New Zealand Guided Walking Holiday

Majestic mountain scenery and Māori culture across two distinctive islands


Print page

Activity types:

  • Coastal
  • High Mountains


  • 1
More information

Choosing the level of your walks

Our easy grading system shows whether a region offer gentle strolls or more challenging routes to help you choose the right holiday for you. Difficulty is measured on many factors such as distance, ascent/descent, terrain, weather and more. There's no magic formula, but from our experience we grade our walks 1 to 5 (where 1 is easy and 5 hard). Our challenger holidays require a high level of fitness and stamina.

More about difficulty levels

From £6,299.00 - 21 to 23 nights


Prices are per person

Room 1:
Room 2:
Room 3:

Holiday overview

Download New Zealand 2019 Trip Notes

Explore the wonders of the breathtaking and varied North and South Islands of New Zealand. Stroll among the thermal springs of Rotorua, admire the raw beauty of Tongariro National Park, and marvel at the incredible peaks of the Southern Alps, including the stunning Mount Cook. Hike across a stretch of the dramatic Routeburn Track, and take a cruise across the truly spectacular Milford Sound.

Holiday highlights

  • Comprehensive tour of the best of New Zealand
  • Wonderful mix of great walking, scenery, sightseeing and culture
  • See Maori culture and amazing geology at Rotorua
  • Options to take either the Milford Track or the Routeburn Track

Price includes

  • 21 nights’ accommodation in en-suite rooms
  • Half board from dinner on day 3 to breakfast on departure, plus 13 lunches and less 8 dinners 
  • A full holiday programme with expert local guides
  • All sightseeing and entrance fees
  • Travel by air-conditioned coach

In pictures...


This holiday encompasses a large area with a variety of different locations on both islands of New Zealand. From modern city hotels to country lodges, the 3 and 4-star hotels are chosen for their high standards, quality, good food, suitability for groups and excellent locations which make the most of their magnificent surroundings.

Some departures will use different hotels but all are of a similar standard.


 Heritage Hotel, Auckland, New Zealand

Auckland - Heritage Auckland Hotel

We begin in Auckland at the modern Heritage Auckland Hotel. Centrally located on Hobson St, the hotel is a short walk from the harbour.

Exterior of the Distinction Hotel in Rotorua showing the pool

Rotorua - Distinction Hotel

We stay at the Distinction Hotel in Rotorua. Located near the Whakarewarewa Forest, the hotel offers the perfect place to relax after a day exploring the local area.

 Room in Beechtree Motel, New Zealand

Taupo - Beechtree Motels

 Modern accommodation which offers style and comfort and is only a 5-minute walk from the lake.

Exterior of the Chateau at Tongariro


Tongariro - Chateau Tongariro

Chateau Tongariro occupies a prime spot in Tongariro National Park. It's full of old-world charm with stunning views.

Distinction Hotel, Wellington, New Zealand

Wellington - Distinction Century City

Situated in the heart of humming Wellington, we stay here overnight ahead of flying to the South Island.

rutherford hotel

Nelson - Rutherford Hotel

A stylish, centrally located hotel. We stay here for 2 nights on arrival on the South Island.

 Example of room at the Punakaiki Resort



West Coast - Punakaiki Resort

Travelling west we arrive at the Paparoa National Park.

We stay at the Punakaiki Resort, which is situated at the top of the beach near the famous Pancake Rocks.


Exterior of Methven Resort, New Zealand

Methven - Methven Resort

We stop off at Methven after crossing the Southern Alps en route to Mt Cook. With stunning views all around, you can relax in the outdoor pool as you take it all in.

 Exterior of Hermitage Hotel, Mt Cook


Mount Cook - Hermitage

Following a drive through the parched high country, we arrive at our accommodation at the Hermitage. The hotel is located at the edge of the high alps of Mt Cook.

