Experience the best of both islands on this top New Zealand family vacation. We offer the best flexible New Zealand escorted tours with no date or itinerary restrictions. Book the best for your family on this privately guided tour of New Zealand inclusive of a private tour guide and chauffeur plus private touring vehicle. This New Zealand family vacation can be customised to suit your interests and budget.
Your intriguing guided holiday begins in Queenstown, the adventure capital of New Zealand. Surrounded by rugged mountains and bordered by the turquoise waters of Lake Wakatipu, Queenstown is a vibrant, buzzing mountain paradise.
Explore Queenstown with your guide, with the option to take a stroll along the lake, or ride the Skyline Gondola to the top of Bob’s Peak for panoramic views over Queenstown and beyond.
Stay 3 nights in Queenstown.
Enjoy a quintessential Kiwi experience – a delicious gourmet BBQ lunch and a farm tour in a stunning lakeside setting. Your experience starts with a cruise aboard the historic TSS Earnslaw across to Walter Peak High Country Farm. Once there, you can sit back on the lakeside terrace of the Colonel’s Homestead Restaurant and savour the delicious aromas as our chef has the best of local produce, sizzling away on the grill. After lunch, you can join an entertaining farm demonstration or explore the beautiful lakeside gardens.
In the afternoon visit Arrowtown with your tour guide. This charming gold rush village sits in a natural paradise. A Queenstown “must-do.” Arrowtown is a lively, quirky, historic village. So many pleasures to choose from – Arrowtown satisfies many sides of your personality. The nature lover, photographer, the museum visitor, the shop browser. The charm of historic Buckingham Street, while savouring a coffee.
Prepare yourself for the ultimate Jet Boating experience with Shotover Jet – the unique, breathtaking white water ride and adrenaline rush you’ll never forget. From the moment the accelerator hits the floor, your adrenaline hits the roof. You’ll speed over 10cm deep water, along the famous Shotover River and deep into the spectacular Shotover River Canyons.
Continue your quest for adventure and choose from any adventure activity on offer in Queenstown; bungy jumping, skydiving, paragliding, quad biking, zip lining, heli flights, 4WD off-roading, you name it we can book it.
Travel time Queenstown to Te Anau – 2 hours
Tick off any last wish list activities in Queenstown in the morning, before following Queenstown’s Lake Wakatipu to Te Anau. Te Anau is the hub of Fiordland National Park and offers visitors a great base for visiting Milford Sound.
Discuss with your guide what you would like to do in the afternoon, recommendations include a once in a lifetime helicopter flight to see this sights of this dramatic landscape or a lake cruise across Lake Manapouri to visit the Te Anau Glowworm Caves.
Stay 2 nights in Te Anau.
Embark on a fantastic journey along the Milford Highway today to New Zealand’s most iconic fiord – Milford Sound. Travel with a small tour group on this extended day trip to Milford Sound, stopping along the way for countless scenic photo opportunities and short walks plus a delicious morning tea. At Milford Sound, enjoy a scenic nature cruise that takes you up close to the majesty of the fiord – you might even spot keas, seals, dolphins, or the rare Fiordland Crested Penguin!
Travel time Te Anau to Dunedin via the Catlins – 5 hours (direct route available if preferred – 3 hours)
Along the way to Dunedin, your guide will take you on a tour of the remote Catlins coast, where you will find pounding waterfalls, an iconic lighthouse, lush native bush, a petrified forest, and maybe even penguins and dolphins! Stop for a number of nature walks and photo opportunities along the way, and soak in the wild natural beauty.
In the evening, relax in Dunedin, where you will find a number of striking historic buildings in the compact town centre.
Stay 2 nights in Dunedin.
Today, venture to Larnach Castle which is situated on the spectacular Otago Peninsula. This castle was built by William Larnach in 1871 offering scandalous and tragic stories, incredible tower views and a exquisite Victorian interiors complete this magical castle.
The gardens at Larnach Castle have been rated by the New Zealand Gardens Trust as a Garden of International Significance. This garden makes up 7 acres of the grounds and with that in mind is well worth exploring! Enjoy the sheer beauty that has been put into this magical venue!
In the afternoon, your guide will show you around Dunedin – you have the option to visit the Otago Settlers Museum, Speight’s Brewery, or the Otago Peninsula.
