New Zealand’s coastline provides spectacular scenic vistas and boasts remarkable marine biodiversity. Here are a few ways to explore it further.
Cruises provide all-inclusive programs, meaning your meals, beverages and onboard activities are included as part of the price of the trip – making it one of the most cost-effective honeymoon vacation options available to you.
The Great Coast Road
Set sail on New Zealand cruises for breathtaking scenery and exhilarating experiences! From South Island untamed coastlines to Fiordland National Park’s glacial mountains, New Zealand holds many surprises for adventure couples as well as those seeking relaxation.
Lonely Planet named the Great Coast Road as one of the world’s premier coastal drives, winding along 100 km of constantly shifting coastline with rainforests, beaches and limestone and sandstone cliffs en route. Experience breathtaking seafront lookouts or stop for lunch in charming hideaways along the way.
Bay of Martyrs features rugged coastline featuring huge cliffs that were once home to Aboriginal tribes in Warrnambool. As there are rarely any tourists at this location, you can fully take in its stunning views while exploring Loch Ard Gorge, Tom & Eva Points, The Arch and Twelve Apostles rocky formations. Look out for Eastern grey kangaroos hopping through green landscape and native birds at Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve while whale watching is also popular between June – September when female Southern Right whales enter Warrnambool waters to calve.
The Bay of Islands
The Bay of Islands in the North Island provides an ideal holiday retreat, ideal for swimming, kayaking, sailing and scuba diving activities. Offering both natural splendor and remarkable frontier history this area has it all: from remote beaches to some of the country’s oldest kauri forests.
Cruise to the Bay of Islands for an opportunity to see Waitangi Treaty Grounds where Chiefs from native Maori Tribes and representatives from the British Crown signed Te Tiriti o Waitangi — New Zealand’s founding document — in 1840. Experience its culture through guided tours or pay a visit to local museum dedicated to Austrian-born architect Friedensreich Hundertwasser’s legacy.
Paihia, the Bay of Islands’ main town, offers an inviting environment with its friendly cafes and shops. If you want to discover it further, take a sailing catamaran trip that includes island stops with snorkel or paddleboard gear; alternatively join one of Tucker Thompson Tall Ship excursions that let you help sail their schooner and climb its masts for a full-day excursion!
Rotorua is an outdoor playground for families. Mount Ngongotaha’s gondola provides access to thrilling family adventures like downhill luge and heart-pounding sky swing. If you want a bit more excitement, try your luck at bungee jumping or tandem zip lining.
Geothermal activity in Rotorua has created an unusual lunarscape of boiling mud pools and geysers, creating the iconic moonscape we know today as Rotorua. Rainbow Springs features colorful pools scented by sulfur while visitors to Te Whakarewarewa thermal reserve can witness the 30-meter-tall Pohutu Geyser. Furthermore, Rotorua serves as a cultural center, offering lessons on local tribes in Maori villages.
Hot Water Beach offers an amazing geothermal beach experience. When the tide goes out, dig yourself a spa bath right there on the shore! For further exploration into geological New Zealand visit Waitomo Caves where there is a large population of glowworms as well as stunning stalagmite and stalactite formations to view.
Kaikoura (pronounced kay-ko-rah) is world renowned for its marine mammal population and sea life, but is also home to breathtaking mountain scenery, rugged rocky coasts and world-class cuisine. The mountains here boast unique shapes while surrounding farmland blossoms with wildflowers each spring.
Whale watching is available all year, with the best chances to see giant sperm whales occurring between June and July. Other marine mammals can also be observed throughout the year. Kaikoura’s abyssal plains also host an estimated 100 New Zealand fur seals that can be viewed from both Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway or Point Kean rock platforms.
Kaikoura is home to many world-renowned attractions, including Fyffe House – an internationally acclaimed cottage constructed on whale vertebrae with exhibits chronicling Kaikoura’s whaling history. For an enjoyable romantic meal visit Zephyr which serves up high quality fare with everything from pate and ravioli made in-house; or head down the road to Poppy’s for some handcrafted ice cream! Additionally, Kaikoura features boutique hotels that provide world-class hospitality as well as unique accommodations, such as Hapuku Lodge + Treehouses.
New Zealand provides something for everyone – be it adrenaline-pumping adventures or relaxing beach days – thanks to its 15,000 km coastline boasting long harbours, intricate bays and sweeping sounds as well as steep fiords.
Christchurch is an incredible feat of resilience that has successfully bounced back after the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 with no loss to its culture, food, shopping or adventure. Now renowned as an epicenter for culture, food, shopping and adventure.
Historic tram rides provide an exciting and memorable experience that allows visitors to discover Canterbury Museum, Botanical Gardens and New Regent Street attractions along the route.
The New Zealand Air Force Museum is an exciting historical treasure for anyone interested in aviation history. Boasting one of New Zealand’s largest collections of military aviation artifacts from pre-WWI to WWII and even contemporary times, you’ll be astounded to witness how these objects have changed throughout time!