57 days in New Zealand Itinerary

57 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Created using Inspirock New Zealand itinerary planner

Make it your trip
Fly to Queenstown, Bus to Te Anau
1
Te Anau
— 6 nights
Bus
2
Queenstown
— 4 nights
Drive
3
Fox Glacier
— 4 nights
Drive
4
Akaroa
— 2 nights
Bus to Christchurch, Fly to Wellington
5
Wellington
— 5 nights
Fly
6
Tongariro National Park
— 5 nights
Shuttle
7
Taupo
— 5 nights
Drive
8
Rotorua
— 5 nights
Drive
9
Waitomo Caves
— 3 nights
Drive
10
Whitianga
— 4 nights
Drive
11
Auckland
— 5 nights
Drive
12
Whangarei
— 3 nights
Drive
13
Paihia
— 5 nights
Fly

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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.
Take a break from the city and head to Milford Sound and Doubtful Sound. Step out of Te Anau to go to Milford Sound and see Milford sound Hwy, which is approximately 56 minutes away. On the 12th (Mon), hike the day away at Hollyford Track. And it doesn't end there: trek along Lake Marian Track, stroll through Mirror Lakes Walk, cast your line with a fishing tour, and explore the activities along Ivan Wilson Park.

For other places to visit, photos, reviews, and more tourist information, use the Te Anau trip planning app.

Adelaide, Australia to Te Anau is an approximately 11-hour combination of flight and bus. The time zone difference moving from Australian Central Standard Time to New Zealand Standard Time is 2.5 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Thu) to allow enough time to take a bus to Queenstown.

Things to do in Te Anau

Parks · Outdoors · Wildlife · Nature

Side Trips

Find places to stay Dec 9 — 15:

Queenstown

— 4 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 Mount Aspiring National Park and Zipline. Peregrine Wines and Wine Tours & Tastings are good opportunities to explore the local culture. There's much more to do: relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas, savor the flavors at Food & Drink, get the adrenaline pumping with an extreme tour, and stroll through Kiwi Birdlife Park.

For reviews, more things to do, photos, and tourist information, refer to the Queenstown trip itinerary planner.

Traveling by bus from Te Anau to Queenstown takes 4 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 19th (Mon) so you can drive to Fox Glacier.

Things to do in Queenstown

Tours · Parks · Nature · Outdoors

Side Trip

Find places to stay Dec 15 — 19:

Fox Glacier

— 4 nights
A trip to Fox Glacier brings you close to one of New Zealand's most easily accessible natural wonders.
Do some cultural sightseeing at ReflectioNZ Gifts & Gallery and River Walk. Get in touch with nature at Gillespies Beach and Fox Glacier South Side Walk. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Fox Glacier: Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu) (Hooker Valley Track, Sealy Tarns Track, &more). Next up on the itinerary: stroll through Franz Josef Glacier, hike along Mount Fox Route, see the world from above with a helicopter tour, and take in the pleasant sights at Lake Matheson Walk.

To see ratings, where to stay, photos, and tourist information, refer to the Fox Glacier attractions planner.

You can drive from Queenstown to Fox Glacier in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Fri) so you can drive to Akaroa.

Things to do in Fox Glacier

Parks · Outdoors · Trails · Beaches

Side Trips

Find places to stay Dec 19 — 23:

Akaroa

— 2 nights

Long Harbour

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.
Kick off your visit on the 24th (Sat): contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Catholic St. Patrick's Akaroa, admire the natural beauty at The Giants House, then get engrossed in the history at Akaroa Museum, and finally pause for some serene contemplation at Saint Peter's Anglican Church. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: see majestic marine mammals with a dolphin and whale watching tour, then appreciate the history behind Banks Peninsula War Memorial and Grounds, and then look for gifts at Little River Gallery.

To find ratings, maps, traveler tips, and other tourist information, you can read our Akaroa planner.

Getting from Fox Glacier to Akaroa by car takes about 5.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and flight; or do a combination of bus, train, and taxi. In December, daytime highs in Akaroa are 24°C, while nighttime lows are 12°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 25th (Sun) so you can travel to Wellington.

