(Christchurch, Franz Josef, Queenstown, Rotorua, Auckland)
French Polynesia (Tahiti & Bora Bora)
Stunning views, relaxing lodges, fine food, this itinerary has it all. Begin your tour at Christchurch, the largest city on New Zealand’s South Island. Go on a whale watching tour in Kaikoura and see a local seal colony. Your journey from Christchurch to Greymouth will take place aboard the scenic TranzAlpine railroad. Spend an evening at the foot of the massive Franz Josef Glacier. From there you will experience New Zealand’s “adventure capital” of Queenstown. Take a boat tour of magnificent Milford Sound, and participate in a variety of exhilarating optional activities. Continue to Rotorua and embark on the Tongariro Crossing, considered one of the greatest 1-day hikes in the world. In Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city, enjoy the panoramic views from the dormant volcano Mount Eden. Your tour will then bring you to the island of Bora Bora in French Polynesia. Take a speed boat tour and participate in an exciting "snorkel safari" of local reefs. Enjoy the end of your trip with optional activities or just relax and enjoy your stay at the 5-star Intercontinental Resort & Thalasso Spa. This trip is at a relaxing pace while seeing some of the highlights in each location.
A private vehicle with driver will provide a transfer between the airport and hotel.
Enjoy a day at leisure in Christchurch and Canterbury, renowned for natural beauty and a wealth of things to do. Christchurch has a lively entertainment scene, strong cultural heritage, gorgeous parks and gardens, lots of sports facilities and good shopping. Among the 'must sees' include the weekend Arts Centre market, Christchurch Cathedral, Botanic Gardens and International Antarctic Centre. The Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu exhibit's New Zealand and international art. The Canterbury Museum has fine cultural and natural collections as well as creative and imaginative displays. Orana Park is New Zealand's largest wildlife reserve and Willowbank Wildlife Reserve has among its displays New Zealand's largest daytime kiwi viewing area. Air Force World captures the adventure and history of flight in New Zealand and Christchurch Casino offers 24-hour gaming entertainment. Visitors can be introduced to Maori culture at Nga Hau E Wha Marae.
Located picturesquely in the heart of Christchurch overlooking its very own "Central Park," this very individual boutique hotel is just steps away from all the key attractions including the tram, arts market, restaurants, theatres and gardens. The hotel’s spacious rooms are designed with a stylish eye for detail, complete with luxury amenities and, with a one-to-one ratio of staff to guests, impeccable service is guaranteed. Boasting two world class restaurants that rate amongst the best in New Zealand, visitors come from far and wide to savor the delicious cuisine in both Pescatore and 50 on Park. Stroll down to the city center and explore the city’s many attractions including the popular casino and world-class art gallery.
Spend your day getting close to nature. Travel by road or train through the rolling hill country of North Canterbury enjoying the beauty of its rural pastoral scenes, to Kaikoura where mountains meet sea. Kaikoura is world renowned for the variety of marine mammals which can be seen, not least of all the giant sperm whales and the acrobatic Dusky dolphins. On your arrival in Kaikoura you will be transferred to a whale watch tour; by boat, light aircraft or helicopter, the choice is yours. In the afternoon you will visit a seal colony where fur seals may be viewed at close quarters. On your return to Christchurch a stop will be made at a North Canterbury vineyard where a wine tasting has been arranged for you pleasure. This option also includes lunch at a local Kaikoura restaurant. The group size may vary between 4 and 45 passengers.
A private vehicle with driver will provide a transfer between the Train Station and Hotel.
The TranzAlpine scenic train journey travels between Christchurch and Greymouth, from one coast of New Zealand to the other. En-route, admire the fields of the Canterbury Plains and farmland, followed by the spectacular gorges and river valleys of the Waimakariri River. The train then climbs into the Southern Alps before descending through lush beech rain forest to the West Coast town of Greymouth – a great base for visits to Punakaiki and the always popular glaciers.
This afternoon you will have time to look around this small coal and mining village, then you will be transferred to Franz Josef Glacier by private vehicle.
