21 days in New Zealand & Australia Itinerary

21 days in New Zealand & Australia Itinerary

Created using Inspirock South Pacific journey planner

Make it your trip
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Rotorua, New Zealand
— 2 nights
Drive
2
Waitomo Caves, New Zealand
Drive
3
Auckland, New Zealand
— 1 night
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Queenstown, New Zealand
— 2 nights
Bus
5
Wanaka, New Zealand
Bus
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Franz Josef, New Zealand
— 1 day
Drive
7
Greymouth, New Zealand
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Christchurch, New Zealand
— 1 night
Fly
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Melbourne, Australia
— 3 nights
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Cairns, Australia
— 2 nights
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Gold Coast, Australia
— 3 nights
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Sydney, Australia
— 3 nights
Fly

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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.
Your day by day itinerary now includes Agrodome, Government Gardens and Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland.

To see photos, where to stay, and more tourist information, read our Rotorua trip planning site.

Mumbai, India to Rotorua is an approximately 23.5-hour combination of flight and bus. Traveling from Mumbai to Rotorua, you'll lose 6.5 hours due to the time zone difference. In May, Rotorua is cooler than Mumbai - with highs of 20°C and lows of 11°C. You'll have a few hours on the 4th (Mon) to wrap things up before traveling to Waitomo Caves.

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks · Historic Sites · Nature

Waitomo Caves, New Zealand

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.
To see photos, more things to do, reviews, and tourist information, refer to the Waitomo Caves planning tool.

You can drive from Rotorua to Waitomo Caves in 2 hours. Another option is to take a bus. On the 4th (Mon), you're off to Auckland.

Things to do in Waitomo Caves

Outdoors · Parks · Tours · Nature

Auckland, New Zealand

— 1 night

City of Sails

The largest and most populous city in New Zealand, Auckland combines a rich history and thriving contemporary culture in an abundance of museums, art galleries, and performance venues.
Your day by day itinerary now includes SkyTower.

Plan my trip to Auckland with suggested itineraries provided by Inspirock.

Drive from Waitomo Caves to Auckland in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of bus and train. In May in Auckland, expect temperatures between 18°C during the day and 18°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Tue) to allow enough time to travel to Queenstown.
Highlights from your trip

Queenstown, New Zealand

— 2 nights

Shallow Bay

Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
Your day by day itinerary now includes Shotover Jet as well as Milford Sound. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 6th (Wed): get interesting insight from Shotover Jet and then get your game on at Skyline Queenstown.

To find where to stay, maps, ratings, and tourist information, go to the Queenstown trip itinerary builder app.

You can fly from Auckland to Queenstown in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of ferry, car, and bus; or do a combination of car, ferry, and bus. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 7th (Thu) to allow time for the bus ride to Wanaka.

Things to do in Queenstown

Nature · Parks · Fun & Games · Outdoors

Side Trip

Wanaka, New Zealand

Situated on the shores of Lake Wanaka in the Otago region, Wanaka has become a popular ski and summer resort area, owing to its extensive views of the lake and its proximity to some of the best slopes in the country.
To find maps, more things to do, reviews, and tourist information, refer to the Wanaka trip planner.

Traveling by bus from Queenstown to Wanaka takes 3 hours. You will leave for Franz Josef on the 7th (Thu).

Things to do in Wanaka

Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Trails

Franz Josef, New Zealand

— 1 day
Located in the World Heritage Site that is home to its eponymous glacier, the town of Franz Josef provides a comfortable and welcoming rest spot for adventurers after a long day out on the ice.
For more things to do, other places to visit, reviews, and more tourist information, refer to the Franz Josef holiday maker site.

You can take a bus from Wanaka to Franz Josef in 6 hours. You will leave for Greymouth on the 8th (Fri).

Things to do in Franz Josef

Outdoors · Parks · Tours · Trails

Greymouth, New Zealand

Greymouth is the largest town in the West Coast region in the South Island of New Zealand, and the seat of the Grey District Council. For other places to visit, more things to do, maps, and tourist information, read Greymouth day trip planner.

Drive from Franz Josef to Greymouth in 2.5 hours. On the 8th (Fri), you're off to Christchurch.

Things to do in Greymouth

Outdoors · Parks · Tours · Trails

Christchurch, New Zealand

— 1 night

Garden City

Recovering from the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 was no easy task, but Christchurch has faced the challenges with aplomb.
To see reviews, maps, photos, and more tourist information, go to the Christchurch trip planner.

