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Grand Traverse

Why Choose Flying Kiwi...?

1. MORE EXPERIENCE = BETTER TRAVEL OPTIONS...  

Flying Kiwi is the original New Zealand tour company.  We are the experts with 30 years' experience in conducting tours of the highest quality and thousands of very, very satisfied customers.  You can be guaranteed that our team will provide a professional and enjoyable experience of a lifetime.

2. MORE NATIONAL PARKS....

We have a license with the Department of Conservation that enables us to visit, and stay in, places other tours can't access.  We ensure our tours give you time to experience New Zealand's best national parks too, including Paparoa, Abel Tasman, Aoraki/Mount Cook, Tongariro and Fiordland.

3. MORE CHANCES TO GENUINELY GET OFF THE BEATEN TRACK...

There are a number of World famous highlights on any trip to New Zealand - Milford Sound, Queentown, Rotorua to name a few and we make sure to experience the best these spots have to offer.  However, what makes our trips totally unique is exploring the lesser known spots that other tour groups don't visit.  Whether it's a secret glow-worm walk at night, a lush rainforest-fringed pool for a dip, a bike ride along deserted roads hugging the coast or a local cafe that serves quite possibly the best muffins in New Zealand we have found the best secret spots - we know you will love them just try not to tell too many others!

4. MORE ACCOMMODATION BY LAKES, MOUNTAINS AND OCEANS...

Rather than wake up in a hostel dorm we wake up to amazing views, fresh air and away from the crowds.  By staying in these carefully selected sites you get to experience amazing sunrises, spectacular sunsets, campfires, sleeping to the sound of the ocean, morning dips, lakeside dining to name a few.  There are camping and cabin accommodation options (so something for everyone) and we do occasionally use hostels (3 on the entire 28-day trip) to give you access to the bustling city centres.

5. MORE TASTY AND HEALTHY MEALS...

Our trips involve a great deal of activity and we appreciate the importance of good food.  We usually offer breakfast, lunch and dinner which saves you time and money.   With an average meal out in NZ costing around $35 you will save a fortune compared to other tour companies. 

6. MORE CYCLE OPTIONS...

With bikes on board you have the chance to cycle as much, or as little, as you want.  We cover a huge range of rides along the coast, by lakes, through mountain landscapes, downhill, uphill and even across hill - there is something for everyone and every fitness level.

7. MORE HIKES AND ACTIVITY OPTIONS (+LOADS OF FREE STUFF)...

We offer more hikes and activity options than any other tour company.  That gives you more choice every day to try the hikes you fancy and the activities you have always wanted to try.  Everything is optional and there are always free alternatives.  We also include a number of the activities free of charge such as wine tasting, Wai-O-Tapu geothermal wonderland, scenic ferry crossings and more.

8. MORE FLEXIBILITY...

Our tours are designed to fit around you.  We aren't a traditional tour - you choose the activities you want to do, you choose the style of accommodation you want and you can even take extended breaks along the way - Flying Kiwi is the perfect combination of independent travel and touring convenience.

10. MORE VALUE FOR MONEY...

Quite simply our trips are unbeatable.  With transport, accommodation, most meals and use of sports equipment included you will not find a better value tour.  Our tours add up to around $170 NZD per day which is a great measure to compare with other options (don't forget a meal out in NZ averages around $35 for starters and bike hire starts at approx. $35 per day).

11. FREE HIGHLIGHTS...

Some operators may list these as free activities specific to their tour but as Kiwis are such a generous bunch all those listed below are free for everyone!

Tongariro Crossing (bus transfer not included), glow worm walks, Te Papa museum, Wellington Botanical Gardens, heaps of free hikes, seal spotting, Tekapo Church of Good Shepherd, Huka Falls, dig your own thermal pool on Hot Water beach (we provide the spades!) + much more.

12. PLACES WE VISIT ARE...
- Stunning Bay of Islands
- Golden beaches of Coromandel
- Thermal mud pools of Rotorua
- Cruise the Marlborough Sounds
- Character cities of Dunedin and Christchurch 
- Infamous Mount Cook
- Adrenalin rush of Queenstown
- Natural beauty of Kaikoura
- The spectacular Milford Sound
- Real Lord of the Rings country
- Cultural and historical treasures
- New Zealand’s World Heritage Sites
- The nation's capital - Wellington
- The wildlife spotting paradise of Otago Peninsula
- Numerous remote locations that other tours and tourists don't reach

13. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES TO CHOOSE FROM...