 Bar and cafe at the Edgewater Hotel in Wanaka

Wanaka - Edgewater Resort

Peaceful and directly on the shores of Lake Wanaka, this is a fine place to soak up the intermontane landscapes.


Heritage Hotel, Queenstown, New Zealand

Queenstown - Heritage Hotel

In Queenstown we stay at the Heritage Hotel, situated on the edge of Lake Wakatipu. Rooms benefit from a range of views over the surrounding mountains, forests and lake.

Facilities include swimming pool, gym and free Wi-Fi.


Example of a room at Marakura Deluxe Motels

Marakura Deluxe Motels 

Exterior of the Distinction Hotel at Te Anau


Te Anau - Marakura Deluxe Motels or Distinction

We stay at the Marakura Deluxe Motels (March and October groups), surrounded by the Fiordland National Park, or at the lakefront Distinction Hotel (November)

Depending on group size, some guests on the March and October departures may stay at Kingsgate.


Lodge on the Milford Track


Milford Track & Routeburn Track options

For these extension options, you will be staying in comfortable Track Lodges. These provide good, basic accommodation and food, with laundry facilities, heated drying rooms, flush toilets and hot showers. Please note however that lodge rooms are multi-bedded and may be mixed sex.

On occasion we may need to change the accommodation listed above. If this happens, your replacement accommodation will be of the equivalent standard or higher. In the rare instance this is not possible, we will contact you in advance.


Guided Walking & Sightseeing in New Zealand

Download New Zealand 2019 Trip Notes

A choice of walks are available each day. Most are 3-6 miles with minimal ascent and are Grade 1. Optional harder walks are up to 13½ miles with 2,500ft of ascent, and are Grade 3 -4; these are great for if you want to really stretch your legs and reach new heights! 

Day 1 -2:

Depart UK, overnight flight to Auckland

Day 3: Auckland

View across Auckland harbour to the city skyscrapersGroup transfer to hotel. Depending on arrival time, explore the city with a short sightseeing trip and a stroll up Mt Eden or enjoy a swim at Mission Bay.

Day 4: Rangitoto Island

Credit Fraser ClementsWe start our day with an cruise to the volcanic Rangitoto Island, where you can walk to the summit or simply enjoy your surroundings. This afternoon, we'll enjoy a scenic drive to Rotorua, centre of Maori traditions.

Day 5: Lake Tarawera

Credit Mark SmithWe'll walk around the crater of beautiful Lake Tarawera and enjoy a soak in a natural hot stream before returning to shore by boat. Later, we'll visit a Maori village for a traditional hangi (earth oven) meal and evening cultural experience.

Day 6: Wai-o tapu

Wai-o TapuVisit Wai-o tapu thermal reserve then hike a 3-4 hour loop trail through the Jurassic-like rainforest of Whirinaki forest. Later, we drive south and visit the Huka Falls and stay in Taupo.

Day 7 - 8: Tongariro National Park

Walkers on the Togariro Alpine CrossingWe spend two days walking in the captivating Tongariro National Park. If weather allows, we'll depart early morning on Day 7 to hike the famous Tongariro Crossing. This walk is optional; there will be another walk option available too. The next day we'll spend another day exploring this magnificent park, or try to tackle the Crossing if we couldn't do this on Day 7.

Day 9: to Wellington

Credit Rob SuistedDrive to Wellington, arriving early afternoon, where you'll time to explore the city independently: perhaps visit Te Papa (Museum of New Zealand), take a ride on the Wellington cable car or explore the city's vibrant cafe and restaurant scene.

Day 10: to South Island

This morning we'll fly to Nelson in South Island. We'll meet out South Island guides and drive to Flora saddle in Kahurangi National Park. From here, we'll hike to the Mount Arthur Hut and higher for superb views of the Nelson Bay and the wilderness expanse of the Kahurangi National Park. On the way back to Nelson, we'll stop in the sea-side village of Mapua for dinner.