At one with nature, Te Waonui Forest Retreat (5*) is the ultimate coming together of luxury escape and environmental awareness. Great care has been taken to ensure this exceptional forest retreat steps lightly upon the earth, from the organic cotton bedspreads to its recycled local building materials. The hotel is within easy access to many excellent local attractions, including the Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers, just minutes away. Luxuriously appointed guest rooms, generously proportioned and featuring the highest standard of room amenities, such as your personal pillow menu, natural wool mattress underlay, and high speed Internet access. Dining among the trees in ‘The Canopy’ restaurant, and savoring quality local cuisine, including an indulgent five-course degustation dinner.
Enjoy a private transfer from your hotel in Fox Glacier / Franz Josef Drive (approx. 5 hour drive) to Queenstown, via Haast Pass. Sit back and enjoy the breathtaking scenery and views.
On arrival to Queenstown you will be met by your driver and transferred to your accommodation.
Azur, is a distinctively contemporary lodge located on a hilltop overlooking some of the most spectacular scenery in New Zealand. Set among native trees and with the stunning panoramic vistas of Lake Wakatipu, The Remarkables, Cecil Peak and Queenstown, Azur is known for privacy, discretion and serenity. The Lodge’s nine villas were designed to let you absorb the incredible views in chic luxury and total privacy. Every design detail has been taken into account to provide guests with a distinctively contemporary New Zealand experience.
Snow capped mountains, a crystal clear lake and blue sky days provide the perfect alpine setting for an unforgettable winter holiday. Queenstown is a snow lover's paradise with several ski areas on its doorstep and an intoxicating après ski culture. The region’s ski season typically runs from early June until early October. Off the slopes, an abundance of activities; being labeled as the adventure capital, inspiring scenery and warm hospitality combine to offer something special for everyone. Thrill seekers can take their pick of adventure activities; home of bungee jumping, white water rafting, and hang-gliding to name a few. While those seeking relaxation can chill out on the golf course, in a vineyard, at a luxury spa or in the many shops, galleries, bars and restaurants. Alternatively, spend a day in historic Arrowtown or take in the magical scenery in Glenorchy.
Today you will be transferred to Queenstown Airport for your flight to Milford. During the flight, enjoy the panoramic views of spectacular alpine scenery, lush rainforest, and Milford Sound. When you arrive at Milford, you will be transferred to the wharf, and commence your scenic cruise of Milford Sound. The cruise affords great views of waterfalls, rainforest, mountains and wildlife. Picnic lunch included on board your cruise. Following lunch, transfer back to Milford Airport, for your return flight to Queenstown. On arrival back in Queenstown, you will be transferred back to your hotel. All flights are weather dependent. Please ring the free phone line (free within NZ) 0800 463 635 an hour before your flight departure (e.g. 9am for 10am flights) to reconfirm. If your flight is proceeding, a taxi will collect you from your accommodation/ pick-up location. Please be ready immediately following your confirmation and a taxi will collect you within 20 minutes. This tour take approximately 3 to 4 hours and can accommodate up to 9 guests. Departure times are 10.00 a.m. and 12.00 noon all year round.
A private vehicle with driver will provide a transfer between the airport and Treetops Lodge.
Enjoy a guided tour of the valley with one of Te Puia's world renowned guides. As part of the tour you will visit New Zealand's national carving and weaving schools and witness these disciplines in practice, under the guidance of full-time master carvers and weavers. You will visit award winning interactive galleries, see a kiwi bird up close, and most importantly, hear stories as told by the descendants of the valley. To conclude the tour you will visit the geyser and mud pools and then be invited to have a short rest prior to the beginning of the evening experience. Traditionally, Te Po is an intimate time for sharing knowledge. Te Po is also Te Puia's authentic evening cultural experience a feast of food, culture and friendship. It begins every night at Te-Heketanga-a-Rangi (The Heavenly Origins). The space comprises twelve monumental carvings reaching skywards, each one representing a Maori deity. Hear the stories of the past and see how these traditions live on today. Feeding guests is regarded by Maori as an honor and a sign of a tribe's mana (standing), So a sumptuous banquet is provided during the evening. This banquet combines contemporary cuisine with a traditional hangi (earth-cooked oven meal), where kai (food) is steam-cooked by hot rocks in the earth, giving it a delicious smoky flavor.Following dessert, you will be transferred to the Whakarewarewa Geothermal Valley to enjoy the spectacular lighting. Guests can wander around the illuminated natural attractions, including Pohutu geyser. This tour can accommodate 160 guests.
