27 days in New Zealand Itinerary

27 days in New Zealand Itinerary

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Route & dates

27 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Start: Wellington
+2
Fly + bus + train:  6​h
1
Kaikoura
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h
2
Hanmer Springs
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 45​min
3
Christchurch
— 2 nights
Drive:  3​h 45​min
4
Twizel
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h 45​min
5
Te Anau
— 2 nights
bus:  3​h 45​min
6
Invercargill
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
7
Dunedin
— 14 nights
Fly:  4​h 30​min
End: Wellington

2
nights
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 19th (Sun): take a memorable tour with Tours and then trek along Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway. Keep things going the next day: look for gifts at Kaikoura Cheese, take an in-depth tour of Kaikoura Museum, then identify plant and animal life at Wildlife Areas, then make a trip to Ohau Point Seal Colony, and finally hike along Ohau Stream Walk.

To find other places to visit, reviews, maps, and tourist information, go to the Kaikoura trip planner .

Wellington to Kaikoura is an approximately 6-hour combination of flight and train. You can also do a combination of ferry and bus; or do a combination of ferry and train. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 21st (Tue) so you can go by car to Hanmer Springs.

Things to do in Kaikoura

Outdoors Parks Trails
Find places to stay Apr 19 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
Dolphin & Whale Watching
Nature & Wildlife Tours
Kaikoura Museum ©
Kaikoura Museum

2
nights
Hanmer Springs

Hanmer Springs ©
Action and relaxation are the reasons that most people head to Hanmer Springs, where natural thermal pools bubble among dramatic alpine surroundings.
Kick off your visit on the 21st (Tue): take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Conical Hill and then head outdoors with Hanmer Llamas. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: stop by The Decadent Fudge Company, witness a stunning natural landmark at Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa, then make a trip to Queen Mary Hospital, and finally take a peaceful walk through Hanmer Forest.

For other places to visit, traveler tips, and tourist information, read our Hanmer Springs travel app .

Drive from Kaikoura to Hanmer Springs in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of train and bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 23rd (Thu) early enough to drive to Christchurch.

Things to do in Hanmer Springs

Parks Nature Outdoors
Find places to stay Apr 21 — 23:
Highlights from your plan
Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa ©
Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa
Hanmer Forest ©
Hanmer Forest
Hanmer Llamas ©
Hanmer Llamas

2
nights
Christchurch

Christchurch ©
Recovering from the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 was no easy task, but Christchurch has faced the challenges with aplomb.
Start off your visit on the 23rd (Thu): appreciate the history behind Chalice Sculpture, then take in nature's colorful creations at Christchurch Botanic Gardens, and then take a memorable ride with TranzAlpine Train. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 24th (Fri): contemplate the long history of Riccarton House & Bush and then get interesting insight from Tours.

For more things to do, other places to visit, and more tourist information, use the Christchurch holiday planning tool .

Traveling by car from Hanmer Springs to Christchurch takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In April, daily temperatures in Christchurch can reach 20°C, while at night they dip to 8°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 25th (Sat) early enough to travel to Twizel.

Things to do in Christchurch

Tours Adventure Transportation
Find places to stay Apr 23 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
TranzAlpine Train ©
TranzAlpine Train
River Rafting & Tubing
Riccarton House & Bush ©
Riccarton House & Bush

2
nights
Twizel

Twizel ©
On the 25th (Sat), relax in the rural setting at SkyScape and then contemplate the waterfront views at Lake Ohau. On the 26th (Sun), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: stop by The Wrinkly Rams, head outdoors with Aoraki/Mt. Cook, and then hike along Mount John Summit Circuit Track.

To find other places to visit, more things to do, and more tourist information, read our Twizel trip itinerary planning site .

Traveling by car from Christchurch to Twizel takes 4 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 27th (Mon) so you can travel to Dunedin.

Things to do in Twizel

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

Aoraki/Mt. Cook, The Wrinkly Rams, Mount John Summit Circuit Track
Find places to stay Apr 25 — 27:
Highlights from your plan
Lake Ohau ©
Lake Ohau
Aoraki/Mt. Cook ©
Aoraki/Mt. Cook
The Wrinkly Rams ©
The Wrinkly Rams

2
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.
On the 27th (Mon), look for all kinds of wild species at Te Anau Bird Sanctuary and then contemplate the waterfront views at Doubtful Sound. Keep things going the next day: identify plant and animal life at Milford sound Hwy and then contemplate the waterfront views at Milford Sound.

For maps, ratings, photos, and other tourist information, go to the Te Anau trip builder app .

The Route module can help you plan travel from Twizel to Te Anau. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 29th (Wed) to allow time to take a bus to Invercargill.

Things to do in Te Anau

Parks Nature Wildlife

Side Trip

Milford sound Hwy
Find places to stay Apr 27 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Milford Sound ©
Milford Sound
Doubtful Sound ©
Doubtful Sound
Milford sound Hwy ©
Milford sound Hwy

2
nights
Invercargill

Invercargill ©
Invercargill is the southernmost and westernmost city in New Zealand, and one of the southernmost cities in the world. On the 29th (Wed), tour the pleasant surroundings at Oreti Beach, see the interesting displays at Bill Richardson Transport World, and then browse the fresh offerings at Southern Farmers Market. Here are some ideas for day two: tour the pleasant surroundings at Rakiura Rides, stroll around Queens Park, make a trip to Burt Munro Statue, then explore the ancient world of Invercargill Brewery, and finally get engrossed in the history at E Hayes and Sons - The World's Fastest Indian.

To see more things to do, where to stay, photos, and tourist information, use the Invercargill sightseeing planner.

Traveling by bus from Te Anau to Invercargill takes 4 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Fri) to allow time to drive to Dunedin.

Things to do in Invercargill

Parks Outdoors Museums
Find places to stay Apr 29 — May 1:
Highlights from your plan
Rakiura Rides ©
Rakiura Rides
Bill Richardson Transport World ©
Bill Richardson Transport World

14
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.
Explore hidden gems such as Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail and Orokonui Ecosanctuary. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Dunedin: Oturehua (Gilchrist's Oturehua Store & Hayes Engineering Works & Homestead (inc Cafe)), Oamaru (The New Zealand Whisky Company, Grainstore Gallery, & more) and Indoor Curling Rink (in Naseby). There's still lots to do: don't miss a visit to Nugget Point/Tokata Walks, pause for some serene contemplation at First Church of Otago, step into the grandiose world of Larnach Castle & Gardens, and test your problem-solving skills at popular escape rooms.

To find other places to visit, ratings, and more tourist information, you can read our Dunedin online vacation planner .

You can drive from Invercargill to Dunedin in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Fri) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Dunedin

Parks Outdoors Wildlife

Side Trips

Oamaru, Oturehua, Waikouaiti, Owaka, Katiki Point Lighthouse
Find places to stay May 1 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Larnach Castle & Gardens ©
Larnach Castle & Gardens
Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail ©
Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail

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