Hi NZ TAs!
We are planning a trip to NZ in January. We are two adults and two children who will be aged 9 and 6. We have 10-14 days (I am pushing for 14 days) so we know we can only really do one island, but we can't decide which one. We will hire a car and stay in hotels/apartments. We prefer not to be changing locale every day, but use a few different places as a base for 2 or 3 nights each and day trip from there.
We are interested in scenery and landscapes, good food & wine, learning about Maori culture, walking/easy hikes and dolphin/whale watching. We would also like to fit in a spot of fishing but have no experience with fishing at all. I am also a big Neil Finn fan so if we do north island I would have to stop at a few Finn-portant places, however if the south island is best for us as a family I am willing to forego Finn things.
If we do the north island we would want to see these things:
Bay of Islands
Lake Taupo (fishing?)
Wellington (we have friends here)
South Island interests:
Christchurch (we have friends here)
Kaikoura (whale watching)
Fox or Franz Josef Glacier
I have been to Auckland and my partner has done the south island but both were 20 years ago. We also have the kids to consider - which island do you think they would enjoy more? Any advice regarding which island to visit and a rough suggested itinerary would be much appreciated.
Thank you in advance!