24 days in New Zealand Itinerary

24 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Created using Inspirock New Zealand trip planner
Make it your trip
Fly
1
Auckland
— 1 night
Drive
2
Paihia
— 2 nights
Drive
3
Rotorua
— 2 nights
Drive
4
Taupo
— 1 night
Drive
5
Tongariro National Park
— 1 night
Drive
6
Wellington
— 1 night
Ferry to Picton, Drive to Christchurch
7
Christchurch
— 1 night
Drive
8
Arthur's Pass National Park
Drive
9
Franz Josef
— 1 night
Drive
10
Lake Tekapo
— 1 night
Drive
11
Wanaka
Bus
12
Queenstown
— 5 nights
Fly
13
Auckland
— 5 nights
Fly

S M T W T F S
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1

Auckland — 1 night

City of Sails

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.
On the 7th (Tue), make a trip to SkyTower.

To see other places to visit, reviews, traveler tips, and other tourist information, use the Auckland trip planner.

Chicago, USA to Auckland is an approximately 19.5-hour flight. The time zone difference moving from Central Standard Time to New Zealand Standard Time is 18 hours. Traveling from Chicago in March, expect Auckland to be much warmer, temps between 22°C and 22°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 8th (Wed) so you can catch the flight to Paihia.
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Find places to stay Mar 7 — 8:
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Paihia — 2 nights

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.
Take a break from the city and head to Phantom Sailing and The Strand Beach. Go for a jaunt from Paihia to Kawakawa to see Kawiti Caves about 36 minutes away. And it doesn't end there: trek along Kerikeri River Track, relax in the rural setting at Blue River Orchard, learn about winemaking at Byrne Northland Wines, and admire the sheer force of Haruru Falls.

For ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, refer to the Paihia trip itinerary builder tool.

Fly from Auckland to Paihia in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 10th (Fri) to allow enough time to fly to Rotorua.
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Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours
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Find places to stay Mar 8 — 10:
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Rotorua — 2 nights

Sulphur City

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.
Start off your visit on the 11th (Sat): delve into the lush surroundings at Redwoods, Whakarewarewa Forest, then witness a stunning natural landmark at Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, then trot along with a tour on horseback, and finally kick back and relax at Papamoa Beach.

To see where to stay, ratings, and more tourist information, refer to the Rotorua online trip maker.

Getting from Paihia to Rotorua by flight takes about 4.5 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. In March, daytime highs in Rotorua are 26°C, while nighttime lows are 18°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 12th (Sun) to allow enough time to drive to Taupo.
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Find places to stay Mar 10 — 12:
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Taupo — 1 night

Great Cloak of Tia

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 12th (Sun): get interesting insight from Tours, then make a splash at Taupo DeBretts Spa Resort, and then take in the dramatic scenery at Huka Falls Walkway.

To see where to stay, other places to visit, reviews, and tourist information, read our Taupo trip planner.

You can drive from Rotorua to Taupo in 1.5 hours. Another option is to take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 13th (Mon) so you can catch the shuttle to Tongariro National Park.
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Outdoors · Tours · Nature · Parks
Find places to stay Mar 12 — 13:
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Tongariro National Park — 1 night

Tongariro National Park has a long history of preserving New Zealand's pristine alpine landscape.
Kick off your visit on the 13th (Mon): trek along Tongariro Alpine Crossing, tour the pleasant surroundings at Taranaki Falls, take in the dramatic scenery at Tawhai Falls, then hike along Mounds Walk, and finally tour the pleasant surroundings at Whakapapa Nature Walk. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: go for a walk through Mead's Wall and then hike along Silica Rapids Track.

To find photos, ratings, where to stay, and tourist information, read our Tongariro National Park online tour planner.

You can take a shuttle from Taupo to Tongariro National Park in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi. On the 14th (Tue), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can fly to Wellington.
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Find places to stay Mar 13 — 14:
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Wellington — 1 night

Harbour Capital

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 15th (Wed): steep yourself in history at Wellington Cable Car and then take in nature's colorful creations at Wellington Botanic Garden.

To find reviews, other places to visit, where to stay, and other tourist information, read Wellington online tour itinerary planner.

Getting from Tongariro National Park to Wellington by flight takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: drive; or do a combination of taxi and train. Expect a daytime high around 22°C in March, and nighttime lows around 16°C. On the 15th (Wed), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can fly to Christchurch.
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Parks · Transportation · Historic Sites
Side Trip
Find places to stay Mar 14 — 15:
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Christchurch — 1 night

Garden City

Recovering from the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 was no easy task, but Christchurch has faced the challenges with aplomb.
On the 16th (Thu), take a memorable ride with TranzAlpine Train and then see the interesting displays at International Antarctic Centre.

For traveler tips, photos, more things to do, and other tourist information, you can read our Christchurch travel planner.