Getting from Greymouth to Christchurch by train takes about 5 hours. Other options: drive. May in Christchurch sees daily highs of 17°C and lows of 5°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 9th (Sat) to allow time to travel to Melbourne.

Things to do in Christchurch

Museums · Parks

Melbourne, Australia

— 3 nights

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.
Your day by day itinerary now includes Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), Royal Botanic Gardens and Ocean Road Tours. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: take in nature's colorful creations at Royal Botanic Gardens, then browse the exhibits of Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), and then enjoy breathtaking views from Eureka Skydeck.

To see traveler tips, more things to do, photos, and more tourist information, use the Melbourne trip maker site.

Fly from Christchurch to Melbourne in 6.5 hours. You'll gain 2 hours traveling from Christchurch to Melbourne due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Christchurch in May, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be a bit warmer in Melbourne, with lows of 9°C. On the 12th (Tue), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Cairns.

Things to do in Melbourne

Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Parks

Cairns, Australia

— 2 nights

The Gateway to the Great Barrier Reef

A neat, cosmopolitan city of shaded plazas and laid-back neighborhoods, Cairns serves as a popular base for exploration of the surrounding region and the Great Barrier Reef, as well as a center for watersport activities like surfing or waterskiing.
Kuranda Scenic Railway and Skyrail self-drive option has been added to your itinerary. Start off your visit on the 12th (Tue): take a memorable excursion with Kuranda Scenic Railway and Skyrail self-drive option, don't miss a visit to Freshwater Station, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Esplanade Boardwalk. On the next day, get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports.

To find other places to visit, where to stay, maps, and other tourist information, refer to the Cairns day trip planning site.

You can fly from Melbourne to Cairns in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a train. Expect a bit warmer weather when traveling from Melbourne in May: highs in Cairns hover around 32°C, while lows dip to 24°C. On the 14th (Thu), you're off to Gold Coast.

Things to do in Cairns

Tours · Outdoors · Wildlife · Trails

Side Trip

Gold Coast, Australia

— 3 nights
A city of towering skyscrapers, sandy beaches, and tree-lined streets, Gold Coast has an unpretentious air complemented by a citywide focus on sports and the arts.
Your day by day itinerary now includes Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary. Kids will appreciate attractions like Sea World Theme Park and Warner Bros. Movie World.

For photos, traveler tips, and tourist information, you can read our Gold Coast attractions tool.

Traveling by flight from Cairns to Gold Coast takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a train. In May, Gold Coast is slightly colder than Cairns - with highs of 27°C and lows of 15°C. On the 17th (Sun), you'll travel to Sydney.

Things to do in Gold Coast

Theme Parks · Zoos & Aquariums · Parks

Sydney, Australia

— 3 nights

The Harbour City

Lent iconic status as a result of its famous bridge and opera house, Sydney has a down-to-earth charm that enhances its spectacular setting and functional efficiency.
On the 18th (Mon), hike along Bondi to Coogee Walk, tour the pleasant surroundings at Bondi Beach, then buy something for everyone on your list at DUX Collection Sydney, and finally take a stroll through The Rocks. On the 19th (Tue), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: take in nature's colorful creations at Royal Botanic Garden Sydney, visit Darling Harbour, then snap pictures at Sydney Harbour Bridge, then go for a walk through The Opera House to the Botanic Gardens Walk, and finally see a show at Sydney Opera House.

To find reviews, photos, maps, and other tourist information, refer to the Sydney trip planner.

You can fly from Gold Coast to Sydney in 3.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. In May, daily temperatures in Sydney can reach 24°C, while at night they dip to 14°C. On the 20th (Wed), you're off to home.

Things to do in Sydney

Neighborhoods · Parks · Outdoors · Historic Sites

Side Trip

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.

Australia travel guide

4.7
Beaches · Gardens · Wildlife Areas
Australia is a country of breathtaking beauty and unforgettable adventure. From coast to coast you’ll find ancient rainforests, towering cities, stunning outback landscapes and white sand beaches. It’s not only the scenery that varies here, but also the lifestyle. Lay back and relax within a coastal paradise, explore the bustling laneways of a lively metropolis, or feed your sense of adventure in the most remote and remarkable pockets of the country. Whether you’re connecting with Aboriginal culture, tasting seafood straight from the ocean, or diving with gentle whale sharks, you’ll discover why there’s nothing like Australia.