Things to do in Akaroa

Historic Sites · Shopping · Museums · Tours

Side Trip

Find places to stay Dec 23 — 25:

Wellington

— 5 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.
Head to New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts Academy Galleries and Kura Art Galleryfor some retail therapy. Escape the urban bustle at Kapiti Island Nature Tours and Kapiti Island. Venture out of the city with trips to Martinborough Wine Tours (in Martinborough) and Southward Car Museum (in Paraparaumu). There's lots more to do: see the interesting displays at Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, take an in-depth tour of The Great War Exhibition, ponder the world of politics at New Zealand Parliament, and catch a ride on Wellington Cable Car.

To see other places to visit, where to stay, ratings, and more tourist information, use the Wellington trip builder tool.

Traveling by combination of bus and flight from Akaroa to Wellington takes 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car and ferry; or do a combination of taxi, train, and ferry. In December, daily temperatures in Wellington can reach 22°C, while at night they dip to 15°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 30th (Fri) early enough to catch the flight to Tongariro National Park.

Things to do in Wellington

Museums · Parks · Tours · Wildlife

Side Trips

Find places to stay Dec 25 — 30:

Tongariro National Park

— 5 nights
Tongariro National Park has a long history of preserving New Zealand's pristine alpine landscape.
Take a break from the city and head to Tongariro Alpine Crossing and Te Porere Redoubt. Popular historic sites such as Active Outdoor Adventures and Ohakune Old Coach Road are in your itinerary. And it doesn't end there: admire the sheer force of Taranaki Falls, trek along Mounds Walk, and stroll through Silica Rapids Track.

To find traveler tips, where to stay, other places to visit, and tourist information, read our Tongariro National Park itinerary builder.

You can fly from Wellington to Tongariro National Park in 2.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of train and taxi. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Wed) to allow time to take a shuttle to Taupo.

Things to do in Tongariro National Park

Parks · Trails · Outdoors · Nature
Find places to stay Dec 30 — Jan 4:

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.
Your cultural itinerary includes sights like L'Arte and Lava Glass. Take a break from the city and head to Huka Falls Walkway and Kayaking & Canoeing. And it doesn't end there: push the limits with an extreme tour, stroll through Orakei Korako Geothermal Park & Cave, take in the dramatic natural features at Craters of the Moon, and head outdoors with Taupo Rod & Tackle.

You can plan Taupo trip in no time by asking Inspirock to help create your itinerary.

Getting from Tongariro National Park to Taupo by shuttle takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: drive; or do a combination of taxi and bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Mon) to allow enough time to drive to Rotorua.

Things to do in Taupo

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Shopping

Side Trip

Find places to stay Jan 4 — 9:

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.
Visiting Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland and Zipline will get you outdoors. Te Puia and Buried Village of Te Wairoa will appeal to history buffs. Get out of town with these interesting Rotorua side-trips: Hobbiton Movie Set (in Hinuera) and McLaren Falls Park (in Tauranga). There's much more to do: let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour, stroll through Rainbow Springs Nature Park, hike along Lake Okareka Walkway, and admire all the interesting features of Whakarewarewa - The Living Maori Village.

To find maps, other places to visit, more things to do, and tourist information, refer to the Rotorua road trip tool.

Getting from Taupo to Rotorua by car takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. In January, plan for daily highs up to 27°C, and evening lows to 19°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Sat) so you can drive to Waitomo Caves.

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Wildlife

Side Trips

Find places to stay Jan 9 — 14:

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.
Escape the urban bustle at Waitomo Glowworm Caves and Spellbound Glowworm & Cave Tours. Next up on the itinerary: let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour, snap pictures at Mangapohue Natural Bridge Walk, explore the fascinating underground world of Caveworld, and take in the dramatic scenery at Marakopa Falls.

Start your trip to Waitomo Caves by creating a personalized itinerary on Inspirock.

