In Style

New Zealand in Style

January and February 2019
New Zealand

This will be our sixth tour to New Zealand all of which have been exceptionally well received. We have organised it slightly differently this year into three separate tours of approximately 2 weeks each. The core tour as the middle tour taking in the key highlights in both islands but if you want to fully explore either island or both. Full details are below separated into the three different tour options.

New Zealand is very popular and some of the accommodation that we staying in had to be booked five years ago to secure our option! This is particularly the case in Napier where our tour is deliberately timed to coincide with the annual art Deco Festival a truly unique event. Our tour is also well timed in that New Zealand have just announced the reopening of the very scenic line between Christchurch and Picton.

New Zealand is perhaps one of the most scenic and memorable countries to visit. The pace of life is slower the people are friendly and if you’ve not been this is a fantastic opportunity to make your first visit. Alternatively if you’ve been before but feel there is the country you’ve not had the chance to fully explore this tour represents the perfect way of achieving your aim.

Highlights

  • Great hotels and food
  • Three tours to choose from including in depth coverage of the South Island
  • Greymouth and Shantytown steam train
  • The remote West Coast
  • Milford Sound Cruise
  • Taieri Gorge Railway excursion
  • Dunedin, Christchurch, Wellington, Auckland and Napier
  • Harbourside, Pleasant Point and Plains Heritage Railways

Tour Manager: Stephen M

Typical Group Size: 16

Pre-tour SOUTH ISLAND IN DEPTH

Various flight options available between the UK and South Island leaving on 20 January.

Tuesday 22 January (D) Having arrived Nelson In the North of the South island we meet at the hotel for our welcome meal and drink. Various flight options are available into Nelson normally via Wellington or Auckland, we will happily assist in making your flight and transfer arrangements if you wish, but we know from experience that some people prefer to make their own travel arrangements and include time in New Zealand prior to the start of the tour to be fresh and ready for the start. We can organise additional nights at the hotel pre-tour if clients would like this option.   Rutherford Hotel Nelson

Wednesday 23 January (B, L, D) A relaxing day with a tour around three wineries, including lunch at a winery restaurant, followed by free time to explore Nelson. In the evening we will dine together at a local restaurant.

Thursday 24 January (B, L,) We will spend a full day visiting the renowned Abel Tasman National Park, close to Nelson in the company of a Ranger guide and will include a boat transfer into the park and a seafood lunch. Dinner in the hotel restaurant

Friday 25 January (B, L, D)  Today we take a scenic coach journey to Westport on the West Coast of the South island and include a jet boat trip on route.

Saturday 26 January (B, L, D) After breakfast in a local restaurant we tour the famous pancake rocks before moving down the coast to Greymouth and Shantytown where we have the opportunity of riding their steam train and panning for gold. After lunch at Shantytown we continue on to Franz Joseff along the scenic coast. Dinner included in hotel restaurant.   Scenic Hotel Franz Josef.

Sunday 27 January (B, L, D)  We first visit the Franz Joseff glacier with a walk to the viewing platforms. Continuing down the incredibly beautiful and remote West Coast we stop at Hastt for a jet boat ride, including a picnic lunch before continuing through the mountains stopping at a number of scenic viewpoints to our overnight stay in Wanaka. Dinner at hotel.   Edgewater Resort Wanaka

Monday 28 January (B,L) Half Day Ridgeline High Country 4 wheel drive tour including a picnic lunch. The afternoon is at leisure to explore Wanaka a beautiful lakeside resort.

Tuesday 29 January (B,L,D) Coach to Invercargill via Gore today we continue to the extreme south of the island via Gore where we will visit three interesting museums, an aircraft, a transport and a museum of local history before arriving in Invercargill.   Ascot Park Hotel Invercargill.

Wednesday 30 January (B, L, D) We transfer to Bluff for a ferry to Stuart Island and time to explore the island. To set the scene we have an included a village and bay tour and a cruise to Patterson inlet, with a number of options that you can take subsequently, including a walk after dark in a nature reserve to look for Kiwi.   South Sea Hotel Stewart

Thursday 31 January (B, L, D) More time to soak up the atmosphere of this unique location before a short walk to the ferry terminal to return to Bluff where coach we waiting to take is back to Invercargill  via the scenic Catlins and the petrified Forest. There is the option of returning by light plane from Stuart island if preferred.   Ascot Hotel Invercargill

Friday 1 February (B,L,D)  We transfer by coach to for a stunning jet boat ride down a rapid river valley to the sea where we enjoy a barbecue lunch Boat including BBQ lunch. We then continue by coach to Te Anau. In the evening we will take a tour to the renowned Glowworm Caves across the lake from our hotel.   Distinction Hotel and Villas Te Anau.

Saturday 2 February (B, L,) Today we take a full day tour to Milford sound including a nature cruise down the fiord. Lunch on-board the boat is included and we will make a number of scenic stops during our journey to and from Milford Sound. This will be a day to remember.

