23 January 2017
If you want a real Lord of the Rings experience this two week self drive tour of New Zealand's North and South islands really hits the spots. Beginning in Auckland and ending in Christchurch you will travel the length of this beautiful country seeing all the sights made famous in the film triology of the Tolkein novels. Your journey through Middle Earth will take you to Hobbiton, the Shire's Rest, Rivendell, the Misty Mountains and all the other locations used in the Peter Jackson movies. And all along the way you will pass through the breathtaking scenery that has made the country so popular with tourists from all over the world.
On arrival at Auckland you will be met at the airport by one of our tour representatives and taken to your hotel. Relax after the journey then go out and explore the City of Sails. Great restaurants and entertainment can be found in and around the waterfront area.
Today after breakfast collect your rental car from the Avis city depot and begin your Lord of the Rings experience by driving south to Matamata to join the Hobbiton Movie Set and Farm tour. This essential stop for film fans includes visits to the actual Hobbiton village, seeing the Hobbit Holes, the Green Dragon Inn, the Mill and the Shire's Rest. After this memorable visit drive on to Rotorua where you will stay for the next two nights.
Today you explore the thermal playground that is Rotorua. You will be given a Legends of Rotorua Pass which includes admission to the Agrodome Sheep Show, Te Puia and Rainbow Springs. Later relax in one of the hot thermal mud pools the city is famous for and in the evening you will be collected from your hotel and taken to a traditional Hangi and concert evening.
Today you can spend some more time exploring the fascinating city of Rotorua and perhaps trying an even hotter mud pool therapy before driving on to the beautiful Tongariro National park area
Leave the stunning scenery of the national park behind today as you head south to the very tip of North Island and the capital city of Wellington, which will be your base for the next two nights. In the evening go out and explore this lively city and try one of the many top class restaurants.
A wonderful full day tour today to the Middle Earth film locations. You will be collected at your hotel to visit Rivendell, the Auduin River and the Gardens of Isengard and the quarry used for the filming of Helm's Deep in Rohan. After lunch visit the Weta Cave, the premier Lord of the Rings venue, for unique souvenirs and find out all about how the films were made. You will be taken back to your hotel in the evening to enjoy a final night in the capital.
Today you drop off your hire car at the Hertz depot at the ferry terminal before boarding the Interisland ferry to cross the Cook Straits to the South Island. After this memorable trip you arrive at the port town of Picton where you pick up your second rental car of the holiday and drive on to Nelson
The emphasis is on relaxation today when you are free to explore the town of Nelson. Sitting at the top north west corner of the South Island, this is the sunniest region of New Zealand and boasts long golden beaches, untouched forests and rugged mountains. Nelson has long been a magnet for creative prople and there are more than 350 artists and craftsmen living and working there. Today you can walk part of the Abel Tasman track or take a sea kayaking tour around the coast to see seal colonies and blue penguins.
Today you drive from Nelson to the west coast glacier town of Franz Josef passing spectacular scenery on the way. The hospitable town of Franz Josef serves the glacier of the same name and is a World Heritage area. From the glacier car park you can hike to a choice of lookout points for views of this awesome river of ice. You can also take a guided tour or a helicopter flight and at nearby Lake Mapourika there are kayaks for hire.
Leave Franz Josef today and meander south along the spectacular west coast. At the town of Haast you turn inland and head for your next destination, Queenstown, where you will be staying in a mountain view room at the Crowne Plaza. There is so much to see and so many thrilling activities to take part in here, and you will be staying for the next three nights so you have plenty of time to experience it all.
You will be picked up at your hotel today for a Lord of the Rings scenic tour based around the Wakatipu Basin and several of the specific sites where filming took place. This is the perfect tour for the thrills of off road adventure as you travel to the Remarkables, the mountains used throughout the film triology, the Kawarau Gorge, Arrowtown, and Skippers Canyon. You will recognise so much of the scenery from the films and your expert guide will tell you everything about what went on during filming.
A day at leisure today to enjoy some of the many activities that this amazing town has to offer. Known as the Adrenalin Junkies capital of the world, you can go white water rafting on the famous Shotover River, bungy jumping, off road four wheel driving or jet boating . . . the choices are endless. Back in town there are great shops and everywhere the views over the lakes and mountains are stunning.
Say farewell to Queenstown today as you drive to Lake Tekapo which is in the Mackenzie country area, near Mount Cook. Tonight you will be picked up at Peppers Bluewater Resort, where you stay, to begin a Mount John night tour. Travel up to Mount John and gaze at the skies from the most southern observatory in the world. Experienced guides will showcase the amazing features in the night sky and you can use the powerful telescopes to view planets, star clusters and distant galaxies.
Today your wonderful two week Lord of the Rings tour of New Zealand comes to an end. Drive from Lake Tekapo to the beautiful garden city of Christchurch and return your hire at the airport before catching your onward flight or beginning your journey home. If you have time, it is worth staying on in Christchurch for a few days and enjoying all that this lovely city has to offer.
Superior Rate fr £2672pp
Rates based on twinshare
International flights not included unless otherwise stated