Back to NEW ZEALAND Sample Itineraries > Discovering the National Parks of New Zealand – Sample Itinerary

Auckland, Waitomo, Rotorua, Abel Tasman National Park, Kaikoura, Christchurch, Franz Josef, Queenstown

Experience New Zealand’s highlights in an action packed itinerary designed for families. Begin your journey in America’s Cup style on Auckland’s waterfront before heading south to Waitomo for a caving and rafting experience, then on to Rotorua for more eco adventures and cultural interaction. Travel to the South Island for outdoor exploration at Abel Tasman and Kaikoura then on to Christchurch followed by the wild West Coast and Franz Josef Glacier. Continue on to Queenstown for more exhilarating eco adventure and urban exploration.

Trip at a Glance:
  • Day 1: Arrive Auckland, America’s Cup sailing experience
  • Day 2: Drive to Rotorua via Waitomo, black water rafting
  • Day 3: Rotorua canopy experience, wet zorbing, cultural experience & hangi
  • Day 4: Fly to Nelson, Drive to Abel Tasman
  • Day 5: Full day kayak & walk trip
  • Day 6: Drive to Kaikoura
  • Day 7: Dolphin encounter, Kaikoura discovery walk
  • Day 8: Drive to Christchurch
  • Day 9: Train to West Coast, drive to Franz Josef
  • Day 10: Glacier helicopter hike
  • Day 11: Drive to Queenstown
  • Day 12: Jetboat ride, canyon swing-jump, gondola and luge ride
  • Day 13: Full day Queenstown
  • Day 14: Return to U.S.A

New Zealand Map GIBSON

Trip Highlights:
  • Embrace New Zealand’s yachting culture with an America’s Cup sail on Auckland’s Waitemata Harbor
  • Raft through the black waters of Waitomo’s caves – keep an eye on the ceiling for glow worms!
  • Experience New Zealand’s beautiful native bush from above with a canopy and zip lining tour
  • Get wet with a wet zorb adventure in Rotorua, zorbing’s birthplace
  • Immerse yourself in Maori culture with a Maori cultural performance and traditional hangi
  • Enjoy a full day guided kayak and walking tour of Abel Tasman National Park
  • Swim with Kaikoura’s dusky dolphins (or view them from aboard the boat if you prefer)
  • Discover the Kaikoura Peninsula’s scenic coastline and history with a guided walk
  • Transverse the South Island on the iconic TranzAlpine railway
  • Discover Franz Josef Glacier with an unbeatable helicopter hike
  • Experience a thrilling jet-boat ride and an equally exhilarating canyon swing