Tours

Our New Zealand tours generally run in Feb/March and Oct/Nov each year. In March 2021 we a running a short 6 days Australia tour! See below for more!

Current tour dates are:

New Zealand tour map

Mondumo – New Zealand in 14 Days (North and South Islands)

This tour includes a small group (average 13-20 people), a top-rated professional tour guide, centrally located hotels, tour bus with extra space for more comfort, all sightseeing, all breakfast, 9 other meals (including a special last night dinner), all tips for drivers, local guides and wait staff at group meals, and countless unforgettable experiences.

Experience highlights:

  • Auckland Museum guided tour
  • Rua Kuri Glowworm Caves
  • Hobbiton Movie Set Tour (Lord of the Rings)
  • Rotorua authentic Maori experiences
  • Wai O Tapu Geothermal Wonderland
  • Maori concert and traditional hangi meal
  • Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony
  • Otago Winery visit and tasting
  • 2 hour Nature Cruise on Milford Sound
  • Full day free in Queenstown
  • Cardrona Distillery visit and tasting
  • Guided Franz Josef Glacier Valley walk
  • Greenstone (jade) carving experience in Hokitika
  • TranzAlpine scenic train ride
  • Quake City visitor centre in Christchurch.

More details:

  • Tour starts in Auckland, and ends in Christchurch.
  • 13 nights accommodation in: Auckland (2 nights), Rotorua (3 nights), Oamaru (1 night), Queenstown (3 nights), Franz Josef (2 nights), Christchurch (2 nights).
  • Tour price covers: accommodation every night of the tour; all breakfasts; 9 other meals; transportation throughout the tour; internal flight from Rotorua to Christchurch; services of a professional tour guide; admissions for all group activities mentioned on the itinerary; all tips/gratuities for drivers, local guides and waiting staff at group meals.
  • Activity Level: This tour is fairly active. To get the most out of the experience, you should be in reasonably good shape. The most active days average 5-6 miles of walking (often over uneven surfaces and including climbing hills or steps). You will have to carry your own bag up to your hotel room, so we also advise packing light!
  • Option for Early Pay Discount if paying 9 months before tour start date.
  • Optional single supplements — we have a limited number of private rooms for solo travellers at an additional fee.
  • Solo travellers may be able to arrange a same gender room share. Email colin@mondumo.com to discuss.
  • Please note: You are responsible for the cost of your own drinks at meals and costs of free-time sightseeing. International flights and airport transfers are not included in the tour cost and should be arranged by yourself or with the help of a travel agent. We strongly recommend taking out comprehensive travel insurance at the time of tour and flight booking. See Terms and Conditions for important details regarding all of the above.
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New Zealand in 14 Days – Tour Dates:


Day 1 - Welcome! - Overnight: Auckland, North IslandWelcome to New Zealand! / Nau mai ki Aotearoa!Welcome drinks and meeting at Heritage Suites Auckland. Short orientation walking tour and ferry to our first group dinner in Devonport.

Day 1 – Welcome!

Overnight: Auckland, North Island

Welcome to New Zealand! / Nau mai ki Aotearoa!

Welcome drinks and meeting at Heritage Suites Auckland. Short orientation walking tour and ferry to our first group dinner in Devonport.

 

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Day 2 – Auckland

Overnight: Auckland, North Island

Exploring Auckland

Walking tour of Auckland, local bus to Auckland museum and guided tour of museum for an introduction to NZ history, flora and fauna, and Maori culture. At conclusion of our museum tour just before lunchtime the rest of the day is yours to explore the city and see what else piques your interest. With a Day Pass for public transport Auckland is your oyster! Free for dinner.

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Day 3 – Rotorua

Overnight: Rotorua, North Island

Glowworms and Bubbly Rotorua

Today we drive south and begin with a visit to Glowworm Caves in Waitomo. These limestone caves are home to thousands of luminescent larvae. We’ll learn all about their life cycles and eating habits and gaze in amazement at the creations of nature. Group lunch at nearby Roselands Farm. We end the day in Rotorua, our home for the next 3 nights.

 

 

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Day 4 – Rotorua

Overnight: Rotorua, North Island

Maori immersion day

New Zealand first people the Maori, have a strong presence in the geothermal town of Rotorua. We have special connections for more intimate experiences that most tours don’t have access to. Visit Wai-O-Tapu Geothermal Wonderland, Te Whakarewarewa village and an exclusive family homestead. Some free time in the afternoon. Concluding our Maori immersion day with a Maori cultural performance and traditional hangi meal. Lunch and dinner included.

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Day 5 – Hobbiton

Overnight: Rotorua, North Island

Hobbiton, Lord of the Rings

Lord of the Rings fans prepare to yell “I’m going on an adventure!”… Today we visit Hobbiton; film set for Peter Jackson’s epic fantasy movies The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. We’ll return to Rotorua for lunch and the rest of the afternoon is free – some may wish to do some afternoon hiking, or to soak in Rotorua’s thermal spa waters (spa admissions not included).

