Gardens of New Zealand
This once-in-a-lifetime garden experience offers the perfect blend of New Zealand's horticultural beauty and stunning scenery
Day 1 - Day 2: Depart Form Home
Cross the International Dateline and begin the adventure of a lifetime by skipping a day ahead.
Day 3: Auckland, New Zealand - Tour Begins
You journey opens in Auckland, the "City of Sails," consistently rated one of the world's best places to live. Tonight, get acquainted with your fellow travelers during a welcome dinner. (D)
Day 4: Auckland
Travel this morning to the famed Ayrlies Gardens. This private garden, planted by Bev McConnell (winner of the prestigious RHS Veitch Medal) and her family, his known for its artistic and complex design. Enjoy some morning tea before being treated to a special garden tour with a horticulturalist. This afternoon, step into paradise when you spend time in Eden Gardens, on the slopes of Mt. Eden, an extinct volcano. (B)
Day 5: Auckland - Hamilton
Leaving Auckland behind, head to Woodlands Homestead, located on the banks of the Waikato River. Woodlands' grounds were first planted in 1872 and house some of New Zealand's oldest and largest trees. End your day in Hamilton, situated on the Waikato River, Hamilton, known for its lush gardens, magnificent parks and abundant restaurants, offers up a charming view of New Zealand life. (B,D)
Day 6: Hamilton
After a brief city tour of Hamilton, visit the Hamilton Gardens for an expert-led tour of the striking grounds with international influences. Meet with Peter Sergel, the director of the gardens, to learn about their fascinating history. Mr. Sergel also provides a behind-the-scenes look at future developments. Continue your day with a tasting of fine New Zealand wines with a local expert in the gardens. (B)
Day 7: Hamilton - Napier
Journey into the Hawke's Bay region and arrive in the coastal city of Napier. Enjoy an Art Deco tour taking in the electric style of the city, featuring a walk along the historic Marine Parade Gardens. There will also be a tour of the original Art Deco-designed gardens in Marewa -- Napier's 1930s Art Deco suburb. (B)
Day 8: Napier - Wellington
This morning, journey south to Gwavas Garden & Honestead. Join in morning tea before your tour of the stunning homestead and its historic woodland gardens, whose collection was inspired by Tregrehan Garden in Cornwall, England. Next, travel through the rolling countryside of the North Island. The rural panoramas and the rugged Rimutaka Ranges slowly give way to Wellington, New Zealand's capital city. (B,D)
Day 9: Wellington
This morning, there will be a panoramic sightseeing tour of the city. View the Beehive, New Zealand's Parliament; historic St. Paul's Church; and the Old Government Building -- the largest wooden building in the Southern Hemisphere. This afternoon there are a number of options. This afternoon enjoy an expert-guided tour of the Otari Native Botanic Gardens or enjoy an expert guided tour of the Otari Native Botanic garden and Wilton's Bush Reserve, the only public botanic garden in New Zealand dedicated solely to native plants. (B)
Day 10: Wellington - Picton - Christchurch
Board a ferry and sail across Cook Strait. Lose yourself in the breathtaking scenery as you experience what has been called "the most beautiful ferry ride in the world." Arrive in Picton on the South Island. Continue to the historic city of Christchurch. Devastated by an earthquake in early 2011, see firsthand how the city is recreating itself. (B)
Day 11: Christchurch - Mt. Cook
This morning you will have some leisure time to spend as you choose. You may wish to explore the International Antarctic Centre to learn about the 7th continent. Later, depart for the Mt. Cook region. En route, visit a Canterbury farm for a fantastic opportunity to learn how a New Zealand family farm operates. Explore the garden anda get to know the owners during a traditional barbecue lunch. Next, traverse the spectacular countryside to New Zealand's most famous national park, Mt. Cook. Admire the jagged contours and nearly vertical slopes of Mt. Cook amid this impressive mountain landscape. (B,L,D)
Day 12: Mt. Cook - Queenstown
The Maori word for Mt. Cook is Aoraki, which means "cloud piercer." This is where famed New Zealand mountaineer Sir Edmund Hillary honed his skills before conquering Everest. You may choose to join a guided native plant walk, enjoy an optional glacier flight-seeing tour (weather permitting) or simply meditate on the beauty of the Southern Alps before traveling onward to Queenstown, one of New Zealand's prettiest towns. This evening's dinner is at the Skyline Restaurant where you will enjoy spectacular views overlooking Queenstown, the Remarkable Mountains and mysterious Lake Wakatipu. (B,D)
Day 13: Queenstown
Today, enjoy an exclusive garden experience. Tour a number of stunning private country gardens, meet the owners and learn the secrets behind their design and planting techniques. Explore the beautiful turn-of-the-century gold rush settlement of Arrowtown. Later, return to Queenstown and enjoy the remainder of your day at leisure. (B)
