The collection of wildly unique scenery, outdoor adventures, and happy-go-lucky people makes New Zealand a jewel of the South Pacific. And Great Tour Experiences, owned by Charmaine Edwards, is on the front lines of inbound travel to New Zealand, which will soon open its borders to international travelers.
“You have unlimited opportunities to experience breathtaking landscapes around almost every corner—snow-clad mountains, rolling sand hills, golden alluvial plains, green pastures. There are gushing geysers and snow-fed rivers that are trout-stocked for fly fishing, and beautiful cities and villages throughout,” Edwards says.
Many of her itinerary options feature the South Island. Groups can see Christchurch, which has emerged as a modern conference and art city after the devastating earthquake nine years ago, and Edwards says it’s the most beautiful city in New Zealand. Iconic attractions include the Cardboard Cathedral and the Antarctic Centre.
Groups can discover a mix of farming operations in the Canterbury Plains, an area that rises into the Southern Alps.
“You can take notice of the turquoise lakes and the pure, clean rivers, and view Aoraki Mt. Cook and Mt. Tasman,” Edwards says. “We recommend you stay a night or two at the foot of Aoraki Mt. Cook.”
The Mountain Machine transports passengers to the Tasman Glacier lake jetty, where Edwards says they can hop on a Mac boat, take a ride among the icebergs, and even taste the 500-year-old ice. Helicopter rides and sampling the diverse cuisines are also penciled-in experiences.
On the western side of the island, Milford Sound is a lovely day-stop to see a remote fjord on the way to Queenstown. Edwards describes Milford Sound’s Mitre Peak as mighty, majestic, and magnificent, towering one mile straight out of the water.
“Landscapes constantly change here. It’s beautiful on misty, wet days with rocky mountains, waterfalls, streams, and tussock plains. The Real Journeys cruise vessels are here to take you out on Milford Sound,” she says.
Top photo: Mitre Peak at Milford Sound
Photo by Great Tour Experiences