You can drive from Rotorua to Waitomo Caves in 2 hours. Another option is to take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 17th (Tue) to allow time to drive to Whitianga.

Things to do in Waitomo Caves

Parks · Outdoors · Nature · Tours
Find places to stay Jan 14 — 17:

Whitianga

— 4 nights
Whitianga is a town on the Coromandel Peninsula, in the Waikato Region of New Zealand's North Island. You'll get in some beach time at Hot Water Beach and Otama Beach. Step out of the city life by going to Cave Cruzer and Opoutere Surf Beach. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Whitianga: Hahei (Hahei Beach Walk & Cathedral Cove Walk), Whangamata (The Little Gallery Whangamata & Whangamata Beach) and Opito Bay Beach (in Kuaotunu). Next up on the itinerary: test the waters at The Lost Spring, kick back and relax at Matarangi Beach, and go for a walk through Shakespeare Cliff Scenic and Historic Reserve.

For reviews, other places to visit, photos, and more tourist information, go to the Whitianga travel route builder website.

Traveling by car from Waitomo Caves to Whitianga takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi, train, and car; or do a combination of bus and shuttle. In January, plan for daily highs up to 26°C, and evening lows to 19°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 21st (Sat) early enough to go by car to Auckland.

Things to do in Whitianga

Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Nature

Side Trips

Find places to stay Jan 17 — 21:

Auckland

— 5 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 Museum and Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki will appeal to museum buffs. Do your shopping at Sculptureum and Kiwa Art. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Auckland: Warkworth (Tawharanui Regional Park & Of Hand & Heart), Muriwai Beach (Muriwai Beach & Muriwai Gannet Colony) and Piha Beach (in Piha). There's still lots to do: don't miss a visit to SkyTower, wander the streets of Devonport, awaken your taste buds at some of the top wineries in the area, and pause for some serene contemplation at St. Patrick's Cathedral.

To see photos, where to stay, ratings, and tourist information, you can read our Auckland travel route planning site.

Traveling by car from Whitianga to Auckland takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a shuttle; or take a bus. When traveling from Whitianga in January, plan for little chillier days and about the same nights in Auckland: temperatures range from 22°C by day to 22°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 26th (Thu) so you can go by car to Whangarei.

Things to do in Auckland

Parks · Museums · Nature · Shopping

Side Trips

Find places to stay Jan 21 — 26:

Whangarei

— 3 nights
Whangarei is the northernmost city in New Zealand and the regional capital of Northland Region. We've included these beaches for you: Ocean Beach and Whale Bay. Visiting Northland Dive and Bream Head Coast Walks will get you outdoors. When in Whangarei, make a side trip to see Sandy Bay in Tutukaka, approximately Tutukaka away. Next up on the itinerary: see the vivid underwater world at Poor Knights Island Marine Reserve, take in the dramatic scenery at Whangarei Falls, stop by Town Basin, and view the masterpieces at Creative Kiwi Arts And Crafts.

To find reviews, where to stay, maps, and more tourist information, read Whangarei visit planner.

Traveling by car from Auckland to Whangarei takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Sun) so you can drive to Paihia.

Things to do in Whangarei

Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Wildlife

Side Trips

Find places to stay Jan 26 — 29:

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.
Your inner history buff will appreciate Waitangi Treaty Grounds and KeriKeri New Zealand. Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Pompallier Mission and Printery and Christ Church. Get out of town with these interesting Paihia side-trips: Russell (Omata Estate & Paroa Bay Winery- Villa Accommodation.). Next up on the itinerary: get a new perspective on things with She's a Lady Sailing Adventures, get to know the fascinating history of Rewa's Village, take in the architecture and atmosphere at St Paul's Anglican Church, and tee off at Waitangi Golf Club.

For reviews, ratings, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read Paihia visit planning app.

Drive from Whangarei to Paihia in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 3rd (Fri) early enough to catch the flight back home.

Things to do in Paihia

Historic Sites · Outdoors · Parks · Wildlife

Side Trips

Find places to stay Jan 29 — Feb 3:

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.