West Coast beach and the Tasman Sea. Your guide will accompany you to walk on the beautiful beaches of the wild and remote West Coast at your leisure; here, the only access is by helicopter.
Or: Try the highest waterfall via Ferrata in the world. The guide will take you into the heart of the waterfall, exposing hidden pools and crossing suspension bridges before crossing our final 35m bridge and traversing back to the base along a picturesque trail.
Accommodation: Queenstown or Wanaka
If you need time to kick back and relax, plenty of rejuvenating experiences are available. Treat yourself to some boutique shopping, and experience excellent local food and wine.
Or: Routeburn Track Day Walk. With soaring mountain peaks, huge valleys, waterfalls and jewel-like lakes, this track links the Mount Aspiring National Park with Fiordland National Park. If you only have a few hours, you can still experience one of New Zealand’s great walks through the beech fore, offering stunning mountain views.
Or: Walk into the alpine zone beneath Mount Rob Roy. This half-day on-foot adventure brings you face to face with active glaciers. The Rob Roy Glacier Track leads you into Mount Aspiring National Park, a fantastic world of mountains, glaciers, river valleys and alpine lakes.
Accommodation: Queenstown or Wanaka
A private driver will transfer you to Queenstown Airport for your departure.