Wanting to get out into the great outdoors? Our selection of guided adventure tours involve exploring some of Australias most beautiful wilderness areas. So whether you are a keen walker or an adrenalin junky we have both "hard" and "soft" small group adventure tours that let you explore the Australian wilderness with the best local guides, interacting with Kiwi culture while enjoying an activity of some kind.

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1

WELCOME IN AUCKLAND

New Zealand’s largest city is located between two large harbours and 48 extinct volcanic cones scattered over the city are evidence of it's volancic past. They also provide a perfect location for viewing the city! A diversely cultural place, Auckland is a great location for marine adventures, wine tasting, forest walks and urban sophistication.

After checking into your hotel,relax, take a stroll around our beautiful city, explore the highly acclaimed Waterfront Restaurant Quarter or choose one of the many activities available to give a more in depth understanding of Auckland and the surrounding area.


Some Activities and Sightseeing Options Available are:

Explore Waiheke Island     Island Kayaking Adventure     America’s Cup Sailing
Auckland's Sky Tower Relax on the Beach Rangitoto Island Cruise & Walk
West Coast Wine Tour Whale and Dolphin Safari Muriwai Surf Beach


Accommodation Auckland - 1 night

Accommodation:
This hotel is a standout for location, comfort and style. The rooms offer either views of the Viaduct Harbour or the cityscape, enjoying a central position amongst the best restaurants, theatres, shopping and harbour-side attractions that Auckland has to offer.Accommodation options include luxury suites and apartments that include an LCD TV and a furnished balcony offering views of the harbour or the city.
Sebel Suites Auckland Waterfront

2

WAITOMO CAVES

The Waitomo region is most famous for its subterranean splendour - the Waitomo Caves. The rolling Waikato hills hide the ancient limestone cave systems, heavily decorated with stalagmites, stalactites, and of course glow-worms. Many caves are open to the public and there is a caving experience for everyone. Some are easy, while others require specialized caving guides and equipment. For the adventure seekers, you just can't beat the Lost World, or perhaps if you are interested in seeing galaxies of beautiful glowworms with a small group then perhaps you would enjoy the magic and splendor of the Spellbound Glowworm Caves, for it is here where Sir David Attenborough on the BBC series 'Life in the Undergrowth' described it as an “Astonishing Cave” And “one of natures most Magical Illuminations!” - This is an easy adventure everyone will enjoy. After your underworld experience continue on approx 2 hrs to Great Lake Taupo.

Approximate Distance: 341 kms | 118 miles  Total Driving Time: 4 hours 

Accommodation Taupo - 2 nights

Accommodation:
Located on the lakefront of Lake Taupo, our self-contained, serviced, motel accommodation has a range of studios and one bedroom units, all with spa baths, air conditioning and unlimited complimentary WiFi. Take in the spectacular views or take a swim in their pool on those hot summer days. The Reef Resort is a great base to stay and explore all the Taupo region has to offer, and has hosts that ensure they go the extra mile to guarantee you the get most out of your stay.
Reef Resort Taupo

3

GEOTHERMAL ROTORUA / GREAT LAKE TAUPO

The resort town of Taupo sits on the edge of New Zealand’s largest lake, which is well stocked with sizeable trout. You’ll find everything a traveller could wish for, including an excellent choice of restaurants. Most accommodation establishments make good use of the underground thermal activity to provide hot spas for relaxation. You’ll follow the western edge of Lake Taupo to reach Turangi. The drive is very scenic and there are many picnic opportunities along the way. Where streams run into the lake, you’ll often see trout fisherman trying their luck. The town of Turangi is the trout fishing capital of New Zealand. There are famous fishing spots in almost every direction, including ‘The Delta’, ‘The Hole’, ‘Little Big O’ and ‘Tailrace’ (believed to contain the world’s fattest trout). The walks and ski fields of the Tongariro National Park are also close by.  

Rotorua is easily visited as a day trip - situated 40 minutes drive from Taupo,  right on the Pacific Ring of Fire, so volcanic activity is part of the city’s past and present. Take a side road to a Geothermal Park, where you’ll discover geysers, silica terraces and craters of boiling mud. Towards the end of your journey you’ll encounter the Wairakei Geothermal Power Station. Other diversions include Huka Falls and a world-acclaimed golf course.

