14 Day - Pure Indulgence – A Feast of the Senses

Bay of Islands tours

This 14 day itinerary is a real feast for your senses. Sample superb wines from the unspoiled Northland, visit the local artisans from Matakana before indulging in delectable food and wine in Hawkes Bay and Wairarapa. Explore the sights and sounds of the nations vibrant Capital, Wellington and savour Marlborough’s infamous Sauvignon Blanc and Greenshell Mussels.

All this plus 5 star accommodation and activities along the way to help you discover the unspoiled landscapes and hospitable people… Come and indulge!

Day 1 – Auckland to Karikari Peninsula

Carrington Estate Bay of Islands

‘Haere Mai’ … Welcome to New Zealand!

On arrival into Auckland, check through Customs and board a short flight to Kerikeri in the Bay of Islands. Before travelling to your destination; Carrington Resort located in Northland's Karikari Peninsula.

This is a fabulous place to unwind. Explore the four spectacular kilometres of secluded white sand coastline, play a round of golf and try the Olympic standard clay and skeet target shooting range before dining at the onsite restaurant. Carrington Resort follows a "nature to plate" culinary philosophy, with a focus on food grown on and around the Carrington property (Black Angus beef, native eel, honey, vegetables and fresh herbs) as well as a showcase to the abundance of fine produce available in the Far North.

One Nights Accommodation at Carrington Resort in Karikari Peninsula. Carrington's world class facilities include an infinity swimming pool and spa pool, two championship tennis courts and a gymnasium. Both lodge and villa accommodation open onto wide verandahs with views to the ocean, golf course or native bush.

Day 2 – Wines, Bay of Islands and Indulgence

Today you will be touring and tasting the wines on the Estate. Their philosophy is to produce the highest quality wine by using the highest quality grapes that can be grown.  The first vines were planted in 1998 and production commenced with its first vintage in 2003 and now boasts some 40 hectares of Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Franc, Malbec, Pinotage, Chardonnay and Viognier.

Proceeding south to Paihia. Check into Paihia Beach Resort & Spa, located in a superb beach position overlooking the Bay of Islands. Enjoy a treatment at the award winning day spa ‘La Spa Naturale’ or simply relax in the 20 metre heated saltwater pool or large Jacuzzi. Dine at “Pure Tastes” restaurant which is headed up by executive chef, Paul Jobin, who has won numerous culinary competitions and food awards.

Two Nights Accommodation at the Paihia Beach Resort & Spa in the Bay of Islands.

Bonus: Receive a complimentary one hour Sauna Steam Room at La Spa Naturalle for two people, and also either a 30 minute facial or traditional Indian head massage for two people.

Day 3 – Private Day Sailing in the Bay of Islands

Sail offshore from Russell, the most historic town in New Zealand and explore the beautiful bays and sights of Northland. Swim and snorkel in crystal clear waters, take a walk or relax on white sandy beaches, see dolphins, seabirds and penguins or even learn to sail. Enjoy delicious home-made muffins and a lunch made from only the freshest Northland products. So the only thing you will have to do is feel the gentle breeze in your hair and the warm sun on your back.

Some alternative sightseeing and activity options are:

Day 4 – Waipoua Forest Walk, Takatu Lodge & Vineyard (2 nights)

Drive south, break your journey with a walk through the Waipoua Forest; this is one of Northland's great treasures and is one of the best examples of kauri forest in New Zealand. Famous for having the two largest living kauris (Tane Mahuta and Te Matua Ngahere). The beauty, unique character, and significance of this forest will always inspire those who visit.

Continue onto the lively village of Matakana. You will be staying at Takatu Lodge; a working vineyard. Enjoy the highest standards of elegance and comfort; high vaulted macrocarpa ceilings, and outside landscaped rooms are a few of the many architectural features. The pre-dinner wine tasting will give you an opportunity to sample wines from their own renowned boutique vineyard, with hors d'oeuvres or antipasti platter.

Two Nights Accommodation at Takatu Lodge and Vinyard in Matakana.

