15 days in New Zealand & Melbourne Itinerary

15 days in New Zealand & Melbourne Itinerary

Created using Inspirock South Pacific tour planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Paihia, New Zealand
— 1 night
+2
Taxi to Whangarei Airport, Fly to Hamilton Airport, Taxi to Waitomo Caves
2
Waitomo Caves, New Zealand
— 1 night
Drive
3
Tongariro National Park, New Zealand
— 2 nights
Drive
4
Taupo, New Zealand
— 1 night
Drive
5
Rotorua, New Zealand
— 2 nights
Fly
6
Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu), New Zealand
— 2 nights
Bus
7
Te Anau, New Zealand
— 3 nights
Bus
8
Queenstown, New Zealand
— 1 night
Fly
9
Melbourne, Australia
— 1 night

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Paihia, New Zealand

— 1 night
The main tourist town in the Bay of Islands area, Paihia gives visitors a good range of accommodations, a convenient town center, long sandy beaches, and interesting architecture.
Kick off your visit on the 8th (Mon): see the world from above with Salt Air and then identify plant and animal life at Paihia Harbour. Keep things going the next day: steep yourself in history at Waitangi Treaty Grounds, surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour, then get up close to creatures of the deep with a dolphin and whale watching tour, and finally indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

Plan a trip to Paihia easily and quickly by telling Inspirock to suggest an itinerary.

Melbourne, Australia to Paihia is an approximately 8.5-hour flight. The time zone changes from Australian Eastern Standard Time to New Zealand Standard Time, which is usually a 2 hour difference. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 9th (Tue) so you can travel to Waitomo Caves.

Things to do in Paihia

Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Parks

Waitomo Caves, New Zealand

— 1 night
Head deep beneath the surface of the earth at Waitomo Caves, a village and cave system that draws both extreme sports enthusiasts and those wanting something a little more relaxed.
Kick off your visit on the 10th (Wed): relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, then explore the fascinating underground world of Ruakuri Cave, then explore the fascinating underground world of Waitomo Glowworm Caves, and finally get interesting insight from Spellbound Glowworm & Cave Tours.

To find traveler tips, reviews, more things to do, and tourist information, read Waitomo Caves day trip planning website.

You can do a combination of taxi and flight from Paihia to Waitomo Caves in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of flight and bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 10th (Wed) so you can go by car to Tongariro National Park.

Things to do in Waitomo Caves

Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Adventure

Tongariro National Park, New Zealand

— 2 nights
Tongariro National Park has a long history of preserving New Zealand's pristine alpine landscape.
Start off your visit on the 11th (Thu): hike along Mounds Walk, admire the sheer force of Tawhai Falls, stroll through Taranaki Falls, hike along Whakapapa Nature Walk, then hike along Silica Rapids Track, and finally stroll through Ridge Track. Keep things going the next day: tour the pleasant surroundings at Tongariro Northern Circuit, then capture your vacation like a pro with Mountain Air Scenic Flights Day Tour, then trek along Rotopounamu Track, and finally stroll through Te Porere Redoubt.

To see photos, maps, and more tourist information, you can read our Tongariro National Park itinerary planner.

Getting from Waitomo Caves to Tongariro National Park by car takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: take a bus; or do a combination of taxi and train. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Fri) early enough to drive to Taupo.

Things to do in Tongariro National Park

Outdoors · Parks · Trails · Nature

Taupo, New Zealand

— 1 night

Great Cloak of Tia

The resort town of Taupo lies on the banks of Lake Taupo, the largest body of water in the whole of Australasia.
Kick off your visit on the 13th (Sat): admire all the interesting features of Spa Thermal Park and Riverbank Recreational and Scenic Reserve, take a tour by water with Boat Tours & Water Sports, then take in the natural beauty of Wairakei Natural Thermal Valley, then admire the sheer force of Huka Falls Walkway, and finally get the adrenaline pumping with an extreme tour.

To find where to stay, maps, photos, and tourist information, refer to the Taupo tour itinerary planner.

Traveling by car from Tongariro National Park to Taupo takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or do a combination of taxi and bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 13th (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Rotorua.

Things to do in Taupo

Parks · Outdoors · Nature · Tours

Rotorua, New Zealand

— 2 nights

Sulphur City

Surrounded by lakes and featuring impressive areas of geothermal landscape, the city of Rotorua offers an otherwordly landscape and a welcoming, peaceful environment, with the culture of the native Maori people very much in the foreground.
Kick off your visit on the 14th (Sun): get interesting insight from Tours, take in the natural beauty of Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, get impressive views of Waimangu Volcanic Valley, take in the natural beauty of Te Puia, then take a peaceful walk through Redwoods, Whakarewarewa Forest, and finally whizz through the canopy at Redwoods Treewalk. On your second day here, whizz through the canopy at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks, then look for all kinds of wild species at Rainbow Springs Nature Park, and then trek along Okere Falls Track.