New Zealand, or Aotearoa, is a mythical land steeped in legend and mystery. The diverse landscape of Rotorua is where adventure abounds. Treetops Lodge offers the ultimate in world class luxury accommodation and is located in the heart of the trout fishing capital of the world and famed therapeutic thermal region, Rotorua, New Zealand. Nestled amidst magnificent native forests and valleys, Treetops Lodge & Estate offers a uniquely New Zealand experience. The Lodge with its’ elegant architectural style derived from this country's pioneering past. Timber and stone finishes echo the beauty and simplicity of the great outdoors at Treetops Lodge. A sanctuary and retreat of breathtaking terrain in 2,500 acres of secluded native forest and game reserve, seven trout streams, four lakes, over 70 kilometers of hiking trails, mountain bike riding, horse riding and the ultimate in tranquillity and splendour.
Being one of New Zealand’s Best 1-day Walks, the Tongariro Crossing is noted for its unique, extraordinary landscapes, its showcasing in Lord of the Rings movie sets and fascinating cultural significance. This 18.5 kilometer trail offers guests an unrivalled adventure while accompanying guides provide interesting commentary regarding sacred areas along the way. Although this hike is very popular and a must-see for any traveler in the region, it is important that clients also understand this experience is best suited for those with a level of fitness capable of completing the 8-hour trek over hilly and arduous sections containing uneven ground.
Enjoy time at leisure to explore at your own pace, or relax at your hotel.
Full Day Trip Waitomo and Auckland by private car with English Speaking Driver. Take in the sights of the picturesque Waikato area on the way to Waitomo. Admission included to the Waitomo Glow Worm Caves. Arrival into Auckland in the early evening
Enjoy a unique dining experience on Auckland’s magnificent Waitemata Harbour. Enjoy an evening of great sailing as the sun sets on the horizon allowing the night lights of this photogenic city come to life. The experienced crew provides detailed info about Auckland’s, whilst those craving some physical activity have the opportunity to participate in the sailing experience. Choose from a set menu served by the crew during the dinner stop at a sheltered mooring location. This cruise departs at 6.00 pm and has a maximum group size of 18 guests. All departures are subject to wind and weather conditions. Smoking is not permitted on the vessel. Before your departure, please report to the Pride of Auckland Office located on the concourse of the Auckland Maritime Museum on the corner of Quay and lower Hobson Streets.
Settled in Auckland CBD, the Hotel DeBrett (5*) links two unique precincts - High Street's hip fashion and Shortland Street's tailored commerce. Hotel's iconic building has been stylishly reinterpreted into a 25-room luxury boutique hotel. Every room is individually designed and complimented with eclectic furniture, New Zealand art and photography. Experience contemporary New Zealand cuisine featuring the best local produce prepared and cooked with care in the Kitchen. The hotel provides a gym and DVD and book library and bars.
See first hand why Auckland is known as the City of Sails as you enjoy a trip over the Harbour Bridge. Visit the Famous Auckland landmark of Mount Eden, a dormant volcano whose summit offers excellent panoramic views of the city and harbours. From the fantastic vantage point you will see evidence of Auckland's volcanic history, the most significant being the youngest volcano of Rangitoto Island at the entrance to the Waitemata harbour. This tour also takes in the Auckland Domain, the city's oldest park which is situated on a 62,000 year old volcano. In addition to these natural features you will be taken to the trendy shopping are of Parnell Village with its historical buildings that have been transformed into boutiques, antique and craft specialty shops. Your tour will then take you along the scenic waterfront route of Tamaki Dr. before returning to Downtown.
