31 days in New Zealand Itinerary

31 days in New Zealand Itinerary

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31 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Los Angeles
Fly:  19​h
Rotorua
— 5 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
Waitomo Caves
— 3 nights
+4
bus + taxi + Fly + taxi + train:  6​h 15​min
Kaikoura
— 2 nights
Drive:  5​h 15​min
Lake Tekapo
— 2 nights
bus:  2​h 30​min
Wanaka
— 1 night
bus:  1​h 15​min
Queenstown
— 4 nights
Drive:  2​h
Te Anau
— 4 nights
Drive:  3​h 45​min
Dunedin
— 3 nights
Fly:  7​h
Hahei
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
Auckland Central
— 3 nights
Fly:  17​h
Los Angeles

4
days
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.
Discover out-of-the-way places like River Rafting & Tubing and Parasailing & Paragliding. Get outdoors at Waimangu Volcanic Valley and Agrodome. Go for a jaunt from Rotorua to Mount Maunganui to see Maunganui Beach about 1:10 hours away. The adventure continues: take in the dramatic natural features at Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, look for all kinds of wild species at Rainbow Springs Nature Park, steep yourself in history at Whakarewarewa - The Living Maori Village, and admire the masterpieces at Rotorua Museum.

To find reviews, traveler tips, ratings, and tourist information, use the Rotorua trip itinerary maker.

Los Angeles, USA to Rotorua is an approximately 19-hour flight. The time zone difference when traveling from Los Angeles to Rotorua is 20 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 2nd (Thu) early enough to drive to Waitomo Caves.

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trips

Maunganui Beach, Waimangu Volcanic Valley, River Rafting & Tubing, Orakei Korako Cave & Thermal Park
Accommodations
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Maunganui Beach ©
Maunganui Beach
Orakei Korako Cave & Thermal Park ©
Orakei Korako Cave & Thermal Park
Waimangu Volcanic Valley ©
Waimangu Volcanic Valley

3
days
Waitomo Caves

Waitomo Caves ©
Head deep beneath the surface of the earth at Waitomo Caves, a village and cave system that draws both extreme sports enthusiasts and those wanting something a little more relaxed.
Step out of the city life by going to Ruakuri Cave and Caveworld. Discover out-of-the-way places like Cape Reinga and Waitomo Adventures - Lost World 4 Hr Option. There's lots more to do: explore the fascinating underground world of Waitomo Glowworm Caves, admire all the interesting features of Roselands Farm Park, relax in the rural setting at Waitomo Big Bird & Miniature Animal Petting Farm, and surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour.

For ratings, where to stay, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the Waitomo Caves holiday planner.

Traveling by car from Rotorua to Waitomo Caves takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel to Kaikoura.

Things to do in Waitomo Caves

Outdoors Parks Tours

Side Trips

North Island, Waitomo Big Bird & Miniature Animal Petting Farm
Accommodations
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Cape Reinga ©
Cape Reinga
Waitomo Glowworm Caves ©
Waitomo Glowworm Caves
Caveworld ©
Caveworld

2
days
Kaikoura

Kaikoura ©
Head to the small town of Kaikoura, a humble setting from which to witness some of nature's grandest designs.
Kick off your visit on the 5th (Sun): trek along Ohau Waterfall Walk and Seal Pups. On the 6th (Mon), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: discover the deep blue sea with a scuba or snorkeling tour and then trek along Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway.

To find photos, other places to visit, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Kaikoura travel itinerary creator.

You can do a combination of car and flight from Waitomo Caves to Kaikoura in 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Tue) to allow enough time to drive to Lake Tekapo.

Things to do in Kaikoura

Outdoors Parks Trails
Accommodations
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Ohau Stream Walk ©
Ohau Stream Walk
Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway ©
Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway
Scuba & Snorkeling

2
days
Lake Tekapo

Lake Tekapo ©
Located in a UNESCO Dark Sky Reserve, Lake Tekapo offers evenings of stargazing and days of long walks.
Kick off your visit on the 7th (Tue): experience rural life at High Country Salmon and then explore the activities along Lake Pukaki. Here are some ideas for day two: pause for some serene contemplation at Church of the Good Shepherd, contemplate the waterfront views at Lake Tekapo, then admire all the interesting features of Gem Alpaca Stud, and finally witness a stunning natural landmark at Tekapo Springs.

To find where to stay, maps, ratings, and tourist information, read our Lake Tekapo trip generator.

Getting from Kaikoura to Lake Tekapo by car takes about 5.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Wanaka.