- Superb cycle rides (for all levels)
- Excellent hikes (for all levels)
- Sea kayaking
- Hobbiton Movie Set tour
- Maori Culture 
- Hot pools
- Zipline tours
- Skydiving
- Bungy jumping & giant swings
- White water rafting
- Whale watching (by air or boat)
- Deep sea fishing
- Dolphin swimming
- Horse riding
- Nature tours
- Surfing
- Brewery tours
- Milford Sound boat cruise
- Glow worm tours

Duration

15 days, 14 nights

    • Tasty meals - 14 x Breakfasts, 5 x Lunches, 7 x Dinners
    • Bus/coach transport
    • Shared tent accommodation, 2 people per tent
    • Inflatable camping mattress
    • Numerous free walks
    • Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland - NZ's most colourful geothermal attraction
    • Scenic Ferry Crossing
    • Tongariro Crossing (bus transfer not included)
    • Fresh Seafood Dinner - a Kaikoura fresh seafood feast - priceless!
    • Use of sports equipment (bodyboards, cricket sets and more)
    • 2 friendly & knowledgeable Flying Kiwi guides
    • Amazing sunrises & sunsets at beautiful beach side campsites
  • This tour is recommended for persons 18 years and older however requests for younger participants will be considered on a case by case basis.Please try to limit the weight of your main bag to 20kg.

  • Day 1 : AUCKLAND – HOT WATER BEACH
    Leaving Auckland at 10am we travel to the Coromandel, renowned for its natural beauty, misty rain-forests and pristine white, sandy beaches. Marvel at the views on a beautiful coastal walk or take in the coastline from the water by kayak. Visit the unique and famous Hot Water Beach to dig, then relax, in your own thermal pool! Soak up the breath-taking scenery and cameras ready for spectacular sunrises at our beach-side camp.
    Meals :Dinner

    Day 2 : HOT WATER BEACH - ROTORUA
    The morning is filled with activity as we make our way south into the thermal wonderland of Rotorua. On the way, those visiting Hobbiton leave us in Matamata as we continue to the cultural and geological heart of the North Island and the perfect place to experience and learn about Maori culture and the dramatic natural thermals, Rotorua. There is plenty of action to choose from such as Zip Lining, OGO and the Luge or go biking in the Whakarewarewa forest. We recommend finishing your day with a Maori cultural experience at the Tamaki Maori Village, there really is something for everyone!
    Meals :Breakfast, Lunch

    Day 3 : ROTORUA - TURANGI
    Enjoy a relaxed start to the day before we check out the geysers & mud pools at Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland (included free). First, we visit the Lady Knox Geyser before exploring one of New Zealand’s most extensive geothermal networks, a unique landscape with colourful sulphur lakes and diverse volcanic vistas. We then take time to explore the impressive Huka Falls before arriving into Taupo, considered the North Island's adrenalin capital. Test your fear of heights on the giant swing, bungy or go skydiving, the scenery is well worth it! We finish the day with a beautiful drive around the edge of Lake Taupo on our way into camp at Turangi.
    Meals :Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 4 : TURANGI - PAEKAKARIKI
    Today you have the chance to experience the Tongariro Alpine Crossing - considered NZ's best day hike, offering a remarkable journey across volcanic landscapes. Lava flows, emerald-coloured lakes, magnificent views and steaming vents combine to make this an unforgettable hike. For those who aren't keen on hiking you can enjoy short local walks or cycle the Tongariro river track. After the hike, we make our way south and stay on the Kapiti coast in a quiet little place called Paekakariki.
    Meals :Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 5 : PAEKAKARIKI – WELLINGTON - PICTON
    Heading south to "the coolest little capital in the World" (as recently named by Lonely Planet), our early arrival by 9am gives you time to experience some of Wellington’s attractions or simply soak up the culture and buzz of our capital city. There are plenty for all tastes including the highly recommend Te Papa Museum. Check out some of New Zealand’s rare birds at Zealandia or take a walk-up Mt Victoria for great views across the city and harbour. Later that day, it’s time to say goodbye to the North Island as the South Island welcomes us with picturesque scenery of the Marlborough sounds as we cross the Cook Strait by ferry. Camping isn’t feasible tonight, so we stay at a great friendly hostel where we have dorm beds reserved for everyone on board (payable locally).
    Meals :Breakfast

