Our recommended iconic must-see's of New Zealand
New Zealand is so awe inspiring, its beauty can sometimes seem overwhelming. Jenn one of our specialists thought this when driving the achingly beautiful road from Queenstown to Glenorchy. You are seemingly followed by sight after sight. It is why we know you will love the country.
So what are our favourite sights in New Zealand. Not an easy answer.
The Bay of Islands
This area is compelling, small hidden bays and local restaurants are scattered about. It is a very pretty part of New Zealand and we strongly advise you visit here for at least 3 days. It’s a good starter after arriving in Auckland.
Often overlooked, this pretty coastal area commands wonderful views and the bohemian feel adds to its tranquillity. We urge to not to bypass this area which is off the beaten tourist track adding to its beauty.
Many don’t realise that just 20 minutes from its centre are the stunning lakes region, Lakes Rotokakhi, Okareka and Rotomahana to name but a few. In our opinion, the ultimate treat for a Rotorua visit is to stay on Lake Tarawera at the gorgeous Solitaire Lodge. We fell in love with this beautiful Lodge and its views and you will too. A real treat.
Tongariro National Park
Time is often precious and this much heralded and its famous day hike are often overlooked. If you can afford the time, make sure you walk the beautiful Tongariro Crossing, one of our top hikes in New Zealand. Stay at Powderhorn Chateau.
Even the ferry crossing from Wellington to Picton across the Cook Strait is incredible.
These winding waterways make for brilliant Dolphin watching and boat trips. Please please stop here for a while and take advantage of doorstep activities and beautiful surroundings. We heartily recommend a 3 night stay at magnificently located Bay of Many Coves.
Certainly, we think the South Island adds an extra punch when it comes to stunning scenery. Mount Cook is a view to behold and the drive towards it is truly stunning. Stop here for some great hikes.
Milford Sound & Doubtful Sound
Milford Sound is very popular and deservedly so. Everyone should visit this majestic fiord and the Unesco World Heritage area of Fiordland National Park. Our secret is the far less visited but equally as stunning, Doubtful Sound, the overnight cruise in this area is truly beautiful.
Is busy but there is so much to do, you have to stop here for at least 3-4 days. Madcap bungee jumps, downhill biking and karting, exhilarating jetboat trips and an abundance of hiking trails await.
Once a sleepy small town, Wanaka now packs a punch and is taking on its bigger neighbour Queenstown superb place for hiking, boat trips and scenic drives. Try the superb day boat trip to Mou Waho Island at the far end of Lake Wanaka.
Talk to our New Zealand experts:
There are so many wonderful places to see in New Zealand but we hope this whets your appetite. We are confident with our vast knowledge of New Zealand and look forward to helping you put together your own New Zealand holiday, including as many iconic places as we can.
For a more in depth look why not read:
Travel Inspiration Travel Guides
- Luxury lodge and experiences along the way
- New Zealands Great Outdoors, experiences & Adventures
- Our Introduction to New Zealand
- Our recommended iconic must-see's of New Zealand
- Planning for an incredible New Zealand adventure
- Tailor-make the ultimate New Zealand holiday experience
- Stopover options for travelling to New Zealand
- New Zealand holiday options: From self-drive, motorhome camping to escorted tours
- Exploring New Zealand's North Island regions
- Exploring New Zealand's South Island regions
- The most swoonworthy stays in New Zealand
- When is the best time to travel to New Zealand?
- Popular experiences to enjoy on your holiday in New Zealand
- Top 10 most photogenic wonders in New Zealand
- Exploring New Zealand's Maori culture
- From north to south - an unexpected journey in New Zealand
- A beginner’s guide to self-drive holidays in New Zealand
- Discover the best of the North Island
- Discover the best of the South Island
- Escorted Touring around New Zealand
- Head out on one of these day trips from Auckland
- Head out on one of these day trips from Christchurch
- Self-Drive the best of New Zealand
- Top 10 things to do in Christchurch
- Discover New Zealand’s magnificent wonders & wildlife
- Head out on one of these day trips from Queenstown
- Head out on one of these day trips from Wellington
- Getting around Queenstown and where to stay