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Complete New Zealand

from £6695
Small country, big adventure! Explore the North and South Island on our ultimate walking holiday in New Zealand
  • Product Code 41800
  • Holiday Type Sightseeing And Walking Holidays, Experiential Holidays, Iconic Paths
  • Grade

    Grades 1, 2 & 3 - Leisurely grades

    Grades 4, 5 & 6 - Moderate grades

    Grades 7, 8 & 9 - Challenging grades

    Grade 4
  • Holiday Duration 25 Nights

All about Complete New Zealand

Geysers, glaciers, snow-capped peaks, lush forest and more trails than you can shake a trekking poll at. This is the holiday of a lifetime!

New Zealand is a small country blessed with more than its share of natural wonders. Complete New Zealand 41800, starts in Auckland, a city cradled between the Tasman Sea and the Pacific Ocean. We travel south to Rotorua, where geysers, bubbling mud pools and lakes fizz with all the colours of the rainbow. Next stop is Tongariro National Park, situated in a region of active volcanoes. The Tongariro Crossing is amongst the greatest one-day walks anywhere in the world (this can be done as an optional extra). From Wellington we sail across the Marlborough Sound to Picton on the South Island. After walking by Queen Charlotte Sound and visiting a vineyard we spend two nights at St Arnaud by the beautiful Nelson Lakes. We continue to Christchurch and meet with those joining for South Island Discovery 41809, and discover the city together.

We travel to Franz Josef Glacier via Arthur’s Pass and the west coast route. We walk around amazing Lake Matheson with its incredible view of the Southern Alps, plus explore the valleys leading up to Fox and Franz Josef glaciers. From Wanaka, we travel on to Queenstown. From here you'll have the option to do the Milford Track instead of walking from Queenstown. Our journey then takes us to Te Anau in the Southern Lake District, from where we cruise on Milford Sound. We head back north to Twizel, a gateway to the peaks and trails of Mount Cook. This really is a holiday of a lifetime.

Please be aware that this holiday can have a total group size of up to 22 people. We also have options to do both the Tongariro Crossing and the Milford Track.

Tongariro Alpine Crossing Option

Heralded as the best one-day trek available in New Zealand, it spans the length of Mount Tongariro covering 12 miles (19.2km) and takes on average 7-8 hours to complete. You have the option to participate in the Tongariro Crossing. A medium to high level fitness required. This walk is above the advertised walking grade for this holiday and is a similar walking grade to our challenging grade 7 RWH holidays. We can book the crossing through a local tour operator at the time of making your booking. Please contact our Sales and Reservations department for a quote. The price includes local guide, lunch, trekking/wet weather gear hire and return transfers from the Chateau.

Milford Track Option

The Milford Track is world famous and the finest way to walk to Milford Sound. The first day begins with a boat journey from Te Anau Downs and a 1.6 km walk followed by a short nature walk. The following day we walk up the Clinton valley around 16 km with 200m of ascent. The next day we reach the head of the Clinton Valley and walk over the Mackinnon pass around 15km but with 720m of ascent. A high level of fitness is required as this walk is above the advertised walking grade for this holiday and is a similar walking grade to our challenging grade 6 RWH holidays. Please contact our Sales and Reservations department for a quote. Please note that the price quoted will be based on you staying in a multi share room. If you would like a quote for a room on a single basis then please specify at the time of booking. Please be aware that places are limited and on a first come first basis. Once the spaces are booked, it is unlikely that we will be able to obtain more so please book early to avoid disappointment! Please ask Sales and Reservations for an information sheet for further details such as kit and accommodation.

Choose either the entire Complete New Zealand route as above, or if you have more limited time available, join us for the South Island Discovery only.

Holiday Highlights

  • Explore Rotorua with its 20ft geysers, thermal springs, cauldrons of burning mud and the best-known Maori settlement.
  • Discover the Milford Sound with its dramatic cliffs, valleys and waterfalls.
  • Visit the Mount Cook region – the highest and most beautiful point of New Zealand.
  • Experience Queenstown and Franz Josef Glacier
  • Specially selected three and four-star hotels throughout.
The holiday inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What's included in this holiday Items that are covered in the cost of holiday price.

      Return flights from Heathrow to Auckland returning Christchurch to Heathrow via Singapore (Singapore Airlines) 
      Airport transfers 
      En suite accommodation with breakfast 
      Twelve or seven dinners taken in the hotels or at local restaurants 
      All local transport costs. 
Whats not included in this holiday Items that are not covered in the cost of holiday price.

