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Independent Vacations in New Zealand
|RV Vacation Special from $1,799|
|New Zealand on Sale from $1,999|
|New Zealand Highlights from $2,989|
New Zealand Explorer from $3,389
New Zealand Naturally from $4,069
Independent Vacations in New Zealand & the South Pacific
Island Escapade from $3,489
South Pacific Explorer from $3,699
Sample Gold Hotels
These are samples of hotels used in our Gold category. These may be substituted with similar (or better) hotels, due to availability, rate changes etc.
|Auckland - Heritage|
|Cairns - Kewarra Beach Resort|
|Christchurch - Heritage|
|Melbourne - Lindrum|
Perth - Duxton
Queenstown - Millenium
Rotorua - Heritage
Sydney - Swissotel
Wellington - James Cook
Sample Silver Hotels
These are samples of hotels used in our Silver category. These may be substituted with similar (or better) hotels, due to availability, rate changes etc.
Auckland - Chifley
Cairns - Cairns Beach Resort
Christchurch - G. Chancellor
Dunedin - Victoria
Melbourne - Ibis Little Bourke
Queenstown - Whistler
Rotorua - Sudima
Sydney - The Cambridge
Wellington - Mercure
Australia and New Zealand are two unique and fascinating destinations – while their landscapes are quite different they do share a common language (English!) as well as a clean and safe environment where visitors are always warmly welcomed. This trip covers the highlights of both the North and South Islands of New Zealand – travelling by bus you will have plenty of free time to spend as you please at the main attractions, without having to worry about the details of finding your own accommodation etc. In Australia, your itinerary not only includes the main cities of Sydney and Melbourne (with local tours included) – but also a visit to Cairns in the far northeastern corner of Australia, where an ancient tropical rainforest meets the famous Great Barrier Reef. A full day tour to the reef is of course part of the tour and there is also free time available to take other tours or simply relax and soak in the magic atmosphere of the place.
Spectacular scenery awaits all around you in New Zealand
Included in your tour:
Round-trip air, including applicable fuel surcharges and airport taxes/fees, from Los Angeles to New Zealand and Australia (low add-on fares are available from most major airports nationwide)
1 night in Auckland – City of Sails
Travel by deluxe bus through the North Island
Visit the Waitomo Glow Worm Caves
2 nights accommodation in Rotorua
Guided tour of Rotorua & Whakarewarewa Thermal Reserve
Sheep shearing performance at the Agrodome
Watch hundreds of rainbow trout at Rainbow Springs
1 night in the capital city of Wellington
Ferry across Marlborough Sound from the North to the South Island
Coastal Pacific train ride to Christchurch
2 nights accommodation in Christchurch
Deluxe bus travel into Mount Cook National Park and Queenstown
3 nights in accommodation Queenstown
Cruise on the magnificent Milford Sound
Skyline gondola ride, dinner and the Kiwi Haka Show
1 night's accommodation in Dunedin
Wildlife cruise from Dunedin
Fly across the Tasman Sea to Australia
4 nights in a beach resort in Palm Cove
Full Day Barrier Reef Excursion incl. lunch and snorkel equipment
Flight from Cairns to Melbourne
2 nights accommodation in Melbourne
Flight from Melbourne to Sydney, including all taxes
3 nights accommodation in Sydney
Sydney tour incl. Opera House, Rocks, Harbor Bridge & Bondi Beach
Airport transfers throughout
Outback Experience: Ayers Rock & Aboriginal Culture (3 Days)
Experience the 30,000-year-old culture of the Australian Aboriginals by visiting the impressive Ayers Rock in the midst of Central Australia. Visit the fascinating rock formation known as the Olgas (also known by the aboriginal name, Katatjuta) before heading to the monumental Ayers Rock. Before you have had a chance to realize how much larger it looks in real life compared to all the photographs that you have seen, you will be entertained to the spectacular natural show of the rock changing color with the varying hues of the setting sun. Local guides will explain the religious and cultural significance of the Rock to the Aboriginals and you will also have the opportunity to climb the rock.