The America’s Cup is the world’s oldest and most prestigious sporting trophy and ultimate yachting accomplishment. Usually the domain of billionaires and elite professional yachties, this activity provides a very unique opportunity to participate in sailing on these grand prix racing machines. A must do attraction in Auckland and a unique opportunity to participate as crew on an actual America’s Cup yacht. The experience varies per person: take the helm, exert energy on the grinders or sit back, relax and enjoy the sail, a once in a lifetime experience. The trip is subject to route alterations as well as wind and weather conditions. The group size may vary between 8 and 30 passengers. Departure times from November until March are 11 am and 2 pm and from April to October 1 pm.
A private vehicle with driver will provide a transfer between the Auckland Airport and Hotel.
Enjoy this one way direct flight from Papeete to Bora Bora. The flight time is approximately 50 minutes.
A private boat transfer to the Airport or pier is provided today.
Scattering itself along the water, the Intercontinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa is seated in the Motu Piti Aau island of Bora Bora. Relax in the comfort and luxuries of 80 overwater villas. Each is equipped with solid furniture, contemporary decor, and the best of high tech audio and video. Panoramic views, a shaded terrace, and solarium are just a few of the delicious features of these villas. Dine at either of two restaurants, each embracing an individual personality. Choose from gourmet cuisine overlooking the lagoon and beach, or casual cocktails and light snacks on the beach. A luscious infinity swimming pool awaits guests in the resort. Also enjoy the spa treatments for which the hotel prides itself.
Get up close to tropical fish, stingrays and blacknose sharks in their natural habitat, the beautiful Bora Bora lagoon, from the decks of the charming Cap Camarat Bayliner. The safari’s schedule can be tailored to suit your interests, so if you want to come face to face with the lagoon’s manta rays, just let your guide know!
If you are here to relax or seeking for adventure, Bora Bora has many memorable, one of a kind experiences to offer; great beaches and a fantastic selection of water sports are awaiting your arrival. The newest sport to hit French Polynesia in the past 50 years has to be kiteboarding. The French call it Flysurfing, and it's also known as kitesurfing. The winds are excellent and for the most part dependable, and there are a few decent spots to launch from shore. There is also lagoon swimming, jetskiing, and world class scuba diving to name a few of the water activities. Try some of the local or wonderful French cuisine that the island has to offer. Take a walk around the beautiful island. The trail system is good and can easily be experienced in only a day or two of non-strenuous hiking.
Bloody Mary's is one of Bora Bora’s most popular restaurants and has welcomed many Hollywood stars to its typically Bora Bora interior. Sink your feet into the sand and indulge in an exotic cocktail with a house special of fish and seafood.
Enjoy your one way direct flight from Bora Bora to Papeete. The flight is approximately 50 minutes.
Enjoy a private airport transfer.
Australia & Pacific
Sharon Weckenbrock ,
May 15, 2013
"We are safely back home but still on Cloud 9 from the fabulous trip that you helped to put together for us! Everything worked just as I had hoped it would and in many cases, exceeded all expectations.
We have definitely been recommending you and your company to anyone asking our advice and again, we can't thank you enough for a trip of a lifetime!"
Australia & Pacific
Donna Brennan ,
April 18, 2013
"The trip was great we all loved the Saint Regis Hotel. It was incredible! Thank you for helping me plan the trip the group was very impressed.
Thank you again,
Australia & Pacific
Paula McNally ,
April 24, 2013
"The trip was wonderful!! . That resort is absolutely beautiful. We had good weather -- hot and humid. The people were very nice everywhere we went. "
Australia & Pacific
Marcia Nunn ,
April 01, 2013
"Candace and I are back in Michigan today after a wonderful trip to New Zealand. You and she did a great job in organizing this trip. Couldn't have been better. In particular, the Wilderness Lodge is a very special place. "
Australia & Pacific
Cindy Burns ,
April 04, 2013
"Miranda is the best, I would recommend her and we plan on contacting her in the future. The hotels were all excellent and the guides knowledge & Service were excellent"
Australia & Pacific
Sheila Black ,
April 08, 2013
"We had the best time you could imagine and it was all based on your planning-thank-you so so much!!
