May 2014

As autumn descends on us and the weather cools down, there are plenty of great reasons to visit New Zealand.

Waterfalls in Milford Sound, Fiordland

Cool mornings, crisp copper leaves falling off the trees and bursts of sunshine just to name a few!

It’s a great time to start planning your clients New Zealand holiday and here are some exciting new products and activities to help you along the way.


Hadleigh Boutique Lodge – new product
Hadleigh Boutique Lodge is a new accommodation property in the Hamilton & Waikato region. Set amongst an oasis of woodland gardens, grazing sheep and abundant bird life, visitors can enjoy an alfresco breakfast poolside, relax in the gardens and library or enjoy the amenities of the guest lounge. Located on the rural outskirts of Hamilton City, Hadleigh is also well placed as a hub from which to explore the city and wider region. Hadliegh’s architecture reflects the Lodge's understated luxury and ambience.


Canopy Tours – new activity
New Zealand’s only native forest canopy tour experience is set to launch another unique and inspiring adventure to the New Zealand tourism scene with its new product ‘Creatures of the Night’. Departing on dusk and moving through the dark, the creatures of the night make themselves known. It is not uncommon to see a range of insects endemic to New Zealand including Weta, to hear the distant calls of Morepork, spot glow worms amongst the forest floor and with rare native bats flying around. The forest becomes alive as the special effect lighting presents a truly remarkable experience.  

Rainbow Springs Wildlife Park – new development
Rainbow Springs Wildlife Park is making behind the scenes experiences more interactive with a new free-flight bird training product. Visitors will get an up close and personal peek into the secret lives of the show birds. Timed to commence after the 11.30am bird show, this small group optional upgrade is a 30 minute tour. It takes visitors into the show birds hall of residence, an area of the park not normally available to visitors. Rainbow Springs are also planning a complete refresh of the Kiwi Encounter visitor experience to be developed this winter.

Happy Ewe Cycle Tours – new product
Happy Ewe Cycle Tours, a new Rotorua company, is offering a tour on two wheels – with cute baby blue Beach Cruiser bicycles featuring a bell on the handlebars and a basket in front. Small groups (maximum of six) are guided to 27 key historical, geothermal and cultural sites that shaped the city into the wonderland it is today. This includes: Ohinemutu, Kuirau Park, Sulphur Point, Sulphur Flats and Government Gardens. With no hills, little traffic and super comfortable seats the tour offers a leisurely way to enjoy the city. Morning and afternoon tours run daily at 10am and 2pm, while self-guided tours and bicycle rentals are available anytime.

Ohinemutu Village & Mitai Maori Village – new product
Two iconic Maori cultural operations have joined forces to offer a “powerful” combo package based around two Rotorua Maori villages – one ancient, one modern. Skillfully combining the past, present and furture, they offer a stimulating look into the heartland of Maori culture.

The journey begins with a Maori host escorting guests to the historic lakeside village of Ohinemutu where Maori have lived since 1365. Guests are invited to learn firsthand about Maori customs, protocols, history and legends of the area as well as view the majestic Tamatekapua meeting house and iconic St. Faith’s church. Visitors are then transferred to Mitai Maori Village, a recreated village at the foot of sacred mountain, Ngongotaha. Guests will be delighted by the sight of Maori warriors paddling an ancient warrior canoe (waka), hearing about traditional ta moko (tattooing), musical instruments, wood carving, and the medicinal uses of native flora, as well as being treated to a hangi meal.

Kaitiaki Adventures – new product
Kaitiaki Adventures is proud to announce the development of exclusive land based tours to Mt Tarawera, an iconic cultural, historical and natural landmark within the Rotorua Region. Mt Tarawera Half Day Volcanic Tours will be departing twice daily from Rotorua and will include expert guided walks around the summit and crater of Mt Tarawera, encompassing some of New Zealand’s most stunning natural vistas, blended with the cultural and geological history of the mountain, the landscape and the people that lived near this amazing landmark. The half day tours will commence in August.



Pen-y-bryn Lodge – new development
The only New Zealand Luxury Lodge in North Otago, Oamaru’s Pen-y-bryn Lodge, is offering a unique new attraction to its offerings to guests who come to enjoy this Category One historic property in New Zealand’s best-preserved historic town. Pen-y-bryn’s guests have always enjoyed exploring Oamaru’s intact historic centre, with grand limestone buildings that are unlike anything seen in the rest of the country, and now they can be taken around the town and the surrounding historic sites in the comfort of a vintage automobile with a knowledgeable local guide behind the wheel.

In addition to offering guided tours of the historic precinct, these classic automobiles are also available to transfer guests between Pen-y-bryn and another of Oamaru’s must-see attractions, the Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony. Bookings for these tours are essential, and the cars on offer will vary depending on availability and the number of passengers.



Manapouri Lake Cruises – new product
Explore New Zealand’s most beautiful lake including kayaking, guided walks, swimming, fishing and live piano music. Twilight cruises are available to watch the sunset and enjoy a light meal. The boat is available for charters for up to 9 people.

Go Orange – new product
Go Orange’s aim is to create attainable and valuable NZ experiences with personality. Their Doubtful Sound day cruise is a whole day experience – the only small boat day cruise in this remote wilderness area, prepare to be wowed! The Doubtful Sound day cruise includes a cruise across beautiful Lake Manapouri and a visit to the Underground Hydro Electric Power Station. Cross the Southern Alps into Deep Cove by coach over the Wilmot Pass and a relaxed 3 hour cruise on Doubtful Sound out to the mouth of the Tasman Sea.

Go Orange also operate a two hour Milford Sound cruise departing at 9am and 12.30pm, and 3.30pm during summer.

Sea Kayak Fiordland – new development
Sea Kayak Fiordland (formerly known as Fiordland Wilderness Experiences) have developed two new activities: Bowen Breezer and Milford Magic. Bowen Breezer (2 ½-3 hours) explores Sinbad Gully and Bowen Falls and is great for clients who don’t have any kayaking experiences but want to give it a go. Milford Magic (full day) combines a morning kayak adventure plus 2 ¼hour Nature cruise in the afternoon.

Lochvista Bed and Breakfast – new product
Lochvista B&B is located on the road to Milford Sound and only a short drive from the Te Anau town centre with one of the best views in all of Te Anau. Overlooking Lake Te Anau and the Murchison Mountains where your guests can relax in comfort and enjoy the ever changing views and warm hospitality.



Real Journeys - update
Following a bumper summer season Queenstown’s 101-year-old “Lady of the Lake” the TSS Earnslaw heads up the slipway at Kelvin Grove to begin her annual maintenance.
The TSS Earnslaw’s last sailing will be Sunday May 11, she will stripped down on Monday May 12 and leave Steamer Wharf for Kelvin Heights on Tuesday May 13. This year’s survey will take nine weeks with sailings to Walter Peak due to commence again on July 13.
While the TSS Earnslaw is out of the water two of Real Journeys original Fiordlander class vessels will be taking visitors to Walter Peak.



Wanaka River Journeys & Ridgeline Adventures – new development
Get back to nature with a 3.5 hour Jet-Boat and back-road 4WD safari adventure. Experience thrills, spins and amazing wilderness photo opportunities with Wanaka River Journeys on one of New Zealand’s most spectacular jet boating rivers, followed by Ridgeline Adventure’s exclusive 4WD safari through a real life high country farm viewing deer, cattle and sheep. Arrive at an incredible mountain-top viewpoint for refreshments overlooking sparkling Lake Wanaka, snow-capped peaks and glaciers.