52 days in New Zealand Itinerary

52 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Created using Inspirock New Zealand trip itinerary maker

Plan created by another user.Make it yours

Route & dates

1
Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu)
— 4 nights
2
Wanaka
— 4 nights
3
Queenstown
— 7 nights
4
Te Anau
— 6 nights
5
Auckland
— 5 nights
6
Paihia
— 4 nights
7
Waitomo Caves
— 2 nights
8
Rotorua
— 6 nights
9
Tongariro National Park
— 5 nights
10
Wellington
— 5 nights
11
Kaikoura
— 3 nights

4
nights
Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu)

Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu) ©
Explore hidden gems such as Hooker Valley Track and Lake Matheson Walk. Visiting Aoraki/Mt. Cook and Kea Point Track will get you outdoors. Venture out of the city with trips to Fox Glacier (River Walk, Fox Glacier South Side Walk, &more) and Franz Josef (Franz Josef Glacier & Sentinel Rock Walk).

To see ratings, other places to visit, photos, and more tourist information, read our Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu) trip itinerary planning site.

Christchurch to Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu) is an approximately 4.5-hour bus ride. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Fri) to allow time to take a bus to Wanaka.

Things to do in Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu)

Outdoors Parks Trails

Side Trips

Fox Glacier, Franz Josef, Lake Pukaki, Hapuka Estuary Walk
Find places to stay Jun 1 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Aoraki/Mt. Cook ©
Aoraki/Mt. Cook
Hooker Valley Track ©
Hooker Valley Track
Lake Matheson Walk ©
Lake Matheson Walk

4
nights
Wanaka

Wanaka ©
Situated on the shores of Lake Wanaka in the Otago region, Wanaka has become a popular ski and summer resort area, owing to its extensive views of the lake and its proximity to some of the best slopes in the country.
Step off the beaten path and head to Roys Peak Track and Mount Iron Track. Get outdoors at Fishing Charters & Tours and Blue Pools Track. Spend the 9th (Tue) exploring nature at Mount Aspiring National Park. The adventure continues: putt your heart out at Crossfire Wanaka, contemplate the waterfront views at Wanaka, get your game on at Puzzling World, and learn about winemaking at Rippon Vineyard.

To find maps, reviews, photos, and more tourist information, read our Wanaka trip maker app.

You can take a bus from Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu) to Wanaka in 6 hours. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 9th (Tue) so you can catch the bus to Queenstown.

Things to do in Wanaka

Parks Outdoors Trails
Find places to stay Jun 5 — 9:
Highlights from your plan
Roys Peak Track ©
Roys Peak Track
Wanaka ©
Wanaka
Mount Iron Track ©
Mount Iron Track

7
nights
Queenstown

Queenstown ©
Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Glenorchy-Queenstown Road and Queenstown Hill. Escape the urban bustle at Ben Lomond Track and Arrowtown Village. Take a break from Queenstown with a short trip to Three Miners Vineyard in Alexandra, about 1h 20 min away. There's still lots to do: grab your bike and head to Otago Central Rail Trail, have some family-friendly fun at Dark Ride, get to know the fascinating history of Arrowtown Chinese Settlement, and enjoy some diversion at Break One.

To find other places to visit, where to stay, traveler tips, and more tourist information, you can read our Queenstown trip itinerary site.

Traveling by bus from Wanaka to Queenstown takes 3 hours. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 16th (Tue) so you can catch the bus to Te Anau.

Things to do in Queenstown

Outdoors Parks Trails

Side Trips

Arrowtown, Otago Central Rail Trail, Three Miners Vineyard
Find places to stay Jun 9 — 16:
Highlights from your plan
Glenorchy-Queenstown Road ©
Glenorchy-Queenstown Road
Otago Central Rail Trail ©
Otago Central Rail Trail
Queenstown Hill ©
Queenstown Hill

6
nights
Te Anau

Te Anau ©
Set among the picturesque peaks and glacially carved fiords of Fiordland National Park, Te Anau offers those wishing to explore the park a great place to stay and enjoy the relaxing atmosphere of a small town in an enviable location.
Step off the beaten path and head to The Chasm Walk and Milford sound Hwy. Escape the urban bustle at Kepler Track and Doubtful Sound. There's lots more to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at Mirror Lakes Walk, hike along Lake Marian Track, explore the activities along Lake Te Anau, and explore the landscape on two wheels at Lake 2 Lake Trail.

Make your Te Anau itinerary with Inspirock to find out what to see and where to go.

Take a bus from Queenstown to Te Anau in 4 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Mon) so you can travel to Auckland.

