About New Zealand and its regions

New Zealand is located in the South Pacific Ocean, between latitude 34’S and 47’S. The country runs roughly north south with mountain ranges down much of its length. New Zealand’s two main islands (North and South) cover 266,200 sq km (103,735 sq miles). Many regions are what we call ‘Visiting Places New Zealand’.

About 100 million years ago, New Zealand separated from other land masses – many ancient plants and animals were able to survive and evolve in isolation. Complementing our unique flora and fauna is a landscape that contains an huge variety of land forms. In just a couple of days drive, it is possible to see the full range – an ever changing landscape of mountain ranges, beaches, lush rainforests, glaciers, fiords and volcanos. For any additional questions please phone or email us and we’ll reply quickly.

View Sample New Zealand travel itineraries.

Visiting Places New Zealand - North Island

Northland

The extensive and pristine coastland of Northland and the Bay of Islands, New Zealand, offers an aquatic playground for adventure and escapist relaxation. Whangarei and Opua are havens for international and local yachts. Tutukaka and Russell are game fishing hot spots. The beaches of Doubtless Bay are endlessly beautiful. And New Zealand’s rich colonial history is visible everywhere. Fine wine, gourmet food, world class golf, sumptuous spas and luxury lodges - these are passions that Northland understands. For travellers intent on packing more pleasure into their holiday plan, the sky's the limit.

Auckland

Imagine an urban environment where everyone lives within half an hour of beautiful beaches, hiking trails and a dozen enchanted holiday islands. Add a sunny climate, a background rhythm of Polynesian culture and a passion for outstanding food, wine and shopping and you have a vibrant and sophisticated city. Auckland is New Zealand's largest city and has the main international airport in New Zealand. Two domestic terminals allow frequent and accessible flights throughout the country.

Waikato

The Waikato region has two spectacular landscapes - one above ground, the other below. In both cases, nature reigns supreme. On the lush surface, the scenery is lush and green, the result of fertile soils, reliable rainfall and kind weather. Below the surface, vast cave systems, huge sink holes and underground streams provide plenty of options for adventure. Include in your travel plans a visit to the monuments and museums and discover the fierce history of the region.

Coromandels

Rustic, relaxed and unspoiled, the Coromandel is one of New Zealand's best-loved vacation destinations. The rugged volcanic hills are cloaked in native rainforest, and with more than 400 kilometres of spectacular coastline, travellers can be assured of finding the beach of their dreams.

Bay of Plenty

The Bay of Plenty is a place of beautiful harbours, long white surf beaches and a sunny, easy going lifestyle. Everything you need for a great family holiday.

Eastland

Eastland is the place where the first Polynesian migration canoes landed and where Captain Cook made his first landfall. Maori culture is evident in every settlement you see. There are carved meeting houses, beautifully painted Maori churches, children riding horses bareback on the beach and conversations in Te Reo.

Hawkes Bay

Cape Kidnappers is at the southern end of Hawke Bay, on the east coast of the North Island. The name Kidnappers refers to an incident during Cook's first voyage when an attempt was made to trade with the occupants of an armed canoe. The warm and dry Mediterranean-style climate of Hawkes Bay produces the stunning red wine, for which the area is famous for. Hawkes Bay is also known to travellers as the Art Deco capital of the world.

Central Plateau

The 800 square kilometre Tongariro National Park (a World Heritage Area) is the centre of attraction for this region. It was gifted to the country by the local Ngati Tuwharetoa people, who recognised that such a precious treasure belonged to all New Zealanders. The park protects three of New Zealand's most dramatic natural assets - the active andesitic volcanoes Ruapehu, Tongariro and Ngauruhoe. On a clear day at any time of the year, the mountains are awesome. Their cones and surrounding lava fields provide amazing opportunities for adventure and exploration.

Lake Taupo

The Lake Taupo region in New Zealand's volcanic heartland is rich in Maori tradition. It also has some of the country's finest untouched, uncrowded and unique landscapes. The lake formed, following the most violent volcanic eruption the world has seen in the past 5000 years - the ash affected the sunsets as far away as Europe and China.

Wairarapa

Essentially rural with off-the beaten-track charm, Wairarapa promises a diverse experience for travellers who appreciate great wine, gourmet food, wildlife and natural beauty. Rolling vineyards, acres of apple orchards, fields of lavender, olive groves, heritage museums and quaint historic towns combine to make Wairarapa an appealing destination.

Wanganui

The Wanganui, Rangitikei, Manawatu, Horowhenua and Tararua districts are bound together by magnificent rivers, forested ranges, deep gorges and long stretches of wild surf beach. There is a strong emphasis on rural lifestyle in this region, as well as an exciting choice of outdoor adventures.

Taranaki

The dramatic, snow-topped volcanic cone of Mount Taranaki provides a spiritual compass for the people of this region. The mountain is the source of over 50 rivers and streams, the home of many botanically unique plants, and the subject of many stories and legends. On sighting the mountain in 1642, explorer Abel Tasman said it was "the noblest hill I've ever seen". The mountain and the Tasman Sea, provide a natural playground for travellers who enjoy outdoor adventures. The region is also known for its creativity and ingenuity - characteristics that materialise as beautiful gardens, fascinating museums and highly acclaimed art collections.