    Day 6 : PICTON - KAIKOURA
    Today we travel the scenic Pacific coast to Kaikoura where close encounters with seals and sea birds are common. Kaikoura translates to 'meal of crayfish' (Kai - food, koura - crayfish) a reference to the abundance of seafood and sea life in the area. The town has transformed from a sleepy fishing village into a hot spot for whale watching, dolphin swimming and seal spotting. This picturesque town sits right on the ocean at the foot of the mountains – a spectacular spot. Stretch your legs with a recommended afternoon peninsula walk and build up an appetite for a tasty feast of locally caught fresh seafood.
    Meals :Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 7 : KAIKOURA – CHRISTCHURCH - RANGITATA
    For those that are keen there is the chance to rise early for a wonderful sunrise and then enjoy one of our most highly rated optional activities – dolphin swimming. The resident dusky dolphins are amongst the most interactive and entertaining in the World and it’s not unusual to swim with pods of 50 or more in their natural habitat, the ocean! We then have the chance to explore this quaint seaside town before heading south to Christchurch to collect and drop off those starting or ending their tour. You’ll have time to explore Christchurch city and buy your lunch from one of the many quirky container cafes at the ‘Restart Mall’. At 2:30pm we travel towards the Southern Alps with fantastic views across the Canterbury Plains – real Lord of the Rings country! Tonight’s unique camp is at the Shearer’s Headquarters (an actual operating farm) located at the foot of the Southern Alps.
    Meals :Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 8 : RANGITATA – LAKE TEKAPO
    Wake up to mountain views and try white water rafting on the mighty Rangitata River! If rafting isn’t for you soak it all in with a morning cycle or walk through Peel forest. We then head through more jaw dropping landscapes (they don’t stop in the South Island) to the picture postcard, Lake Tekapo. Here you will view the most spectacular turquoise waters which get their colour from the glacial flour brought down from the rivers flowing from glaciers high up in the mountains. Relax in the nearby hot pools or enjoy star gazing at the Mt John Observatory and make the most of staying in an International Dark Sky Reserve, plus there are plenty of hike and cycle options to choose from.
    Meals :Breakfast, Lunch

    Day 9 : LAKE TEKAPO – MT COOK - MOERAKI
    Immerse yourself in the snow-capped mountain scenery that New Zealand is famous for and explore Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park. Hike to the base of NZ’s highest mountain following a trail up the Hooker valley where you’ll cross swing bridges and get stunning views of the mountains before finishing up at a glacial lake with views of the Hooker Valley glacier. We then travel back towards the Pacific coast for a quick stop in the historic town of Oamaru before continuing onwards to the small village of Moeraki. Walk to a great view point offering expansive views of the Pacific Ocean and try to spot a little Blue Penguin along the shore. If you have a bike it’s possible to visit a colony of extremely rare Yellow-eyed Penguins near to camp.
    Meals :Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Day 10 : MOERAKI - DUNEDIN
    Before travelling south, we make a stop at the nearby Moeraki Boulders and then it’s onto the historic Scottish city of Dunedin, the South Island's second-largest city. This southern city is home to the world’s steepest residential street and the coastline is home to some fantastic and rare wildlife. It’s possible to take a tour onto the Otago Peninsula to view some of this diverse wildlife which includes Albatross and Fur Seals. For the adventurous why not try surfing at one of Dunedin’s best breaks! Our camp is a short distance from the beach with a variety of restaurants close by to choose from.
    Meals :Breakfast

    Day 11 : DUNEDIN – FIORDLAND NATIONAL PARK
    Today is one of our longer travel days as we drive through some of New Zealand’s most dramatic natural scenery on our way to Fiordland. Large parts of the landscape have been carved out over thousands of years to leave stunning paths that weave through snow-capped mountains. We stop briefly in Te Anau, the hub and gateway town for Fiordland National Park and Milford Sound and your last chance to get supplies for those doing the Routeburn Track tomorrow. From Te Anau we make our way into the gigantic Fiordland National Park, encompassing some 12,500km2 it is New Zealand’s largest National Park. Tonight’s camp is a pretty special place in the heart of the Hollyford Valley, established in the 1930s. You can learn more about the history of the camp at the onsite museum. Cyclists have the chance to cycle to camp through some great native bush and walkers can do some nice short walks from camp (ask your guide about the secret glow worm trails).
    Meals :Breakfast, Dinner