Day 14: Queenstown
There is a choice of activities this morning. You may prefer to relax, shop and soak up the local atmosphere, or perhaps join the optional "Journey Through Middle-earth" tour which takes you through the majestic Remarkable Mountains and the breathtaking Queenstown countryside showcasing many of the spots where the Lord of the Rings movies were filmed. (B)
Day 15: Queenstown - Milford Sound - Te Anau
En route to Milford Sound, enjoy the rugged grandeur of the Hollyford Valley. You'll travel through ancient beech forest via the Homer Tunnel. During a cruise on the tranquil Milford Sound you'll see why this fjord is one of the most visited sights on the South Island. With rock faces that rise nearly 4,000 feet on either side, the scenery is simply breathtaking. Following your cruise, enjoy an overnight stay on the southern shores of Lake Te Anau, the largest lake on the South Island. Indulge in a special "Taste of Fiordland" dinner showcasing the bountiful local produce. (B,L,D)
Day 16: Te Anau - Dunedin
Travel to Dunedin, located on the southeast coast of New Zealand. One of the earliest European settlements on the islands, Dunedin holds proudly to its Scottish heritage and traditions. Visit the Royal Albatross Centre, the only mainland breeding location in the world for these magnificent birds. Their epic wingspan can reach nearly 10 feet. Later, pay a visit to Hereweka Garden Retreat for a guided tour with one of the owners. Share their passion as you venture through this peaceful garden before a late arrival at your hotel for dinner. (B, D)
Day 17: Dunedin
This morning, we will visit Larnach Castle and Gardens. Enjoy a presentation of the stories and history behind the gardens. Learn about Margaret Barker, owner and sole curator of the gardens since 1967. Later, embark on a guided tour with one of the resident garden experts. If she is available, you will be joined by Margaret for your tour. This afternoon, visit Dunedin Botanic Gardens for a guided horticultural tour. A member of the curatorial staff leads you into the plant collections that are being highlighted at the time of your special visit. (B)
Day 18: Dunedin - Ashburton
Travel through the Waitaki region back to Canterbury. En route, stop at Oamaru and Timaru to stroll in two of the oldest traditional public gardens in New Zealand and view Trevor Griffiths' Rose Garden. Enjoy dinner at a popular local restaurant in the bustling country town of Ashburton. (B, D)
Day 19: Ashburton - Christchurch
Enjoy a full day exploring the private gardens and homesteads of the Canterbury region. Every step of the way you will be surrounded by nature's masterpieces. Visit locations such as Trott' s Garden, Longbeach, Akaunui, Broadfield, Wendrum and Frensham. (B)
Day 20: Christchurch
Today we visit Christchurch, the "Garden City." Enjoy a guided walking tour through the Christchurch Botanic Gardens, home to flora from around the world. Later, discover the house and meticulous gardens of Kate Sheppard, the celebrated leader of the women's suffrage movement in New Zealand. Enjoy a personal welcome and guided tour from the owner. Tonight, visit the region's earliest home, Riccarton House, and enjoy a farewell dinner. (B, D)
Day 21 Christchurch - Tour Ends
Your tour ends, leaving you with many pleasant memories of a wonderful journey through New Zealand. (B)
+ 29 Meals
+ Sedan service & airport transfers when you purchase our air.
Contact Muriel Lee for more information.
Extend Your Journey With...
Day 21: Today you will arrive in the beautiful tropical paradise of Fiji. Fijians are warm and friendly, with a welcoming, vibrant South Pacific culture. The expansive sandy beaches and clear ocean waters draw visitors from around the world.
Day 22: Your day is free to explore everything that your resort has to offer. Relax by the beach and pool, or choose one of the many fun, adventurous activities available to you from the hotel activities desk. Tonight, enjoy a lovely dinner.
Day 23: Enjoy another day of rest and relaxation. The friendly concierge and activities staff will help you get the most out of your time.
Day 24: Before your tour ends today in Fiji, an optional island tour is offered.
This extension is hosted by a local representative who will provide all included services.
Extensions not purchased at time of deposit are subject to availability and applicable charges at the time of request.
Due to flight schedules, on some departures the optional Fiji extension is 2 nights and is slightly lower priced.
A minimum of 2 passengers is required for this extension to operate.
Additional air segment purchase required.
The following tours are provided with the courtesy of gocollette.com. For more information on how you can book your garden tour.
Please contact Muriel or Yolanda at (905) 829-0111 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please contact Muriel or Yolanda at (905) 829-0111 or email at email@example.com