Day 11: Abel Tasman National Park

Glorious coastline in the Abel Tasman National ParkDrive to Kaiteriteri and take a water taxi into the Abel Tasman National Park. We'll walk between Bark Bay and Anchorage on the Abel Tasman Coastal Track.

Day 12: to the West Coast

Credit Mike HoldenToday we'll drive out to the West Coast via the spectacular Buller Gorge. We'll hike along a coastal path, visiting a lighthouse and a fur seal colony at Cape Foulwind. Later we continue on to Punakaiki, where we'll enjoy a stroll up the Pororari River Canyon before dinner.

Day 13: to the Southern Alps and Methven

Pancake RocksVisit Pancake Rocks and walk the Truman Track before driving through the Southern Alps at Arthurs Pass. Here we'll walk the Centennial Trail and wander among the imposing limestone towers and crags of Castle Hill. We then continue our drive to the eastern side of the main divide and on to Methven.

Days 14-15: Aoraki/Mount Cook

Mount Cook national parkWe drive, via Lake Tekapo, to Mount Cook/Aoraki; we'll enjoy lunch at the world famous gourmet pie shop. On arrival, we'll walk up to Red Tarns to get great views of the Alps.

The next day we have options for half day and full-day walks as we explore the Mount Cook National Park and its stunning alpine scenery: Hooker Valley, Sealy tarns and Mueller Ride. There are also options for you to take a spectacular scenic flight over the national park and take a guided walk on a glacier (both optional extras, payable locally).

Day 16: to Wanaka

View over the lake at WanakaWe start our day with a boat trip on the Tasman glacial lake to see icebergs up close and learn about the dynamic, ice carved landscape. We then drive to Wanaka, arriving early afternoon; the rest of the day is then at your leisure to relax or to explore independently. Dinner is not included this day to allow you the chance to tantalise your tastebuds depending on what you fancy - there's plenty of great restaurants to choose from.

Day 17: Mount Aspiring National Park

NZWHW - Mount Aspiring National ParkToday is going to be an exhilarating day in the Mount Aspiring National Park! We drive to Makarora, where we board a helicopter for a flight around the ice carved peaks of the park. Landing in the remote Siberia Valley, we hike out through the beech forest to the Wilkin River. From there, we'll take jet boat back down river to Makarora then drive to Queenstown, New Zealand's adventure capital, arriving early evening.

Day 18: Queenstown

Lakeside at Queenstown with TSS EarnslawToday you have a free day to explore Queenstown. This is the home of bungee jumping, so there are plenty of adrenaline sports to try if that's your thing - other options include heliskiing or ziplining. We suggest you take a look at some options in advance in case you need to pre-book. If you'd prefer something less action-packed, Queenstown has plenty more to offer than just heart-pumping pursuits. It's rich with dining options and a range of bars, nearby vineyards and a vibrant arts scene. You might like to simply take things easy and enjoy the view of the Remarkables and Lake Wakatipu.

Day 19: Lake Manapouri

Stunning scenery of Doubtful SoundWe'll depart early for Lake Manapouri, where we'll board a boat for a journey across the lake. Back on dry land, we'll drive  over the mountains at Wilmot Pass and into Doubtful Sound. Here we'll experience a remarkable day in true wildernes. At 40 km long and with three distinct arms, this is the largest fiord in New Zealand, with countless waterfalls, thickly forested islands and opportunities to see dolphins, seals and penguins. We return via coach and boat to the lakeside town of Te Anau.

Day 20: Kepler Track

NZWHW - Kepler TrackToday we'll hike on the Kepler track, one of the famed ‘Great Walks‘. The hike begins as an easy stroll around the lake shore before you have the option of catching the water taxi back across the lake to Te Anau. For those up for more of a challenge, we can continue along the track as it climbs its away to the bushline near Luxmore hut. Enjoy the expansive views of the Fiordland wilderness and the Te Anau basin. After the descent, we catch the water taxi back across the lake to Te Anau.

