13 days in New Zealand Itinerary

13 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Created using Inspirock New Zealand trip planner

Plan created by another user.Make it yours

Route & dates

1
Waitomo Caves
— 2 nights
2
Rotorua
— 3 nights
3
Dunedin
— 2 nights
4
Wanaka
— 3 nights
5
Queenstown
— 2 nights

2
nights
Waitomo Caves

Waitomo Caves ©
Head deep beneath the surface of the earth at Waitomo Caves, a village and cave system that draws both extreme sports enthusiasts and those wanting something a little more relaxed.
Start off your visit on the 29th (Sun): admire the sheer force of Marakopa Falls and then explore the fascinating underground world of Ruakuri Cave. On your second day here, head off the coast to Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari, thentake in the views from Mangapohue Natural Bridge Walk, thenHead underground at Caveworld, and finally trek along Ruakuri Walk.

To see ratings, reviews, where to stay, and other tourist information, you can read our Waitomo Caves trip itinerary maker tool.

Sydney, Australia to Waitomo Caves is an approximately 9-hour flight. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 2 hours traveling from Sydney to Waitomo Caves. Cap off your sightseeing on the 30th (Mon) early enough to go by car to Rotorua.

Things to do in Waitomo Caves

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari
Find places to stay Dec 28 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Marakopa Falls ©
Marakopa Falls
Ruakuri Walk ©
Ruakuri Walk
Ruakuri Cave
Ruakuri Cave

3
nights
Rotorua

Rotorua ©
Surrounded by lakes and featuring impressive areas of geothermal landscape, the city of Rotorua offers an otherwordly landscape and a welcoming, peaceful environment, with the culture of the native Maori people very much in the foreground.
Visit Mt Maunganui Main Beach and Papamoa Beach for some beach relaxation. Explore hidden gems such as Waimangu Volcanic Valley and Kuirau Park. Step out of Rotorua to go to Mount Maunganui and see Mount Maunganui Base Track, which is approximately 1h 10 min away. There's lots more to do: get interesting insight from Tours, trek along Blue Lake Track, look for all kinds of wild species at Redwoods Treewalk, and witness a stunning natural landmark at Waikite Valley Thermal Pools.

For reviews, maps, ratings, and more tourist information, use the Rotorua online trip itinerary planner.

You can drive from Waitomo Caves to Rotorua in 2 hours. Another option is to take a bus. In December, daily temperatures in Rotorua can reach °C, while at night they dip to °C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 2nd (Thu) to allow time to travel to Dunedin.

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trips

Tauranga, Okere Falls Track, Waiotapu Boardwalk/ Mud Pool, Papamoa Beach
Find places to stay Dec 30 — Jan 2:
Highlights from your plan
Waimangu Volcanic Valley ©
Waimangu Volcanic Valley
Mt Maunganui Main Beach ©
Mt Maunganui Main Beach
Papamoa Beach ©
Papamoa Beach

2
nights
Dunedin

Dunedin ©
With its history proudly stemming from the Scottish settlers who came here during the colonial era, Dunedin's streets are lined with well-preserved examples of Victorian and Edwardian architecture, while a new culture of nightlife and fine dining takes hold around them.
On the 3rd (Fri), examine the collection at Port Chalmers Maritime Museum, enjoy the sand and surf at Aramoana Beach, thenlook for all kinds of wild species at Orokonui Ecosanctuary, and finally identify plant and animal life at Wildlife Areas. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 4th (Sat): stroll through St Clair Beach, take a tour by water with Wild Angler, and then enjoy the sand and surf at Karitane Beach.

To find maps, other places to visit, traveler tips, and other tourist information, go to the Dunedin trip planner.

Getting from Rotorua to Dunedin by flight takes about 6.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of car and ferry. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Sat) to allow time to take a bus to Wanaka.

Things to do in Dunedin

Outdoors Parks Wildlife

Side Trip

Port Chalmers Maritime Museum
Find places to stay Jan 2 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Orokonui Ecosanctuary ©
Orokonui Ecosanctuary
Nature & Wildlife Tours
Wild Angler ©
Wild Angler

3
nights
Wanaka

Wanaka
Situated on the shores of Lake Wanaka in the Otago region, Wanaka has become a popular ski and summer resort area, owing to its extensive views of the lake and its proximity to some of the best slopes in the country.
Do some cultural sightseeing at The World of Deer Museum & Speciality Shop and Aitken's Folly Vineyard. Get outdoors at Blue Pools Track and Rob Roy Track. Step out of Wanaka with an excursion to Lake Hawea in Lake Hawea--about 44 minutes away. Next up on the itinerary: take in the dramatic scenery at Thunder Creek Falls, explore and take pictures at Haast Pass, have some family-friendly fun at Basecamp Adventures Wanaka Climbing Centre, and take a memorable tour with Oxbow Adventure Co.

To find where to stay, traveler tips, ratings, and tourist information, refer to the Wanaka road trip tool.

Getting from Dunedin to Wanaka by bus takes about 5.5 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Tue) so you can take a bus to Queenstown.

Things to do in Wanaka

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trips

Lake Hawea, Fantail Falls, Haast Pass
Find places to stay Jan 4 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
Blue Pools Track
Blue Pools Track
Thunder Creek Falls ©
Thunder Creek Falls
Fantail Falls ©
Fantail Falls

2
nights
Queenstown

Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
On the 8th (Wed), contemplate the long history of Vesta Design Boutique, get your game on at Dark Ride, browse the exhibits of Silver Fern Gallery, thentour the pleasant surroundings at Tobins Track, thentake an in-depth tour of Lakes District Museum & Art Gallery, and finally see what you can catch with a fishing tour. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 9th (Thu): stroll around Village Green, thenexplore the activities along Moke Lake, thentrek along Tiki Trail, and finally have fun at Break One.

To see traveler tips, maps, other places to visit, and other tourist information, refer to the Queenstown journey maker website.

You can take a bus from Wanaka to Queenstown in 3 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 9th (Thu) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Queenstown

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trip

Arrowtown
Find places to stay Jan 7 — 9:
Highlights from your plan
Fishing Charters & Tours
Moke Lake ©
Moke Lake
Break One ©
Break One

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