Wellington

Wellington is New Zealand's capital city and is perfectly located between a picturesque harbour and forested green hills. The city is home to memorable arts, cultural and heritage attractions including the national museum, Te Papa. Natural attractions, such as the wild south coast, are within easy reach of the city centre. Wellington also has a sophisticated cafe scene and a vibrant nightlight.
Visiting Places New Zealand - South Island

Marlborough

Marlborough basks in year-round sunshine, providing perfect conditions for walking, mountain biking, sea kayaking and vineyard explorations. It's a region where you can pick a theme and follow it through. Focus your itinerary on outdoor adventures, vineyards and wineries, arts and crafts, history and gardens or marine pursuits. Better still, mix them up and experience a little of everything this beautiful region has to offer.

Nelson-Tasman

A pocket of paradise in the top northwest corner of the South Island, Nelson has a positive, creative attitude to life. This region is the sunniest in New Zealand and has attracted more than 350 working artists and craftspeople. Their work is often inspired by the region's exceptionally beautiful geography - coastal, forest and valley landscapes provide places to wander and dream. The weather is perfect for outdoor pursuits and lovers of boutique wine.

Christchurch

Although the central business district of Christchurch is undergoing exciting renovations, the city still lives up to it's name as a 'Garden City'. Travellers will be surprised and delighted with innovative eating options both in central Christchurch and on the outskirts, The Tannery being a sophisticated example. Outdoor markets with fresh local produce still abound and Christchurch's best shopping boutiques continue to thrive. Christchurch has bountiful backyard of magnificent alpine heights, broad expansive plains, fresh snow-fed rivers, volcanic peninsulas and luxury pockets of wineries, hot pools and a breathtaking coastline.

Canterbury

Travellers should expect massive scenery when visiting the Canterbury Region. From huge panoramas of ocean and mountains, to great sweeps of pastureland and massive skies. The highest point of the region is actually the highest point of New Zealand. The spectacular Aoraki Mount Cook stands at 3754 metres (Aoraki is Maori for Cloud Piercer). At the other end of the scale, the submarine trenches off the coast of Kaikoura are thousands of metres deep, providing an ideal environment for the whales, dolphins and seals that live there permanently.

Westcoast

With a population of only 31,000 people, the West Coast retains the feeling of a pioneer frontier. The region has a rugged and wild beauty, known for it's rivers, rainforests, glaciers and geological treasures. The locals are known as 'coasters', a term synonymous with friendliness and hospitality. Separated from the rest of New Zealand by the Southern Alps, coasters have developed their own distinctive culture. Their pioneering values of self-reliance and loyalty are as strong today as they were 100 years ago.

Coastal Otago

The Coastal Otago Peninsula is home to rare and unusual coastal wildlife. Travellers are fascinated by the hoiho (yellow-eyed penguins), little blue penguins and the world's only mainland albatross colony. Sea lions and fur seals also live here. Visitors can join tours to experience some of the most spectacular wildlife spots in the area including a restricted wildlife conservation sanctuary, where excellent close-up viewing of some of the World's rarest wildlife is available.

Cental Otago

Wanaka is located in the Central Otago region, which is breathtakingly different with vast undulating landscapes, rugged snow-capped mountains, clear blue rivers, deep gorges and tussock-clad hills. More recently, in the 1860s, Central Otago was the scene of a gold rush. Trails used by miners can still be seen winding over the hills. Stone cottages, a haunted hotel, cleverly engineered water channels, mines and machinery are other relics to discover. Nowadays, Central Otago is the scene of a ‘wine rush'. Pinot Noir has become one of the region's newest treasures, and many of the wineries welcome visitors for tours and tastings.

Queenstown

Queenstown New Zealand's rare beauty was first discovered by Maori pounamu (jade) hunters and later, gold-miners. Today, Queenstown is treasured for its magnificent and dramatic scenery, adventure opportunities and luxury lifestyle. Queenstown offers a vibrant atmosphere and a fun-packed nightlife - it richly deserves is global reputation as an "Adventure Capital".

Southland

Southland's tranquil waterways attract fly fishing enthusiasts in search of brown trout. The pristine southern rainforest provides the perfect location for day walks and longer overnight hiking. From Bluff, visitors can catch a ferry to Stewart Island which is a haven for native bird life and the only place in New Zealand where you may observe a kiwi in their natural habitat.

Fiordland

The power of Fiordlands scenery is a magnet to travellers. Waterfalls tumble hundreds of metres into massive fiords; ancient rainforest cling to the mountains; shimmering lakes and granite peaks remain unchanged from a thousand years ago. Magnificent Milford Sound Described by Rudyard Kipling as the Eighth Wonder of the World; Milford Sound is forever spectacular. Feel the mist of the waterfalls, look for seals on the rocks and marvel at the steep sides of the fiord.

Stewart Island

Stewart Island lies at the southern-most island of New Zealand and may look like a tiny dot on the map, but it is actually 64 km long, and 40 km across (at its widest point). It has a 700 km of pristine and rugged coastline, but there are only 20 km of roads! Even ten days tramping only covers the northern third of the Island. There is much to see on this beautiful paradise rich in native wildlife with walks, boating, fishing, diving, kayaking, hunting on offer. Stewart Island is definitely the perfect choice for nature lovers.