Tahiti & Moorea (5 Days)
How about combining your New Zealand vacation with a break on the romantic islands of Tahiti? Experience the charm and beauty of the Polynesian islands of Tahiti and Moorea on this island stopover. Your Tahiti extension includes 4 nights' accommodations (one on Tahiti and three on Moorea), inter-island transfers and a sightseeing tour.
Fiji Islands (5 Days)
Bula! Or, ‘welcome’ in Fijian, is a greeting you hear very often on these islands. Why not add to your vacation by stopping over in this relaxing, South Pacific idyll for a few days, on your way back from New Zealand? Enjoy the warm sunshine and wonderful beaches, visit some traditional villages with their thatched huts and meet some friendly locals! Kiwi-1 prices feature the equivalent of 3-star hotels in Fiji, whereas Kiwi-2 prices feature the equivalent of 4-star hotels.
Leave the US this evening from Los Angeles, flying across the Pacific Ocean; cross the International Date Line on the way.
Arrive in Auckland early in the morning and transfer to your hotel. The rest of the day is free to see the sights of Auckland – New Zealand's largest city. Overnight in Auckland
From the Sky City Coach Terminal board your Intercity Coach (morning departure) bound for Rotorua. Leaving Auckland behind, travel through the lush Waikato pastures to the famous Waitomo Caves, illuminated by millions of glowworms. Later, travel across the Mamaku Hills and arrive in Rotorua – center of New Zealand's indigenous Maori culture and a fascinating geothermal area. Overnight in Rotorua.
During a half day sightseeing tour you will see roaring geysers, boiling mud pools, tame trout at the springs along with performing sheep and sheep dogs at the Agrodome. This evening you can join a Maori hangi (a feast with food cooked the traditional way – in the ground!) and a Maori concert (optional). Overnight in Rotorua.
Leave Rotorua by bus this morning and travel south through dense forests to Wairakei and the beautiful Lake Taupo; continue across the Manawatu Plains to Wellington, the capital city of New Zealand. Overnight in Wellington.
Leaving the coach behind, take the ferry across the Cook Strait (approx. 3 hours) to the South Island; on the way pass through breathtaking fjords and exquisite landscapes. After arrival in Picton on the New Zealand's South Island, board the waiting Coastal Pacific Train, which travels through lovely countryside along the South Island’s East Coast to Christchurch, where you arrive around 7pm. Overnight in Christchurch.
Today, take to the road again and travel by bus across the manicured Canterbury Plains towards the mountains and into the Mount Cook National Park. Pass the central lakes, climb over Lindis Pass to Cromwell; the rocky and formidable Kawarau Gorge finally leads to Queenstown. Overnight in Queenstown.
A beautiful drive through very pretty countryside awaits us today. Travel alongside the grand Lake Wakatipu to Kingston and then to Fjordland and the beautiful Eglinton and Hollyford Valleys. The Homer Tunnel and the awesome Cleddau Canyon are a prelude to a cruise on the magnificent Milford Sound. After a day full of awesome sights we return to Queenstown for the night.
A full day to enjoy this fabulous area: There are dozens of optional activities as well – thrilling jetboat runs on the narrow rivers, white water rafting, helicopter rides through the river chasms, bungy jumping, spectacular walking trails or cruises on the lake – the list is almost endless! A great way to end the evening - a ride on the Skyline Gondola up to Bob's Peak for panoramic views of Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu, dinner and the Kiwi Magic Show - all included in your tour price.
Leaving the mountains behind, head to Cromwell, South Otago and Dunedin, which is perhaps the most "Scottish" town outside Scotland! After your arrival around noon, take a hour long wildlife cruise around the Otago peninsula. Experience unrivalled viewing of spectacular Taiaroa Head; the only mainland nesting place for Northern Royal Albatross birds in the world, and home to fur seals, and eight other nesting bird species. You may also see, dolphins sea lions and a fascinating array of rarely seen ocean birds including other species of albatross, penguins and marine mammals in their natural environment. Spend the night in Dunedin.
