New Zealand Escapes
New Zealand is a country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean consisting of 2 main islands, both marked by volcanoes and glaciation. Capital Wellington, on the North Island, is home to Te Papa Tongarewa, the expansive national museum. Wellington’s dramatic Mt. Victoria, along with the South Island’s Fiordland and Southern Lakes, stood in for mythical Middle Earth in Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” films.
Named “Aotearoa” by the native Maori (“Land of the Long White Cloud”), New Zealand is a destination famed the world over for its staggering beauty. From snowy mountain ranges to pure blue lakes, wild coastlines and gorgeous beaches, nowhere else in the world packs more untouched natural wonder into such a sparsely populated place.
It may be the scenery people come for, but it’s the easy charm of the ‘Kiwi’ people that makes them want to stay. Ready smiles and heartfelt welcomes abound here, a natural reflection of life in such a remote paradise.
For our New Zealand travellers, your itinerary is designed exclusively for you – the experiences hand-picked with care and consideration to please your unique tastes and specifications. From opulent escapes to adrenaline-pumping action, rugged rural beauty or just a beer with the local boys in a coastal pub, our itineraries deliver a New Zealand you will remember forever.
Rated as the third most liveable city in the world, Auckland is a place where vibrant city style and spectacular landscapes go hand in hand. Imagine an urban environment where everyone lives within half an hour of beautiful beaches, hiking trails and a dozen enchanting holiday islands. Add a sunny climate, a background rhythm of Polynesian culture and a passion for outstanding food, wine and shopping, and you’re beginning to get the picture of Auckland, New Zealand, our largest and most diverse city. More than just a city, Auckland is a whole region full of things to see and do. Best of all, with so many experiences close by it’s easy to hop from one adventure to the next.
Rotorua is known for bubbling mud pools, shooting geysers and natural hot springs, as well as showcasing our fascinating Maori culture. From crystal-clear streams and magical forests, to epic biking trails and thermal mud pools, Rotorua has it all. The city offers a raft of attractions and experiences for everyone from adventure-seekers to those just looking to unwind. Sitting within the Pacific Rim of Fire, Rotorua is a geothermal wonderland with bubbling mud pools, clouds of steam, and natural hot springs perfect for bathing and relaxing in. After marvelling at the distinctive landscapes and volcanic activity within a geothermal park, enjoy a simple soak in a natural hot stream or indulge in a wellness getaway at a luxurious spa.
Queenstown is one of New Zealand’s top visitor destinations and if you come to the region you’ll understand why. Queenstown sits on the shore of crystal clear Lake Wakatipu among dramatic alpine ranges; it’s rumoured that gold prospectors – captivated by the majestic beauty of the surrounding mountains and rivers – gave this now cosmopolitan town its name. With a smorgasbord of outdoor activities, Queenstown is the home of the ultimate adventure bucket list. There’s skiing in the winter and activities such as bungy jumping, sky diving, canyon swinging, jet boating, horse trekking and river rafting all year round. It has also become a renowned cycling destination, providing everything from easy scenic tracks to backcountry trails, road rides to heli-biking and the Southern Hemisphere’s only gondola accessed downhill mountain biking.
The beautiful Lake Taupo is about the size of Singapore – more of an inland sea really. Lake Taupo was created nearly two thousand years ago by a volcanic eruption so big it darkened the skies in Europe and China. Visit the Craters of the Moon and you’ll see evidence of the lake’s fiery birth in the geysers, steaming craters and boiling mud pools. At some of Lake Taupo’s beaches, swimmers and paddlers can enjoy warm, geothermal water currents. Just north of Lake Taupo you’ll find New Zealand’s most visited attraction, the magnificent Huka Falls, where more than 220,000 litres of water thunder over the cliff face every second.
