New Zealand Grand Tour - 14 days

Combine our North and South Island self drive itineraries to create an action packed two week adventure around the whole of New Zealand.


  • A day exploring Auckland
  • Geysers, mud pools and springs at Rotorua
  • Scenic cruise on the Interisland ferry
  • See the Franz Josef glacier
  • A day to explore bustling Queenstown

Day 1 - Auckland
Arrive into Auckland International Airport and be transferred to your hotel.  Spend the remainder of the day at leisure in Auckland.

Situated on a narrow isthmus between two beautiful harbours, Auckland the “city of sails” is New Zealand’s largest city with a population of over 1 million. Auckland’s Waitemata Harbour, so aptly named by the Maoris as the “sea of sparkling waters”, has brought prosperity to the city.

Besides being New Zealand's main shipping port, Auckland is also the main terminal for overseas traffic. The warm sunny climate, with its generous and evenly distributed rainfall is ideal and there are beautiful parklands and garden reserves throughout. The many miles of coastline provide Aucklanders with the means to enjoy their favourite sport of yachting.

Standard: Sky City Hotel
Deluxe: Eden Park, B&B basis

Day 2 - Auckland to Coromandel Peninsula
This morning collect your rental car in Auckland and make your way to Pauanui on the Coromandel Peninsula (approximately 160kms). Spend the remainder of the day at leisure in Pauanui.

This area, about 1.5 hours drive from Auckland is renowned for its native pohutukawa trees on its West Coast and the beautiful white sandy beaches on the East Coast. The historical past of this region is evident in the mining relics, logging dams and Maori Pa sites that dot the landscape. The central ranges of native rainforest are also popular with hikers & ramblers. Many activities are possible in this area, mainly of a walking or water related nature.

Standard: Pauanui Pines Motor Lodge, Pauanui
Deluxe: Brenton Lodge, Whangamata, B&B basis

Day 3 - Coromandel Peninsula to Rotorua
Make your way to Rotorua (approximately 218 kms). Spend the remainder of the day at leisure Rotorua.

Rotorua is the centre of the intense thermal activity in New Zealand. The city itself is situated on the shores of Lake Rotorua and excellent stream and lake fishing abounds. Geysers, pools of boiling mud, crystal springs and hot mineral water and richly coloured craters make Rotorua one of the world’s great tourist attractions.

Standard: Sudima Hotel Lake Rotorua
Deluxe: Black Swan Lakeside Boutique Hotel, B&B basis

Day 4 - Rotorua to Napier
Make your way to Napier (approximately 225kms). Spend the remainder of the day at leisure in Napier.

The centre of the Hawkes Bay region of New Zealand, Napier is renowned for both its Art Deco architecture and also for its wine industry. It is said to be one of the warmest regions in the country with warm summers and mild winters. There are many activities from adventure seeking and wine tasting to just browsing around the local art deco shopping areas.

Standard: The Nautilus Hotel
Deluxe: The County Hotel, B&B basis

Day 5 - Napier to Wellington
Make your way to Wellington (approximately 334kms). Spend the remainder of the day at leisure in Wellington.

Wellington, the capital city of New Zealand lies at the southern end of the North Island. On the shores of a magnificent harbour and surrounded by the rugged beauty of green hills, it is one of the most scenic cities. Some of the best views are obtained from the hilltops especially from Mt Victoria lookout, which can be conveniently reached by a short taxi ride.

Public buildings of interest are the Dominion Museum and National Art Gallery, parliament buildings and the Alexander Turnbull library. The newest attraction in the “capital” is New Zealand’s National Museum. Named “Te Papa” (our place) it contains a wealth of information on New Zealand’s past, present and future, many interactive exhibits, multi-media databases and fascinating collections. A must see while in Wellington.

Standard: Ibis Hotel
Deluxe: Museum Hotel, B&B basis

Day 6 - Wellington to Nelson via Picton
Today please make your way to the Hertz Car counter at the Wellington Interislander Ferry Terminal and return your rental car as pre-arranged.

Board the InterIslander Ferry for your journey across Cook Strait to Picton. On arrival in Picton collect your rental car and make your way to Nelson (approximately 110kms). Spend the remainder of the day at leisure in Nelson.

Nelson, at the top of the South Island, is an extrordinary corner of New Zealand - a beautiful region between sweeping beaches and the northern edge of the southern Alps.

