- 15 Days -

New Zealand Luxury Lodges

We're just assembling some amazing activities to choose from - wont be long!

With understated luxury, outstanding service, and all with their own distinct sense of style, New Zealand's luxury lodges are renowned worldwide. Nestled beside rivers, suspended in trees and perched on cliff-tops, these 5-star luxury lodges are some of the world’s most luxurious properties. They are totally unique in design and location but ultimately share the same purpose – to help you completely relax and fully recharge. This example includes stays in the North & South Islands staying at five of New Zealand’s finest luxury lodges. You will be driven or flown between each lodge, or if you prefer, we can arrange for a rental car for driving yourself between some stops. If you feel inspired by this itinerary, we can help you create a tailor-made version designed specifically for you. Just contact our office in Santa Barbara.

Days 1 to 4

The Lodge at Kauri Cliffs

After your morning arrival at Auckland Airport, take the short flight to KeriKeri where you will be met and transferred to your accommodation at The Lodge at Kauri Cliffs. Resting on an unspoilt coastline where high cliffs nestle into three pristine private beaches, Kauri Cliffs is experiential travel at its best. Named the number one resort in Australia and New Zealand by 'Travel + Leisure', Kauri Cliffs is a leisure travellers dream. Activities abound with the David Harman-designed golf course, immersive local heritage tours, bountiful fishing, bush walks, mountain biking, quad biking and a spa sanctuary hidden within native forest.

You might also find time to enjoy one of following optional activities; just add them to your Wish List. 

Days 4 to 7

Delamore Lodge, Waiheke Island

  • 170 Miles + 35 Minute Ferry
  • 4 Hours

Your chauffeur driven car will be ready for a morning transfer to the Auckland departure point for the Waiheke Island ferry (35 minutes). On arrival you'll be met by your hosts and transferred for your 3 night stay at the luxurious Delamore Lodge

Waiheke Island is a haven of beautiful vineyards, olive groves and white sand beaches. In landscape, lifestyle and experience it's a world away and is now established as a favorite with international visitors.  During your stay you might be tempted to return to Auckland for the day to experience one or more of these optional activities. Or maybe just explore the vineyards and cafes of Waiheke Island from your home at Delamore Lodge.

Days 7 to 9

Huka Lodge

  • 170 Miles
  • 35 Minutes Ferry + 3 1/2 Hours Drive

This morning your driver will be waiting for you at the Auckland ferry terminal to drive you to Huka Lodge the resort that sets the standards for luxury New Zealand accommodation. A long list of past guests includes H.M. Queen Elizabeth II of England, Barbra Streisand, authors Bryce Courtenay & James A. Mitchener, Bill Gates and many more.

On the drive to Huka Lodge you'll have time to enjoy a stop or two along the way at one of the following. If any of these interest you, add them to your Wish List, just so we know.

Days 9 to 11

The Farm at Cape Kidnappers

  • 106 Miles
  • 2 Hours

Today's drive of around 2 hours is all about fantastic scenery with rugged forested hills, beautiful valleys, gentle plains and wonderful panoramic views to enjoy along the way. Your accommodation for the next 2 nights will be at The Farm at Cape Kidnappers, located close to New Zealand's wine growing region of Hawkes Bay.

The Farm at Cape Kidnappers is one of the world’s extraordinary luxury destinations, set on a 6,000 acre sheep and cattle farm with breathtaking views over the Pacific Ocean and the finest standards of accommodation, service and hospitality that New Zealand offers.

Days 11 - 15

Matakauri Lodge

  • Flight 3 Hours via Christchurch

Your hosts will take you to Napier Airport for your morning flight to New Zealand's premier destination, Queenstown and for the next 4 nights you will stay at the luxury Matakauri Lodge, overlooking majestic Lake Wakatipu. 

Matakauri Lodge offers stunning views from every angle of the Remarkables and Walter Peak mountain ranges. The Lodge is nestled in one of the world's most serenely beautiful landscapes. Originally constructed in 2000 with a contemporary New Zealand design, it was reopened in August 2010 after undergoing extensive refurbishment and new interior design by acclaimed New Zealand Interior Designer, Virginia Fisher. Then there's the many attractions of nearby Queenstown and the many forests, lakes, rivers and hiking opportunities to be explored and enjoyed.