  • Entrance fees to some museums and historic buildings (unless otherwise specified)
  • Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Discretionary tips
  • Optional excursions
  • Insurance
Please select Departure Date to view:

Please see Holiday Information Sheet for this holidays individual departures itinerary (located under View Departures & Book tab)

Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised programme, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.

This departure: Grade 4/SS

  1. Day 1 to 2

    Depart London Heathrow for Auckland via Singapore with Singapore Airlines.

  2. Day 3 to 4

    We land in Auckland around lunchtime, where we stay for two nights. We spend our time exploring and sightseeing in the ‘City of Sails’, including the harbour area, the Sky Tower, Albert Park and museums. We'll take the ferry across to Devonport to walk along the magnificent coastline overlooking the skyline of New Zealand’s principal city between the Pacific Ocean and the Tasmanian Sea.

  3. Day 5

    Leaving Auckland we travel south to the Maori and thermal centre of Rotorua where we stay for one night.

  4. Day 6

    This morning we visit the hot springs, erupting geysers and Maori culture at the Te Puia Thermal Reserve, in the Whakarewarewa Valley. In the afternoon we continue, via the spectacular Aratiatia dam and the Huka Falls (where we have a 2 hour walk) to the Tongariro National Park. We stay at the Chateau Tongariro for two nights giving us time to walk in the wild country with its active volcanic peaks of Ruapehu (2780m), Ngauruhoe (2277m), and Tongariro (1956m).

  5. Day 7
    Today you may choose to do the Tongariro Crossing day walk. Due to the National Park regulations we are not able to offer the Tongariro Crossing as part of the itinerary, however it is an option which you can book, at a supplement, to add on to your holiday (please contact our Sales & Reservations department for further details).


    Those not choosing to walk the Tongariro Crossing can join your tour leader on a walk through Whakapapa Village, before the Taranaki Falls walk, which rewards us with open views of Mt Ruapehu, Ngauruhoe and Tongariro, as well as the Lower and Upper Tama Lake viewpoints. Its a simply breath-taking day out amongst a striking landscape.

  6. Day 8

    We leave the Tongariro National Park and drive south to Wellington; New Zealand’s capital. From here we take the ferry across the Cook Strait through the Queen Charlotte Sound to Picton, on the shores of the Marlborough Sound, where we spend one night. The 3 ½ hours crossing and the coastal views from the ferry as we leave Wellington and cruise along the Queen Charlotte Sound are spectacular.

  7. Day 9

    After a morning’s walk along the Marlborough Sound shore, we continue to Blenheim to visit a local winery before moving on to the alpine village of St Arnaud, for two nights.

  8. Day 10

    We have a full days walking in the beautiful surrounding alpine countryside of the Nelson Lakes National Park near Mt Robert and Lake Rotoiti. This unspoilt area is rarely visited by tour groups, making it a very special experience.

  9. Day 11
    We leave Nelson Lakes and travel across the great divide; mountainous spine of the South Island. We stop, enroute, at the resort of Hanmer Springs, where we have the opportunity to bathe in the natural hot springs pools. We finally reach Christchurch where we stay for two nights. It is the second largest city, known as the Garden City of New Zealand. Founded in 1850 as a model church settlement, the founders envisaged recreating an English town; echoed in the Gothic Architecture of its early buildings and the hundreds of acres of parkland surrounding the city. We'll explore the city on an orientation walk where we will visit the botanical gardens, the cardboard cathedral, the remembrance gate and Hagley park.


    Here we will meet up with those travelling on our South Island Discovery holiday.

  10. Day 12

    We'll walk along the Godley Head walkway with lovely coastal views; this headland was where the original English settlers arrived in the 1860s after their 4 month voyage in the middle of the 19th century. We'll hug the coast for spectacular scenery and enjoy a picnic lunch on Taylors Mistake Beach. Later in the afternoon, there will also be time for individual sightseeing or an enjoyable walk into Hagley park and Christchurch city centre.

  11. Day 13

    We cross the Great Divide again, traversing spectacular gorges and the ancient forest of Arthur’s Pass National Park, where we enjoy a short walk in the park before continuing to the West Coast and Hokitika with its wild windswept beach covered in driftwood.  From there, we enter Glacier Country and stop in the tiny village of Franz Josef.