Travel time Dunedin to Wanaka – 4 hours
Your scenic tour will continue as you enjoy the drive through rolling green farmland, then through moon-like valleys where glacial rock lies scattered over mountains. Drive through orchards and fruit farms where you can stop to taste fresh fruit and real fruit ice creams. The next feature includes patchwork vineyards, if you are interested in New Zealand wines, make the most of your guide’s local knowledge and stop off at some of the best wineries in New Zealand.
Explore the alpine town of Wanaka in the afternoon – your guide could take you to Puzzling World or the Toy and Transport Museum, or you could simply relax on the lakefront and stroll around the great selection of boutique shops.
Stay 1 night in Wanaka.
Travel time Wanaka to Franz Josef – 4 hours
The Haast Pass Highway is one of the most scenic alpine routes in New Zealand. Explore the pass with your guide, stopping to view cascading waterfalls, broad alpine meadows, craggy snowcapped mountains, and the turquoise depths of the Blue Pools.
Continuing along the West Coast, your guide will take you to Lake Matheson, where you can take a 20 minute walk (one-way) to the jetty, to admire the reflected views of the Southern Alps on the surface of the lake.
In the afternoon, take an unforgettable helicopter flight over Franz Josef Glacier, where you will land in the snow to enjoy incredible views of the majestic Southern Alps.
Stay 1 night in Franz Josef.
Travel time Franz Josef to Greymouth – 2.5 hours
Train travel time Greymouth to Christchurch – 4.5 hours
Leave the rugged West Coast behind today as you board the TranzAlpine Train for a fantastic journey through Arthurs Pass. Travel past the soaring peaks and braided rivers of the Southern Alps, through the gorges of the Waimakariri River, and past the rolling Canterbury Plains.
Your guide will meet you at the train station and bring you to your accommodation.
Stay 1 night in Christchurch.
In the morning catch a domestic flight from Christchurch to Auckland to start your North Island adventure. (Cost of flight not included in package, please enquire for indicative pricing).
Arrive at Auckland Airport and get on the road, first stop Rotorua!
Travel time Auckland to Rotorua – 3 hours
Enjoy the scenic drive through rolling farmland to Rotorua, the geothermal capital of New Zealand. Tour the exciting geothermal attractions with your guide, visiting sulphur springs, mud pools, geysers, and sinter terraces.
Stay 2 nights in Rotorua.
In the morning stroll through Hell’s Gate Geothermal Reserve, where you will have the opportunity to experience the rich Maori culture and soak in a relaxing sulphur spa.
There is more to see! In the evening experience New Zealand’s cultural side with a evening of Maori Culture and delicacies. See a real life haka and be touched by a traditional Maori welcome. Then feast on the three course meal cooked in the traditional hangi pits. Finish your evening next to a fascinating geyser watching it erupt under the night sky.
Travel time Rotorua to Matamata – 1 hour
Experience the magic of Middle-earth as you tour the Hobbiton Movie Set, where the charming village from The Lord of the Rings has been brought to life.
Travel time Matamata to Auckland – 2.5 hours
Sit back and relax as your guide drives through unique landscapes before entering the bustle of Auckland streets. Home to one quarter of New Zealand’s population and bordered by two stunning harbours, Auckland is a thriving, diverse city surrounded by natural wonders.
In the evening, explore Auckland with your guide, visiting top attractions such as the Sky Tower.
Stay 2 nights in Auckland.
Explore Auckland with your guide, visiting top attractions such as Mt Eden’s volcanic crater, Waiheke Island or Sea Life Kelly Tarlton’s Aquarium.
At midday head to sea as you finish your New Zealand holiday with a very memorable Auckland Whale and Dolphin Safari! Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf Marine Park is home to resident populations of whales, dolphins and seabirds and visited by a staggering one third of all marine mammal species found on earth. Departing directly from the Viaduct Harbour in down-town Auckland, be welcomed aboard a purpose-built research vessel the ‘Dolphin Explorer’ for an unforgettable 4.5hr eco-safari of whale watching, dolphin watching and seabird spotting on the sparkling waters of the Hauraki Gulf.
Your guide will deliver you to Auckland Airport for your departing flight.
Guided tours are the perfect choice for your New Zealand family vacation. Here are a few reasons why:
Contact New Zealand Guided Tours to begin planning.
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