Day 15

Homeward Bound

Today you take an afternoon flight back to Auckland in time to connect with your homeward flight to the USA. Kia Ora New Zealand and please return one day soon.


$14,974.00 including accommodation and travel within New Zealand.

This is an indicative cost, based on a departure from the US in October 2018. It is subject to change, based on your departure date and currency exchange rate fluctuations between the US$ and NZ$.

The Waitangi Treaty Grounds

This is New Zealand’s most important historic site where in 1840 New Zealand’s founding document was signed, the Treaty of Waitangi. The Treaty Grounds features the Treaty House, the carved Meeting House and the world’s largest ceremonial war canoe. Be sure to visit the exciting new Te Kongahu Museum of Waitangi opened in February 2016 and telling the story of Maori and European contact and the ongoing development of New Zealand as a nation.

  • Allow:
  • Cost:
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  • Best time:
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Cape Reinga via 90 Mile Beach

This is an organized coach tour to Cape Reinga at the very top of the North Island where the Pacific Ocean meets the Tasman Sea. Travel via the spectacular 90 Mile Beach and experience the wild beauty of this vast and untouched region, rich in Maori culture and legend.

  • Allow: Full Day
  • Cost: $132.00
  • Age: All
  • Best time: November - April
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'Hole in The Rock' Cruise

Cruise the Bay of Islands in search of dolphin on board our purpose built catamaran as well as experiencing the breathtaking 'Hole in the Rock'. Includes an island stopover on beautiful Urupukapuka Island Reserve.

  • Allow: Half Day
  • Cost: $82.00
  • Age: All
  • Best time: November - March
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Maori Tours

Small group tours to view the stunning Waiheke Island landscapes, contemporary and traditional Maori art practices and internationally renowned boutique wineries. To really experience the depth and beauty that Waiheke Island has to offer is to experience it with Potiki Tours, the indigenous people of this land.

  • Allow: 5 hours
  • Cost: From $150.00
  • Age: All
  • Best time: All year
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The Auckland Art Gallery

Closed in 2007 for 4 years of extensive renovations, this wonderful gallery has now re-opened as one of the country's most iconic buildings.  Experience world-class touring exhibitions, immerse yourself in the sights, sounds and atmosphere of traditional and contemporary international works of art and discover the largest permanent collection of New Zealand art right in the heart of Auckland City.

  • Allow: Half Day
  • Cost: Free. Charges may apply to special exhibitions
  • Age: All
  • Best time: All year
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America's Cup Sailing

Auckland, also known as 'The City of Sails' is the city that provided the core of the team that first won the America’s Cup in 1995 in San Diego. Here's your opportunity to feel the thrill of sailing an authentic America’s Cup yacht. Take the helm to help steer, work hard on the grinders to hoist the mainsail or simply sit back and enjoy the scenery.

  • Allow: 2 hours
  • Cost: From $120.00
  • Age: All (no children under 10 years permitted)
  • Best time: November to April
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Visit the Hobbiton movie set where scenes from The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit were filmedIn a fascinating two-hour guided tour you will be taken through the twelve acre site recounting fascinating details of how the movie set was created. The Hobbit Holes, Green Dragon™ Inn, Mill and other structures created for these films can be viewed. For something really special ask us about the Wednesday evening Dinner Tour. 

  • Allow: 2 hours
  • Cost: From $55.00
  • Age: All
  • Best time: All Year
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Waitomo Caves

This is one New Zealand's iconic visitor attractions. The glow worm, Arachnocampa luminosa is unique to New Zealand and thousands of these tiny creatures radiate their unmistakable luminescent light as your expert guides explains the Caves' historical and geological significance. A highlight of a visit to Waitomo Caves is the river boat ride under the thousands of magical glowworms.

