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Self Drive Nature Tours
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Forgotten Islands of the South Pacific
Luxury Tours:
The Sunny Side of Life
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Coach Tours:
18 Day Ultimate Tour
16 Day Panorama Tour
15 Wonderland Tour
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Discovery Tour
8 Day Southern
Highlights Tour
7 Day Tranz Alpine Tour
6 Day Northern
Highlights Tour
Motorhome Tours:
Cruising New Zealand
 

 

16 Day Panorama Tour



Relax and let someone else do the driving while you witness New Zealand’s magnificent scenery and experience a genuine friendliness. Itinerary includes 7 National Parks and World Heritage areas. Special highlights include sight seeing tours of Auckland, Christchurch and other major cities, Rotorua thermal springs, traditional Maori culture and an optional helicopter tour over Fox Glacier.

TRANZ ALPINE Option
Join the world famous Tranz Alpine train for a journey through the Southern Alps.
All transfers are provided. Ask us for details. Tour concludes on arrival in Christchurch which is scheduled for 6.05pm.


TOURS PRICES PER PERSON COST
01 Oct 2007 to 30 April 2008 $3,615.00
01 May 2008 to 30 Sep 2008 $3,165.00
Breakfast (15) Supplement add $255.00
Dinner (13) Supplement add $390.00
Single Room Supplement add $955.00
Tranz Alpine Train Option add $145.00

Tour Itinerary

Day 1
Auckland/Bay of Islands

Your tour departs from Rydges Auckland Hotel, Federal Street, City at 7.30am. Cross Auckland’s distinctive Harbour Bridge to drive north along the Hibiscus Coast, through Kawakawa to Paihia in the Bay of Islands. A guided visit to Waitangi with its Treaty House and Maori war canoe. This afternoon enjoy a launch cruise on
the Bay crossing the areas world renowned game fishing grounds to the Cape Brett Lighthouse and famous “Hole in the Rock”. Return through the inner islands with their
beautiful sandy beaches, sparkling waters and marine life.
Hotel Paihia (2 nights)

Day 2
Bay of Islands

A day free for you to relax and enjoy the many optional activities available. Your Coach Captain will happily assist with details. A full day Tour to Cape Reinga, New Zealand’s northern most point and Ninety Mile Beach or explore historic Russell, New Zealand’s first settlement and visit its original Church, Mission House and Museum.

Day 3
Bay of Islands/Rotorua

South through the city of Whangarei to Warkworth passing the satellite tracking station. Auckland and its majestic harbour soon comes into view and a tour will visit the summit of Skytower, at 328m the tallest building in the Southern Hemisphere for panoramic views across the city and its two harbours, the Domain, the central city area, the Waterfront Drive with its numerous yacht marinas and nearby residential suburbs. Cross the Bombay Hills to the lush farmlands of the Waikato noted for its horse studs, and the bush clad Mamaku Ranges to Rotorua.
Lake Plaza Hotel (2 nights)

Day 4
Rotorua

A sightseeing tour visits the Agrodome to see a display featuring New Zealand’s various sheep breeds and sheep shearing, Rainbow Springs to see rainbow and brown trout and native birds including the Kiwi. The spectacular Skyline Gondola offers superb views over city, lake and mountains and for a little excitement try a Luge ride with our compliments. There will be time this afternoon for optional activities. This evening enjoy a Maori hangi (meal) with traditionally prepared meats and vegetables plus conventional dishes and followed by a concert featuring Maori songs, chants and the stirring haka.

Day 5
Rotorua/Taupo/Napier/Hastings

Visit Whakarewarewa, the Maori Arts and Crafts Centre and Thermal Reserve with its boiling mud, silica terraces and Pohutu Geyser. Skirt some of the worlds largest pine forest to Wairakei where natural steam is harnessed to generate electricity, view the Huka Falls where the Waikato River pours through a narrow chasm and pause at Lake Taupo, the largest lake in New Zealand. Continue across the Central Plateau to the Hawkes Bay region and Napier, claimed to be the world’s art deco capital. A city tour will encompass the Marine Parade and foreshore area plus many of the city’s art deco buildings. A visit to the Hawkes Bay Museum is included. A few minutes drive
to Hastings, the fruit bowl of New Zealand.
Angus Hotel (1 night)

Day 6
Hastings/Wellington

Orchards and vineyards give way to lush farmlands as you pass through Hastings then to Dannevirke and Woodville for an early afternoon arrival in the Capital city Wellington. A city tour includes the summit of Mount Victoria for views over the city and its Harbour, the Houses of Parliament and distinctive “Beehive”, Wellington Cathedral, the central city and business area and Oriental Bay. Also explore the city yourself. Don’t miss Te Papa, the “Museum of New Zealand” or take a ride
on the famous Cable Car.
Bay Plaza Hotel (1 night)