You can fly from Wellington to Christchurch in 2.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of ferry and car; or do a combination of ferry and bus. Traveling from Wellington in March, Christchurch is little chillier at night with lows of 11°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 16th (Thu) so you can travel to Arthur's Pass National Park.
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Tours · Transportation · Museums
Find places to stay Mar 15 — 16:
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Arthur's Pass National Park

To see photos, more things to do, ratings, and tourist information, use the Arthur's Pass National Park trip itinerary planner.

The Route module can help you plan travel from Christchurch to Arthur's Pass National Park. You'll set off for Franz Josef on the 16th (Thu).
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Outdoors · Parks · Trails · Winter Sports
Find places to stay Mar 16 — 17:
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Franz Josef — 1 night

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.
Kick off your visit on the 17th (Fri): take in the dramatic natural features at Franz Josef Glacier and then see the world from above with a helicopter tour.

For maps, photos, ratings, and more tourist information, you can read our Franz Josef trip itinerary planner.

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Arthur's Pass National Park to Franz Josef. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 17th (Fri) to allow time to drive to Lake Tekapo.
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Outdoors · Tours · Nature · Parks
Find places to stay Mar 16 — 17:
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Lake Tekapo — 1 night

Located in a UNESCO Dark Sky Reserve, Lake Tekapo offers evenings of stargazing and days of long walks.
Start off your visit on the 18th (Sat): explore the activities along Lake Tekapo and then boost your wellbeing at Tekapo Springs.

To find reviews, where to stay, traveler tips, and more tourist information, you can read our Lake Tekapo trip builder app.

You can drive from Franz Josef to Lake Tekapo in 6 hours. On the 18th (Sat), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel to Wanaka.
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Nature · Parks · Spas
Find places to stay Mar 17 — 18:
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Wanaka

Situated on the shores of Lake Wanaka in the Otago region, Wanaka has become a popular ski and summer resort area, owing to its extensive views of the lake and its proximity to some of the best slopes in the country.
Kick off your visit on the 18th (Sat): tour the pleasant surroundings at Wanaka.

To see traveler tips, more things to do, where to stay, and more tourist information, go to the Wanaka trip builder app.

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Lake Tekapo to Wanaka. Finish your sightseeing early on the 18th (Sat) to allow enough time to take a bus to Queenstown.
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Outdoors · Nature · Parks · Winter Sports
Find places to stay Mar 18 — 19:
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Queenstown — 5 nights

Shallow Bay

Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
Escape the urban bustle at Te Anau Glowworm Caves and Adrenaline & Extreme Tours. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Queenstown: Bannock Brae (in Cromwell), Millbrook Resort Golf Course (in Arrowtown) and Glenorchy Animal Experience (in Glenorchy). The adventure continues: explore the activities along Lake Te Anau, have some family-friendly fun at Skyline Queenstown, get interesting insight from Tours, and race across the water with a speed boat tour.

To find more things to do, where to stay, ratings, and more tourist information, go to the Queenstown day trip website.

Traveling by bus from Wanaka to Queenstown takes 3 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 23rd (Thu) to allow time for the flight to Auckland.
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Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Nature
Side Trips
Find places to stay Mar 18 — 23:
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Auckland — 5 nights

City of Sails

You'll enjoy a bit of beach vacationing at Orewa Beach and Browns Bay Beach. Get outdoors at Rangitoto Island and Devonport. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Auckland: Wine Tours & Tastings (in Waiheke Island), Piha Beach (in Piha) and Muriwai Beach (in Muriwai Beach). Explore Auckland further: get impressive views of Mount Eden, head off the coast to Tiritiri Matangi Visitor Centre, look for gifts at Pauanesia, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Takapuna Beach.

For photos, ratings, where to stay, and tourist information, read Auckland driving holiday site.

Traveling by flight from Queenstown to Auckland takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car and ferry. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 28th (Tue) to allow time for the flight back home.
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Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Nature
Side Trips
Find places to stay Mar 23 — 28:
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New Zealand travel guide

4.5
Land of the Long White Cloud
Far-flung New Zealand has become known for its astounding topography, singular biodiversity, varied climate, and for marrying native Maori and post-colonial European cultures on its two main islands and the multitude of smaller landmasses dotted around them. Free-spirited New Zealanders cultivate a love of sports, sustainability, and the outdoors. Far from other landmasses, the islands existed for millions of years before being inhabited by humans, so an abundance of species have come to thrive in the thick, wild rainforest, vast and rugged backland, and extensive surrounding marine areas. While much of New Zealand tourism centers around adventures through this spectacular scenery, take time to explore the nation's rich cultural heritage as well. The traditions and history of the Maoris, and the industry and internationalism of the descendents of the first European settlers endure in fascinating attractions, ranging from museums, to farms, to places of worship.
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