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Day 6 – Oamaru

Overnight: Oamaru, South Island

Rotorua to South Island

A morning flight takes us from Rotorua to Christchurch on the South Island. From Christchurch we drive south across the Canterbury Plains, the Southern Alps to the west provide a natural barrier for this area. After a lunch stop en route, we continue to the Victorian heritage town of Oamaru. Dinner together at the hotel, then out to see the world’s smallest penguins in their natural environment returning from their day’s fishing. Learn about the life cycles of the Little Blues and conservation efforts from the colony guides. We watch from an outdoor seated area.

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Day 7 – New Zealand Wines

Overnight: Queenstown, South Island

Central Otago – wine and kiwi hospitality

Our first stop is at Moeraki where mysterious large boulders up to 60 million years old line the beach. Then inland to the heart of Central Otago Wine Region. Enjoy great kiwi hospitality and a gourmet lunch at Ophir. Otago is the world’s most southerly wine region, we’ll discover what makes this the ideal place for Pinot Noir at a local winery. Tasting included. Arrive into Queenstown in the early evening.

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Day 8 – Fiordland

Overnight: Queenstown, South Island

Fiordland and Milford Sound

A long but stunning daytrip today, destination: Milford Sound. We’ll take various stops for short hikes along the way in the Fiordland National Park. At Milford Sound we enjoy a 2 hour nature cruise with commentary from the local guide. We cruise the full length of Milford Sound to the Tasman Sea, admiring waterfalls, rainforest, towering peaks and wildlife. Lunch is included on board the cruise. Return to Queenstown in time for dinner and perhaps a beautiful sunset. Option to take a scenic flight or helicopter ride back from Milford Sound to Queenstown at extra cost.

 

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Day 9 – Queenstown

Overnight: Queenstown, South Island

Free day in Queenstown

Today is a vacation from our vacation! You have the full day at leisure in Queenstown. There are plenty of options available from cruising on an old steamboat on Lake Wakatipu, to mountain biking, luge riding, jet boating, spa/massage (optional activities not included).

 

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Day 10 – Franz Josef

Overnight: Franz Josef, South Island

Queenstown to Franz Josef

Leaving Queenstown, we make a short drive to the Cardrona Distillery. One of New Zealand’s newest and most exciting distilleries has only been operational since late 2015 but is already winning awards for its spirits. Tour and tasting at the distillery. Lunch stop en route. We then skirt the western side of Lake Hawea and climb gradually to cross Haast Pass. Stops for short walks along the way, and arrive into Franz Josef township in the early evening, where we’ll dine together.

 

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Day 11 – Glacier Valley Walk

Overnight: Franz Josef, South Island

Franz Josef Glacier Valley

This morning is at leisure, bucket-listers may want to take a heli ride with glacier landing (extra cost), keen hikers and landscape photographers may wish to join a morning excursion to Lake Matheson (no extra cost). This afternoon our main activity is the Franz Josef Glacier Valley walk. We visit the valley with local guides who allow us to gain access beyond the public barriers. We’ll learn how glaciers have shaped this remarkable landscape and more about New Zealand’s unique flora and fauna.

 

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Day 12 – Train Ride

Overnight: Christchurch, South Island

Greenstone carving and TranzAlpine Scenic Train Ride

Travelling up the west coast this morning we’ll arrive to the town of Hokitika, famous centre for greenstone (jade) carving. We meet master carvers who will have pre-shaped our stones that we get to polish and take home as our taonga (treasure) from the whenua (land) of Aotearoa (New Zealand). Learn about the importance of greenstone to Maori and its cultural significance today. Free for lunch on Hokitika – local whitebait sandwich recommended. At Greymouth we board the TranzAlpine Train to Christchurch. One of the world’s great train rides, we travel in comfort through chiseled alpine mountains, crossing deep gorges and alongside ice-fed rivers. Arrive into Christchurch in the evening.

 

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Day 13- Christchurch

Overnight: Christchurch, South Island

Christchurch

This morning we start with a walking tour of Christchurch, which concludes at “Quake City”. This multi-sensory attraction informs, engages and educates visitors about the region’s earthquakes. Your afternoon is free in Christchurch, known as the ‘Garden City’. Options to hire a bike, go punting, rowing or kayaking on the Avon River, visit Canterbury Museum, Hagley Park and/or the Botanic Gardens. Tonight we’ll share memories of New Zealand and toast new friends at our final dinner together.

