55 days in New Zealand Itinerary

55 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Created using Inspirock New Zealand holiday planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Queenstown
— 5 nights
Bus
2
Te Anau
— 6 nights
Drive
3
Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu)
— 4 nights
Drive
4
Christchurch
— 3 nights
Fly
5
Wellington
— 3 nights
Fly
6
Tongariro National Park
— 6 nights
Shuttle
7
Taupo
— 5 nights
Drive
8
Rotorua
— 5 nights
Drive
9
Waitomo Caves
— 3 nights
Drive
10
Hamilton
— 1 night
Drive
11
Whitianga
— 2 nights
Drive
12
Auckland
— 4 nights
Fly
13
Paihia
— 5 nights
Fly

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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.
On the 11th (Fri), dedicate a day to the elevated beauty of Coronet Peak. Next up on the itinerary: have some family-friendly fun at Skyline Queenstown, do a tasting at Peregrine Wines, get outside with Outdoor Activities, and relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas.

For ratings, traveler tips, more things to do, and tourist information, you can read our Queenstown trip itinerary maker website.

Zurich, Switzerland to Queenstown is an approximately 30-hour flight. The time zone difference moving from Central European Standard Time (CET) to New Zealand Standard Time (NZST) is 11 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Sat) to allow time to take a bus to Te Anau.

Things to do in Queenstown

Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Nature
Find places to stay Feb 7 — 12:
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Te Anau

— 6 nights
Set among the picturesque peaks and glacially carved fiords of Fiordland National Park, Te Anau offers those wishing to explore the park a great place to stay and enjoy the relaxing atmosphere of a small town in an enviable location.
Spend the 17th (Thu) exploring at Doubtful Sound. On the 15th (Tue), hike the day away at Hollyford Track. There's lots more to do: explore the activities along Milford Sound, trek along The Chasm Walk, stroll through Lake Marian Track, and add some adventure to your tour with a kayaking and canoeing tour.

For where to stay, more things to do, maps, and other tourist information, go to the Te Anau trip builder website.

Getting from Queenstown to Te Anau by bus takes about 4 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Fri) early enough to travel to Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu).

Things to do in Te Anau

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Trails

Side Trip

Find places to stay Feb 12 — 18:
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Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu)

— 4 nights
Explore Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu)'s surroundings by going to Spas (in Franz Josef) and Fox Glacier (Gillespies Beach, Helicopter Tours, &more).

For more things to do, where to stay, reviews, and more tourist information, use the Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu) online road trip planner.

The Route module can help you plan travel from Te Anau to Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu). Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Tue) to allow time to travel to Christchurch.

Things to do in Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu)

Outdoors · Parks · Trails · Tours

Side Trips

Find places to stay Feb 18 — 22:
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Christchurch

— 3 nights

Garden City

Recovering from the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 was no easy task, but Christchurch has faced the challenges with aplomb.
On the 24th (Thu), spend the day riding on TranzAlpine Train. And it doesn't end there: walk around Christchurch Botanic Gardens, get to know the resident critters at Willowbank Wildlife Reserve, admire the natural beauty at Ohinetahi Garden, and see the interesting displays at International Antarctic Centre.

To find out how to plan a trip to Christchurch, use our trip itinerary maker.

Explore your travel options from Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu) to Christchurch with the Route module. February in Christchurch sees daily highs of 26°C and lows of 13°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Fri) early enough to fly to Wellington.

Things to do in Christchurch

Transportation · Parks · Tours · Museums

Side Trip

Find places to stay Feb 22 — 25:
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Wellington

— 3 nights

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.
Wellington is known for museums, parks, and classes. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: see the interesting displays at Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, take some stellar pictures from Mount Victoria, steep yourself in history at Old St Paul's, and take a memorable ride with Wellington Cable Car.

For reviews, maps, and more tourist information, read Wellington day trip site.

Fly from Christchurch to Wellington in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car and ferry; or do a combination of bus and ferry. Traveling from Christchurch in February, expect a bit warmer with lows of 17°C in Wellington. Cap off your sightseeing on the 28th (Mon) early enough to catch the flight to Tongariro National Park.

Things to do in Wellington

Side Trip

Find places to stay Feb 25 — 28:
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Tongariro National Park

— 6 nights
Tongariro National Park has a long history of preserving New Zealand's pristine alpine landscape.
On the 6th (Sun), hike the day away at Tongariro Alpine Crossing. On the 2nd (Wed), hike the day away at Horsemtrails. There's much more to do: hike along Tongariro Northern Circuit, stroll through Rotopounamu Track, explore the activities along Tama Lakes, and take in the pleasant sights at Mead's Wall.

For more things to do, ratings, other places to visit, and tourist information, go to the Tongariro National Park day trip planner.

Traveling by flight from Wellington to Tongariro National Park takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of train and taxi. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 6th (Sun) early enough to take a shuttle to Taupo.

