(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.
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.
A private vehicle with driver will provide a transfer between the airport and Treetops Lodge.
Enjoy an evening cultural experience at a local Maori concert. It is a feast of cultural storytelling, entertainment and Maori kai (indigenous food). Feel the spirit of Te Puia at night and experience the heritage - a living legacy of people, culture and place. Feeding guests is regarded by Maori as an honour 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 flavour.
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.
The Tongariro Crossing is considered by many as one of the greatest 1-day hikes in the world, and a must do for the intrepid traveler. Boasting stunning views from all around, the hike begins from Mt Tongariro to Mt Ngauruhoe under the guidance of an experience regional expert whom will provide information about the local Kiwi on their tribal lands. Upon completion of this magnificent walk a return transfer to Rotorua is provided.
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.
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.
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 and personal with 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 is tailor-made to suit you so if you want to come face to face with the lagoon’s manta rays, just let us know!
Bora Bora has many memorable, one of a kind adventures to experience, a fantastic selection of water sports awaiting your arrival. If you're in the mood to just relax, there are many wonderful options for you as well. The most radical new 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. It basically involves being pulled on a board similar to a surfboard with straps, by a powerful kite. The winds are excellent, and (for the most part), dependable, and there's a few decent spots to launch from shore. 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 easily experienced in only a day or two of non-strenuous hiking.
One of Bora Bora’s most popular restaurants 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.
VISA/PASSPORTA passport valid for six months beyond duration of stay is required for both US and Canadian citizens. Visas are not required for stays of up to three months.
Please note obtaining a visa is your responsibility. These requirements change often and therefore it is best that you check information about entry requirements, travelers, particularly those planning to enter by sea,with the french Embassy.HEALTHHealth insurance is required. Medical facilities are not widespread and poor quality. We recommend that you see a health-care provider who specializes in Travel Medicine. The doctor or health-care provider will determine what vaccinations and medication you will need, depending on factors such as your health and immunization history, areas of the country you will be visiting, and planned activities. For more information on travel requirements, visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/french-polynesia.aspx COUNTRY INFOCapital: Papeete (Tahiti Island). Government: French Overseas Territory since 1946. Language: The official languages are French and Tahitian. Other Polynesian languages are spoken by the indigenous population. English is widely understood, mainly by islanders accustomed to dealing with foreign visitors. Religion: Approximately 55% Protestant and 34% Catholic. Time: Tahiti and Her Islands span three time zones: Gambier Islands: GMT - 9. Marquesas Islands: GMT - 9.5. Society Archipelago, Tubuai Islands, Tuamotu Archipelago (except Gambier Islands), Tahiti: GMT - 10. Electricity: 110/220 volts AC, 60Hz. US-style two-pin plugs are in use. Telephone: Country code +689 Mobile Telephone: The GSM 900 network is not compatible with US mobile phones. Mobile phones are available to rent, which offer better rates than roaming fees. Internet: There are Internet cafes in Papeete and Moorea.
VISA/PASSPORTU.S. and Canadian citizens eligible for a visa waiver do not need a visa for tourist stays of three months or less.
Please note obtaining a visa is your responsibility. These requirements change often and therefore it is best that you check with the Embassy of New Zealand for the most up to date visa information.
HEALTHHealth insurance is recommended. Medical facilities are good quality. We recommend that you see a health-care provider who specializes in Travel Medicine. The doctor or health-care provider will determine what vaccinations and medication you will need, depending on factors such as your health and immunization history, areas of the country you will be visiting, and planned activities. For more information on travel requirements, visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/new-zealand.aspx COUNTRY INFOCapital: Wellington. Government: Constitutional monarchy since 1907. Language: English is the common and everyday language, but other languages are also spoken, including Maori, which is New Zealand’s second official language (spoken by the indigenous Maori people who constitute approximately 15% of the population). Religion: 55% Christian: Anglican, Presbyterian, Roman Catholic and Methodist are all represented. Time: New Zealand: GMT + 12 (GMT + 13 from the last Sunday in September to the first Sunday in April). Chatham Island: GMT + 12.75 (GMT + 13.75 from the last Sunday in September to the first Sunday in April). Electricity: 230 volts AC, 50Hz. Most hotels provide 110-volt AC sockets (rated at 20 watts) for electric razors only. Telephone: Country code: 64. Most public phones take cards purchased from bookstalls; some also accept credit cards, but very few still accept coins. Mobile Telephone: Roaming agreements exist with most international mobile phone companies. Coverage is good. Internet: There are Internet cafes in cities and smaller town central business districts. Travelers may access the Internet at many hotels and youth hostels.
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