Small Group Tour
Highlights and Hot Spots
Highlights and Hot Spots Tour
min 8, max 14
- Waiheke Island Tour with Local Maori Lesbian Guide
- Waitomo Glowworm Caves
- Rotorua Geothermal Areas
- Maori Cultural Performance
- Kaikoura Marine Wildlife
- Mt. Cook, Hooker and Tasman Valleys
- Wanaka High-Country Farm
Join other LGBTQ travellers on our 12 day Highlights and Hot Spots Tour. Experience the highlights and iconic locations of New Zealand and meet some of our trusted local partners who are eager to welcome you into their lives. You’ll enjoy gorgeous Waiheke Island with a local Maori guide who offers an in-depth perspective into Maori culture, marvel at our unique and gorgeous glowworms with a passionate cave enthusiast, and learn about our farming heritage on a private farm. Spending time with the locals offers a unique and authentic taste of life in New Zealand. You’ll also experience the other worldly geothermal wonderland of Rotorua and be in awe of the wild and stunning natural beauty of the South Island’s mountains, lakes, and wilderness. This trip is designed to be the perfect blend of relaxation, gourmet food and wine, and soft and thrilling adventure, all in the company of other LGBTQ travellers. No minimum level of fitness is required for this trip.
Day 1: Auckland – Waiheke Island
Welcome to New Zealand!
- Relax on Waiheke Island, with its gorgeous vineyards, ocean vistas, boutique shops and cafes, and white sand beaches.
- Gather with your travel mates for a welcome dinner.
Day 2: Waiheke Island
- Spend the day with your local Maori guide, exploring beautiful Waiheke Island.
- Walk through native bush, learning about traditional and medicinal Maori uses for native plants.
- Play with Maori musical instruments and weave a souvenir from harakeke (native flax).
Day 3: Waiheke Island – Pukeatua
- Journey through the rural farmland of the central Waikato with its rolling hills and picturesque countryside.
- Visit internationally acclaimed Hamilton Gardens for lunch.
- Relax into your rural lodgings for the night with the opportunity of a night tour to explore our native forest.
Day 4: Pukeatua – Waitomo – Rotorua
- Appreciate an amazing glowworm cave this morning on a nature based glow worm experience.
- Experience an ancient rainforest of giant native trees, rich with rare native birdlife.
Day 5: Rotorua
- Marvel at a geothermal wonderland with its bubbling geysers, steaming fumaroles, and plopping mudpools.
- Enjoy a Maori Cultural performance as part of this visit.
- Optional Afternoon Activities:
- zipline through the forest canopy
- visit the Hobbiton Movie Set
- helicopter to, land on, and explore an active volcano
- soak in a private mineral spa pool
Day 6: Rotorua – Blenheim – Kaikoura
- Fly to Blenheim (1hr 50mins), at the top of the South Island.
- Travel through wine country then along the glorious coastal road south to Kaikoura.
- Spot seals with their pups playing in the rock pools along the coast.
Day 7: Kaikoura – Christchurch
- Experience the wildlife of Kaikoura by adding an ocean experience this morning. Swim with (or watch) playful Dusky Dolphins in the wild, or meet natures most extraordinary seabirds up close on an Albatross Encounter.
- Relax in a family owned vineyard restaurant for lunch, sampling local and fresh cuisine.
Day 8: Christchurch – Mt. Cook
- Journey towards the spectacular Southern Alps and Mt. Cook, enjoying turquoise lake views along the way.
- Walk on the spectacular Hooker Valley Track, surrounded by mountain and glacier views.
- Marvel at the stars this evening, appreciating your lodging in the middle of an international dark sky reserve.
Day 9: Mt. Cook – Wanaka
- Explore the region with an easy hike into the Tasman Valley, or choose to add a once in a lifetime glacier heli-hike, or glacier kayak.
- Relax in your lake-side lodging, wondering how the scenery just keeps getting better!
- Optional Activities:
- heli-hike on the Tasman Glacier
- kayak amidst glacier icebergs on the Tasman Lake
Day 10: Wanaka
- Enjoy a free day in this funky lakeside town. Wander the shops, discovering quality New Zealand made products, or choose some adventure.
- Optional Activities:
- fly over glaciers into the iconic Milford Sound
- explore the region’s vineyards on a wine tour
- paraglide your afternoon away
Day 11: Wanaka
- Learn from a local about our farming heritage in an exclusive visit to a private station (large farm/ranch) watching how sheep are shorn and appreciating breathtaking high country vistas.
- Enjoy our final dinner with new friends and share stories and favourite memories of the trip.
- Optional Activities:
- jet boat into a wilderness environment
- helicopter over and onto a glacier
Day 12: Wanaka – Home
- Cross the highest main road in New Zealand on your way to Queenstown Airport.
- Bid farewell to new friends.
- Start planning your next trip to the land of the long white cloud, Aotearoa.
There’s still so much to see and do! Talk with us about extending your trip.
- Private New Zealand Tour Guide
- Private Transportation
- Ferry to and from Waiheke Island
- 11 Nights Lodging in 3 and 4 Star Accommodation
- Domestic Flight – Rotorua to Blenheim
- Meals: 10 Breakfasts, 1 Lunch, 5 Dinners
- Exclusive Maori Culture Tour –Waiheke Island
- Glowworm Cave Experience – Waitomo
- Admission to Geothermal Area – Rotorua
- Maori Cultural Performance – Rotorua
- Native Forest Walks
- Hikes in Mt. Cook area
- Exclusive High-Country Sheep Station Visit
- Free time to explore on your own or simply relax in the beautiful surroundings
- And of course the opportunity to share this once-in-a-lifetime adventure with like-minded travellers
Enhance your trip by choosing to add:
- Ziplining (Rotorua)
- Hobbiton Movie Set Tour (Rotorua)
- Volcano Scenic Flight and Landing (Rotorua)
- Private Mineral Spa (Rotorua)
- Dolphin Swim/Watch (Kaikoura)
- Albatross Encounter (Kaikoura)
- Glacier Heli-Hike (Aoraki Mt Cook)
- Glacier Lake Kayak (Aoraki Mt Cook)
- Milford Sound Flight and Cruise (Wanaka)
- Wine Tour (Wanaka)
- Paragliding (Wanaka)
- Wilderness Vally Jet-Boat Experience (Wanaka)
- Heli-glacier Flight and Landing (Wanaka)
If you have an activity you’d like to add but don’t see on this list, let us know!