17 days in New Zealand Itinerary

17 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Created using Inspirock New Zealand holiday planner

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Route & dates

17 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Start: Doha
Fly:  21​h 30​min
1
Christchurch
— 1 night
Drive:  1​h 30​min
2
Akaroa
— 1 night
bus + Fly:  6​h 45​min
3
Queenstown
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h 30​min
4
Franz Josef
— 1 night
Drive:  6​h 45​min
5
Kaikoura
— 2 nights
6
Nelson
— 2 nights
Drive + ferry:  4​h 45​min
7
Wellington
— 1 night
Drive:  4​h 30​min
8
New Plymouth
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h 45​min
9
Rotorua
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
10
Auckland
— Few hours
Fly:  20​h
End: Doha

1
night
Christchurch

Christchurch ©
Recovering from the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 was no easy task, but Christchurch has faced the challenges with aplomb.
On the 5th (Fri), contemplate the long history of Riccarton House & Bush and then take an in-depth tour of Canterbury Museum.

To find where to stay, more things to do, reviews, and tourist information, you can read our Christchurch route builder .

Doha, Qatar to Christchurch is an approximately 21.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of car and flight; or do a combination of flight, taxi, and bus. You'll lose 9 hours traveling from Doha to Christchurch due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Doha in July, expect Christchurch to be colder, temps between 13°C and 1°C. On the 5th (Fri), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive to Akaroa.

Things to do in Christchurch

Museums Historic Sites Parks
Find places to stay Jul 4 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Canterbury Museum ©
Canterbury Museum
Riccarton House & Bush ©
Riccarton House & Bush

1
night
Akaroa

Akaroa ©
The French heritage and colonial architecture of Akaroa has broad appeal to anthropologists, historians, architects--and just about anyone with an eye for beautiful, historical buildings and a palate for fine dining.
On the 5th (Fri), take in the architecture and atmosphere at Saint Peter's Anglican Church and then take in the spiritual surroundings of Catholic St. Patrick's Akaroa.

For photos, other places to visit, reviews, and more tourist information, refer to the Akaroa route planner .

You can drive from Christchurch to Akaroa in 1.5 hours. Another option is to take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 13°C in July, and nighttime lows around 1°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 6th (Sat) early enough to travel to Queenstown.

Things to do in Akaroa

Parks Wildlife Historic Sites
Find places to stay Jul 5 — 6:
Highlights from your plan
Hinewai Reserve ©
Hinewai Reserve
Akaroa Museum ©
Akaroa Museum
Saint Peter's Anglican Church ©
Saint Peter's Anglican Church

2
nights
Queenstown

Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
Kick off your visit on the 7th (Sun): explore the landscape on two wheels at Queenstown Trail, then indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas, and then take in the exciting artwork at Hetties Rock & Crystal Shop.

For photos, traveler tips, more things to do, and other tourist information, use the Queenstown trip planning website .

Traveling by combination of bus and flight from Akaroa to Queenstown takes 7 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 8th (Mon) early enough to drive to Franz Josef.

Things to do in Queenstown

Trails Parks Outdoors
Find places to stay Jul 6 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Spas
Hetties Rock & Crystal Shop ©
Hetties Rock & Crystal Shop

1
night
Franz Josef

Franz Josef ©
Located in the World Heritage Site that is home to its eponymous glacier, the town of Franz Josef provides a comfortable and welcoming rest spot for adventurers after a long day out on the ice.
Start off your visit on the 8th (Mon): have fun at Franz Josef Clay Target Shooting, then indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas, then take in the dramatic natural features at Franz Josef Glacier, and finally look for all kinds of wild species at West Coast Wildlife Centre. Here are some ideas for day two: trek along Peters Pool Walk, trek along Sentinel Rock Walk, take in the exciting artwork at Te Koha Gallery, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Terrace Walk, then hike along Tatare Tunnels Walk, and finally tour the pleasant surroundings at Callery Gorge Walk.

To find photos, where to stay, and other tourist information, read Franz Josef travel route website .

You can drive from Queenstown to Franz Josef in 4.5 hours. Another option is to take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 9th (Tue) so you can go by car to Kaikoura.

Things to do in Franz Josef

Parks Trails Outdoors
Find places to stay Jul 8 — 9:
Highlights from your plan
Franz Josef Glacier ©
Franz Josef Glacier
West Coast Wildlife Centre ©
West Coast Wildlife Centre
Tatare Tunnels Walk ©
Tatare Tunnels Walk

2
nights
Kaikoura

Kaikoura ©
Head to the small town of Kaikoura, a humble setting from which to witness some of nature's grandest designs.
Get outdoors at Ohau Stream Walk and Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Nature & Wildlife Tours and Queen Mary Hospital. Get out of town with these interesting Kaikoura side-trips: Hanmer Springs (Hanmer Pitch & Putt & Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa). There's lots more to do: Head underground at Maori Leap Cave, look for gifts at Kaikoura Cheese, get engrossed in the history at Kaikoura Museum, and get up close to creatures of the deep with a dolphin and whale watching tour.

