A voyage of lofty mountains and glacial fjords
Wellington, Auckland, Christchurch, Te Papa, the Bay of Islands, and more
New Zealand is open and uncrowded. It’s an ecological arcadia of glacial fjords, dawn-of-time rock formations, and fields of endless emerald green. You are free to explore its mighty mountains and mingle with its easy going people.
In Windy Wellington, the pace of life is slow but the cosmopolitan treats are many. Visit Te Papa, the national museum, which is referred to as a ‘treasure box’ for its interactive exhibits and amazing Maori artefacts. Reach the hilly Wellington Botanic Gardens via the Wellington Cable Car and wander 25-hectares of natural forest and perfectly manicured gardens.
Schedule a stop at the Lady Norwood Rose Garden, and if you visit during spring, be sure to cast your eyes over the fields of newly-bloomed tulips. The Bay of Islands warrant a multi-day boat expedition. There you’ll cruise among some 150 undeveloped islands, like Aroha Island, Ake Ake, and Haratu. See the incandescent Kawiti Glowworm Caves and be immersed in 19th century history at the Waitangi Treaty Grounds. While you’re there, take in a cultural performance and stop at the Museum of Waitangi.
Auckland is a coastal urban centre known according to its Maori name - Tamaki Makaurau - as the city of ‘many lovers’. The city has sublime geographical foundations: volcanic peaks, rolling farmland, and two shimmering harbours. Make for the top of Mount Eden and take in awe-inspiring panoramas of the city, all the way to the horizon; head to Sky Tower in the city centre and take in brilliant vistas of the countryside; visit Auckland Art Gallery and Auckland Museum; hike the coast-to-coast walkway. Auckland’s views are its main attraction.
The Hauraki Gulf Islands must not be missed. Sail to Rotoroa Island; be humbled by Stonyridge and swim in the waters of Dead Dog Bay on Waiheke Island; admire the history of Mansion House on Kawau Island.