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Mode of travel in New Zealand

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Mode of travel in New Zealand

My wife and I have never been to New Zealand before and as part of a 2 month trip will be visting for 14 nights flying in to Christchurch having been in Sydney for a week and then out of Auckland to Brisbane.

We would like to visit both islands and although I am happy to drive I see little point in spending time doing so unnecessarily if flying is an option.

The idea is to go Tranzalpine from Christchurch to Greymouth collect a car, drive to Frans Josef ,overnight there and drive on to Queenstown with another overnight followed by a 2 day Doubtful Sound cruise returning to Queenstown.

originally we were then flying to Rotorua with no further fixed ideas.

We would however miss Nelson and the ferry crossing to North Island which seems a shame as does not seeing Wellington. Is it daft to fly Queenstown to Nelson cross by ferry and then fly Wellington to Rotorua/Auckland?

Help please on travel/destinations/anything that comes to mind.

We are in our 60's relatively fit save for a new knee and a back that has its moments so bunjy jumping /white water rafting may be a step too far.We like to visit restaurants have a glass of wine and watch the world go by if there's time.

NZ looks beautiful and we very much look forward to our trip.We will be there from 16 February.

Edited: 29 August 2013, 19:15
Rarotonga, Cook...
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for Rarotonga, Waiheke Island, Southern Cook Islands, Auckland Central
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1. Re: Mode of travel in New Zealand

Hi newtosa,

Flying from Queenstown to Nelson will likely involve either 2 or 3 flights, with a lot of time spent at airports and inflight.

The Coromandel has some wonderful beaches and coastal areas, as does the Bay of Plenty, if you don't reach Nelson and Tasman Bay. Wellington is a lovely capital city, and the Martinborough region is on the way to Napier, both of which offer some wonderful wines in their regions. From Napier its a short but scenic drive to Taupo & Rotorua thermal attractions. You could skip the BOP/Coromandel, but continue from Rotorua to Waitomo Caves and Raglan instead.

Suggested North Island route:


Martinborough - Napier

Taupo - Rotorua

Tauranga - Whitianga

possibly...west Coromandel Peninsula (Thames & Coromandel township)


February is a lovely time of year to explore NZ.

Edited: 29 August 2013, 20:23
Wanaka, New Zealand
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2. Re: Mode of travel in New Zealand

I think that a car really allows you to see the best of NZ. So much of what is great - at least about the South Island - is the drive from A-B. Having your own vehicle gives you the flexibility to stop at the views that interest you, and to take detours that seem worth it. Have a look at factoring Wanaka into your itinerary. It is an hour from Queenstown when coming from Franz Josef. There are a number of good restaurants. It is much more laid back than Queenstown, and even more scenic (and sunnier!) I posted a link to an article yesterday that sums up the place. Have a look. It's still on this first page somewhere.

New Zealand
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3. Re: Mode of travel in New Zealand

Is your flight to Chch booked? You could instead fly into Queenstown then drive up the SI and ferry to Wellington.

Flying Q'town to Nelson is certainly possible though it will take 3 to 5 hours for 2 or 3 sectors as you will fly via Chch or Chch to Wellington to get to Nelson. Check www.grabaseat.co.nz for discounted Air NZ flights.

Christchurch, New...
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for Zhuhai, Christchurch, South Island
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4. Re: Mode of travel in New Zealand

With such a short time, I would look at flying ZQN (Queenstown) to WLG and following Frangipani's itinerary for the NI. You simply don't have time to do everything.

Edited: 30 August 2013, 01:12
5. Re: Mode of travel in New Zealand

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