 

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Day 14 – Tour Over

No overnight accommodation

Tour over after breakfast

Breakfast is provided, but there are no group activities today. Christchurch Airport is easily reachable by public transport, taxi or Uber from our accommodation. There are various car rental companies located close to our B&B and near the airport if you are going to extend your South Island road trip. For those flying home, some international flights depart from Christchurch but the majority are out of Auckland airport; a short hop flight will take you there. The main airlines for this are Air New Zealand and Jet Star. Your guide will be on hand to offer any other onward travel advice.

Itinerary specifics subject to change.


 

Tour Dates & Prices:

– March 9 – March 22, 2020
  • SOLD OUT! Contact us for wait-list
  • Tour Price: US$5,699 per person 
  • Early Pay Discount Price: US$5,399 per person 
  • Above prices include all tips for drivers, guides, and wait staff at group meals.
  • [Single supplement: US$1,250]


– Oct 12 – Oct 25, 2020*** – Selling fast!
  • ***This tour is running in collaboration with our friend and fellow tour guide Sarah Murdoch of Adventures with Sarah. Sarah will be joining lead guide Colin Mairs on the tour. Two great guides for the price of one!
  • Tour Price: US$5,799 per person
  • Early Pay Discount Price*: US$5,499 per person
  • Above prices include all tips for drivers, guides, and wait staff at group meals.
  • [Single supplement: US$1,360]
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– Nov 9 – Nov 22, 2020
  • Tour Price: US$5,799 per person 
  • Early Pay Discount Price*: US$5,499 per person (*paying in full by March 2020).
  • Above prices include all tips for drivers, guides, and wait staff at group meals.
  • [Single supplement: US$1,360]
register button

– Feb 22 – Mar 7, 2021
  • Tour Price: US$5,799 per person 
  • Early Pay Discount Price*: US$5,499 per person (*paying in full by June 2020).
  • Above prices include all tips for drivers, guides, and wait staff at group meals.
  • [Single supplement: US$1,360]
register button

– Mar 15 – Mar 28, 2021

  • Tour Price: US$5,799 per person 
  • Early Pay Discount Price*: US$5,499 per person (*paying in full by July 2020).
  • Above prices include all tips for drivers, guides, and wait staff at group meals.
  • [Single supplement: US$1,360]
register button

All details bound by Mondumo Terms and Conditions.

If you have any questions about this tour please email colin@mondumo.com

Weather

Being in the Southern Hemisphere New Zealand’s seasons are opposite to the Northern Hemisphere. Late October / early November is late spring in New Zealand. For this time of year the average daytime temperatures are between 61-66 F (16-19 C). Average 9 to 12 rainfall days in a month. More chance of rain in the north. The sun rises around 6am and sets around 8pm. This is arguably one of the best times of the year to visit as there are less crowds but usually decent weather. Some warm November spring days can feel like summer. That said, it is advisable to pack layers (from light t-shirts to fleeces).

First and Last Hotels

If you’re thinking of booking extra pre- or post-tour nights at the same hotels as the tour, the contact information for the first and last hotels we use will be included in your tour confirmation email. Roughly one month prior to the tour departure, we’ll email you directions on how to get from the airport to your first tour hotel, as well as the complete list of hotels we’ll stay at during the tour.

Getting to New Zealand

You may want to arrive a day or two before the tour begins —it will help considerably with the jet lag! This will allow you to make the most of the first few days of the tour, rather than struggling through them and then only starting to enjoy yourself quarter of the way in. You’ll most likely be looking for international flights in and out of Auckland. It is the main international airport for New Zealand, which makes additional travel to other countries before or after your tour quite easy. Remember the tour ends in Christchurch so you’ll also need to book either a short flight from Christchurch to Auckland or travel over land, and ferrying across the Cook Strait to the North Island. For information about flying to New Zealand, ask your local travel agent or check online sites such as Skyscanner, Kayak, Opodo, Expedia. Remember you will cross the international date line going to New Zealand so in effect you “lose a day” going, but you “get that day back” when you return home. Plan carefully when booking flights so as not to mix up the time difference. Most of mainland USA is between 16 to 19 hours behind New Zealand time. Hawaii is 22 hours behind New Zealand time. Europe is between 10 to 12 hours behind New Zealand time. If you have any questions about extending your travel in New Zealand or elsewhere contact colin@mondumo.com

Sightseeing on Your Own

If you arrive in Auckland before your tour begins, use our New Zealand travel tips sent to you before the tour to get acquainted. Walk around and breath in plenty of fresh air to help get over your jet lag. Here are a few suggestions for sightseeing in Auckland that we will not do as a group: Waiheke Island, Rangitoto Island, Auckland Art Gallery, the Maritime Museum, Kelly Tarlton’s Aquarium. We will also send tips and ideas for extra time you may have with the pre-tour information and we’ll be happy to advise with post-tour plans.

Packing

For advice on packing see our Packing page.

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