Things to do in Tongariro National Park

Parks · Trails · Outdoors · Nature
Find places to stay Feb 28 — Mar 6:
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Taupo

— 5 nights

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.
Taupo is known for nature, adventure, and theme parks. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: take in the dramatic scenery at Huka Falls Walkway, contemplate the waterfront views at Lake Taupo, witness a stunning natural landmark at Wairakei Natural Thermal Valley, and look for gifts at Huka Honey Hive.

To plan Taupo vacation without wasting time, ask Inspirock to design an itinerary.

Take a shuttle from Tongariro National Park to Taupo in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of taxi and bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 11th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Rotorua.

Things to do in Taupo

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours
Find places to stay Mar 6 — 11:
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Rotorua

— 5 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.
Change things up with these side-trips from Rotorua: Hobbiton Movie Set (in Hinuera) and Mount Maunganui (Mount Maunganui Base Track & Mount Maunganui Summit Track). There's lots more to do: witness a stunning natural landmark at Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, relax in the rural setting at Agrodome, explore and take pictures at Te Puia, and let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour.

For ratings, more things to do, maps, and other tourist information, use the Rotorua attractions planner.

Drive from Taupo to Rotorua in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In March, plan for daily highs up to 26°C, and evening lows to 18°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 16th (Wed) so you can go by car to Waitomo Caves.

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trips

Find places to stay Mar 11 — 16:
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Waitomo Caves

— 3 nights
Head deep beneath the surface of the earth at Waitomo Caves, a village and cave system that draws both extreme sports enthusiasts and those wanting something a little more relaxed.
Waitomo Caves is known for nature, adventure, and wildlife. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: explore the fascinating underground world of Waitomo Glowworm Caves, tour the pleasant surroundings at Ruakuri Walk, get outside with Spellbound Glowworm & Cave Tours, and let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour.

To find photos, maps, other places to visit, and other tourist information, you can read our Waitomo Caves trip itinerary planner.

Traveling by car from Rotorua to Waitomo Caves takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 19th (Sat) so you can drive to Hamilton.

Things to do in Waitomo Caves

Outdoors · Parks · Tours · Nature
Find places to stay Mar 16 — 19:
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Hamilton

— 1 night

Tron

On the banks of the Waikato River lies Hamilton, a pretty, active city on North Island.
Start off your visit on the 20th (Sun): stroll around Hamilton Gardens and then examine the collection at Waikato Museum.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, and other tourist information, go to the Hamilton trip itinerary planner.

Traveling by car from Waitomo Caves to Hamilton takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 20th (Sun) so you can go by car to Whitianga.

Things to do in Hamilton

Museums · Parks
Find places to stay Mar 19 — 20:
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Whitianga

— 2 nights
Whitianga is a town on the Coromandel Peninsula, in the Waikato Region of New Zealand's North Island. On the 21st (Mon), see the interesting displays at Mercury Bay Museum and then get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports. On the next day, stroll through Cathedral Cove Walk and then witness a stunning natural landmark at Hot Water Beach.

For where to stay, reviews, and more tourist information, use the Whitianga trip builder site.

Getting from Hamilton to Whitianga by car takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of train and car; or do a combination of bus and shuttle. In March in Whitianga, expect temperatures between 26°C during the day and 18°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Tue) so you can drive to Auckland.

Things to do in Whitianga

Outdoors · Parks · Nature · Museums

Side Trips

Find places to stay Mar 20 — 22:
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Auckland

— 4 nights

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.
Auckland is known for nature, museums, and parks. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: make a trip to SkyTower, step off the mainland to explore Tiritiri Matangi Visitor Centre, explore the world behind art at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki, and enjoy a live performance at SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton's Aquarium.

For more things to do, traveler tips, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Auckland itinerary planning app.

Getting from Whitianga to Auckland by car takes about 3 hours. Other options: take a shuttle; or take a bus. When traveling from Whitianga in March, plan for a bit cooler days and a bit warmer nights in Auckland: temperatures range from 22°C by day to 22°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 26th (Sat) so you can catch the flight to Paihia.

Things to do in Auckland

Parks · Museums · Nature · Zoos & Aquariums
Find places to stay Mar 22 — 26:
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Paihia

— 5 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 Paihia with a short trip to Poor Knights Island Marine Reserve in Whangarei, about 1h 25 min away. Spend a day of island exploring on the 27th (Sun) at Urupukapuka Island. There's lots more to do: take in nature's colorful creations at Waitangi Treaty Grounds, admire the striking features of The Stone Store & Kemp House - Kerikeri Mission Station, glide through the air with a parasailing or paragliding tour, and pause for some serene contemplation at St Paul's Anglican Church.

For reviews, traveler tips, photos, and tourist information, use the Paihia online trip itinerary builder.

Fly from Auckland to Paihia in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 31st (Thu) so you can fly back home.

Things to do in Paihia

Parks · Wildlife · Historic Sites · Outdoors

Side Trips

Find places to stay Mar 26 — 31:
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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.