Sunday 3 February (B, L, D) We start our journey northwards stopping at the renowned Kingston Flyer preserved railway line. Having been out of action for several years it’s now been sold and potentially restored if so we will take a ride.  We continue on to Walter Peak Farm, a sheep farm for lunch and a demonstration and then on to our overnight in Queenstown. In the evening we enjoy a Lake cruise on the Earnslaw coal-fired steamboat and dinner.   Novotel Hotel Queenstown.

Monday 4 February (B, L, D) Today’s the last day of this tour and we will visit Gibbston Valley Wines for tour and tastings. We will also visit Arrowtown and the site of the first bungy jumping bridge before continuing by coach to Dunedin.

Main Tour – NORTH AND SOUTH ISLAND HIGHLIGHTS

Monday 4 February (D) Dinner at hotel we assemble at our hotel in the centre of Dunedin for welcome drinks. Dinner is at the hotel. Scenic Hotel Southern Cross.

Tuesday 5 February (B, L)  An easy walk down to Dunedin Railway station voted one of the most outstanding stations in the world.  Depart on Taieri Gorge Railway Excursion to Pukerangi in a heritage carriage with a picnic lunch on board. Transfer to Ocean Beach Railway Station for a tour round the engineering facilities and train ride.

Wednesday 6 February (B, D) (Waitangi Day)  We have a suitably varied programme to celebrate Waitangi day. Starting with another excursion from Dunedin Railway Station on the “seaside train”. Before free time back in Dunedin. In the afternoon we depart to Larnach Castle, then on to see the albatross who roost outside Dunedin followed by dinner and then in the evening, (which is the best time to go) view the nesting penguins before a late return to the hotel.

Thursday 7 February (B, L, D) Our journey today takes as from Dunedin to Christchurch however, during our journey we break three times to 3 different preserved railway lines. In Oamara we will have a steam ride on the Harbourside Railway before proceeding to Pleasant Point Railway where our journey will be by model T railcar to their engineering works and station where we will enjoy lunch. We’ll then move on to the Plains Railway where we should be pulled by Rogers K class steam locomotive. After which will proceed on to our hotel in Christchurch where we will have dinner.   Rydges Latimer Hotel CHC

Friday 8 February (B,L,D) Today we have a nice combination of railways and wineries. We first take a charter train on the Weka Pass Railway about an hour north of Christchurch before moving on for lunch at Pegasus Bay Winery. We then return to Christchurch where you have free time to explore the city before in the evening we are treated to a meal on the tramcar which circulates the city centre.

Saturday 9 February (B,L,D) Today is a first for PTG in that we will traverse the spectacular trans-Alpine train in both directions which will require a full day on board we will be served lunch. There will be time to explore Greymouth on the West Coast before returning to Christchurch and our hotel for dinner.

Sunday 10 February (B,D) An early start today as we join the Coastal Express train only recently reinstalled after the earthquake for our journey to Picton. Here we transfer to our hotel and visit the Edwin Fox Museum followed by free time to explore this harbour side town and then dinner at the hotel. Picton Yacht Club Hotel.

Monday 11 February (B, D ) In the morning we join our private Beachcomber cruise to the Paua Pearl Farm at the end of the inlet. We did this particular cruise for the first time on our last tour and it proved highly educational and enjoyable. We return to Picton in time for lunch and then we take a coach to Blenheim for a sightseeing tour including a visit to the spectacular and world-class Omaka Aircraft Museum with an incredible exhibits of aircraft of both the first and second world war. There’s also possibly the option of a flight in a Tiger Moth plane for any brave aviator. We return to our hotel in Blenheim where we will have dinner. Scenic Marlborough Hotel Blenheim

Tuesday 12 February (B, L)  Our first visit will be to the Whither Hills winery for tasting and tour . Followed by a visit to Brancott Estate winery for  lunch and tour. There is free time in the afternoon to explore Blenheim.

Wednesday 13 February (B, L ) Today we say goodbye to the South island and go by coach to Picton from where we catch the Inter Island ferry to Wellington. We are picked up at Wellington Harbour and taken to our hotel for our stay in this delightful city. Free time to explore the city. Novotel Hotel Wellington

Thursday 14 February (B, D ) Subject to it operating our planned today is to take the once a year Art Deco train from Paekakariki near Wellington to Napier. This in the past has been steam hauled and many people on board are dressed in costumes from the 1930s. We transfer from Napier rail station to our luxury hotel from where we go out for a delightful dinner at Mission Estate Winery. Scenic Te Pania Hotel Napier.

Friday 15 February (B,) There are lots of options for today which will need to be pre-booked and details will be sent out at the time of booking.

Saturday 16 February (B) There are a different range of Art Deco festival activities to enjoy at your leisure. There is the option which has proved highly popular in the past of going as a group to the “depression dinner” in the evening.