  12. Day 14

    We start the day with an early morning walk around Lake Matheson, famous for its post-card reflections of the Southern Alps. Then we drive inland so we can walk to view the glacial face of Fox Glacier which lies in a magnificent wide glacial valley.  After lunch, we return to Franz Josef to walk to the face of its own glacier before returning to our hotel. 

  13. Day 15

    We continue our journey south along the coast via Haast, turning inland over the Haast Pass and through wonderful country (with stops at the startling blue Lake Wanaka and the even bluer Lake Hawea) to the charming town of Wanaka (known affectionately as ‘Queenstown’s little brother) where we stay for two nights.    

  14. Day 16

    Today we will walk in the Mount Aspiring National Park. Here we may hike the Minaret Burn Track, or the Diamond Lake and Rocky Mountain track.  Both tracks offer some of the best mountains & Lakes views that NZ has to offer. 

  15. Day 17
    We continue south to Queenstown, where Ben Lomond and the ‘Remarkables’ mountain range tower above Lake Wakatipu. We stay for three nights. On route, we will visit Arrowtown, a pretty gold rush village with a 'wild west' feel to it. We will enjoy a walk around the river before exploring the town and having lunch. Once we arrive in Queenstown, we will have an afternoon orientation walk to include a lakeside walk and the memorial gardens. Dinner for our first evening in Queenstown is spent high above the town after taking the gondola up to Bolos Park to the ‘Skyline’ restaurant.


    Please note that if you choose to take the option of hiking the Milford Track (see the information below for the Milford Track option, days 1-5), you leave the main group to start your adventure tomorrow.  A high level of stamina and fitness is required as this walk is above the advertised walking grade for this holiday and is a similar walking grade to our challenging grade 6 RWH holidays. Please contact our Sales and Reservations department at the time of booking to request this optional extra.
  16. Day 18
    Today we catch a gondola cable car to above the tree-line, then hike up a good mountain track towards the summit of Ben Lomond (with options of reaching the saddle or the top, as this is an out-and-back walk). There are far reaching 360 degree views throughout the day and you can relax after the walk at the Skyline restaurant and cafe by the upper gondola station before riding back down to town and the hotel.

    Milford Track option day 1: You'll be picked up at our Queenstown hotel and transfer to a wharf on Lake Te Anau. You'll take an afternoon scenic cruise to the start of the famous Milford Track long distance trail. A short walk of just 1 mile brings you to Glade House for an overnight stay. The local guides will show you some interesting flora and fauna along the way.

  17. Day 19
    You will be ready to have a free day to yourself! Queenstown is the outdoor activity and sightseeing capital of NZ and your options include a lake trip on the SS Earnslaw steam ship (built 1912), an exhilarating jet boat ride, a self-guided local walk, or simply a lie-in followed by a relaxing day out; perhaps enjoying a lunch in the many eateries in this lovely town.

    Milford Track option day 2: You'll cross the Clinton River and walk through mountain beech forests and open clearings to the Hirere Waterfalls. You then continue onto a grassy plain (known as the Prairie) where the views open out into Clinton Canyon. A rocky but well made path takes you up to Marlene’s Creek and then to Pompolona Lodge. A good day hike with 10 miles distance over an ascent of 400m.

  18. Day 20
    We walk the Frankton Arm, a pleasant level shoreline walk to the Frankton Tavern where we can enjoy the Boatshed cafe en route. We then continue south to Te Anau; set on a lake of the same name, where we stay for three nights. We're in the heart of the Southern Lakes region from where we can walk alongside the Lake and explore the magnificent Fjordland National Park.

    Milford Track option day 3: Today you will reach the head of the Clinton valley and walk over the Mackinnon pass. This is around 9 miles but with 720m of ascent. You’ll have a chance to visit the Sutherland Falls, the world's fifth highest waterfall with a drop of 580m.

  19. Day 21
    Today we visit the world famous Milford Sound. Even our drive there is along one of the most spectacular roads in the world, with dramatic lakes, cliffs and mountains. We enjoy short scenic walks en route, then a boat trip on the Milford Sound simply takes your breath away. We sail out on deep waters between towering spires of rock surrounding the narrow inlet, with unforgettable views of the sheer mile-high Mitre Peak and the thundering Lady Bowen Falls.