 


4

TRAVEL TO WELLINGTON VIA THE DESERT ROAD

On the long, straight Desert Road you’ll enjoy amazing views of Tongariro National Park’s Volcanoes. In Waiouru, the QE2 Memorial Museum is worth a look. As you drive south towards Taihape (the Gumboot Throwing capital of the world), the landscape becomes dominated by rivers and valleys. The Mangaweka Gorge is a scenic masterpiece. Find time to browse the antique shops of Bulls, or spy on wading birds in the estuary near Foxton. Two beautiful dune lakes are an easy detour from Levin. Offshore from Waikanae Beach is Kapiti Island Nature Reserve. A car museum and gourmet cheese factory are other attractions in this area. Wellington is compact, cultured and full of character. Nestled between the harbour and the hills, the downtown area is ideal for explorations on foot. Enjoy cafes, restaurants, museums, theatre and all kinds of shops. Dance, theatre and musical performances are a Wellington specialty. As New Zealand’s capital, this city is rich in political history.

Approximate Distance: 375 kms | 233 miles  Total Driving Time: 4 hours 40 mins

Accommodation Wellington - 1 night

This self-contained bed and breakfast is located in the fashionable seaside suburb of Seatoun, home to Wellington's film industry. Choose from two beautiful self-contained studios complete with private courtyards. Enjoy free internet, free on-street parking and only a 10 minute drive from downtown Wellington. 

boutique studio

5

INTERISLAND CRUISE / NELSON

The passage across Cook Strait on the InterIsland Ferry goes through the Marlborough Sounds is one of the most scenic ferry trips in the world. The fast ferry makes the trip in just over 2 hours, the cruise-style ferry takes 3 hours. Both types of vessel can transport vehicles. Highlights along the way include the Red Rocks seal colony, Tory Channel, Cook’s Lookout and the beautiful coves of the sounds. The picturesque seaside town of Picton is the South Island base for the ferry service that links the North and South islands of New Zealand. It’s also the gateway to the marine, forest and island attractions of the Marlborough Sounds. Museums and interesting walks will keep you entertained while you’re here.

The drive to Nelson first takes you to the town of Havelock, which is known as the Green Shell Mussel Capital of the World. Nearby Canvastown is a place to explore old gold mining fields – thousands tried to get rich here in the 1860s. At Pelorus Bridge Scenic Reserve you can enjoy a bush walk or a swim, depending on the time of the year. And if you’d like a glimpse of local life in 1890, Rai Valley has a beautifully preserved cottage museum. The city of Nelson is home to a fascinating community of beach, bush and art lovers. From here you can organise yourself an eco-adventure or become immersed in the local creative culture.

Approximate Distance: 109 kms | 68 miles  Total Driving Time: 1 hour 45 mins

Accommodation Nelson - 2 nights

Wakefield Quay House is a beautiful heritage villa that offers relaxed bed and breakfast accommodation in Nelson. Only a few metres from the tranquil sea and overlooking Tasman Bay on the beautiful Nelson waterfront. From this prime spot you can watch the ships and yachts come and go, enjoy the panoramic sea to mountain views that take in Haulashore Island. Wakefield Quay has two guest suites and deliver a personal service.
Wakefield House Nelson

6

EXPLORE ABEL TASMAN NATIONAL PARK

The road to Motueka hugs the coast, which makes it easy to browse beaches as you go. The Waimea Inlet and the villages of Mapua and Ruby Bay are particularly irresistible. Art and pottery studios, vineyards and excellent cafes are other local distractions. In the horticultural town of Motueka you can indulge your love of fresh fruit and vegetables, and feed your imagination with local arts and crafts. Because it’s so close to the Abel Tasman National Park and the Kahurangi National Park, Motueka is an ideal place to plan and prepare for hiking adventures. In the horticultural town of Motueka you can indulge your love of fresh fruit and vegetables, and feed your imagination with local arts and crafts.

Because Motueka is so close to the Abel Tasman National Park and the Kahurangi National Park, it is an ideal place to prepare for hiking adventures. The picnic area in the Riwaka Valley is another scenic detour – you can walk to the source of the Riwaka River. Marahau is often called ‘the Abel Tasman Village’, because it’s where many people begin their explorations of the Abel Tasman National Park. You can hire kayaks, swim with seals or catch a water taxi to one of the park’s amazing beaches. The Coast Track in the Abel Tasman National Park is the most popular ‘great walk’ in New Zealand. The track takes you past pristine golden sand beaches and calm turquoise waters. Travel on foot or in a sea kayak.