Day 7
Wellington/Picton/Blenheim

Join the Interislander Ferry for a scenic cruise to the South Island with views of the City and its hillside suburbs. Cross Cook Strait into the sheltered waters of Queen Charlotte Sound, bush clad hillsides remote bays and isolated holiday homes. In Picton, you are welcomed by your South Island Coach Captain. Explore Picton
then drive to Blenheim for an afternoon’s sightseeing and a visit to the Montana Winery for a complimentary tasting and afternoon tea.
Blenheim Country Hotel (1 night)

Day 8
Blenheim/Kaikoura/Christchurch

Past Lake Grassmere then follow the coastline to Kaikoura, an area noted for whale watching. Over the Hundalee Ranges and onto the Canterbury Plains to the Garden City of Christchurch. Visit the International Antarctic Centre before a city tour highlighting a strong English influence. See the parklands and River Avon before boarding the Tourist Tram for a circuit of the city centre which showcases all the main points of interest.
Pavilions Hotel (1 night)

Day 9
Christchurch/Mt Cook/Omarama

Cross the broad Canterbury Plains with the Southern Alps to the west. Enter the foothills near Geraldine to the barren MacKenzie Country. View the Church of the Good Shepherd dedicated to the early pioneers of the region and the Collie Dog memorial overlooking the milky blue waters of Lake Tekapo. Time for a spectacular flight over the Southern Alps, lakes and glaciers with Air Safaris (optional). Visit Mt Cook National Park, with time to enjoy the scenic majesty of New Zealand’s highest snow capped peaks before travelling around Lake Pukaki to Twizel and Omarama.
Heritage Gateway Hotel (1 night)

Day 10
Omarama/Dunedin

Pass large hydro lakes as you travel down the Waitaki Valley to Oamaru and Dunedin – the “Scottish” city. An early arrival allows the choice of excellent optional activities. Combine a Monarch harbour cruise or Newton’s Citibus tour to see the albatross, penguins and seals. Enjoy the historic and scenic Taieri Gorge train excursion or explore the city only a few minutes walk away. This evening prior to Dinner you will be treated to a traditional Scottish Haggis Ceremony, complete with piper, address to the
Haggis and gift.
Cargills Hotel (1 night)

Day 11
Dunedin/Lake Manapouri/Te Anau

Visit historic Olveston House, then cross rich farmlands to the agricultural towns of Gore and Lumsden. Visit Lake Manapouri with its rugged bushclad mountains before arriving at the shores of Lake Te Anau.
Fiordland National Park Hotel (2 nights)

Day 12
Milford Sound Day Trip

A highlight of any tour. Follow the Eglinton and Hollyford Valleys where the beech forests reach to the roads edge and snow capped peaks tower above. Descend into the Cleddau Canyon to Milford Sound, dominated by Mitre Peak. A launch cruise takes you to the open sea and shows such highlights as the Bowen and Stirling Falls. Time to relax and appreciate your surroundings. Walk into the rainforest to visit The Chasm a spectacular waterfall then pause at the Homer Tunnel. If conditions permit, your
Coach Captain may make a short drive into the Lower Hollyford Valley.
Return to Te Anau.

Day 13
Te Anau/Queenstown

Cruise across Lake Te Anau to explore the underground world of rushing water and drift beneath the luminous shimmer of thousands of glow-worms, an unforgettable sight. This afternoon drive north to Kingston and around the shores of Lake Wakatipu to picturesque Queenstown. This evening, cruise across the lake aboard the steamship Earnslaw for dinner in the Colonel’s Homestead at Walter Peak Sheep Station.
Rydges Hotel (2 nights)

Day 14
Queenstown

A day to explore the delights of this alpine resort at your leisure. Your Coach Captain will happily advise on the many sightseeing activities available. We recommend the world famous Shotover Jet Boat ride, take a Gondola to the Skyline high above, a tour to the gold mining area of Skippers Canyon or for the adventurous – white water rafting. Alternatively browse in the many shops and galleries.

Day 15
Queenstown/Haast Pass/Fox Glacier

Pass picturesque Lake Hayes on to an area steeped in fascinating history relating to early settlement and the goldmining era, to Lake Wanaka, a picture postcard resort on the lakes edge with a spectacular mountain backdrop. Pass Lake Hawea and the upper reaches of Lake Wanaka to Makarora into Mt Aspiring and Westland National Parks. Drive north along the coast to the glacier region. Explore the township or take the optional guided walk to the glacier’s terminal face.
Fox Glacier Hotel (1 night)

Day 16
Fox Glacier/Christchurch

Time for an optional helicopter flight over the glaciers then north to Greymouth to visit a Greenstone (Jade) factory to see craftsmen cutting and polishing giant boulders to create fine jewellery. Cross the Otira Gorge and Arthurs Pass to the Canterbury Plains and into Christchurch.
Your tour concludes at approximately 5.00pm.

 
 
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