New Zealand Self Drive Tours

Driving through New Zealand is easy. Wide, uncrowded roads. Pleasant non-aggressive fellow drivers. Beautiful scenery. Outstanding places to stay. Unique attractions and sights.

Driving New Zeland's North Island includes the Bay of Islands, where New Zealand's Maori warriors came to make a new beginning. The Treaty between the European settlers and Maori natives was signed here. Today this area is home to the country's most famous maritime national park - with its abundance of dolphins, whales, fish and birds.

The North Island is the dramatic result of thousands of years of volcanic activity that is still very evident today. Auckland, surprisingly not New Zealand's capital city, is the gateway for most visitors to New Zealand who travel from North America. The beautiful harborside city of Auckland and the sophisticated capital of Wellington are separated by slumbering volcanic mountains, steaming thermal geysers, and refreshing clear lakes. Listen to ancient Maori legends and discover bubbling geothermal springs in Rotorua.

Driving the South Island of New Zealand, experience some of the most impressive scenery in the world. This is the landscape that inspired Sir Edmund Hilary; it is where Mt Cook, the country's highest peak, can be found. Walk tracks carved by the ancient glaciers that formed magnificent Milford Sound and striking Franz Josef. Explore the beautiful towns of Christchurch and Dunedin, too.

Follow one of our well planned driving itineraries in New Zealand or ask us to plan a unique New Zealand driving adventure for you. We recognize that each traveller has specific interests and requirements; that each person has their own individual 'wants' that will make their New Zealand vacation all the more memorable. The New Zealand experts at Lynott Tours will help you to plan that perfect New Zealand vaction.

Travel between the islands with Interislander and experience one of the most spectacular 3 hour cruises in the world. You will cruise through the magnificent Wellington Harbour, view the rugged lower North Island coastline, cross Cook Strait, before finally enjoying the peaceful Marlborough Sounds.

Self Drive New Zealand Vacation 9 Day North and South Islands

Spend 3 nights on the North Island and 6 nights on the scenic South Island on New Zealand Suggested Itinerary:

Highlights: Famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves 2 nights in Rotorua, including Maori culture 1 night in Christchurch 1 night in Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park 3 nights in exciting Queenstown Milford Sound Red Boat Cruise

Day 1: Arrive Auckland

Welcome to Auckland, the ‘City of Sails’.

Day 2: Auckland/ Waitomo/Rotorua

(226 miles/363 kms) (lunch and dinner included) (optional meal plans begin today) Travel to the fascinating Waitomo Caves where you will enjoy lunch. Experience a guided tour of the famous Glowworm Grotto. Continue on via Lake Karapiro to arrive in Rotorua to enjoy an evening Maori Hangi (feast) and Concert.

Day 3: Rotorua Sightseeing

Today you will experience the many varied sights that Rotorua has to offer. Visit Rainbow Springs and Rainbow Farm Show before travelling to TeWhakarewarewa Thermal Reserve. Learn about traditional Maori crafts at the Maori Arts and Crafts Institute. Enjoy an afternoon at leisure.

Day 4: Rotorua/ Christchurch

North Island to South Island (airfare not included) Fly to Christchurch. Perhaps visit the International Antarctic Centre – the ‘must see’ attraction in Christchurch.

Day 5: Christchurch/ Mount Cook

(206 miles/331 kms) Today travel south with Great Sights across the Canterbury Plains, through the Mackenzie country via Lake Tekapo, to Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park. This afternoon is free to enjoy some of New Zealand’s finest alpine scenery.

Day 6: Mount Cook/ Queenstown

(163 miles/263 kms) A free morning to enjoy the natural beauty of the area. This afternoon travel on to Queenstown.

Day 7: Milford Sound Day Excursion

Travel along the shores of Lake Wakatipu to TeAnau, gateway to the Fiordland National Park. From the Homer Tunnel emerge into the Cleddau Valley. Join your Milford Sound Red Boat Cruise, for an unforgettable experience, and explore the wonder of this majestic fiord before returning to Queenstown.

Day 8: Queenstown

A free day to enjoy the many activities on offer.

Day 9: Queenstown

Your tour arrangements conclude this morning. Coach options available for return journey to Christchurch.