Approximate Distance: 64 kms | 40 miles  Total Driving Time: 1 hour


7

WILD WEST COAST - PUNAKAIKI

Travel through Wakefield, before heading over the Spooners saddle in the Golden Downs forest. Follow SH6 to Murchison, although part of the Nelson Region, this will be your first introduction to the glory and green that is the scenic beauty of the West Coast and Buller Region.  Navigate the awesome Buller Gorge, where at Hawks Crag the road has been hacked out of solid rock – you’ll drive under a dramatic overhang. Continue on to Punakaiki, famous for its ancient Pancake Rocks and booming blowholes. It is the centrepiece of the Paparoa National Park, which is packed with a variety of stunning landscapes. 

Approximate Distance: 287 kms | 178 miles  Total Driving Time: 3 hours 30 mins

Accommodation Punakaiki  - 1 night

Accommodation:

Surrounded by the Paparoa National Park and with stunning views of the Tasman Sea, Punakaiki Resort is a great location. The resort is situated only 300m from the famous Punakaiki Blowholes and has been designed in harmony with the local environment.  Evenings are spent relaxing in a standard resort room with views of the sea or an Eco Suite with rainforest and distant seaviews.


 

Punakaiki Resort

8

GLACIER COUNTRY

The road between Hokitika and Greymouth provides great views of the wild west coast. Detour to the beach and breathe the salt spray air. Driftwood is the ornamentation of choice for west coast beaches – every shape, size and colour. Shantytown, just south of Greymouth, is a reconstructed 1880s gold rush town – great family entertainment. Hokitika was first settled in 1860, after the discovery of gold on the west coast. It still has the feel of a ‘frontier town’, and there are some lovely old buildings to admire. Greenstone (NZ jade) is the town’s treasure these days – you can see it being polished and sculpted. You might also want to pan for gold, investigate the museum and do the historical walk. First explored in 1865, the Franz Josef Glacier has been moving forward at a rate of about 1 metre a day since 1985. Previously it was in retreat. Franz Josef township has a good range of accommodation and eating establishments.

The Fox Glacier and Franz Josef Glaciers are unique relics of the last ice age. Mighty rivers of solid white, tumbling down ice-hewn rock valleys, they are classically beautiful in the glacial sense. Nowhere else in the world have glaciers advanced so close to the sea at this latitude. While in the area, you can choose from a wide range of adventure activities (mostly involving glaciers and mountains). After a short drive south, you’ll arrive at Fox Glacier. The glacier’s terminal face is just 5 kilometres (3.1 Miles) from the township, and the road to the walking track crosses ancient moraine from earlier advances and retreats. Fed by four alpine glaciers, Fox Glacier was named after an early New Zealand Prime Minister, William Fox. 

Approximate Distance: 241 kms | 150 miles  Total Driving Time: 3 hours 

Accommodation Fox Glacier - 1 night

After your day exploring the West Coast, spending the night at Distinction Fox Glacier in the beautiful Fox Glacier Village is a real treat. Tucked into the foothills of the Southern Alps, rooms here feature their own balcony, spacious bedroom and lounge area. Spend the evening relaxing in the guest lounge or browsing through the many books in the Hotel library. 


 
Distinction Hotel - Fox Glacier

9

FOX GLACIER TO LAKE WANAKA

Not far from Fox Glacier is the western end of the Copland track. In half a day you can walk to the hot springs at Welcome Flat. Pretty Lake Paringa is full of trout, and you can enjoy a delicious meal of salmon at the salmon farm. Lake Moeraki is another peaceful forest lake with good fishing – a 40 minute walk takes you to the penguin colony at Monro Beach. The long one-lane bridge over the Haast River leads you into the settlement of Haast, once a construction camp for the Ministry of Works (the government department responsible for road and bridge building). It’s a town with a touch of the wild west – helicopters fly deer hunters into the rugged ranges and local pubs make a feature of stuffed animal trophies. Enjoy waterfalls and river scenery as you leave the coast and climb up the Haast river valley to Haast Pass. The road snakes through the Aspiring National Park, and the vegetation becomes more sparse as you travel inland. The wilderness town of Makarora is a chance to refuel and refresh. Watch for the famous ‘bra fence’ – it’s become a local legend. Lakes Wanaka and Hawea make the last part of your trip beautifully scenic.