You can plan Rotorua trip in no time by asking Inspirock to help create your itinerary.

Getting from Taupo to Rotorua by car takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. In February in Rotorua, expect temperatures between 28°C during the day and 19°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Mon) to allow enough time to travel to Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu).

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks · Nature · Wildlife · Outdoors

Side Trip

Kick off your visit on the 16th (Tue): take a memorable tour with Glacier Explorers, then stroll through Hooker Valley Track, then explore the striking landscape at Franz Josef Glacier, and finally trek along Sentinel Rock Walk. Keep things going the next day: view the masterpieces at ReflectioNZ Gifts & Gallery, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Fox Glacier South Side Walk, then take an unforgettable tour with a helicopter tour, and finally hike along Fox Glacier Hiking Trails.

For reviews, photos, ratings, and tourist information, refer to the Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu) road trip planning website.

Traveling by flight from Rotorua to Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu) takes 8 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car and ferry. Finish your sightseeing early on the 17th (Wed) so you can take a bus to Te Anau.

Things to do in Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu)

Outdoors · Parks · Trails · Tours

Side Trips

Te Anau, New Zealand

— 3 nights
Set among the picturesque peaks and glacially carved fiords of Fiordland National Park, Te Anau offers those wishing to explore the park a great place to stay and enjoy the relaxing atmosphere of a small town in an enviable location.
Take a break from the city and head to Milford Sound and Te Anau Glowworm Caves. Change things up with a short trip to Boat Tours & Water Sports in Milford Sound (about 1 hour away). There's lots more to do: take an unforgettable tour with Southern Lakes Helicopters, explore the activities along Ivan Wilson Park, get outside with Bushbash - Day Wilderness Expeditions, and get all the equipment you need at Wild Rides.

For where to stay, photos, more things to do, and more tourist information, use the Te Anau day trip planner.

Take a bus from Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu) to Te Anau in 7 hours. Cap off your sightseeing on the 20th (Sat) early enough to catch the bus to Queenstown.

Things to do in Te Anau

Parks · Outdoors · Nature · Tours

Side Trips

Queenstown, New Zealand

— 1 night

Shallow Bay

Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
Kick off your visit on the 21st (Sun): take a tour by water with Boat Tours & Water Sports, then identify plant and animal life at Kiwi Birdlife Park, then get around town with Nomad Safaris, and finally take a memorable tour with Tours.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, ratings, and more tourist information, you can read our Queenstown itinerary maker.

Traveling by bus from Te Anau to Queenstown takes 4 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Sun) to allow time to travel to Melbourne.

Things to do in Queenstown

Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Transportation

Melbourne, Australia

— 1 night

Australia's Garden City

The state of Victoria crown jewel, Melbourne boasts shaded streets, leafy residential neighborhoods, vibrant street life, and a picturesque city center.
On the 22nd (Mon), take in nature's colorful creations at Royal Botanic Gardens, admire the masterpieces at National Gallery of Victoria, then examine the collection at Melbourne Museum, and finally admire the striking features of Royal Exhibition Building.

To find reviews, photos, where to stay, and more tourist information, read our Melbourne route planner.

Fly from Queenstown to Melbourne in 6.5 hours. The time zone changes from New Zealand Standard Time (NZST) to Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST), which is usually a -2 hour difference. February in Melbourne sees daily highs of 32°C and lows of 16°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Mon) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Melbourne

Museums · Parks

New Zealand travel guide

4.5
Specialty Museums · Hiking Trails · Landmarks
Land of the Long White Cloud
Far-flung New Zealand has become known for its astounding topography, singular biodiversity, varied climate, and for marrying native Maori and post-colonial European cultures on its two main islands and the multitude of smaller landmasses dotted around them. Free-spirited New Zealanders cultivate a love of sports, sustainability, and the outdoors. Far from other landmasses, the islands existed for millions of years before being inhabited by humans, so an abundance of species have come to thrive in the thick, wild rainforest, vast and rugged backland, and extensive surrounding marine areas. While much of New Zealand tourism centers around adventures through this spectacular scenery, take time to explore the nation's rich cultural heritage as well. The traditions and history of the Maoris, and the industry and internationalism of the descendents of the first European settlers endure in fascinating attractions, ranging from museums, to farms, to places of worship.