Standard: The Rutherford Hotel, Nelson
Deluxe: Cambria House, B&B basis

Day 7 - Nelson to Greymouth or Hokitika
Make your way to Greymouth or Hokitika (approximately 290kms to Greymouth or approximately 330kms to Hokitika). En route you may like to stop at Punakaiki and visit the famous “Pancake Rocks”. Spend the remainder of the day at leisure in Greymouth or Hokitika. 

Standard: Ashley Hotel Greymouth
Deluxe: Breakers Boutique Accommodation, B&B basis

Day 8  - Greymouth or Hokitika to Franz Josef
Today, make your way down the West Coast to Franz Josef (approximately 179kms from Greymouth or approximately 161kms from Hokitika). Spend the remainder of the day at leisure in Franz Josef.  

The best thing about the West Coast (Westland) is its ruggedness – the narrow coastal strip is still very much untamed. Here and there are patches of native forest that have escaped the axe and fire. The two glaciers Fox and Franz Josef are perhaps the major draw cards to the West Coast, but visitors soon find that the whole area is worth exploring.

Standard: Punga Grove Motor Lodge
Deluxe: Holly Homestead, B&B basis

Day 9 - Franz Josef to Queenstown
Today drive through the Haast Pass and past Lake Wanaka to Queenstown (approximately 404 kms). Spend the remainder of the day at leisure in Queenstown.

Queenstown nestles in Queenstown Bay, about midway along the eastern shores of the azure blue waters of Lake Wakatipu. An unusual feature of the lake is the regular “breathing”, a 3-inch rise and fall every 15 minutes. Striking mountain peaks surround Queenstown, and although still rural in character, the town has developed into a tourist resort for all seasons.

Situated more than 300 metres above sea level, it is sufficiently inland to provide a sharp contrast between the hot summer and bracing winter. The autumn colours and the Lake District are justly famous and a delight to photographers and painters. Winter brings spectacular snow scenery, ice-skating, skiing, heli-skiing and snowboarding. Year round adventure activities include world famous bungee jumping, white water rafting, parapenting and much more.

Standard: Mercure Resort Queenstown
Deluxe: Browns Boutique Hotel, B&B basis

Day 10 - Queenstown
Full day at your leisure to select your optional sightseeing: thrilling jet boat rides, vintage steamer lake cruises, visit to high country sheep stations, mountain gondola rides — the list is endless and you also have time to relax and simply marvel at the beautiful scenery.

Day 11 - Queenstown to Te Anau 
Make your way to Te Anau (approximately 170kms). We suggest you travel via Milford Sound. (Approximately 420kms) where time is available to enjoy a cruise on the scenic sound (at your own expense).

Standard: Kingsgate Hotel Te Anau
Deluxe: Fiordland Lodge Log Cabins, B&B and dinner included

Day 12 - Te Anau to Dunedin
Make your way to Dunedin - the "Edinburgh of the South" (approximately 290kms). This afternoon in Dunedin time is available to explore — you may like to visit the Otago Peninsula - home of the Royal Albatross Colony, the Yellow Penguins or historic Larnach Castle (at your own expense)

Standard: Kingsgate Hotel Dunedin
Deluxe: Larnach Lodge at Larnach Castle

Day 13 - Dunedin to Christchurch
Make your way to Christchurch (approximately 362kms). Spend the remainder of the day at leisure in Christchurch. Christchurch is known as the “most English City outside England” or the “garden city”.

From the unique Summit Road there is a magnificent view of the Canterbury Plains, bounded on the west by the Southern Alps and on the east by the Lyttleton Harbour and the Banks Peninsula.

Standard: Heartland Hotel
Deluxe: The Classic Villa, B&B basis

Day 14 - Christchurch 
Tour ends with returning your rental car to the Christchurch airport depot. Depart Christchurch.

14 day self drive - from £1372

14 day Deluxe New Zealand Grand Tour Self Drive - from £2124

All prices are per person and based on 2 sharing a double or twin room. Standard tours include comfortable touring hotels. Deluxe tours include breakfast and more intimate accommodation in lodges, country houses and small hotels, offering a warm welcome and personal service. Hotels specified are subject to availability and may be substituted by one of a similar or higher standard.

Self Drive Tour

Relaxed and enjoyable self drive touring. Book them as they are or ask your consultant to add extra days in the places you choose. Available in both directions.

Your self drive tour includes:

  • Well planned route
  • Air conditioned car
  • Standard or deluxe hotels
  • Time to explore
  • Maps and information
  • Flexible itineraries


More self drive tours

For help and advice or to start planning your New Zealand holiday

call 0333 234 3209 or enquire online