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What to do? Need some help!

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Salt Lake City, Utah
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What to do? Need some help!

We are going to New Zealand in December with our whole family from the U.S., 12 adults (parents ages 60's, kids 20-30's). We have most of it planned out but have a few free days and not sure what we should do? There is so much but we want to pick out a few more things that would be the best.

We are probably going to do an Agrodome tour, Zip Lining Activity, Milford Sound Tour. Thoughts?

We want some fun adventure activities but our parents also want some more mellow activities. Suggestions were:

Gondola ride - Scenery

Dart River Wilderness Tour - but the mother is worried about boat accidents.

Jet Boat - is this pretty dangerous, my friend who did it said it was amazing!!

Bunge Jumping - I already know that the boys are doing this

Any tours you can recommend, or places we shouldn't miss?

Wanaka, New Zealand
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1. Re: What to do? Need some help!

Wine tour around Marlborough (top of South Island), Queenstown or Cromwell? Wildlife spotting tours - lots around the country, but Dunedin in particular is known for this. Stewart Island would be very special: bird sanctuary (most amazing bird life I have seen in NZ), charter fishing, relaxed vibe.

Christchurch, New...
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for Zhuhai, Christchurch, South Island
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2. Re: What to do? Need some help!

How long do you have in NZ? Which airport(s) ar e you flying in & out of? How are you planning to travel or is going to be a stay-put in QTN holiday? Without this information our answers might miss the mark.

California
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3. Re: What to do? Need some help!

>>>" We have most of it planned out but have a few free days and not sure what we should do?"

It would help if you elaborated on this statement. No sense in being advised to do things you already have planned to do. Or being advised to do things that are no where near where you are going. Where are those free days, or are they flexible within the route you have planned? If we had a draft of your itinerary, that would be very helpful.

ETA - and what time of year are you traveling?

Edited: 24 September 2013, 20:21
Salt Lake City, Utah
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4. Re: What to do? Need some help!

Thanks for your input!! Much appreciated! We are going to be there the middle of December. It's going to be almost 3 weeks of New Zealand and Australia. We are packing it all in, will definitely be tight. We are flying into Auckland, going to Hamilton to visit some friends, driving to Rotoura to see some caves (glow worms?) and spend 2 days. Then flying into Queenstown where we will spend the last 4 days of our trip. We aren't renting a car, but we can organized some transfers. So we will stay around Queenstown for those last few days. One day is already booked to do a little traveling around the country and going on a Milford Sound Tour. Then we are planning on doing some fun adventure activities. Or what are the best tours/places? Any suggestions?

Sydney, Australia
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5. Re: What to do? Need some help!

In Rotorua, I suggest a visit to Hells Gate. The area is interesting to walk around and then you can have a mud bath soak to relax. There is also hot spring pools near the lake at Rotorua as well. I also enjoyed the 4WD Safari and zorbing.

If you are staying in Te Anu (on the way to Milford Sound), I suggest the the glow worm tour - some steps but nothing too strenuous and I really enjoyed it and recommend it highly

California
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6. Re: What to do? Need some help!

Ack! I wrote a very lengthy response and it seems to have disappeared into the ozone!

Regarding jetboats, they can be very different experiences. The Shotover jetboat is a white knuckle, 20 minute experience, doing turns and spins inches from the rockface of a very narrow canyon. In contrast, the Dart River jetboat, aka Wilderness Safari, is a much longer scenic ride with a couple of spins thrown in. The Dart River itself is wide and shallow - exactly what jetboats were designed for.

Then there is Skippers Canyon Jet which is somewhere between the two as far as the boat experience goes. But half of that adventure is the drive on Skippers Canyon Rd. Google images to see!

Less adrenaline activities might include renting bikes in Arrowtown and biking down Arrowtown River, being picked up at the bungy bridge for return. Or kayaking to the islands on the Glenorchy side of Lake Wakatipu. Perhaps a horseback ride through Paradise to see LOTR sights. Or rent a Segway to cruise the paved path along the shore around Queenstown.

Richmond, Australia
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7. Re: What to do? Need some help!

If you want something that can be more mellow, i would recommend the Onsen hot pools, they are a nice way to relax after a long day and only 5 mins out of queenstown with a complimentary bus pick up from queenstown. I also always enjoy the indoor mini golf, i know it may not sound that cultural but it's really fun and something the whole family can enjoy, plus its the best mini-golf i've ever seen. Or you could take the family to see the Kiwi park, its just located at the bottom of the gondola so you could go after a zip trek ride :)

Washington DC...
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8. Re: What to do? Need some help!

Just returned from Queenstown Jessica. We are about your parents' age and enjoyed the Milford Sound cruise (absolutely the highlight of our Queentown trip). We also really enjoyed Arrowtown - quirkier/more interesting shops then the glut of souvenir and sports clothing shops of Queenstown, a great pub (The Fork and Tap), a great little museum documenting the history and gold mining in the area, the Amisfield Winery (Amisfield Dry Riesling is a treat!) and the hiking trail along the banks of Lake Hayes (also in Arrowtown).

Queenstown skews young. While 20 - 40 somethings could probably spend several days in Queenstown, the four days you've planned will probably be perfect for your parents. If you like ethnic food our favorite restaurants in Queenstown were Bombay Palace and Minami Jujisei (great Udon and decent sushi). We loved our Ecotour Coach and Cruise to Milford Sound from Queenstown option with Jessie as a driver (by far out best driver/facilitator of the 5 day tours we took in NZ) http://www.ecotoursmilford.co.nz/

9. Re: What to do? Need some help!

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