New Zealand - 14 day holiday sample Itinerary

New Zealand is a fantastic place to visit but not every traveller has the time to really take in this picturesque wonderland.

We had 2 weeks to race through New Zealand and tick off as many sights, destinations, and activities

Day 1 – Arrive in Auckland

After landing in Auckland it's tempting to think you'll just grab a rental car and start making you way toward some of the higher profile tourist destinations. There is quite a bit of driving on this trip - it's best to stay at a convenient hotel and rest up for the next day. As we were landing pretty late at night we chose to stay close to Auckland Airport so we could collect our rental car and head off early the next morning

Suggested Accommodation

Ibis Budget Auckland Airport

Cost - approx. $80 per might
Stars - 2
Comments - This is a very basic hotel and you won't spend much time reminiscing about the night you spent at the Ibis in Auckland. On the plus side it's walking distance from the Airport and fairly cheap.

Day 2 - Auckland to Rotorua


Drive to Hamilton (2 hrs) (BOOKED)

  • Stay the night in Hamilton for the night (BOOKED)

 It's not the most exciting city but I can show you where I came from.

Option – visit Hamilton gardens

The gardens are actually really nice and it will be open and free.

Option – Mormon temple Xmas lights

They bling it up with 150,000 lights for Xmas. It's pretty impressive and runs until Jan 9th. 

Option – Catch up with friends

There aren't a lot of options. It'll be Boxing day. Most things are closed and a lot of people leave the city.

Booked and paid for 11515SB001266 $80NZ

Day 2 – Thursday December 27th (HAMILTON - ROTORUA)

  • Drive to Rotorua (2 hrs)
  • Stay overnight in Rotorua (BOOKED)

Option – Zorb

$90 each (3 rides)

Option - Luge and gondola ride

$50 each (3 rides)

Accommodation $140 per night (Studio with spa pool)

Booking Reference:2IYQ $80 NZ (BOOKED)

Day 3 – Friday December 28th (ROTORUA - PATEA)

  • Off to visit mum – drive (4.5 hrs)


We should be able to arrive mid-afternoon as long as we get started early. There is some nice scenery to look at on the way. I think we should find food in Rotorua and bring it with us. Patea is a very small place and the chances we will be able to find vegan options are slim to fuck-all.


Option – Orakei Korako Cave & Thermal Park

$36 each and will take about 1.5 hours.

Accommodation – Free (mums place) (BOOKED)

Day 4 – Saturday December 29th(PATEA - WELLINGTON)

·         Drive to Wellington 3.5 hours

Option – The Beehive – free

New Zealands' parliament building

Option – Wellington Cable Car

$6 each (return)

Option – Te Papa - free

New Zealands' national museum

Option – Zealandia Sanctuary

This is an actual sanctuary for native species. Over 40 locally or nationally-threatened plant and animal species have been reintroduced. Many of Zealandia’s species have been reintroduced as part of a national species recovery programme, and many more have dramatically increased in number. They do night time tours which would cost $76.50 each if you are comfortable going.

AccommodationGrand Mercure Wellington Central City Apartments  $80NZ (BOOKED)

·      Reservation number :G96-06V5

Day 5 – Sunday December 30th (WELLINGTON – HANMER SPRINGS)

  • Ferry to Picton (3 hours) (BOOKED)
  • Drive to Kaikoura (2 hours)
  • Drive to Hanmer Springs (2 hours) (BOOKED)

Welington to Picton Ferry

The Wellington to Picton ferry is quite a nice trip with good scenery to look at. We really need to book this ASAP as there are limited seats left on the 8:25am trip. $330 for both of us and the car.

The alternative is to go for the 2:35am ferry. It would still be dark and we'd miss the scenery but this would give us more time in the next locations.

Kaikoura is a tiny wee coastal town but has great wildlife. We can stick around and try to see whales, dolphins, seals, and albatross.

Accommodation - $329 Pamper pack (BOOKED) 

Day 6 – Monday December 31st (HANMER SPRINGS) (BOOKED)

  • Chillax in Hanmer Springs
  • Option – Jetboat ride - $115 each

Day 7 – Tuesday January 1st(HANMER SPRINGS - FIORDLAND)

  • Drive to Fiordland (12 hours)
  • Option – Stop in Oamaru (penguins!)

Day 8 – Wednesday January 2nd (FIORDLAND)

Day 9 – Thursday January 3rd (FIORDLAND - QUEENSTOWN)

  • Drive to Queenstown (4 hours)

Day 10 – Friday January 4th (QUEENSTOWN)

  • Queenstown
  • Relax!!

Day 11 – Saturday January 5th (QUEENSTOWN – FOX GLACIER)

Day 12 – Sunday January 6th (FOX GLACIER - CHCH - SYDNEY)

  • Fox Glacier to Christchurch (5 hours)
  • Christchurch to Sydney flights

AirNZ -  (flight at 3:45pm)

is a tiny wee coastal town but has great wildlife. We can stick around and try to see whales, dolphins, seals, and albatross.

Accommodation - $329 Pamper pack (BOOKED) 




rest up on this day,