20 days in New Zealand Itinerary

20 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Created using Inspirock New Zealand travel planner

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Route & dates

20 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Start: Brisbane
Fly:  6​h 45​min
1
Auckland
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h
2
Paihia
— 3 nights
Fly:  3​h 30​min
3
Taupo
— 2 nights
Fly:  2​h 45​min
4
Wellington
— 1 night
Fly:  2​h 15​min
5
Nelson
— 2 nights
Fly + bus:  3​h
6
Christchurch
— 2 nights
7
Queenstown
— 3 nights
+2
Fly + bus + ferry:  6​h
8
Waiheke Island
— 3 nights
+2
ferry + bus + Fly:  5​h 45​min
End: Christchurch

3
nights
Auckland

Auckland ©
The largest and most populous city in New Zealand, Auckland combines a rich history and thriving contemporary culture in an abundance of museums, art galleries, and performance venues.
Wine Tours & Tastings has been added to your itinerary. There's lots more to do: enjoy breathtaking views from Sky Tower, contemplate the waterfront views at Devonport, step off the mainland to explore Waiheke Island, and do a tasting at Foxes Island.

To see reviews, traveler tips, ratings, and other tourist information, read our Auckland journey planner .

Brisbane, Australia to Auckland is an approximately 7-hour flight. You can also do a combination of train and flight; or do a combination of train, bus, and flight. The time zone difference when traveling from Brisbane to Auckland is 2 hours. While traveling from Brisbane, expect little chillier days and about the same nights in Auckland, ranging from highs of 20°C to lows of 20°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 2nd (Thu) early enough to drive to Paihia.

Things to do in Auckland

Parks Nature Tours

Side Trip

Cheltenham Beach
Find places to stay Dec 30 — Jan 2:
Highlights from your plan
SkyTower ©
SkyTower
Wine Tours & Tastings
Devonport ©
Devonport

3
nights
Paihia

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.
When in Paihia, make a side trip to see Pompallier Mission and Printery in Russell, approximately 42 minutes away. The adventure continues: admire all the interesting features of Waitangi Treaty Grounds, look for all kinds of wild species at Wildlife Areas, see some colorful creatures with a scuba or snorkeling tour, and trek along Kororipo Pa Historic Walk.

To see ratings, other places to visit, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our Paihia day trip planner.

Traveling by car from Auckland to Paihia takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and flight; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Sun) early enough to travel to Taupo.

Things to do in Paihia

Outdoors Wildlife Tours

Side Trips

Kerikeri, Pompallier Mission and Printery
Find places to stay Jan 2 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Dolphin & Whale Watching
Waitangi Treaty Grounds ©
Waitangi Treaty Grounds
Scuba & Snorkeling

2
nights
Taupo

The resort town of Taupo lies on the banks of Lake Taupo, the largest body of water in the whole of Australasia.
Start off your visit on the 6th (Mon): don't miss a visit to Aratiatia Rapids, enjoy some diversion at Huka Prawn Park, then get the adrenaline pumping with an extreme tour, and finally admire the sheer force of Huka Falls Walkway.

For other places to visit, reviews, traveler tips, and other tourist information, go to the Taupo online visit planner .

Fly from Paihia to Taupo in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or drive. Cap off your sightseeing on the 7th (Tue) early enough to travel to Wellington.

Things to do in Taupo

Outdoors Parks Tours
Find places to stay Jan 5 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
Adrenaline & Extreme Tours
Huka Falls Walkway ©
Huka Falls Walkway
Huka Prawn Park ©
Huka Prawn Park

1
night
Wellington

Wellington
Wellington, the world's southernmost capital city and New Zealand's second most populous urban area, combines the nation's rugged history and nature with its modern and cosmopolitan present.
Start off your visit on the 7th (Tue): look for all kinds of wild species at ZEALANDIA Sanctuary, then take in nature's colorful creations at Wellington Botanic Garden, and then see the interesting displays at Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

To find ratings, where to stay, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Wellington tour itinerary builder tool .

Traveling by flight from Taupo to Wellington takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and flight. In January, daytime highs in Wellington are 24°C, while nighttime lows are 17°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Wed) so you can travel to Nelson.

