We’re here to help make this the best tour of New Zealand. You will receive a comprehensive itinerary by eMail after booking, but here are some tips to get you started:
1. What to bring
- Bring a backpack, a suitcase or suite pack – it doesn’t matter, but it would be best to restrict yourself to 1 or 2 bags, max 23kg weight
- Dress depending on the weather (see Weather point 6). When packing for colder conditions take layers of thick, light clothes. If you don’t have appropriate clothes there are plenty of outlets in New Zealand – See LINKS…
- Sun screen at all times of year – New Zealand sun is intense!
- Swimwear – you may swim with dolphins, swim in thermal hot pools at Rotorua or Hot Water Beach, or you may just swim in your hotel pool.
- Comfortable shoes jandals/sandals/flip flops/thongs in summer, trainers/runners in winter. Remember it starts and ends with your feet.
- Day bag – some tour operators will provide you with bag
- Passport OF COURSE
- A valid visa, passport (more than 3 months before its expiry), and travel insurance – we are affiliated with INSURANCE LINK
2. What not to bring
- Extra equipment for activities other than swimwear; everything is provided
- Large sports equipment, surf boards, bikes and such without permission.
- Ladies: You may only want 1 or 2 pairs of high heels for a special dinner
- Bedding, cooking equipment, tents or anything along these lines
3. What to expect on a day-to-day basis
The earliest time we expect you to be out of the accommodation by is by 7AM (when we have to catch the ferry from Wellington to Picton). Normally breakfast is between 8 and 9am. On “free days” there is sometimes the opportunity for a longer lie-in but we like to make the most of your time!
Journey times can vary between an hour to maybe occasionally 4 or 5 on the road (depending on which tour you have booked on!). However, don’t sweat because your tour guide will break up every journey with heaps of unique stops to keep you entertained and show you as much of our beautiful country as possible. Besides, the scenery is so stunning you can never get bored!
Don’t expect an hour-by-hour constant schedule as we like to keep some spontaneity involved! However, your tour guide will always make sure you know what is planned ahead. Saying this, they will still provide the odd surprise along the way!
Your guide will give you information to help fill in your ‘free days’ and you certainly won’t forced into doing anything you don’t want to do.
Lunch and dinner are provided on some tours on some days. Your guide will have suggestions as to where the best places are to go. In the evening there is always an opportunity to socialise but again it is completely optional! Some tour members will like to have a drink in the hotel bar whilst others will rather chill out in their room and have an early night.
4. What to expect from your tour guide
Your tour guide is there to provide you with an outstanding service and show you everything New Zealand has to offer! They will show passion, knowledge, organisation, and be a good friend. Guides are bursting with energy and information about their country. Don’t be be afraid to ask lots of questions and make full use of their expertise – you wouldn’t get this service if you were travelling alone!
Your guide can advise you on all of the activities whilst on tour and help get you booked that you haven’t pre-booked. (But be warned they will cost more than the online prices).
Finally, please realise that your guide cannot be expected to work 24/7, and therefore will need a break in the evenings to relax after a busy day of driving/guiding ! We can promise they will still go out of their way to make sure you have the time of your life, but don’t forget they are also human!
5. What to budget for
There are often unexpected costs when travelling in to a new destination. We suggest you budget for food (say $50 per person) per day, depending on how expensive your tastes may be!
Some activity suppliers will offer you photos or DVDs of your time with them, for example skydiving, canyon swing, quad biking, rafting, and bungy. This can vary from $30-100 and is completely optional.
Allow money for souvenirs should you wish to bring back anything. New Zealand’s souvenirs are made from natural products like;
- Greenstone or Jade,
- Paua Shell,
- Sheep Skin Rugs,
- Woollen Jackets,
- Possum Fur,
- Kauri wood carvings
- Maori masks
- Manuka Honey
- and stuffed Kiwis.
- You may even see traditional souvenirs like tea towels and teaspoons !
6. NZ weather
New Zealand is known to have 4 different seasons in 1 day; so take those layers of clothes and the small backpack to put your jacket into each day. The North Island is considerably warmer than the South Island.
New Zealand seasons:
Spring – October to December: varying temperatures with cold/cool temperatures in the evenings/out of the sun. December can be as warm as the summer months.
Summer – January to March: temperatures usually from 20 – 35 degrees in the North, with the occasional cooler day in the South. Sun screen is essential as you can burn even in 10 minutes of our sun. Very little rain in most places.
Autumn – April to mid June: getting cooler with more chance of rain, especially in the West Coast
Winter – June to September: colder temperatures, occasionally dropping below freezing. Snow is common in places especially in the South but rain remains infrequent.
Have any further questions? One of the team will be happy to help at info @ ibook new zealand.com