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3 week Itinerary

Tyler, Texas
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3 week Itinerary

Hello TA!

I will be travelling to New Zealand for the first time this December-Jan. I have been working on this itinerary for quite some time now and I think I just need some expert or local kiwis to give me some sound advice. Is there anything I should take out and replace with a different destination? Should I reroute some areas to make it flow better? I have looked at maps and distance calculations to hopefully plan this correctly. Okay, so here it is, I shall let you all tear it apart now. :)

Also, the day I have planned for Milford sound I have read about some awesome day walks in the area. Should I skip the cruise and do the walk instead? Any advice or suggestions are well appreciated.

Day1-Arrive in Auckland. Have lunch/explore over at Waiheke island. Or just explore Auckland/ Relax.

Day2- May have some time this AM to venture around Auckland or else Waitomo before driving to Roturua. Explore Rotorua (zorbing, luge, thermal spas, etc) afternoon/evening. Maori Cultural Show/ Hangi dinner. (This may be too much for today, may have to take out Waitomo)

Day3- Rotorua-Full day planned

Day4-drive south to Huka Falls Jetboat and Lake Taupo, afternoon kayak to the Maori Rock Carvings. Turangi for 2 nights

Day 5- hike the Tongariro Alpine Crossing

Day 6-drive to Pipiriki and take Jetboat up the Whanganui River

Day 7-Pipiriki to Wellington this afternoon. Explore Wellington (Museum this afternoon?) Maybe we'll have time before it closes. Wellington tonight

Day 8- Morning Ferry to Picton. Afternoon kayak on the Pelorus river. 2 nights in Nelson

Day 9- Abel Tasman for the day (This is New Years Eve, hoping there is something going on)

Day 10-Nelson to Punakaki

Day 11- Punakaki (Can raft through a cave here in replace of Waitomo)

Day 12-Punakaki to Franz Josef

Day 13- Franz Josef

Day 14- Franz Josef to Wanaka

Day 15-Wanaka to Te Anau/ Milford sound overnight cruise. (Can see glowworms in Te Anau in place of waitomo) May need to do Canyoning today and Milford Sound day cruise tomorrow

Day 16- Canyoning today. Explore Queenstown. (Or Milford Sound Day Cruise)

Day 17- Glenorchy (Have something planned 8am-4pm) - Drive to Lake Tekapo

Day 18-Lake Tekapo to Mt Cook back to Lake Tekapo for the night or stay at Mt Cook and have a longer drive to Christchurch

Day 19-Lake Tekapo to Christchurch-

Day 20- Last day in New Zealand. Early flight to Auckland to explore this morning in Auckland or later flight to explore in Christchurch.

We depart Auckland @ 4:45pm so we have a little room to play with flights on the last day. Does this seem like too much driving? Also, this trip is consisting of a lot of kayaking in certain locations, should I just hike or do an alternate activity in some areas? So overwhelmed!

Thanks in advance!

New Zealand
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for South Island
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1. Re: 3 week Itinerary

Hello ST, you have certainly packed lots in!

I would try to ease some of your days to allow a bit of leeway. I would not recommend driving the 4 plus hours to Tekapo after a full day in Glenorchy. Tired drivers make mistakes and driver fatigue is a leading cause of NZ road accidents.

Where are you going canyoning?

Why go to Tekapo when you plan to explore Aoraki/Mt Cook? So you go past Aoraki to get to Tekapo, back to Aoraki to explore back to Tekapo to get to Chch.

day 11 - can you drive to Franz after your rafting? This will free up a much needed day to ease your travels further south.

It would certainly help if a you add a few extra days to the lower South - or eliminate some of your activities?

Tyler, Texas
8 posts
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2. Re: 3 week Itinerary

Hmm, I thought Mt Cook was North of Tekapo. So I figured we'd stay a night there. Maybe we can stay overnight in Glonarchy, that's where the canyoning and other activity is we are doing. But then there are no days in Queenstown and I want to explore a bit there. Hmm, we could probably leave after rafting, I suppose that would free up a day. I'll have to see if we can visit the pancake rocks and raft in the same day. Not sure how long that hike takes. I need an extra week to see everything!

Thanks for the response :)

Edited: 16 July 2014, 09:41
New Zealand
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3. Re: 3 week Itinerary

still unknown where you plan to go canyoning - or do you mean the glow worm caves?

California
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4. Re: 3 week Itinerary

WL, I think he means the canyoning in Glenorchy: http://canyoning.co.nz/routeburn.html

The hike to Pancake Rocks is all of 30-40 minutes and originates from the Hwy. Unless you are going to do other hikes in the area, I see no reason to spend 2 nights there. The rafting trip might be done on the afternoon you are driving Nelson to Punakaiki. Isn't it closer to Westport, which is on the way?

New Zealand
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5. Re: 3 week Itinerary

?

But they drive Wanaka to Te Anau that day - and they plan to be in Glenorchy a few days later...

California
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6. Re: 3 week Itinerary

I think the OP is throwing out a couple of options for Days 15/16, depending on if they decide on the overnight cruise or day cruise at Milford. It's a bit muddled and hopefully they come back to clarify.

Tyler, Texas
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7. Re: 3 week Itinerary

I think we are going to spend one less day in Franz Josef so that will free up a day and Canyoning is in Glenorchy. He did post the right link, thank you. Maybe it will work better that way since the last part of this trip seems jammed. I just tried to follow the maps as best I could putting this together with distance, etc. I am starting to wonder if I should even visit the glaciers as I have seen glaciers in Alaska before. Now I have added (or wanting to add) a stop along the way to Queenstown, there is a town I believe with penguins so i'll have to look into that more. Sorry to have confused you guys.

Thanks for the replies!

Edited: 17 July 2014, 08:57
Tyler, Texas
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8. Re: 3 week Itinerary

I think we are going to spend one less day in Franz Josef so that will free up a day and Canyoning is in Glenorchy, that is the corrwct link you posted. Thanks for the suggestion in Punakiki. We can probably leave early from there as well. I don't think we have anything else planned. Maybe it will work better that way since the last part of this trip seems jammed. I just tried to follow the maps as best I could pitting thia together with distance, etc. I am starting to wonder if I should even visit the glaciers as I have seen glaciers in Alaska before. Now I have added (or wanting to add) a stop along the way to Queenstown, there is a town I believe with penguins so i'll have to look into that more. Sorry to have confused you guys.

Thanks for the replies!

Edited: 17 July 2014, 09:05
Tyler, Texas
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9. Re: 3 week Itinerary

Eck, sorry for double and now triple posting. I tried editing (from my cell phone) and it just posted a second time.

10. Re: 3 week Itinerary

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