Things to do in Te Anau

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

Fiordland National Park, Milford sound Hwy
Find places to stay Jun 16 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
The Chasm Walk ©
The Chasm Walk
Kepler Track ©
Kepler Track
Mirror Lakes Walk ©
Mirror Lakes Walk

5
nights
Auckland

Auckland ©
The largest and most populous city in New Zealand, Auckland combines a rich history and thriving contemporary culture in an abundance of museums, art galleries, and performance venues.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Orewa Beach and Cornwall Park. Escape the urban bustle at Tiritiri Matangi Visitor Centre and Piha Beach. Get out of town with these interesting Auckland side-trips: Piha (Arataki Visitor Centre & Kitekite Falls), Brick Bay Sculpture Trail (in Snells Beach) and Warkworth (Goat Island Marine Reserve & Sheepworld). There's lots more to do: contemplate the geological forces at One Tree Hill (Maungakiekie), head off the coast to Rangitoto Island, have some family-friendly fun at Virtual Reality Studio, and take in panoramic vistas at SkyTower.

To see traveler tips and tourist information, read Auckland day trip planning tool.

Fly from Te Anau to Auckland in 7.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of ferry and car; or do a combination of bus, ferry, and car. Expect a daytime high around °C in June, and nighttime lows around °C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 27th (Sat) early enough to drive to Paihia.

Things to do in Auckland

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Piha, Warkworth, Brick Bay Sculpture Trail, Matakana War Memorial, Orewa Beach
Find places to stay Jun 22 — 27:
Highlights from your plan
Orewa Beach ©
Orewa Beach
Tiritiri Matangi Visitor Centre ©
Tiritiri Matangi Visitor Centre
Goat Island Marine Reserve ©
Goat Island Marine Reserve

4
nights
Paihia

Paihia ©
The main tourist town in the Bay of Islands area, Paihia gives visitors a good range of accommodations, a convenient town center, long sandy beaches, and interesting architecture.
Visit Christ Church and St Paul's Anglican Church for their historical value. You'll discover tucked-away gems like The Parrot Place and Paihia Harbour. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Paihia: Pompallier Mission and Printery (in Russell) and Whangarei Falls (in Whangarei). The adventure continues: admire the sheer force of Rainbow Falls, get interesting insight from Tours, explore the landscape on two wheels at Twin Coast Cycle Trail Northland, and steep yourself in history at Waitangi Treaty Grounds.

For photos, maps, reviews, and more tourist information, use the Paihia day trip website.

Drive from Auckland to Paihia in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 1st (Wed) so you can travel to Waitomo Caves.

Things to do in Paihia

Parks Historic Sites Outdoors

Side Trips

Kerikeri, Russell, Twin Coast Cycle Trail Northland, Whangarei Falls
Find places to stay Jun 27 — Jul 1:
Highlights from your plan
The Parrot Place ©
The Parrot Place
Paihia Harbour ©
Paihia Harbour
Whangarei Falls ©
Whangarei Falls

2
nights
Waitomo Caves

Waitomo Caves
Head deep beneath the surface of the earth at Waitomo Caves, a village and cave system that draws both extreme sports enthusiasts and those wanting something a little more relaxed.
Kick off your visit on the 2nd (Thu): stroll through Ruakuri Walk, experience rural life at Roselands Farm Park, explore the fascinating underground world of Ruakuri Cave, thenHead underground at Caveworld, and finally Head underground at Waitomo Glowworm Caves. On the 3rd (Fri), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: take in the dramatic natural features at Mangapohue Natural Bridge Walk, thentake in the dramatic scenery at Marakopa Falls, thenexplore the fascinating underground world of Aranui Cave, and finally head outdoors with Waitomo Clay Birds.

To see other places to visit, traveler tips, where to stay, and tourist information, use the Waitomo Caves online journey planner.

Getting from Paihia to Waitomo Caves by combination of taxi and flight takes about 4.5 hours. Other options: drive; or fly. Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Fri) to allow enough time to drive to Rotorua.

