26 days in New Zealand Itinerary

26 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Created using Inspirock New Zealand trip itinerary planner

This plan was created by another user. Make it your plan

Route & dates

Start: Sydney
Fly:  6 h 45 min
1
Auckland
— 1 night
Drive:  2 h 45 min
2
Rotorua
— 5 nights
Fly:  3 h
3
Wellington
— 2 nights
Fly + Taxi:  2 h 15 min
4
Nelson
— 2 nights
Drive:  4 h 45 min
5
Kaikoura
— 2 nights
Bus:  3 h
6
Christchurch
— 3 nights
Drive:  4 h 30 min
7
Dunedin
— 3 nights
Bus:  5 h 15 min
8
Te Anau
— 3 nights
Bus:  3 h 15 min
9
Queenstown
— 4 nights
Fly + Bus:  4 h 15 min
End: Auckland

1
night
Auckland

Auckland ©
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), explore the landscape on two wheels at Orewa – Te Ara Tahuna Estuary Cycleway, then take in the exciting artwork at Of Hand & Heart, and then ride a horse along Horse Riding Warkworth. Keep things going the next day: get your game on at Gravity NZ Mt Wellington, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Holy Trinity Cathedral, and then appreciate the extensive heritage of Coast-to-Coast Walkway.

To find where to stay, other places to visit, more things to do, and more tourist information, refer to the Auckland trip app.

Sydney, Australia to Auckland is an approximately 6.5- hour flight. You can also do a combination of train, bus, and flight. The time zone difference when traveling from Sydney to Auckland is 2 hours. While traveling from Sydney, expect little chillier days and somewhat warmer nights in Auckland, ranging from highs of 22°C to lows of 22°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Wed) so you can drive to Rotorua.

Things to do in Auckland

Outdoors Trails Parks

Side Trips

Warkworth, Orewa – Te Ara Tahuna Estuary Cycleway
Find places to stay Apr 7 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Horse Riding Warkworth ©
Horse Riding Warkworth
Of Hand & Heart ©
Of Hand & Heart
Holy Trinity Cathedral ©
Holy Trinity Cathedral

5
nights
Rotorua

Rotorua ©
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.
Relax by the water at Mt Maunganui Main Beach and Papamoa Beach. You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Waimangu Volcanic Valley and Paradise Valley Springs Wildlife Park. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Rotorua: Hairy Maclary & Friends Tauranga Waterfront Sculpture (in Tauranga), Ohope Beach (in Whakatane) and Mount Maunganui Base Track (in Mount Maunganui). The adventure continues: witness a stunning natural landmark at Waikite Valley Thermal Pools, identify plant and animal life at Orakei Korako Geothermal Park & Cave, hike along Blue Lake Track, and learn about winemaking at Volcanic Hills Winery.

To see where to stay, more things to do, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read our Rotorua trip itinerary builder tool.

Traveling by car from Auckland to Rotorua takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of flight and bus. Traveling from Auckland in April, Rotorua is little chillier at night with lows of 15°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 13th (Mon) early enough to travel to Wellington.

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trips

Tauranga, River Rafting & Tubing, Papamoa Beach, Ohope Beach, Orakei Korako Geothermal Park & Cave
Find places to stay Apr 8 — 13:
Highlights from your plan
Paradise Valley Springs Wildlife Park ©
Paradise Valley Springs Wildlife Park
Papamoa Beach ©
Papamoa Beach
Mt Maunganui Main Beach ©
Mt Maunganui Main Beach

2
nights
Wellington

Wellington ©
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.
On the 14th (Tue), enjoy the sand and surf at Scorching Bay, then learn about all things military at National War Memorial, then identify plant and animal life at Otari-Wilton's Bush Native Botanic Garden, and finally look and learn at Space Place at Carter Observatory. On your second day here, see exotic creatures in open habitats at a safari tour and then take in the spiritual surroundings of Saint Mary of the Angels.

For photos, ratings, other places to visit, and other tourist information, you can read our Wellington journey planner.

You can fly from Rotorua to Wellington in 3 hours. Other options are to do a combination of bus and flight; or drive. When traveling from Rotorua in April, plan for a bit cooler days in Wellington, with highs around 20°C, while nights are about the same with lows around 14°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Wed) early enough to travel to Nelson.

Things to do in Wellington

Outdoors Wildlife Tours
Find places to stay Apr 13 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Scorching Bay ©
Scorching Bay
Safaris
Space Place at Carter Observatory ©
Space Place at Carter Observatory

2
nights
Nelson

Nelson ©
Put on your shades to enjoy the sights of Nelson, one of the sunniest cities in New Zealand.
Start off your visit on the 16th (Thu): take an in-depth tour of Nelson Provincial Museum, admire the natural beauty at Queen's Gardens, make a trip to The Suter Art Gallery Nelson, then look for all kinds of wild species at Brook Waimarama Sanctuary, and finally have some family-friendly fun at Vortex Wind Karting. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: stroll through Tahunanui Beach, then have some family-friendly fun at Pro Karts, and then get to know the resident critters at Natureland Zoo.

To see traveler tips, photos, where to stay, and more tourist information, read our Nelson road trip planner.

Traveling by combination of flight and taxi from Wellington to Nelson takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or do a combination of ferry and car. Cap off your sightseeing on the 17th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Kaikoura.