Things to do in Lake Tekapo

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Gem Alpaca Stud, Lake Pukaki, High Country Salmon
Accommodations
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Lake Pukaki ©
Lake Pukaki
Tekapo Springs ©
Tekapo Springs
Gem Alpaca Stud ©
Gem Alpaca Stud

2
days
Wanaka

Wanaka ©
Situated on the shores of Lake Wanaka in the Otago region, Wanaka has become a popular ski and summer resort area, owing to its extensive views of the lake and its proximity to some of the best slopes in the country.
On the 9th (Thu), hit the slopes at Wanaka and then take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mount Iron. On the next day, contemplate the waterfront views at Lake Wanaka, take in breathtaking views at Deep Canyon, and then learn about winemaking at Rippon.

To see traveler tips, more things to do, reviews, and other tourist information, go to the Wanaka itinerary maker.

Traveling by car from Lake Tekapo to Wanaka takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 10th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Queenstown.

Things to do in Wanaka

Parks Nature Outdoors
Accommodations
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Wanaka ©
Wanaka
Mount Iron Track ©
Mount Iron Track
Deep Canyon ©
Deep Canyon

4
days
Queenstown

Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
Step out of the city life by going to Walter Peak High Country Farm and Ben Lomond Walkway. Discover out-of-the-way places like Dark Ride and Queenstown Arts Centre. There's much more to do: have some family-friendly fun at Skyline Queenstown, try to win big at Skycity Casino, get the adrenaline pumping with an extreme tour, and hike along Queenstown Hill.

For where to stay, other places to visit, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the Queenstown vacation trip planner.

You can drive from Wanaka to Queenstown in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Tue) so you can drive to Te Anau.

Things to do in Queenstown

Outdoors Tours Adventure
Accommodations
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Parasailing & Paragliding
Ben Lomond Track ©
Ben Lomond Track
Adrenaline & Extreme Tours

4
days
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.
Step off the beaten path and head to Kepler Track and Lake Te Anau. Get in touch with nature at Doubtful Sound and Kayaking & Canoeing. The adventure continues: explore the fascinating underground world of Te Anau Glowworm Caves, see the world from above with a helicopter tour, and hike along Gertrude Saddle.

To see more things to do, traveler tips, ratings, and tourist information, go to the Te Anau online itinerary creator.

Traveling by car from Queenstown to Te Anau takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. On the 18th (Sat), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive to Dunedin.

Things to do in Te Anau

Parks Outdoors Trails
Accommodations
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Lake Te Anau ©
Lake Te Anau
Doubtful Sound ©
Doubtful Sound
Kepler Track ©
Kepler Track

2
days
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.
On the 19th (Sun), examine the collection at Toitu Otago Settlers Museum, stroll through Tunnel Beach, and then explore the striking landscape at Otago Peninsula. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 20th (Mon): admire the landmark architecture of Olveston Historic Home, step into the grandiose world of Larnach Castle & Gardens, then look for all kinds of wild species at Penguin Place, and finally identify plant and animal life at The Royal Albatross Centre.

To find reviews, where to stay, ratings, and tourist information, refer to the Dunedin tour planner.

Traveling by car from Te Anau to Dunedin takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Tue) early enough to travel to Hahei.

Things to do in Dunedin

Parks Wildlife Trails
Accommodations
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Otago Peninsula ©
Otago Peninsula
Olveston Historic Home ©
Olveston Historic Home
Tunnel Beach Track ©
Tunnel Beach Track

2
days
Hahei

Hahei ©
Kick off your visit on the 21st (Tue): add some adventure to your tour with a kayaking and canoeing tour. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 22nd (Wed): tour the pleasant surroundings at Hahei Beach Walk, explore the activities along Cathedral Cove, and then take in the natural beauty of Hot Water Beach.

For other places to visit, more things to do, photos, and tourist information, use the Hahei tour planner.

The Route module can help you plan travel from Dunedin to Hahei. Finish your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Thu) to allow enough time to travel to Auckland.

Things to do in Hahei

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trip

Hot Water Beach
Accommodations
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Cathedral Cove Walk ©
Cathedral Cove Walk
Hot Water Beach ©
Hot Water Beach
Hahei Beach Walk ©
Hahei Beach Walk

4
days
Auckland Central

Auckland Central ©
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.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Piha Beach and Orewa Beach. Relax by the water at Sunset Beach and Karekare Beach. The adventure continues: cruise along Waitakere Ranges, stop by Pauanesia, take in panoramic vistas at Sky Tower, and step off the mainland to explore Tiritiri Matangi Island.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, where to stay, and more tourist information, use the Auckland itinerary planner.

Traveling by car from Hahei to Auckland takes 2.5 hours. In February, plan for daily highs up to 72°F, and evening lows to 72°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 26th (Sun) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Auckland Central

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Karekare Beach, Sunset Beach, Orewa Beach, Piha Beach
Accommodations
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Piha Beach ©
Piha Beach
Orewa Beach ©
Orewa Beach
Waitakere Ranges ©
Waitakere Ranges

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