Dunedin is a region of unique landscapes and fascinating cultural history. Enjoy getting close to rare wildlife and soaking up the quirky city vibe. nown as the Edinburgh of New Zealand, Dunedin is the country’s city of the south, wearing its Scottish heritage with pride. Surrounded by dramatic hills and at the foot of a long, picturesque harbour, Dunedin is one of the best-preserved Victorian and Edwardian cities in the Southern Hemisphere. The accommodation is good and plentiful; the nightlife buzzes with funky bars and delicious restaurants and the natural attractions are unique and fascinating. Don’t miss a drive up the Otago Peninsula – the views are endless and the beaches are beautifully rugged. Nestled at the foot of Taiaroa Head is the Royal Albatross Centre, the only place in the world on the mainland where you can view Northern Royal Albatross in their natural habitat. On Dunedin’s doorstep you will also find incredible wildlife including the world’s rarest penguin colonies.
The picturesque coastal town of Kaikoura is the perfect place for marine life encounters, coastal walks, and tucking into a plate of crayfish. Kaikoura is a base for wildlife experiences of all kinds – it’s also a great place to eat crayfish (in the Maori language ‘kai’ means food, ‘koura’ means crayfish). An easy two-hour drive north of Christchurch, Kaikoura makes for a great day trip or a fun stop on your way to Marlborough. Kaikoura’s environment is truly spectacular – the village is caught between the rugged Seaward Kaikoura Range and the Pacific Ocean. In winter the mountains are covered with snow, adding to the drama of the landscape.
- Best of North & South – Enjoy 3 nights each at two of New Zealand’s celebrated and iconic retreats, Otahuna Lodge and Wharekauhau Country Estate, and pay for only 5. Both properties are rich in heritage and provide a unique array of New Zealand experiences. Wharekauhau is located at the Southern tip of the North Island and Otahuna is located outside Christchurch on the South Island.
- Private Charter Program – A 12 Day Private Charter Family program,features a range of family friendly experiences and luxury accommodation options throughout New Zealand, using Private Charter Aircraft to transfer through the country.
- Adventure Lovers – An experience including New Zealand’s best adrenalin and outdoor experiences combined with luxury accommodation.
- Honeymoon Escape in New Zealand – This romantic gateway includes New Zealand’s top honeymoon locations. It features some of New Zealand’s top romantic accommodation options, some fantastic activities. Life time honeymoon experience.
- Golfer Paradise – A selection of New Zealand’s world renowned golf courses. It includes stays at some of New Zealand’s top luxury lodges, and a selection of fantastic excursions in each region.
- The Tiger Tour – Incorporating the best of New Zealand’s North & South Islands, the Tiger Tour by Private Air features nine nights, three award-winning lodges and dozens of out-of-this-world destination options.
- Hunting with Locals – In New Zealand, hunting is a part of life. We have abundant introduced animals (deer, chamois, tahr) which the Department of Conservation spends a lot of taxpayer money to keep under control. Local hunters play their part in ethically managing areas of remote land. This experience provides access to one of those areas, together with an excellent conservation-minded group of local hunters – mostly Search & Rescue trackers. It has worked very well when introducing parents and children to ethical hunting.
- Maori & The Art Of War – Nga Puhi are renowned amongst Maori for their prowess at war. Maori in general (although Maori will be the first to tell you Maori do not exist – they know each other by their tribal names and Maori is a word used by Europeans) are phenomenal warriors, and there is a famous instance when a Maori warrior armed with a taiaha (quarterstaff) took on a Samurai warrior and ended up breaking their centuries-old sword.
- Ben Lomond Station – 33,500 acres of spectacular high country farm right on Queenstown’s doorstep. John and Ginny Foster have been farming the place since 1986 and are now making their lodge available exclusively through us as an extremely private wilderness retreat just 5 minutes by helicopter or an hour by road from Queenstown Airport.
- Harvey Hutton – One of the most beautiful places in the world to discover by helicopter, together with one of our helicopter legends as your pilot. The sightseeing includes mountains, glaciers, beaches, wildlife, lakes, waterfalls and Milford Sound.