    Day 12 : FIORDLAND NATIONAL PARK – MILFORD SOUND - TE ANAU
    Travel one of the world’s most scenic routes into Milford Sound! Described as the 'eighth wonder of the world', Milford Sound was carved by glaciers during the ice ages. We highly recommend taking in the boat trip on Milford Sound with dramatic waterfalls, snow-capped peaks and possible wildlife spotting of dolphins, penguins and seals! As it’s just the one road in and out, we head back along the same breath-taking route to our lakeside camp in Te Anau. Along the way, we drop off those doing the 3-day Routeburn Track, one of New Zealand’s 9 Great Walks. This 3-day hike passes through two National Parks and is a haven for native birdlife. Charge up your camera as this hike offers everything from mountainous peaks and sheer rock faces to pristine lakes, cascading waterfalls and dense, luxuriant forest.
    Meals :Breakfast, Lunch

    Day 13 : TE ANAU - QUEENSTOWN
    Today we journey to Queenstown along the shores of the photogenic Lake Wakatipu. Once we arrive at the adventure capital of New Zealand you have a huge selection of activities to choose from. There is everything here, from adrenalin pumping bungy, canyon swing and skydiving to a relaxing horse trek or boat cruise – this place has it all. There are great tracks around the lake ideal for bikers and hikers and all with wonderful views of this alpine region.
    Meals :Breakfast

    Day 14 : QUEENSTOWN
    With so much to do we spend the full day in fantastic Queenstown with the opportunity to enjoy those once in a lifetime experiences (don’t forget to try the legendary and very tasty Fergburger!). Routeburn Track walkers re-join the group here at midday with time to try some of the many exciting activities this vibrant city has to offer. Tonight, we dine out at one of Queenstown’s many delicious eateries - a great chance for your group to enjoy a true kiwi feast (own cost).
    Meals :Breakfast

    Day 15 : QUEENSTOWN
    Another chance to try any of the numerous activities including bungy, canyon swing, skydive, paraglide, horse trek or gondola ride - to name a few! This is the last day of the tour and there is plenty to keep you busy with options to extend the trip or stay on for more fun and frolics in the stunning, adrenalin capital.
    Meals :Breakfast

  • Auckland pickup: 10am outside the Grand Millennium Hotel, 106 -110 Vincent Street, Central Auckland (opposite the Auckland City Police Station).

    2020 TOUR DEPARTURE DATES:

    November:  15, 24
    December:  3, 7, 12, 21, 27

    2021 TOUR DEPARTURE DATES:

    January:     8, 17, 26
    February:    4, 13, 22
    March:         3, 12, 21, 30
    April:           8

  • Optional hires: You can hire any of the following equipment from us for the duration of your trip or bring your own gear. We charge a small handling fee for those who bring their own bikes but there are no charges for your own tent etc.

    $320   Cycle hire for entire trip
    $145   Bring your own bike
    $165   Single tent upgrade
    $80     Sleeping bag hire

    Hostel nights: There is 1 night where camping isn't feasible, and we stay in a hostel, payable on arrival. We have dorm beds reserved for everyone on board. Contact us prior to travel if you would like to pre-book a private room (subject to availability).

    Cabin upgrades (optional): Are available most nights for a small fee, payable on the day (subject to availability).  During the peak travel months of Dec, Jan, Feb we recommend pre-booking upgrades prior to travel through the Flying Kiwi office. Pre-booking upgrades incur a 10% pre-booking service fee of the total upgrade cost.

    Optional Activities: Most days there are a selection of optional activities you can choose to do (i.e. skydiving, heli hiking etc). Payment for optional activities are made direct to the operator on the day.

    Tour extensions If you have a few days after your trip why not extend it with one of these great trips:

    Northern Express Tour - Take the short northward journey from Wellington back up to Auckland and enjoy the unique Waitomo caves on the way.

Language

-

Age Req.

-

Fitness Req.

None

Group Size

26

Organised by Flying Kiwi Adventure Tours

Activity ID: W-10892

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