Things to do in Waitomo Caves

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Aranui Cave
Find places to stay Jul 1 — 3:
Highlights from your plan
Ruakuri Cave
Ruakuri Cave
Ruakuri Walk ©
Ruakuri Walk
Caveworld ©
Caveworld

6
nights
Rotorua

Rotorua
Surrounded by lakes and featuring impressive areas of geothermal landscape, the city of Rotorua offers an otherwordly landscape and a welcoming, peaceful environment, with the culture of the native Maori people very much in the foreground.
Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Redwoods Treewalk and Lake Rotorua. Get some historical perspective at Government Gardens and Te Puia. Change things up with these side-trips from Rotorua: Mount Maunganui (Mt Maunganui Main Beach, Mount Maunganui Base Track, &more) and Taupo (Great Lake Taupo, Huka Falls Walkway, &more). There's still lots to do: take in the natural beauty of Waikite Valley Thermal Pools, look for all kinds of wild species at Waimangu Volcanic Valley, hike along Blue Lake Track, and have some family-friendly fun at OGO Rotorua.

To find reviews, where to stay, more things to do, and other tourist information, read our Rotorua trip planner.

Drive from Waitomo Caves to Rotorua in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In July, plan for daily highs up to °C, and evening lows to °C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Thu) so you can drive to Tongariro National Park.

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Taupo, Tauranga, Orakei Korako Geothermal Park & Cave
Find places to stay Jul 3 — 9:
Highlights from your plan
Huka Falls Walkway
Huka Falls Walkway
Waimangu Volcanic Valley ©
Waimangu Volcanic Valley
Mt Maunganui Main Beach ©
Mt Maunganui Main Beach

5
nights
Tongariro National Park

Tongariro National Park ©
Tongariro National Park has a long history of preserving New Zealand's pristine alpine landscape.
Your inner history buff will appreciate Ohakune Old Coach Road and Te Porere Redoubt. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Mount Ruapehu and Tongariro National Trout Centre. When in Tongariro National Park, make a side trip to see Schnapps Mini Golf in National Park Village, approximately National Park Village away. There's lots more to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at Taranaki Falls, go from sight to sight with Tongariro Crossing Shuttles, admire the sheer force of Tawhai Falls, and trek along Horsemtrails.

For ratings, traveler tips, where to stay, and more tourist information, you can read our Tongariro National Park holiday planning app.

You can drive from Rotorua to Tongariro National Park in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or do a combination of bus and shuttle. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 14th (Tue) to allow time to travel to Wellington.

Things to do in Tongariro National Park

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

Tongariro National Trout Centre, Schnapps Mini Golf
Find places to stay Jul 9 — 14:
Highlights from your plan
Ohakune Old Coach Road ©
Ohakune Old Coach Road
Taranaki Falls ©
Taranaki Falls
Mount Ruapehu ©
Mount Ruapehu

5
nights
Wellington

Wellington
Wellington, the world's southernmost capital city and New Zealand's second most populous urban area, combines the nation's rugged history and nature with its modern and cosmopolitan present.
Visiting Otari-Wilton's Bush Native Botanic Garden and Queen Charlotte Track will get you outdoors. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Matiu / Somes Island and Wellington Zoo. Change things up with a short trip to Pukaha National Wildlife Centre in Masterton (about 1h 55 min away). There's much more to do: contemplate the waterfront views at Oriental Bay, get engrossed in the history at The Great War Exhibition, take in the architecture and atmosphere at Old St Paul's, and admire the natural beauty at Wellington Botanic Garden.

Plan my trip to Wellington with suggested itineraries provided by Inspirock.

Fly from Tongariro National Park to Wellington in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of taxi and train. July in Wellington sees daily highs of °C and lows of °C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 19th (Sun) early enough to travel to Kaikoura.

Things to do in Wellington

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

Queen Charlotte Track, Pukaha National Wildlife Centre, Wellington Botanic Garden
Find places to stay Jul 14 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
Queen Charlotte Track ©
Queen Charlotte Track
Oriental Bay ©
Oriental Bay

3
nights
Kaikoura

Kaikoura ©
Head to the small town of Kaikoura, a humble setting from which to witness some of nature's grandest designs.
Kick off your visit on the 20th (Mon): tour the pleasant surroundings at Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway and then identify plant and animal life at Peninsula Seal Colony. Keep things going the next day: see majestic marine mammals with a dolphin and whale watching tour, make a trip to Ohau Point Seal Colony, and then hike along Ohau Stream Walk.

To find reviews, photos, maps, and tourist information, refer to the Kaikoura day trip tool.

Traveling by flight from Wellington to Kaikoura takes 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of ferry and bus; or do a combination of ferry and train. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 22nd (Wed) to allow enough time to drive back home.

Things to do in Kaikoura

Parks Outdoors Wildlife
Find places to stay Jul 19 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway ©
Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway
Peninsula Seal Colony ©
Peninsula Seal Colony
Ohau Stream Walk ©
Ohau Stream Walk

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