  • Allow: Adds 2 hours to todays driving time - Guided Cave tour takes 45 minutes
  • Cost: From $35.00
  • Age: All
  • Best time: All Year
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Waimangu Valley

The strange geological formations, the forest and the lakes of Waimangu always create a sense of wonder for visitors. This is a place of constant geothermal activity and tremendous heat, creating steam, geysers and streams bubbling away at 125 degrees! We recommend a cruise on the incredible cobalt blue lake, where stories will be told of the violent eruptions of 1886 that formed Waimangu and the natural beauty that it created. Read more about Waimangu on our blog - North Island Highlights - Waimangu Volcanic Valley

  • Allow: A minimum of 1-2 hours
  • Cost: From $25.00 (With lake Cruise $30.00)
  • Age: All
  • Best time: All Year
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Art Deco Napier

In 1931 Napier was almost completely destroyed by a devastating earthquake. An interesting outcome of interest to visitors from the USA is that after the earthquake, a delegation visited Santa Barbara in California which had been rebuilt after their terrible earthquake of 1925. As a result of this visit the city fathers decided that Napier would be rebuilt in the Spanish Mission style of Santa Barbara, but although examples of this style are still to be found, it was the Art Deco style of the 30's that eventually prevailed. 

  • Allow: One Hour
  • Cost: Downloadable Self-guided Walk Brochure $6:00. One hour guided walking tour $17.00
  • Age: All
  • Best time: All Year
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Cape Kidnappers Gannets

This is the world's largest and most accessible colony of gannets birds where over 6,500 breeding pairs make their homes. Travel from Napier in a specialized air conditioned 4x4 vehicle to these amazing nesting grounds, a 'must see' for any visitor.

  • Allow: 4-5 hours
  • Cost: From $75.00
  • Age: All
  • Best time: November - April
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Bicycle Wine Tour

'On Yer Bike Winery Tours' offers a great fun one-day cycling experience exploring wineries in the region by bike, following a user-friendly map. Discover some of the regions finest wineries, taste wines and take in the superb scenery of the Gimblett Gravels and Bridge Pa Triangle wine growing regions. The terrain is flat and the cycling easy passing vineyards, olive groves, horse studs, orchards and farmland.

  • Allow: Choose from 2 Hours to 1 Day
  • Cost: $35.00 per person including bike hire & helmet & exclusive guide map
  • Age: 20+
  • Best time: November - April
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Night Cruise Doubtful Sound

With its ancient rain forests and abundant wildlife Doubtful Sound is quite simply breathtaking. Practically untouched by humans the physical grandeur of towering peaks, outstanding waterfalls like The Browne Falls that cascade 2,000 feet into the fiord, and calm inland seas combine to create a powerful atmosphere of solitude and serenity. Crested penguins, bottlenose dolphins and New Zealand fur seals will among the wildlife that might be encountered. Our blog also explores the adjacent Dusky Sound tours, a very special experience.

  • Allow: If you choose the overnight cruise option it will add one day to your itinerary.
  • Cost: $333.00 including 3 course buffet dinner, cooked breakfast, kayaking. Private cabins with ensuite bathrooms. Picnic lunch.
  • Age: All
  • Best time: Operates September to mid-May
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Milford Sound Cruise

Either drive from Te Anau or from Queenstown to Milford Sound or take a coach tour from Te Anau or Queenstown or fly to Milford Sound and return to Queenstown by coach. Your opportunity to enjoy the world famous Milford Sound Cruise. For more about Milford Sound read our Milford Sound blog here.

  • Allow: Full Day
  • Cost: Varies
  • Age: All
  • Best time: All year
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Scenery and Vineyards

This guided tour is a great way to enjoy the best scenery in the wider Queenstown region combined with a wine tour that is tailored to suit the tastes of everyone on board. There will be many scenic stops to capture the exceptional scenery and 3 wineries will be visited with a platter lunch of local and seasonal delights included. A highlight will be a stunning drive over the Crown Range Alpine Pass. You can see some great shots of vineyards in this region on our blog. Just click here.

  • Allow: Full day
  • Cost: From $215.00. Maximum group size 7
  • Age: 18 Plus
  • Best time: All year excluding winter, May - September
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