Things to do in Wellington

Parks Wildlife Museums

Side Trip

Wellington Botanic Garden
Find places to stay Jan 7 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Wellington Botanic Garden ©
Wellington Botanic Garden
ZEALANDIA Sanctuary ©
ZEALANDIA Sanctuary

2
nights
Nelson

Nelson ©
Put on your shades to enjoy the sights of Nelson, one of the sunniest cities in New Zealand.
Kick off your visit on the 8th (Wed): walk around Founders Park, see the interesting displays at World of WearableArt & Classic Car Museum, and then kick back and relax at Kaiteriteri Beach. Keep things going the next day: kick back and relax at Tahunanui Beach, get engrossed in the history at Nelson Provincial Museum, then make a trip to Centre of New Zealand, and finally admire the natural beauty at Queen's Gardens.

To see reviews, where to stay, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read our Nelson online itinerary planner .

You can fly from Wellington to Nelson in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or do a combination of ferry and car. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Fri) early enough to travel to Christchurch.

Things to do in Nelson

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trip

Kaiteriteri Beach
Find places to stay Jan 7 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Founders Park ©
Founders Park
Nelson Provincial Museum ©
Nelson Provincial Museum

2
nights
Christchurch

Christchurch ©
Recovering from the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 was no easy task, but Christchurch has faced the challenges with aplomb.
On the 10th (Fri), catch a ride on TranzAlpine Train, see the interesting displays at International Antarctic Centre, and then pause for some photo ops at Chalice Sculpture. Here are some ideas for day two: take an in-depth tour of Canterbury Museum, take in nature's colorful creations at Christchurch Botanic Gardens, then take a memorable ride with Christchurch Gondola, and finally make a trip to Cardboard Cathedral.

For more things to do, traveler tips, and tourist information, read Christchurch trip itinerary planning website .

You can do a combination of flight and bus from Nelson to Christchurch in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and flight. Expect a daytime high around 26°C in January, and nighttime lows around 13°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Sun) to allow time to travel to Queenstown.

Things to do in Christchurch

Transportation Tours Museums
Find places to stay Jan 10 — 12:
Highlights from your plan
TranzAlpine Train ©
TranzAlpine Train
Christchurch Botanic Gardens ©
Christchurch Botanic Gardens
Canterbury Museum ©
Canterbury Museum

3
nights
Queenstown

Queenstown ©
Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
Queenstown is known for fun & games, adventure, wildlife, nature, and spas. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: get your game on at Skyline Queenstown, learn about winemaking at Chard Farm Winery, whizz through the canopy at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks, and push the limits with an extreme tour.

Inspirock's itinerary builder makes planning a Queenstown trip simple and quick.

Fly from Christchurch to Queenstown in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. On the 15th (Wed), you'll have the morning to explore before heading back home.

Things to do in Queenstown

Outdoors Tours Parks
Find places to stay Jan 12 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Skyline Queenstown ©
Skyline Queenstown
Adrenaline & Extreme Tours
Zipline

3
nights
Waiheke Island

Head to Waiheke Island, a place of white sandy beaches, palm trees, great wine, and relaxation, just 35 minutes off the coast of Auckland.
Waiheke Island is known for adventure, wineries, breweries & distilleries, wildlife, and outdoors. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: awaken your taste buds at some of the top wineries in the area, learn about winemaking at Stonyridge Vineyard, indulge your thirst for a good beer at Wild on Waiheke, and explore the galleries of Waiheke Community Art Gallery.

To see other places to visit, photos, reviews, and more tourist information, read our Waiheke Island day trip planner .

Traveling by combination of flight and ferry from Queenstown to Waiheke Island takes 6 hours. January in Waiheke Island sees daily highs of 26°C and lows of 19°C at night. On the 18th (Sat), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Waiheke Island

Wineries Tours Breweries & Distilleries
Find places to stay Jan 15 — 18:
Highlights from your plan
Wine Tours & Tastings
Stonyridge Vineyard ©
Stonyridge Vineyard
Obsidian Vineyard ©
Obsidian Vineyard

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