To see reviews, ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, you can read our Kaikoura trip itinerary planning tool .

Traveling by car from Franz Josef to Kaikoura takes 7 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of bus and train. Cap off your sightseeing on the 12th (Fri) early enough to travel to Nelson.

Things to do in Kaikoura

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trip

Hanmer Springs
Find places to stay Jul 9 — 12:
Highlights from your plan
Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa ©
Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway ©
Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway
Ohau Stream Walk ©
Ohau Stream Walk

2
nights
Nelson

Nelson ©
Put on your shades to enjoy the sights of Nelson, one of the sunniest cities in New Zealand.
Start off your visit on the 13th (Sat): take in the exciting artwork at Rare Creations Interactive Wooden Art Gallery, do a tasting at Rimu Grove Winery, stroll through Railway Reserve, then take in the architecture and atmosphere at Christ Church Cathedral, and finally view the masterpieces at South Street Gallery.

Planning Nelson trip won't be overwheling when you use's Insprock itinerary maker.

Do a combination of train and bus from Kaikoura to Nelson in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or drive. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 14th (Sun) early enough to travel to Wellington.

Things to do in Nelson

Shopping Museums Trails

Side Trip

Mapua
Find places to stay Jul 12 — 14:
Highlights from your plan
Christ Church Cathedral ©
Christ Church Cathedral
Rimu Grove Winery ©
Rimu Grove Winery

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.
Kick off your visit on the 14th (Sun): take in the spiritual surroundings of Saint Mary of the Angels, then kick back and relax at Lyall Bay, then brush up on your military savvy at National War Memorial, and finally get engrossed in the history at The Great War Exhibition.

For traveler tips, photos, maps, and more tourist information, read our Wellington planning app .

Traveling by flight from Nelson to Wellington takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and flight; or do a combination of car and ferry. In July, plan for daily highs up to 14°C, and evening lows to 8°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 15th (Mon) so you can travel to New Plymouth.

Things to do in Wellington

Museums Beaches Parks
Find places to stay Jul 13 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
The Great War Exhibition ©
The Great War Exhibition
National War Memorial ©
National War Memorial
Lyall Bay ©
Lyall Bay

1
night
New Plymouth

New Plymouth ©
Where other cities run, New Plymouth prefers to stroll.
Start off your visit on the 15th (Mon): stroll through Back Beach, don't miss a visit to Port Taranaki Walkway, and then explore the different monuments and memorials at Te Henui Cemetery. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: stroll through Oakura Beach, take in the architecture and atmosphere at Taranaki Cathedral, Church of St Mary, then stroll through Te Henui Walkway, and finally take in the views from Te Rewa Rewa Bridge.

Discover how to plan a New Plymouth trip in just a few steps with Inspirock's itinerary builder.

You can fly from Wellington to New Plymouth in 2.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 16th (Tue) early enough to drive to Rotorua.

Things to do in New Plymouth

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trip

Oakura Beach
Find places to stay Jul 15 — 16:
Highlights from your plan
Te Henui Walkway ©
Te Henui Walkway
Port Taranaki Walkway ©
Port Taranaki Walkway
Te Henui Cemetery ©
Te Henui Cemetery

2
nights
Rotorua

Rotorua ©
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.
On the 17th (Wed), pause for some serene contemplation at St. Faith's Anglican Church, explore the galleries of 3D Trick Art Gallery, learn about winemaking at Volcanic Hills Winery, then contemplate the long history of Ohinemutu, and finally admire all the interesting features of Government Gardens. On the 18th (Thu), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: look for all kinds of wild species at Waimangu Volcanic Valley and then look for all kinds of wild species at Wingspan National Bird of Prey Centre.

To find more things to do, other places to visit, reviews, and more tourist information, read our Rotorua trip planner .

You can drive from New Plymouth to Rotorua in 4 hours. Other options are to fly; or do a combination of flight and bus. July in Rotorua sees daily highs of 17°C and lows of 7°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Thu) early enough to drive to Auckland.

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks Wildlife Historic Sites

Side Trip

Waimangu Volcanic Valley
Find places to stay Jul 16 — 18:
Highlights from your plan
Waimangu Volcanic Valley ©
Waimangu Volcanic Valley
Wingspan National Bird of Prey Centre ©
St. Faith's Anglican Church ©
St. Faith's Anglican Church

few
hours
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.
To see where to stay, more things to do, traveler tips, and tourist information, go to the Auckland trip planner .

Drive from Rotorua to Auckland in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or fly. While traveling from Rotorua, expect a bit cooler days and somewhat warmer nights in Auckland, ranging from highs of 13°C to lows of 13°C. On the 18th (Thu), you're off tohome.

Things to do in Auckland

Tours Outdoors Parks
Find places to stay Jul 18 — 19:

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