    Milford Track option day 4: Today’s walk gives you a wonderful view of the Lady of the Snows, a distinctive mountain at the head of Green Valley. The 13 mile walk covers a long distance, but is comfortable with only 125m of descent. The interest never wanes as you pass various hills, flats and waterfalls on our way to the end of the Track at Sandfly Point. From there, we are collected by motor launch across the Milford Sound to Mitre Peak Lodge.

  20. Day 22
    Today we visit the National Park Visitor Centre, then walk some of the famous Kepler Track - a fabulous hike through NZ rainforest with all the sights and sounds that make these areas so special. In the afternoon, we visit the Te Anau Glow Worm Caves. We take a cruise across lake Te Anau to the caves where we have a guided tour to see the spectacular show.

    Milford Track option day 5: Take a boat trip on the Milford Sound out on the deep waters between towering spires of rock surrounding the narrow inlet, with unforgettable views of the sheer mile-high Mitre Peak and the thundering Lady Bowen Falls. You’ll then enjoy a scenic coach ride back to Te Anau where you’ll rejoin the main group and visit the Te Anau Glow Worm Caves.

  21. Day 23

    We leave Te Anau and travel north through the centre of the island into the sparsely populated MacKenzie Country to our hotel in the tiny village of Twizel, our gateway to the Mount Cook region.

  22. Day 24

    We spend today walking in the area around Mount Cook (3741m), which dominates this spectacular alpine region. We walk up the Hooker Valley, crossing three swing bridges, towards the base of Mt. Cook with views of the hanging glaciers of Mount Sefton and Mount ‘Footstool’.  Our walk reaches the glacier terminal moraine where we take some unforgettable photographs of the icebergs in the glacial lake.

  23. Day 25

    Today we leave Mount Cook and travel north, stopping briefly to admire the astonishing electric blue Lakes Pukaki and Tekapo.  We then continue on to Christchurch airport to check in for our flights home to London Heathrow via Singapore.

  24. Day 26

    Arrive in the UK.

Travel Details

  • Return flights from Heathrow to Auckland returning Christchurch to Heathrow via Singapore (Singapore Airlines)
  • Airport transfers by road c.30mins
  • Stopover package: If you would like to break your journey in Singapore please contact us for details on the stopover packages available when flying Singapore Airlines.
  • Upgrades are available on most flights. For scheduled flights Premium Economy, Business or First Class and most low-cost carriers have extra legroom seats. Please ask us for details and a competitive quote.
  • If direct regional flights are not available, we can often offer add-on flights to a London airport at a competitive rate. Please ask us for details and a competitive quote.
  • Visa is required.



Trip Map

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Our Accommodation on this holiday

Below is the accommodation featured on this holiday. If you are on a multi-centre holiday, these are highlights of the places where we stay. Please refer to your Holiday Information sheet (which can be found under View Departures & Book), for your departure date and for all your accommodation details.

Chateau on the Park, Christchurch

Chateau on the Park, Christchurch is located in the heart of the city. The hotel is designed to provide maximum tranquility and the surrounding scenery is simply breathtaking. The hotel grounds boats a beautiful rose garden, a moat and a vineyard. The hotels ideal location is within walking distance to Christchurch’s beautiful Botanic Gardens. 



Chateau Tongariro Hotel

Chateau Tongariro Hotel is located in the Tongariro National Park, and offers wonderful views of magnificent volcanic peaks of Mount Ruapehu and Mount Ngauruhoe. The hotel is 7km from Whakapapa, which hosts the largest ski field in New Zealand. Visitors can relish the opportunity of skiing on mountains from June to October. The nearby area encompasses natures’ finest creations such as lakes, beech forests and waterfalls. 



Edgewater Resort

Edgewater Hotel is located in the beautiful destination of Lake Wanaka, only 2km from Wanaka town centre in the South Island of New Zealand. The hotel has a restaurant and a café and allows the opportunity to take in the wonderful scenery of Lake Wanaka. The hotel has many facilities such as a spa, a sauna and a tennis court. The Edgewater Day Spa is located on site of the hotel with stunning views of the lake and nearby surrounding mountains. It offers a wide range of beauty and spa treatments. There is also kayaking on the lake, and mountain biking on the surrounding mountains.



Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier 4*

The Scenic Hotel Franz sits at the edge of the Westland World Heritage Park and is just moments from one of New Zealand’s most spectacular natural attractions, the Franz Josef Glacier. The hotel provides free Wi-Fi, a restaurant and bar and private spa pools.