Here goes - 1st attempt at a NZ 17 night itinerary.

Jun 23rd, 2013, 10:43 PM
  #41  
 
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Hey Annhig, I just posted our newest itinierary attempt in another thread, See what you think.
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Jun 24th, 2013, 01:44 PM
  #42  
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will do, 'chick.

Melnq - how long does it take to get back to Te Anau from Milford if you just drive and don't hang about? and how long to QT?
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Jun 24th, 2013, 03:48 PM
  #43  
 
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90 minutes to two hours from Milford to Te Anau, two hours from Te Anau to QT. About four hours total, one way.
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Jun 25th, 2013, 07:17 AM
  #44  
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thanks, melnq.

so if we did the last cruise of the day it'd be a long drive back to QT but still doable.
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Jun 26th, 2013, 03:39 PM
  #45  
 
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Sunset is 9:02 pm on December 9, so yeah, it could work.
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Jun 27th, 2013, 12:11 AM
  #46  
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thanks, Mel. a friend has lent me a guide to NZ B&Bs so that's going to be my bedside reading for a few nights now. I'm particularly trying to work out where to stay in QT, given that we may be spending a few days there.

any suggestions, anyone?
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Jun 27th, 2013, 01:48 AM
  #47  
 
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If you're a light sleeper annhig, take care in which accommodation you choose in QT. Accommodation that faces Shotover Street can be quite noisy as drivers accelerate to get up the hill...all...night...long.

We like Villa del Lago, which is near the lake on the outskirts of town. Bella Vista Motel is a good budget option - it's near the gondola, about a five minute walk to town, and very quiet with plenty of parking.

We rather like this place in Arrowtown:

http://theorchardcottage.co.nz/

Arrowtown is a quieter base from which to explore QT - close enough, but more subdued than QT which can get quite manic at times.
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Jun 27th, 2013, 09:03 AM
  #48  
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again thanks.

it's always a difficult balancing act when it comes to accommodation, especially for more than one night. Do we want to be in a fabulous location but have to drive to restaurants, shops, bars etc? or do we want to be in town where it may be busier and less scenic but we're closer to things we want to do in the evening?

yet more decisions to make.
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Jun 29th, 2013, 06:30 AM
  #49  
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after extensive research [ok, mainly based on indiancouple's itinerary] i've decided to drive straight from Roturua to Wellington, and just to spend one night here. That give us this:

Nov 26 - land Auckland 14.00. Pick up car and drive to Roturua
Nov 27 - Roturua
Nov 28 - Drive to Wellington. Late night visit to Te Papa museum. [thanks for that tip, IC]
Nov 29 - afternoon ferry to Picton. Stay Picton or Havelock.
Nov 30 - drive to Motueka via Nelson for market
Dec 1 - Stay Motueka for Abel Tasman
Dec 2 - Drive to Hokitika [? too far?]
Dec 3 - Drive to Fox glacier/Franz Joseph
Dec 4 - Glacier day
Dec 5 -Drive to Wanaka
Dec 6 - Drive to Te Anua
Dec 7 - drive to Queenstown via Milford Sound [afternoon cruise]
Dec 8, 9, 10, - tour area
Dec 11 - drive to Mount Cook [Mount Cook lodge already booked - thanks, mlgb]
Dec 12 - drive to Christchurch
Dec 13 - fly out.

Better?
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Jun 29th, 2013, 07:12 AM
  #50  
 
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You can make Hokitika from Nelson, not a problem.

You may or may not need that night on Dec 4 in the glaciers, it's just weather dependent and can't be predicted. If you manage to do the glaciers early, you can also go out to the coast to Okarito (with extra strong DEET), lots of bird watching.
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Jun 29th, 2013, 07:18 AM
  #51  
 
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You might be interested in Zealandia in Wellington. I did not go since I went to Kapiti Island instead, but the night tour looked interesting.

http://www.visitzealandia.com/
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Jun 29th, 2013, 08:23 AM
  #52  
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mlgb - you're right it looks interesting, especially the night tour but at $76 per adult, that also looks pretty expensive! the day time entry to Sanctuary Valley looks doable - $18 pp is ok.

you're right about the glaciers - it's difficult to know whether to reckon on doing one night there or two. as you say, if we ran out of things to so, we could drive along the coast and look at the birds.
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Jun 29th, 2013, 08:51 AM
  #53  
 
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Still cheaper than going to Kapiti, annhig! Some people do want to see the kiwi "in the wild" and will pay that amount.

I don't think you have time for Kapiti, and the weather is always an issue because of the need to cross from Paraparaumu to the Island. I did luck out and was able to go 3 years ago. Birdwatcher heaven. We spotted a kiwi in about 10 minutes!

http://www.fodors.com/community/aust...dge-photos.cfm
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Jun 29th, 2013, 09:16 AM
  #54  
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thanks for the link, to your TR, mlgb - I was going to have to look it up! I think that we'd need an extra night on NI to do it, whereas we could fit Zealandia into our itinerary as it presently stands.

but certainly something to consider.
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Jun 29th, 2013, 04:06 PM
  #55  
 
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I may have already suggested this, but you might be interested in the evening Kiwi tour that leaves from Okarito - it's also $75, but probably the only chance on the SI to see kiwis in the wild.

We tried to do it on a previous visit, but it was cancelled due to illness, so we're signed up to give it a go again in Sept.
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Jun 30th, 2013, 01:10 AM
  #56  
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Mel, that's a nice idea. Where would we have to stay in order to do it?

__________________________________________________ ___

After dong a bit of research i see that it's about 30 mins from Franz Joseph, so that rather answers my own question!

Which brings me back to how long to spend in Wellington - one night or two?
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Jun 30th, 2013, 02:54 AM
  #57  
 
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Franz Josef is just a few minutes south of Okarito
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Jun 30th, 2013, 02:55 AM
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Oops, didn't read your whole post annhig.
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Jun 30th, 2013, 07:22 AM
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Wellington has always been a one-night visit for me, on the way to somewhere else!
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Jun 30th, 2013, 09:17 AM
  #60  
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No probs - Melnq. I like to try an answer my own questions if I can.

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Wellington has always been a one-night visit for me, on the way to somewhere else!>>

do i gather you're not a fan then, mlgb? by making it a one-nighter, it certainly frees up time for SI.

regarding which, I'm trying to work our where to stay near Abel Tasman. The choices appear to be as follows:

Nelson - which requires longish transfers to the park but is somewhere where there are cafes, restaurants and things to see and do in the evenings.

Moketua - which is closer to the park but has less to see and do, and

Maukua - which is still closer but has little to do in the evenings, so far as I can see.

ideas, anyone?
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