Depart Dunedin in the morning and drive north along the East Coast via Timaru to Christchurch. The afternoon is free to enjoy this picturesque city. Overnight in Christchurch
Bid farewell to New Zealand today and fly from Christchurch, across the Tasman Sea, to Australia. After arriving in Sydney or Brisbane and a change of aircraft, proceed for your onward flight to Cairns in tropical North Queensland. You will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel, where your accommodations have been booked for four nights.
No visit to North Queensland is complete without a day exploring the Great Barrier Reef. You will be picked up at your hotel early in the morning and transferred by bus to the jetty, where you board a high-speed catamaran which takes you out to the Reef (about 70 miles away) in approx. 2 hours. Once at the reef, youwill have several hours to enjoy the beauty of the fascinating underwater world of brightly colored corals and tropical fish. Snorkel equipment is provided, and so is a lavish smorgasbord lunch. Certified divers can pay a surcharge for an escorted dive. Others can board a semi-submersible vessel and see the life under water from huge windows without even getting wet! After an exciting day at the Reef you return to Cairns by early evening.
You have two free days in Cairns to do as you please. A large choice of optional tours are available to explore this magical area where the Great Barrier Reef meets the ancient tropical rainforest.
Late this morning you will be transferred to the airport for your flight from Cairns to Melbourne; the transfer from the airport to your downtown hotel is included and the remainder of the day is free for you to enjoy the many charms of Australia's second largest city. Melbourne is also famous for its restaurants and you may wish to venture and find out why!
Enjoy a free day in Melbourne and the surrounding area – time to discover the diverse neighborhoods, colorful markets, stylish shops and boutiques or perhaps a stroll along the Yarra River sidewalks or enjoy one of the many parks and beautiful gardens. Of course there is also the opportunity to join an optional day tour – for a drive along the beautiful Great Ocean Road or to Phillip Island, famous for its koala sanctuary and a colony of penguins that come in to shore every evening.
Around noon you will be transferred to the airport for our flight from Melbourne to Sydney; transfer to your downtown hotel in Sydney. The remainder of the day is free for you to explore Sydney, often voted to be the world's best to visit!
You will be picked up at your hotel in the morning for a half day sightseeing tour which includes the famous Opera House, the impressive harbor bridge, the historic part of town called "The Rocks" and popular Bondi Beach. The tour ends around noon at the Rocks and you will have time to yourselves to browse the small shops, enjoy an optional harbor cruise or take in the view from Sydney’s Centerpoint Tower.
The whole day is yours to discover and enjoy Sydney and its surrounding areas on your own. Or perhaps take an optional day trip to the spectacular Blue Mountains, or the vineyards of the Hunter Valley or a wildlife park with native animals.
This morning you will be transferred to Sydney's international airport for your flight back to Los Angeles. This time, you can ‘cheat’ the International Date Line and arrive back in the United States on the same day that you left Australia!
|1/01 - 3/31/16||$6,229||$7,179|
|4/01 - 5/31/16||$5,679||$6,589|
|6/01 - 8/31/16||$6,239||$7,159|
|9/01 - 11/30/16||$6,149||$7,099|
|12/01 - 12/31/16||$6,979||$8,089|
|1/01 - 3/31/17||$6,269||$7,239|
Feb-May & Sep-Nov
|Tahiti Extension. (Jun-Oct)||$999||$1,299|
We offer two categories of accommodation: Silver hotels are carefully selected for their excellent value - all rooms have private facilities and a tea/coffee maker. Gold hotels are better located, offer more spacious rooms with better amenities and a higher standard of service.
The departure date determines the price applicable. All prices are per person and based on twin-share accommodation.
A $100 surcharge applies for bookings made within 30 days of the departure date. The tour price does not include meals (other than those indicated), personal expenses and travel / rental car insurance.
Penguins near Dunedin
Summer scene Christchurch