Sunday 17 February (B) This morning, marks the end of our “Highlights of New Zealand” section of the tour and presents three options; continue with us for our “Three Bays Tour” to explore the north of the island which becomes more semitropical as we travel north; transfer back to Auckland or Wellington by air from Napier airport or subject to availability take the return Art Deco train back to Wellington.

Post-Tour THE THREE BAYS

Sunday 17 February (B, L) Our exploration of the Three Bays starts with a coach trip from Napier to Gisborne, the most easterly point on the New Zealand coast. On arrival in Gisborne there is time to explore the town with our hotel located close to the harbour. OVERNIGHT:  Emerald Hotel Gisborne

Monday 18 February (B, L) An early start today to observe sunrise from the most easterly point in New Zealand. After a tour of the historic city we then return to our hotel for breakfast before transferring to Tatatouri Bay for Stingray Feeding, followed by a visit to Tologa Bay Wharf. We then have a wine tour with lunch to Milton Vineyard and Gisborne Wine Centre before joining Gisborne Vintage Railway. This is followed by a guided tour of Tarawhiti Museum where we will learn much about the local history Maori traditions.

Tuesday 19 February (B L D) We travel the scenic “Gorge road north to Whakatane with lunch en route. The rest of the day is devoted to the Maori culture with a visit to Mataatua Wharenui and an evening Maori dinner experience. OVERNIGHT:  Asure Barringtons Motel

Wednesday 20 February (B, L) Subject to weather conditions today we will visit one of the natural wonders of New Zealand White Island some 5o km off the coast during our time on the island. We will enjoy a lunch. Returning to mainland there is free time to explore the local area. OVERNIGHT:  Asure Barringtons Motel.

Thursday 21 February (B, L) A morning visit to Moutohora Island with a guided nature walk, an opportunity to swim and picnic lunch. In the afternoon we take a coach to Rotorua. In the evening we have the opportunity of a redwood tree walk. OVERNIGHT:  Novotel Rotorua                              

Friday 22 February (B,L,D) Full cooked breakfast at hotel today we have the opportunity of exploring this major area of volcanic activity long exploited by the Maoris. It will include a visit to Whakarewarewa a living Maori village, lunch at Waimangu, a guided walk and cruise on a volcanic crater lake. Subject to availability we plan to partake of Mataatua evening Hangi experience. OVERNIGHT:  Novotel Rotorua

Saturday 23 February (B,L,D) We will travel by coach to Waiuku via Matamata and Pukekohe and the Glenbrook Vintage Railway for a chartered steam train before continuing into Auckland. There is one place to eat in Auckland which must be missed so we will have dinner in  SkyTower revolving restaurant. OVERNIGHT:  Stamford Plaza Hotel

Sunday 24 February (B)   A day of leisure to explore Auckland with its many fascinating sites.

There is the option of leaving the tour at this point and not continuing on to the Bay of Islands.

Monday 25 February (B, L, D) We travel by coach to Matakohe and visit the Kauri Museum this indigenous New Zealand tree has produced some extraordinary artefacts, we will lunch at the Museum Before continuing on for a guided walk through Tane Mahuta national Park. Our accommodation tonight overlooks a stunning beach and includes lunch on the Terrace. OVERNIGHT:  Copthorne Hotel Hokianga – Beachfront Rooms

Tuesday 26 February (B,L) We take a coach to Kawakawa for a charter train on Bay of Islands Vintage Railway. We will then meet our Mari guide for a historic tour of the treaty grounds at Waitangi and a real insight into the Maori culture. OVERNIGHT:  Copthorne Hotel & Resort Pahia – Harbour views.

Wednesday 27 February (B) Today we have a thrilling boat ride to Cape Brett with the chance to travel through hole in the rock and to observe dolphins. The remainder of the day is free to explore Russell and the surrounding area.

Thursday 28 February (B, L,) An early start today for those that have been with the tour since the beginning. You will have had a chance to go to the most southerly point of New Zealand today you have the opportunity of going to the most northerly point at Cape Reinga with a coach journey which includes travelling the 90 mile beach. Lunch is included.

Friday 1 March (B, L,D) Today we leave the Bay of Islands and head back to Auckland by  coach stopping on route for lunch and tonight we have our farewell meal at Harbourside restaurant in Auckland. OVERNIGHT:  Stamford Plaza Auckland                                  

Saturday 2 March (B) Transfer to Auckland airport for chosen flight or we can arrange for you to stay on longer in Auckland or other options

Place(s) available

£100 discount until 15/11/18

To discuss this tour further please email Stephen at smart@ptg.co.uk or call the main office on 01235 227288 and we will get Stephen to call you back.

There are a range of prices and options for the New Zealand tour so please contact us on 01235 227288 to discuss the various options. Flight can be included.