NZ flights booked - now need to plan route

Old Feb 17th, 2006, 04:01 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 1,175
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
NZ flights booked - now need to plan route

I've booked my flights for October and now need some advice for planning my trip, so I may have a few questions to ask here! We will be arriving in Auckland 11.30pm on 6th October, so all we can do that night is find an airport hotel and try to get some sleep. Any suggestions for a decent airport hotel?

My next thought is to fly the next morning to Queenstown, start at the bottom and work our way back. As this will be my birthday, I'd like to stay somewhere nice for a couple of days (not ridiculously expensive, though). Does it sound reasonable to spend a couple of days there before we hire a car, to get over jet lag and see any local sights before moving on? If so, are there any recommendations for suitable hotels?

We don't want to move on every night - we prefer to spend at least 2 - 3 days in each place to explore and then move on to the next area. Where would be the next and best base to explore this corner of South Island?

Many thanks for any help, Maria
Maria_H is offline  
Old Feb 17th, 2006, 06:06 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 1,793
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
How many nights will you be in NZ?
We really enjoyed our stay at Browns Boutique Hotel in Queenstown.
Tim_and_Liz is offline  
Old Feb 17th, 2006, 06:17 AM
  #3  
Jed
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,546
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
More info would help. How many people, how old, how active, what would you like to do, what is your max for accommodations, etc.

If you don't get a car in QT, you should stay in town. A car there is helpful because there is much to do in nearby areas, which could be done by bus, but easier by car.

Yes, stay in QT for a few days. You then have to choose between going to the west to Milford, or north to the glaciers, or east to the Catlins and Dunedin, then CHC.

Get ready for a lot of advice here.
Jed is offline  
Old Feb 17th, 2006, 07:39 AM
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 1,175
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks - we're going to be there for 3 weeks. The trip is for my 50th birthday, so I don't mind paying a little extra for the first few nights (maybe UK £100 to £150 a night) but other than that we'll be happy with decent motel or self catering accommodation.

My hubby's 50th birthday trip last year was in the Canadian Rockies, so that may give you an idea what we like. We're reasonably fit and enjoy walking (though nothing too strenuous for me!), exploring beautiful scenery, gardens, seeing the wildlife, etc. We're not into extreme or water sports and not particularly interested in modern cities.

We intend to do a one way car hire back to Auckland but I'm not sure if we should pick it up at Queenstown airport or if there's enough to keep us occupied locally for a couple of days, while we get over the jet lag. At this stage anything is possible!

Thanks again, Maria
Maria_H is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2006, 06:36 AM
  #5  
Jed
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,546
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
First, get a map, such as http://www.accommodationz.co.nz/distances2.html .

Then read trip reports, such as

http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...3&tid=34745614

and http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...3&tid=34602230

and read other commercial itineraries.

Then, If you really want to start in QT, after you get over your jetlag, the next obvious place to go is to Te Anau on the way to the day or overnight cruise on Milford or Doubtful sound.

From there you have 3 choices.

1- My choice - back to QT, then over the Haast pass to the glaciers, Greymouth, and Nelson. Or Greymouth over Arthur's pass to CHC by car or train.

2- From TA to QT to Mt Cook, Tekapo, and CHC.

3 - From TA to Dunedin, either straight or through the Catlins, then to CHC.

Then, since you do not care for cities, skip Wellington. Fly from some place in SI (Nelson, CHC, or Dunedin) to some place in NI such as Rotorua or AKL.

Driving between the islands takes a long time and will be more unpacking and less relaxing.

So many wonderful choices.
Jed is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2006, 08:25 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 20,466
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Flying into Queenstown and working your way north is an excellent choice. The Tss Earnslaw cruise and sheepfarm visit, and Glenorchy tour, don't require much energy and operate out of Queenstown. If it's predicted fine in Fiordland, you can do day trips to Milford and/or the trips via Te Anau to Doubtful Sound. I've done them both, I personally would not do both on one trip unless you think you will never return to NZ.

October will be chilly, it's between late winter and early spring.
For gardens, you can search www.gardens.org.nz by region and season.

The glacier coast would be my first choice if the weather is good, but I would hesitate if it is forecast to be bad. An alternative is to go east from Queenstown, via Rte 6, then north via Rt 8 to Twizel/Tekapo/Mt. Cook, and on to Christchurch, possibly doing Arthur's pass and the west coast if the weather clears later. Or, down to Dunedin via 85 (scenic route through the Maniototo) for a few days.

From Christchurch you could visit to Kaikoura, Blenheim, and Picton to the ferry, or loop back to Christchurch and catch an interisland flight to Rotorua. It would save a bit of time and 3 weeks is not really that much. On the North Island, Rotorua, a visit to National Park, and back to Auckland.
mlgb is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2006, 10:12 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 424
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Jed,
Not sure why you suggest "Then, since you do not care for cities, skip Wellington. Fly from some place in SI (Nelson, CHC, or Dunedin) to some place in NI such as Rotorua or AKL."

A little contradictory as Dunedin, Christchurch, Rotorua and Auckland are all cities!!
Wellington is a great city to visit. I suspect you have either not been to Wellington or had an unpleasant experience there.
dotty is offline  
Old Feb 18th, 2006, 12:34 PM
  #8  
Jed
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,546
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have not had the pleasure of visiting Wellington.

Maria writes 'We're not into extreme or water sports and not particularly interested in modern cities.'

Those others you mentioned are indeed cities, but (except AKL), small and quaint.

But I guess the main reason is that it is a lot of driving to get to and go from, especially north. My suggestion is more practical than ideological.

I may someday get back to NZ, and perhaps will get to Wellington. If I do, then dinner is on me!
Jed is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
kim34
Australia & the Pacific
9
Nov 7th, 2016 10:59 PM
sek90
Australia & the Pacific
14
Nov 14th, 2014 05:27 PM
britomart
Australia & the Pacific
38
May 22nd, 2010 01:35 AM
CCRieb
Australia & the Pacific
7
Jan 4th, 2009 01:46 PM
LittleNell
Australia & the Pacific
6
Jul 6th, 2004 07:06 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 08:59 PM.