Approximate Distance: 262 kms | 163 miles  Total Driving Time: 3 hours

Accommodation Wanaka - 1 night

Distinction Wanaka Alpine Resort is nestled in a quiet Lake Wanaka location and enjoys wonderful mountain views from the serviced apartments. The resort offers stylish, self-contained, serviced apartments each providing you with a high level of personal comfort and convenience, perfect for all seasons. Distinction offer a range of large, stylish and spacious self-contained apartments that provide a high level of personal comfort and convenience. They offer great facilities including a fully equipped designer kitchen.
Distinction Wanaka Alpine Resort

10

QUEENSTOWN - CAPITAL OF THE GREAT OUTDOORS

The lakeside resort town of Wanaka can provide you with an appealing mix of fine living, family fun and adventure. It has a high concentration of cafes, restaurants and interesting shops. You’ll also find some unique attractions, like the 3D maze and the ‘warbird’ air show, which is held every two years.

The shortest route to Queenstown is over the Crown Range Road. It’s a challenging drive, but the views are amazing and you’ll probably encounter friendly keas (mountain parrots). More conservative drivers can take the route that runs beside the Clutha River, Lake Dunstan and the Shotover River. The vineyards of the Gibbston area and bungy jumpers at the Kawarau River Bridge are interesting distractions along the way. The alpine resort of Queenstown is exciting, sophisticated and fantastically scenic. It’s the place to source almost any kind of adventure, including bungy, jet boating, horse trekking, rafting and river surfing. It’s also a destination for luxury experiences – gourmet food and wine, spa treatments and leisurely games of golf.

Approximate Distance: 70 kms | 44 miles  Total Driving Time: 1 hour 10 mins

Accommodation Queenstown - 2 nights

Sitting on the crystal-clear shores of Lake Wakatipu, Novotel Gardens is centrally located - only a five-minute walk to town on level ground - home to prime restaurants and boutique shopping. Rooms are spacious and comfortable with views from private balconies over manicured landscapes, with the property being adjacent to the beautiful Queenstown Gardens.

Novotel Queenstown

13

TE ANAU - GATEWAY TO FIORDLAND NATIONAL PARK

The drive from Wanaka to Te Anau will take three and half hours, but there is plenty to enjoy along the way. We highly recommend staging your Fiordland National Park activities from Te Anau as a base (Queenstown to Milford becomes a 12hr return highway trip that needs to be to avoided!) Some of the sightseeing along the way are beautiful - Lakes Wakatipu and Manapouri and the Manapouri Dam. The Te Anau Wildlife Centre (take the opportunity to identify some of the numerous native birds visitors may only see on your walks and hikes)

This afternoon there is plenty of time to check out one of Te Anau's top attractions - The recently discovered and wonderful Te Anau Glowworm Caves. It starts with an informative trip by boat across Lake Te Anau to the western side of the lake. Upon arrival you will be met by friendly guides who will accompany you underground. As the darkness and silence descends - your senses will be overwhelmed by a glowworm galaxy as stunning as any Southern night sky.

Approximate Distance: 228 kms | 142 miles  Total Driving Time: 3 hours

Accommodation: Te Anau - 2 nights

Accommodation:
Whitestones B&B is located 10km from Te Anau on a working deer farm. Enjoy the peace and tranquillity in generously sized King/twin rooms with ensuites and a purpose built guest/dinning lounge. Both rooms have fantastic views of surrounding countryside and mountains, complete with private entrances to all guest areas. Choose from an extensive breakfast menu and/or continental breakfast at a time to suit you.
Te Anau

13

MILFORD SOUND CRUISE

The Road to Milford is one of New Zealand’s most scenic drives. The first part is relatively mild farmland, then you’ll ease into beech forest near the entrance to the Fiordland National Park. Look for the Avenue of the Disappearing Mountain and the Mirror Lakes. The rough hewn Homer Tunnel brings you into Milford Sound, an amazing 22km-long fiord dominated by Mitre Peak. A cruise on Milford Sound will be an essential component of your time in Fiordland, or you can get up close and personal in a sea kayak. Tall waterfalls, vertical rock faces and seals are some of the things you’ll remember. The underwater observatory is an option with most cruises. 


21

HOMEWARD BOUND

Haere rā and Bon Voyage!