Every hotel was located just where we would have wanted-all so lovely and we loved the buffet breakfasts!! The Grace is a beautiful hotel and everyone was very helpful-we could walk to the main areas and Darling Harbor and we just loved being in Sydney-Norm even got in a game of golf!! Every tour was wonderful. We are so glad you switched us from the large bus Blue Mountain tour to the boutique tour-we heard others talk of the Blue Mountain tour in that it was a long drive, crowded and they did not seem to have a great day. We LOVED our boutique tour-we had a super driver (Cliff)who really really tried to find every animal in the wild he could-we saw kangaroos, emu, wombats and even a koala-it was a wonderful day-we got back about 11;30 pm and because of that we saw so many of the nocturnal animals-he was so accommodating-just a great day!!
The Pullman in Cairns was just gorgeous-and we could walk to the water-we had a perfect(calm!!) day on the reef and we loved the trip to the rainforest-all in all a wonderful few days there. Our weather for the whole trip was also perfect!!! How did you do that!!??!!
We thank-you so much, Louise, for helping us-you take full credit for this holiday and we so often spoke of you there “thanks to Louise for another great day” we would say!! Every tour worked out perfectly-the flights were just great and the timing super-and we really felt you listened to what we ‘thought ‘ we wanted to do and you just seemed to know what would be right for us. We packed some Canada pins and tee shirts and gave them to our tour drivers and they seemed to love that!!
We came home happy and relaxed and so thankful-I will send you a few pictures for certain.
Australia & Pacific
Larry Sanders ,
February 28, 2013
"We had an amazing trip, all the Australia, New Zealand and Hawaii connections worked out great. The hotels, and tours were wonderful. People ask what was your favorite? All of it! We sure saw a lot, everyday was a new adventure. We especially loved the Rees Hotel in Queenstown, and the condo in Hawaii was over the top.
Thank you so much for making our trip so successful.
Australia & Pacific
Josie Rodriguez ,
March 19, 2013
"Thank you for all your help arranging a wonderful Australian tour for us. There was a lot of anxiety/reservation arranging a tour on line, not meeting the other person on the other line but it all ended well and we had a fantastic experience. Please thank also Ruby for us for arranging our domestic flights. The two of you did a very good job in coordinating/planning everything.
For sure I will use you again in our next trip which will be in September. We would like to go to St. Petersburg, Malta and Sicily.
Again, thank you!
Australia & Pacific
Iain Campbell ,
March 13, 2012
"This was our third long haul vacation with Kensington and was truly fantastic trip, probably the best to date. The balance with adventures and activities in New Zealand followed by a restfull couple of days in Bora Bora was just right. I cannot say enough about the local support team who were following up to adjust our schedule following the earthquake in Christchurch right into the evening of Christmas Eve, all changes were made efficiently with the addedd bonus of being able to do a wilderness jet boat tour outside of Queeenstown with our extra day. Many thanks for all you help - we will not hesitate to use Kensington for our future travel adventures
Australia & Pacific
Laura Hollenbaugh ,
February 11, 2013
"It was a great trip. The Medina was great, centrally located and helpful staff. We enjoyed Christmas Mass at the Cathedral with the Cardinal celebrating and the famed boys choir singing. The dinner cruise was fine despite the rain. The driver's tip about the ferries, being a good way to see more of the harbour without great expense was a good one. We especially enjoyed the tour to the Blue Mountains, wonderful lunch at the quaint lodge, and Fetherdale Wild life Sanctuary (fantastic). The accommodations at Uluru were fine and the activities were great, especially the camel ride. We loved the resort at Kewarra. Wonderful service and accommodations and grounds. We spotted a mama and baby Wallabee living in the jungle just outside the suite! We ended up booking 2 days of diving and also a tour of Mossman and Daintree. Wonderful trip. The food was great everywhere but extremely expensive! The locals were always polite and helpful and often amusing! Thanks for all your help! Laura"
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