Things to do in Nelson

Parks Wildlife Beaches
Find places to stay Apr 15 — 17:
Highlights from your plan
Tahunanui Beach ©
Tahunanui Beach
Nelson Provincial Museum ©
Nelson Provincial Museum
Brook Waimarama Sanctuary ©
Brook Waimarama Sanctuary

2
nights
Kaikoura

Kaikoura ©
Head to the small town of Kaikoura, a humble setting from which to witness some of nature's grandest designs.
Start off your visit on the 18th (Sat): get engrossed in the history at Kaikoura Museum, observe the fascinating underwater world at Kaikoura Marine Aquarium, then contemplate the long history of Fyffe House, and finally explore the galleries of Art & Design Gallery. On the 19th (Sun), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: indulge your thirst for a good beer at The Emporium, then Head underground at Maori Leap Cave, and then get in on the family fun at Fyffe View Ranch Adventure Park.

To see maps, photos, where to stay, and tourist information, read our Kaikoura trip planner.

Traveling by car from Nelson to Kaikoura takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of bus and train. Cap off your sightseeing on the 19th (Sun) early enough to catch the bus to Christchurch.

Things to do in Kaikoura

Theme Parks Parks Museums
Find places to stay Apr 17 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Fyffe View Ranch Adventure Park ©
Fyffe View Ranch Adventure Park
Kaikoura Museum ©
Kaikoura Museum
Kaikoura Marine Aquarium ©
Kaikoura Marine Aquarium

3
nights
Christchurch

Christchurch ©
Recovering from the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 was no easy task, but Christchurch has faced the challenges with aplomb.
Get in touch with nature at Sumner Beach (Cave Rock) and Hinewai Reserve. Explore hidden gems such as River Rafting & Tubing and Corsair Bay. Go for a jaunt from Christchurch to Akaroa to see Saint Peter's Anglican Church about 1h 05 min away. And it doesn't end there: wander the streets of Port Hills, explore the galleries of Christchurch Art Gallery (Te Puna o Waiwhetu), explore and take pictures at Riccarton House & Bush, and don't miss a visit to Canterbury Earthquake National Memorial.

For photos, where to stay, reviews, and more tourist information, use the Christchurch travel planning app.

You can take a bus from Kaikoura to Christchurch in 3 hours. Other options are to take a train; or drive. April in Christchurch sees daily highs of 20°C and lows of 8°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Wed) early enough to drive to Dunedin.

Things to do in Christchurch

Parks Outdoors Adventure

Side Trip

Akaroa
Find places to stay Apr 19 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Sumner Beach (Cave Rock) ©
Sumner Beach (Cave Rock)
Port Hills ©
Port Hills
River Rafting & Tubing

3
nights
Dunedin

Dunedin ©
With its history proudly stemming from the Scottish settlers who came here during the colonial era, Dunedin's streets are lined with well-preserved examples of Victorian and Edwardian architecture, while a new culture of nightlife and fine dining takes hold around them.
Escape the urban bustle at Orokonui Ecosanctuary and Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail. Katiki Point Lighthouse and Dunedin Public Art Gallery are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Change things up with a short trip to Shag Point Nature Reserve in Palmerston (about 48 minutes away). Next up on the itinerary: take in the architecture and atmosphere at First Church of Otago, stroll through St Clair Beach, and get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour.

To see more things to do, maps, and more tourist information, refer to the Dunedin online route planner.

You can drive from Christchurch to Dunedin in 4.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of flight and bus; or take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 25th (Sat) early enough to catch the bus to Te Anau.

Things to do in Dunedin

Parks Outdoors Wildlife

Side Trips

Shag Point Nature Reserve, Katiki Point Lighthouse, Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail
Find places to stay Apr 22 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Orokonui Ecosanctuary ©
Orokonui Ecosanctuary
Katiki Point Lighthouse ©
Katiki Point Lighthouse
Shag Point Nature Reserve ©
Shag Point Nature Reserve

3
nights
Te Anau

Te Anau ©
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.
Get in touch with nature at The Chasm Walk and Lake 2 Lake Trail. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Punanga Manu o Te Anau and Southern Discoveries - Milford Discovery Centre and Underwater Observatory. Next up on the itinerary: identify plant and animal life at Te Anau Bird Sanctuary, contemplate the waterfront views at Ivan Wilson Park, observe the fascinating underwater world at Trout Observatory, and stroll through Lake Gunn.

For other places to visit, photos, more things to do, and other tourist information, read Te Anau trip builder site.

You can take a bus from Dunedin to Te Anau in 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Tue) to allow enough time to take a bus to Queenstown.

Things to do in Te Anau

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

Lake Gunn, Southern Discoveries - Milford Discovery Centre and Underwater Observatory
Find places to stay Apr 25 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
The Chasm Walk ©
The Chasm Walk
Te Anau Bird Sanctuary ©
Te Anau Bird Sanctuary
Gertrude Saddle ©
Gertrude Saddle

4
nights
Queenstown

Queenstown ©
Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
Kids will enjoy Basecamp Adventures Wanaka Climbing Centre and Alpine Aqualand. Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Chard Farm Winery and Vesta Design Boutique. Get out of town with these interesting Queenstown side-trips: Wanaka (Diamond Lake & Rocky Mountain walks, Parasailing & Paragliding, &more). There's much more to do: contemplate the waterfront views at Moke Lake, tee off at Jacks Point Golf Course Queenstown, stroll through Mt Crichton Loop Track, and trek along Lake Hayes Walkway.

To find maps, ratings, traveler tips, and tourist information, read our Queenstown online trip itinerary builder.

Traveling by bus from Te Anau to Queenstown takes 3.5 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Sat) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Queenstown

Outdoors Parks Trails

Side Trips

Wanaka, Lake Hayes Walkway
Find places to stay Apr 28 — May 2:
Highlights from your plan
Diamond Lake & Rocky Mountain walks ©
Diamond Lake & Rocky Mountain walks
Parasailing & Paragliding
Horseback Riding Tours

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