Bonus: Receive a bottle of the award winning Takatu Estate ‘Kawau Bay’ 06 and two tickets the local Brick Bay Sculpture Trail – where you can explore and view renowned NZ sculptors works.

Day 5 – The Brick Bay Vinyard and Sculpture Trail

Spend the morning at The Brick Bay Sculpture Trail; walk through a remarkable landscape framed by towering native trees and majestic palms, abundant birdlife, and green pastures all overlooking the celebrated vineyard. All this while viewing contemporary sculpture created by established and emerging artists. The 2km track is an easy one hour walk suitable for most ages and abilities.

Spend the afternoon exploring the area, whether it be walking along the beach at Omaha, visiting local artisans in Matakana or catching the ferry to Kawau Island, the afternoon and evening is yours to explore.

Day 6 – Waiheke Vineyard Tour

Today you will be catching the ferry to Waiheke Island a mere 35 minutes across the Hauraki Gulf from Auckland. Join a deluxe vineyard tour and be transported by luxury coach to three of Waiheke’s finest vineyards. The first stop is the stunning Mudbrick Vineyard for your first tasting experience whilst overlooking the sparkling waters of the Hauraki Gulf. Followed by Ridgeview Estate; the newest winery on Waiheke. Last stop is the exquisite acclaimed Te Whau vineyard and restaurant and their wine tastings are definitely worth the wait! Return by ferry to Auckland.

One Nights Accommodation at the Hilton Auckland. Set on Auckland's dramatic waterfront, this impressive hotel combines contemporary design, a central location and great facilities such as an outdoor swimming pool and spa.

Day 7 - Napier, Art Deco & Wineries

Transfer to Auckland Airport before flying to Napier; The Art Deco capital of New Zealand.  Renowned for a beautiful coastline, a multitude of nearby wineries, and 1930's art deco architecture. Today eighteen wine producers produce one third of the national grape harvest and many are open for wine tasting and lunch.

Visit the largest mainland Gannet colony at Cape Kidnappers before dining at Clearview Estate and have the opportunity of tasting their range of hand crafted single vineyard wines.

Stay at Millar Road, this luxury self catered apartment is tucked away in the Tuki Tuki Hills, overlooking the vineyard, Te Awanga and the coast from Cape Kidnappers to Mahia. Relax and take a soak in the separate “bathing room” which contains a luxurious cradle bath. Facilities are endless. Four fantastic winery restaurants are close at hand: Terrôir at Craggy Range, Black Barn Bistro, Clearview Estate and Elephant Hill.

Some alternative sightseeing and activity options are:

Two Nights Accommodation at Millar Road in Hawkes Bay

Bonus: Receive a bottle of Millar Road Sauvignon Blanc and also two tickets to ‘Big Picture Wine’ a virtual wine tour, aroma room and tasting experience in one of Napier’s famed Art deco buildings.

Day 8 - Heli Wine Tour over Hawkes Bay

Enjoy an exciting helicopter tour of the Hawke's Bay region with full commentary by your pilot. Fly over Te Mata Peak and on to the Gimblett Gravels grape growing district before ending your flight at the prestigious Sileni Estate for a 2 course lunch with matching wines. During the afternoon you'll learn about the regions many different grape varieties and a little bit of local history. You will taste classic red European varieties such as Syrah/Shiraz, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, and Pinot Noir.

The area is also famous for the white varieties, Chardonnay, Sauvignon, Semillon, Pinot Gris and Viognier. Four wineries will be visited during the tour with time taken to enjoy various cheeses from around New Zealand. At the end of your tour you will be dropped off at your accommodation.

Day 9 – Napier to Wairarapa Wine Region

Today your journey will take you to the Wairarapa Region. There are plenty of places to stop enroute including Greytown where you will find plenty of antique stores and Martinborough for its small family run vineyards. If you don’t have the energy to wander between vineyards there is a wine centre where you can sample many wines under one roof.

Continue to Featherstone; home of Wharekauhau Country Estate. Built along the lines of an Edwardian country mansion this Country Estate has an awe inspiring view over Palliser Bay. Simply walking out the French doors will bring you into another world; the immaculate croquet lawn and petanque field is the ideal spot to enjoy a local Chardonnay. Relax in absolute bliss; deep sofas, fluffy pillows, and heated marbled floors are just a few of the luxury’s that are associated with the 10 Guest Cottages.