Day 21: Milford Sound

NZWHW - Milford SoundEnjoy a stunning alpine drive to Milford Sound. On the way we take a  morning hike on a section of the Routeburn Track to Key Summit, followed by a visit to Milford Sound, one of New Zealand's most iconic visitor destinations. Although smaller than Doubtful Sound, Milford‘s topography will leave you spell bound – glaciated mountains and sheer cliffs hundreds of metres high plummeting into the dark waters of the fiord. Keep an eye out for marine wildlife as we enjoy a 2-hour boat cruise out to the entrance of the Fiord and Tasman sea. We then return to Te Anau in the afternoon.

Day 22: Gibbston Valley

Credit Miles HoldenAfter a relaxed breakfast, we make our way back to Queenstown, with a detour down the Gibbston Valley. Also known as the Valley of Vines, the rugged schist mountains and impressive Kawarau gorge make this a dramatic place to enjoy lunch on a local vineyard. We'll continue on to Queenstown, arriving mid afternoon.

Day 23: Queenstown

Enjoy another free day, before the group meets for farewell drinks at around 6pm. Dinner is not included on this day, so you can make your own plans or enjoy a final meal with new-found friends.

Day 24: Departure day

Return transfer to Queenstown airport before return flight to UK.


Photo credits Rangitoto Island:Fraser Clements, Lake Tarawera: Mark Smith, Cape Foulwind: Miles Holden, Gibston Valley: Miles Holden, Hooker Valley: Miles Holden, Wellington: Rob Suisted

Track Options

With this holiday there are two additional route options during your stay. You can choose to complete the Milford Track or the Routeburn Track. This information relates to our 2019 holiday; please contact us if you'd like to know more for our final trip in 2018.

Milford Track option

You can choose to leave the main group on Day 19 in order to traverse Fiordland National Park on the famous Milford Track. This is often described as the finest walk in the world and is a very accessible adventure. Stay in comfortable lodges en route and benefit from expert and friendly guiding on the walk as you pass through amazing untouched landscapes.

The Milford Track was a real highlight of my trip to New Zealand, and much more comfortable than I expected. Despite it being a 5-day trip, the first day entailed a coach, boat and then half a mile walk to the first night’s accommodation. The first proper day’s walking and the third day were each 10-12 miles, walking on fairly flat well maintained tracks through rainforest with the odd view of a peak. We were 50 walkers together, including 4 guides, one of whom led and the other backmarked whilst the two other guides floated around the group. One guide carried big flasks and stopped at key points to offer a welcome hot drink. There was virtually no time pressure though; many walkers stopped along the way to swim in beautiful cool pools or take photos of the little birds who pecked at our feet when we stopped. The second day was the challenge, with some steep ascent and descent, we covered 5-6 miles in total on rocky paths, but it wasn’t too difficult, and the views were spectacular.  The accommodation was basic but very clean and the food was good quality. I’d definitely recommend the experience, it felt very special and a must-see. (David, Sutton)

This is a snapshot of the itinerary; for more details, including more information on what to expect and what to pack, see the Ultimate Hikes website.

Day 19 - to Te Anau

Walkers crossing the mountainous Mackinnon PassEarly morning journey from Queenstown to Te Anau, and then take an afternoon cruise to Glade House, 1 night.

Day 20 - to Pompolona Lodge

We cross the Clinton River and walk amidst beech forest to lunch at Hirere Falls. Continue onto the Prairie grassy plain, with spectacular views of Clinton Canyon, before the rocky climb to Pompolona Lodge.

Day 21 - to McKinnon Pass and Quintin Hut

Breathtaking view of Milford SoundToday is a fairly challenging but extremely rewarding day’s walking, passing Mirror Lake before the zig-zag climb up McKinnon Pass, around Mount Balloon - passing glaciers, native forests and creeks until arriving at Quintin Hut. Finally, we make a short visit to Sutherland Falls, the highest in the Southern Hemisphere.

Day 22 - to Mitre Peak

The last day’s walk on the Milford Track, with a long descent with views to the Lovely Lady of the Snows mountain and on past Mackay Falls, Giants Gate Waterfall and Sandfly Point before reaching Mitre Peak Lodge and the end of walk celebrations.

Day 23 - Return to Queenstown

Morning boat cruise on Milford Sound, before travelling back to Queenstown to re-join the rest of the group.

Additional charge applies.

Price includes

  • 4 nights' accommodation (in multi bedded rooms on the walk)
  • Guided escort and briefing for full duration of track walk
  • Accommodation in fully catered walk lodges, in comfortable bunk rooms with duvets, fresh towels, hot showers, soap and shampoo and more
  • Hearty New Zealand-style dinners, packed lunches and large breakfasts
  • Certificate of achievement and other extras

Routeburn Track Option 

The Routeburn guided walk is a superb Alpine adventure through Fiordland and Mount Aspiring National Parks.

The Routeburn Track was my first foray into backpacking and it really was a five-star introduction. The route was high level but not too challenging and the scenery was simply superb. The guides were excellent and let our group of about 20 go at our own pace, indicating places we could take small diversions to reach an extra peak or visit some pools for a refreshing dip. The accommodation was amazing: although we were in bunk beds it felt really plush, with hot showers and excellent food. It was a great introduction to backpacking in comfort and I would highly recommend it. (Dawn, UK)

This is a snapshot of the itinerary; for more details, including more information on what to expect and what to pack, see the Ultimate Hikes website.

Day 20 - to Lake Mackenzie

Stunning mountain scenery on the Routeburn TrackTransfer from Te Anau to the Divide. We begin our walk following the Routeburn from the Divide, walking to Key Summit for breathtaking Routeburn views. Descend to Lake Howden for lunch and then climb to Earland Falls, looking over to the glaciated Darran Mountains, before descending to our lodge in the serene setting of Lake Mackenzie for the night.

Day 21 - to Routeburn Valley

Walk into the mountains for views across the Hollyford valley, which slices through Fiordland to the distant Tasman Sea. After lunch at Harris Saddle, you can ascend Conical Hill for outstanding high peak views. Descend to the upper basin of the Routeburn Valley and the Routeburn Falls lodge for a celebration dinner.

Day 22 - Routeburn Flats & to Queenstown 

Walk through the alpine pastures of the Routeburn Flats, following the river through the magnificent gorge and through columns of red beech trees to the road end. Transfer to Queenstown to rejoin the main group.

Additional charge applies.

Price includes

  • 2 nights' accommodation (in multi bedded rooms on the walk)
  • Guided escort and briefing for full duration of track walk
  • Accommodation in fully catered walk lodges, in comfortable bunk rooms with duvets, fresh towels, hot showers, soap and shampoo and more
  • Hearty New Zealand-style dinners, packed lunches and large breakfasts
  • Certificate of achievement and other extras

Essential Info

A full passport is required and must be valid for at least three months from the date you are due to leave New Zealand.

Visas are not necessary for full British passport holders visiting for less than 6 months. Other passport holders are advised to check with their nearest New Zealand consulate or embassy.

Health advice

Before booking, you should check with your doctor to see if any health precautions are needed. The following websites provide a wealth of information on travelling and

Vaccines: Tetanus vaccine is recommended.

All our holidays are planned around the New Zealand spring, summer and early autumn when all routes are open and the days are long. The warmest weather is likely to be from November to February although October and March are also excellent times to travel with fewer tourists and superb mountain flora.

The local currency is New Zealand Dollars. Banks are open from 9am until 4.30pm on weekdays. Credit cards are widely accepted. There are no restrictions on taking currency in and out of the country. For most people the easiest method will be to use cash machine cards – but please consult with your bank concerning suitable machines and their availability. Traveller’s cheques are not advised.

Tipping is not expected in New Zealand; any tips you feel you would like to give are gratefully received. When eating out, for example, you may wish to consider rounding up the bill. New Zealand and its people are very relaxed so it’s fine if you choose not to do this.

Given this relaxed nature, there’s also no requirement or expectation to tip for key services or the local guide(s). If you feel you would like to thank the principle guide with a tip, this is entirely at your discretion.

Walking boots must be clean of mud/soil before entering New Zealand immigration; we also recommend you pack them at the top of your bag so they are easily found to be checked by biosecurity personnel on arrival.

For flight information please see the Dates and Prices tab - however please note the following:

Our ‘with-flight’ option (2019) currently transits via Singapore on the outbound journey. If you are transiting via the USA, you will need a visa or ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorisation). No visa is required by citizens with full right of residence in visa waiver programme (VWP) countries. This includes UK, Australia, New Zealand – please see for details of other countries included in the VWP. Citizens of VWP countries are required to obtain travel authorisation prior to travel. You can register for authorisation online through the website above.

The return flight transits via Melbourne then Singapore. The connection time in Melbourne is currently less than 2 hours. However, should there be a scheduled flight change, which means that your time in Australia exceeds 8 hours, you will need to apply for an Australian visa. We will contact you in advance if this is the case.

Canadian and US citizens require an ETA (electronic travel authorisation). These must be applied for in advance, and cost AUS $20. Please go to or consult your embassy for advice.

British and EU passport holders need an eVisitor visa (subclass 651). To do this you need to create an Immiaccount via There is no charge for an eVisitor visa. Please see for further information.



Read more reviews from feefo

Dates & Prices

Here at HF Holidays, we pride ourselves in offering a unique holiday full of experiences that you can’t find with anyone else. Find out what's included in this holiday.

Date Description Nights Brochure price Book
17 Oct 2019 NZWHW - New Zealand
(Travel included - Departs from: London Heathrow)

Flight - Outbound


  • Depart: 17 Oct 2019, 10:05 p.m.
  • Arrive: 19 Oct 2019, 1:40 p.m.
  • Depart from: London Heathrow
  • Arrive at: Auckland International

Flight - Return


  • Depart: 9 Nov 2019, 4:20 p.m.
  • Arrive: 10 Nov 2019, 7:20 a.m.
  • Depart from: Queenstown Frankton
  • Arrive at: London Heathrow
23 £7,499.00 Book Now
19 Oct 2019 NZWHW - New Zealand - Without Flights 21 £6,299.00 Book Now
14 Nov 2019 NZWHW - New Zealand
(Travel included - Departs from: London Heathrow)

Flight - Outbound


  • Depart: 14 Nov 2019, 10:05 p.m.
  • Arrive: 16 Nov 2019, 1:40 p.m.
  • Depart from: London Heathrow
  • Arrive at: Auckland International

Flight - Return


  • Depart: 7 Dec 2019, 4:20 p.m.
  • Arrive: 8 Dec 2019, 7:20 a.m.
  • Depart from: Queenstown Frankton
  • Arrive at: London Heathrow
23 £7,499.00 Book Now
16 Nov 2019 NZWHW - New Zealand - Without Flights 21 £6,299.00 Book Now

Prices are per person

Price includes

  • 21 nights’ accommodation in en-suite rooms
  • Half board from dinner on day 3 to breakfast on departure, plus 13 lunches and less 8 dinners 
  • A full holiday programme with expert local guides
  • All sightseeing and entrance fees
  • Travel by air-conditioned coach

Other important information

  • Single room: from £1,549
  • Milford Track: from £949 
  • Routeburn Track: from £829


  • Non-member associate fee: £10 per person

Sign up for our newsletter

Our newsletters are a great way to receive special offers, inspiring articles, stories and news from HF Holidays.

To subscribe, please enter your email address below and click 'submit'.

We won't pass your details on to any third party unless we have your express permission, you are free to unsubscribe at any time.