Nz general activities waiheke island drone water boats land joshua mccormack
Nz general activities tui bird
Nz general activities mount cook hiking trail
Nz general activities dunedin sunrise surfer water
unique activities

Top things to do in New Zealand

Whom are you travelling with?

Select what applies most to your needs Reset

Get the most out of your journey and discover New Zealand through the eyes of a local. Dive deep into New Zealand’s culture, identity, landscape and experience our unique small-scale activities. From multi-day kayak adventures and wildlife excursions to scenic flights over World Heritage Sites. Connect with local Māori and their fascinating culture

We have carefully selected small-scale, locally owned and environmentally-friendly activities. A range of unique experiences that showcase the best of New Zealand. We can assist you in selecting activities that match your interests.

7 must-do activities in New Zealand

# 1 Have close encounters with native wildlife

New Zealand is home to some of the most unique wildlife in the world. A country surrounded by the ocean, attracting magnificent marine animals. Kaikoura’s nutrient-rich waters attract whales, dolphins and albatross. Go whale watching or swim with dolphins and seals. Akaroa and the Bay of Islands are also great places to have close encounters with dolphins and other wildlife.

Spot yellow-eyed penguins and New Zealand fur seals in the Catlins and on the Otago Peninsula. Search for the elusive Kiwi bird - New Zealand’s national icon, on Stewart or Kapiti Island. Keep a lookout for cheeky kea or the flightless weka throughout the South Island.

Go whale watching in Kaikoura
Go whale watching in Kaikoura
Swim with dolphins in Kaikoura's nutrient-rich waters
Swim with dolphins in Kaikoura's nutrient-rich waters

"I love to watch animals in their natural habitat, either organised with a local guide or by myself. It always fascinates me!"

Nicole, Travel specialist

# 2 Meet the locals

Embracing the Māori culture and spending time with locals is the best (and, we think, the only way) to completely understand New Zealand’s identity, culture, landscape and of course its people. Join local Māori, Maria and Joe, in the Far North and wander into the rainforest. Learn about their special connection to the land and visit unique places.

Another local legend that we can’t wait for you to meet is Johnny. He lives on the wild West Coast of the South Island. With his bushy grey beard, muddy gumboots and jeans, Johnny is renowned for living off the grid and preserving his much loved Awakari Valley. He will introduce you to the history and wilderness of New Zealand.

Embrace the fascinating Maori culture
Embrace the fascinating Māori culture
Visit Waipoua Forest with Maori guide Maria | New Zealand holiday
Visit Waipoua Forest with Maori guide - Maria

"Swimming with wild dolphins still remains one of the most incredible encounters that I ever had, it's magical."

Tobias, Travel specialist

# 3 Cycle the best trails

Discover New Zealand’s diverse landscape by cycling the best trails. Whether you would like to explore the vineyards of Marlborough, Gisborne or the Hawkes Bay? Or maybe you are after a bit more adventure?

Conquer the Great Lake Trail, Otago Rail Trail or the West Coast Wilderness Trail. We can match the best cycle trail to your experience and wishes.

Cycle the iconic Otago Central Rail Trail | New Zealand active holiday
Cycle the iconic Otago Central Rail Trail

# 4 Explore 15,000 kilometres of coastline

New Zealanders absolutely love the water and all activities that involve it. That shouldn’t come as a surprise with 15,000 kilometres of coastline. Surrounded by the Tasman Sea and the Pacific Ocean, you are never too far away from the ocean.

Set sail in the Bay of Islands and the Coromandel, kayak the waters of Marlborough Sounds and Doubtful Sound or go snorkelling and diving at Poor Knights Islands. We have found the most unique small-scale water activities for you to experience.

Kayak the waters of Doubtful Sound and spot wildlife
Kayak the waters of Doubtful Sound and spot wildlife

# 5 Take a scenic flight

Capture a birds-eye view of New Zealand’s unique landscape during a scenic flight. An experience that you won’t be forgetting any time soon. Soar above snow-capped peaks, crystal clear lakes, active volcanoes, golden beaches and mystical fiords. Go to places that aren’t normally accessible.

Fly above Milford and Doubtful Sound, Mount Cook, Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers or the lake districts of Rotorua and Taupo. Whether you prefer a helicopter, floatplane or twin-turbo aircraft, we have found the best scenic flights of New Zealand.

"Whether it's a flight across Lake Tekapo, or above the Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers - it's always special to get a bird's eye view."

Tobias, Travel specialist
Are you searching for the ultimate view? Enjoy a scenic flight
Are you searching for the ultimate view? Enjoy a scenic flight

# 6 Conquer New Zealand’s spectacular hikes

New Zealand is full of spectacular walking tracks. From easy-going day hikes to adventurous multi-day hikes, there is a range of options to suit all experience levels. Go deep into the wilderness of New Zealand’s national parks including Mount Aspiring, Abel Tasman and Fiordland.

Be guided by a local Māori into the Te Urewera Rainforest and learn about the deep history of the region. Follow the coastline of the Coromandel Peninsula, conquer one of the world’s best day hikes - the Tongariro Alpine Crossing or a local favourite, the Routeburn Track.

Routeburn Track | New Zealand active holiday
Hike the Routeburn Track over 3 days with a local guide
© Linda van den Berg

# 7 Taste the best of New Zealand

New Zealand has made a name for itself for producing quality wine. Waipara Valley is the fastest growing wine region in the county. With its long dry summers, high sunshine hours and cool nights, a variety of Chardonnay, Riesling and Pinot Noir grapes are grown here. Looking for New Zealand’s finest Pinot Noir? Central Otago is your region.

The regions of Marlborough and Blenheim produce world-famous Sauvignon Blanc and Hawke’s Bay is renowned for fruitful and award-winning wineries as well as New Zealand’s oldest winery - Mission Estate. Of course, where there is world-class wine, there is also food to match. Indulge in fresh seafood and a fusion of local produce, innovation and flair.

Taste the best of the best when it comes to New Zealand's wine
Taste the best of the best when it comes to New Zealand's wine

We would love to discuss with you further about all the possibilities. Our activities are far away from mainstream tourism. Small-scale experiences that connect you with the country and the locals.

Useful facts

Discover more about New Zealand

A land of diverse culture and nature

Regions of New Zealand

New Zealand is a relatively small country, but with huge diversity. From lush rolling hills, glacial lakes,… read more

The ultimate road trip

Car hire in New Zealand

New Zealand features some of the best scenic drives in the world. And that is why we recommend travelling through… read more

All the things you love

and none of the things you don't

Our local knowledge makes the difference for your bespoke holiday through New Zealand or Australia. Your Journey Down Under starts here.