Bonus: Enjoy a complimentary bottle of the Gold Medal Winning Te Kairanga Pinot Noir 06 or Johner Estate 08 Sauvignon Blanc.

Day 10 – Wellington – The Nation’s Vibrant Capital city

Wellington is famous for it's nightlife

Onto Wellington; this city offers visitors a vibrant and sophisticated city experience, set within a natural amphitheatre of a harbour and lush green hills. Stylish cocktail bars, funky designer shopping, contemporary art galleries, award winning restaurants and cafes. Wellington really is New Zealand’s 'Capital of Cool'.

Sightseeing and activity options include:

Two Nights Accommodation at the Ohtel in Wellington. located in the exclusive seaside neighbourhood of Oriental Bay, this is a brand new 10 room boutique Hotel. A stunning, contemporary 4 storey concrete structure, embedded into the base of a steep coastal cliff face with unique Mid-Century furnishings.

Bonus: Receive a complimentary gourmet platter for two.

Day 11 – Wellington Sights and Nocturnal Tour of Zealandia

Visit all sights on this ½ day City Tour; from the dramatic, unearthly south coast to the famous centrally located Beehive, our seat of government. The contrasts and quirkiness of Wellington's wonders are unlike anywhere on earth. See the ruins of the Wahine ferry disaster, take a trip on the cable car, and enjoy the views from Mt Victoria. In Thorndon, New Zealand's oldest suburb, visit the magnificent Parliament buildings and gorgeous Old St Paul's cathedral, an example of 19th-century Gothic Revival architecture adapted to colonial conditions.

During the evening join a Nocturnal Tour at ’Zealandia’. Your tour begins at the unique predator-proof fence, kitted out with red-light torches that don’t disturb the locals, your guide will lead you this wildlife safe haven. As dusk falls, you will hear native parrots squabble in the trees, and tuatara, our unique ‘living fossil’, heading out to hunt. When darkness has settled, your guide will look for our elusive national mascot – the kiwi. Over 100 call this valley home, so there’s a good chance of spotting one, foraging in the leaf litter! Often, the glow-worms are so bright you won’t even need your torch!

Day 12 – Ferry to Picton & Blenheim

Board the Interislander ferry for a 3 hour cruise across Cook Strait to the Marlborough region renowned for herbaceous Sauvignon Blanc. Spend two nights at Straw Lodge; a unique eco-friendly straw-bale building that is nestled amongst the Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir vines.  This is a working vineyard, with home-cooked and fresh home-grown produce. All three exquisite suites have extensive mountain views and the guest kitchen and dining room are fully equipped should you be in the mood to prepare your own evening meal with produce from the onsite vegetable garden.

Two Nights Accommodation at Straw Lodge Vineyard near Blenheim

Day 13 – Icons of Marlborough Tour

Start this exciting day by travelling to Havelock; gateway to the Pelorus and Kenepuru Sounds and which also has the official title of Greenshell Mussel Capital of the World. Enjoy lunch right on the waterfront before boarding a launch and cruising into the tranquil Sounds. Learn from your experienced Skipper the history of the Marlborough Sounds and the history of the pioneering families who have settled in the Sounds over 6 generations. Visit a Greenshell Mussel farm and learn why this delicacy grows so well in the Marlborough Sounds. Taste a local favourite – freshly steamed mussels matched perfectly to a complimentary glass of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc.

Spend your last evening dining at one of the fabulous local restaurants.

Day 14 – Fly home or extend your trip!

Depart Blenheim to connect with your international flight OR Extend your stay and experience some of the South Islands highlights.

Less than 2 hours drive south of Blenheim is Kaikoura, the perfect place for whale watching before continuing onto Christchurch or perhaps cross the island to the Wild West Coast.

VIRTUAL TOUR & DOSSIER

Please take the time to view our “Virtual Tour” for the 14 Day Pure Indulgence tour or download/print the detailed “Tour Dossier”. Both can be found on the right hand column of this page. