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New Zealand Trip 13D/13N - Need help to finalize itinerary

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Hi friends. My wife and I are visiting New Zealand for 13 days in November 2015. We will be landing in Auckland on 15th Nov afternoon and leaving from Queenstown on 28th Nov afternoon. We have already booked the air tickets and now need to finalize the itinerary.

About us - We are a fit and healthy couple from India, aged 28 and 25. We are more interested in the natural beauty so would like to spend less time in cities and more in smaller towns surrounded by beautiful scenery. Not very interested in hardcore hiking/trekking but would like to do adventure sports and some mild trekking. Basically our idea of a perfect holiday is where we get ample time to sit and enjoy the places rather than just driving all around for most part of the day.

Self-drive - We understand that self-driving is the best way to explore New Zealand in all its glamour so we would like to hire a car for a majority of our trip. My wife does not drive so I will be the only driver though I can easily manage a few long drives during daytime, but would not like to drive for more than 4-5 hours at a stretch.

We are planning to spend lesser time in the NI (4-5 days) and more time in the SI (8-9 days). Basically, we would like to cover as much of the two islands as possible in this time frame but keeping in mind that it does not get too hectic – we are basically going there to relax :)

I have done some extensive research over last few days and come up with the following itinerary. Need your feedback on how this looks? Anything missed out by me or any major flaws in my timing assumptions?

15th Nov - Arrive in Auckland, general city sightseeing in the evening

16th Nov - Day trip to Bay of Islands (Dolphin sighting and hole in the rock cruise) by Intercity bus – Start early morning and back to Auckland by night

17th Nov - Local sightseeing in Auckland in the morning and then self-drive in car from Auckland to Rotorua, overnight in Rotorua

18th Nov - Full day excursion in Rotorua including thermal springs and other surrounding places, see some Maori cultural stuff at night, overnight in Rotorua

19th Nov - Start early from Rotorua, do the Matamata Hobbinton tour followed by a visit to Waitomo caves (can let go one of these two if time doesn't permit) and reach Auckland by night, return the car, overnight in Auckland

20th Nov - Early morning flight to Christchurch, city sightseeing for the day, overnight in Christchurch

21st Nov - Checkout in morning and proceed to Lake Tekapo via self-drive car, scenic flight over the Alps from Tekapo (including glacier landing), local sightseeing (Mt. John observatory etc.) and overnight stay in Tekapo

22nd Nov - Day trip to Aoraki / Mt. Cook for the Hooker Valley trek and Glacier Explorers boat tour to Tasman glacier, local sightseeing and overnight stay either in Aoraki or drive back to Tekapo for night stay

23rd Nov - Self-drive from Tekapo to Wanaka, local sightseeing in Wanaka (mainly want to go to the puzzling world), overnight either in Wanaka or drive to Queenstown in the evening and check-in hotel in Queenstown for night stay

24th Nov - Full day excursion to Arrowtown, Glenorchy and other areas surrounding Queenstown, return the car in the evening in Queenstown, overnight at Queenstown

25th Nov - Activities in Queenstown (Would like to do bungee, river rafting, gondola etc.)

26th Nov - Full day excursion to Milford Sound by Intercity tour, back to Queenstown at night

27th Nov - Activities in Queenstown, anything missed out on 25th, shopping etc.

28th Nov - Checkout and proceed to airport

One key thing is that this itinerary completely misses out on the West Coast glaciers but from what I understand the drive along the West Coast is very long and tiring (although the views are stunning), so would have to break it in parts and it will take a lot of time. Is it possible to tweak this itinerary so as to include them in some way or it would be ok to miss them considering that we are anyways not very keen on heavy trekking and would get a chance to see the glaciers from the other side (Tasman glacier, Hooker valley etc)?

I am sorry if the post got too long, I just wanted to include everything in my mind in detail so that you could provide me best guidance. We look forward to any comments/suggestions from the experts to improve our itinerary.

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