We are sure you will enjoy the 21 Day Oceania Discovery Itinerary and our promise is to make your travels through New Zealand and Australia as hassle-free and hospitable as possible - ensuring that today you leave with a memory card full of photos, and huge smiles on your faces when recalling your time in New Zealand! Have a great homeward journey, farewell and hope to see you again soon in Oceania. 
 


1

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 1

Spend a day relaxing and enjoying Auckland - New Zealand's largest city. Take a ferry to Rangitoto or Waiheke Island in the beautiful Hauraki Gulf.


2

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 2

Drive north to Matauri Bay, launching point for the first of your dives. This beautiful bay is the perfect seaside location for getting into the diving mood.


3

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 3

Dive the infamous wreck of the Rainbow Warrior, a Greenpeace vessel fatally wounded by French bombers in Auckland harbour and later sunk as an artificial reef. In the late afternoon take a short drive to Tutukaka.


4

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 4

Other vessels sunk in the vicinity especially for recreational diving are the HMNZS Tui and HMNZS Waikato. Both are ex-naval vessels purposely sunk for recreational diving and prepared for easy penetration.


5

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 5

Dive the Poor Knights Marine Reserve, named by Jacques Cousteau as one of the top 10 dive sites in the world. The warm currents here originate in the Coral Sea, so the water temperature is higher and visibility greater than that of nearby coastal waters. Born from volcanic activity, tropical and sub-tropical life abounds in this unique underwater environment. Caves, tunnels and archways are all home to great schools of friendly colourful fish - great photography!


6

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 6

Drive to Leigh and snorkel Goat Island Marine Reserve. For non-divers the reserve offers excellent and very accessible snorkeling.


7

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 7

Drive to Whitianga via Auckland and the Coromandel Peninsula, a scenic journey with many highlights. Take an afternoon dip at Hot Water Beach - just dig your own hot water pool in the sand and sink into a homemade spa!


8

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 8

Dive Cathedral Arch's pinnacles with a chance to see monster crayfish and then take the coastal drive to Whakatane.


9

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 9

There are very few places you can dive a live volcano, but White Island, which has been steaming away for centuries, is something quite unique. Explore the crater area of this active volcano in the interval between diving with huge Kingfish, Stingrays and Blue Maomao, along with some of the biggest crayfish. But what makes this place truly unique are the bubbling underwater fissures creating an underwater Jacuzzi. Warmer currents also mean nudibranches like those of the Poor Knights and visibility of generally 20 metres plus.

After a big day's diving take the short drive to the Maori Cultural Centre of Rotorua with its geysers and bubbling mud for a hot spring bath.


10

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 10

Drive to Napier via Taupo for a drift dive on the Waikato.


11

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 11

Enjoy a morning exploring the scenery of Hawkes Bay, perhaps even partaking in a spot of wine tasting, before taking the scenic drive to Wellington, the capital of New Zealand and an evening ferry to Picton.


12

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 12

Today is a day of huge contrasts. Start with an entry level cave dive with full technical equipment into the Riwaka Caverns, before a river drift dive at Fish Creek, then on to Waikoropupu Springs to dive reputedly the clearest fresh water in the world - a massive 62m visibility. In the late afternoon check out the beautiful town of Nelson, famous for its wide variety of arts, or head to the Abel Tasman national park for a spot of kayaking or walking.


13

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 13

Dive the wreck of the Mikhael Lermontov, a Russian cruise liner that controversially sunk when the pilot took a miscalculated short-cut. Still largely intact you can cruise along the promenade deck looking into passenger rooms, swim the beautifully tiled swimming pool or check out the bridge or huge propeller.


14

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 14

Drive to Kaikoura to swim with dolphins, go whale watching or dive with seals or in the kelp forests.


15

Self Drive Diving Package Auckland to Christchurch: 15

Drive to Christchurch for your final day. If time permits take a day trip to the French settlement of Akaroa to swim with dolphins, before dropping off your vehicle and boarding your overnight flight home.


THE BOAT AND SKIPPER

Image removed.


DEPARTURES

2 Day Live-aboard Option 

During the 2 days you’ll be able to fit in at least five dives with plenty of time to relax between dives.

RV Acheron Departs from Tutukaka

Depart Monday- return Tuesday.
Depart Thursday- return Friday.
Depart Saturday – return Sunday.

Prices:

  • Liveaboard with all your own gear is NZ$795
  • Liveaboard & hiring tanks and weights is NZ$845
  • Liveaboard & hiring full kit is NZ$995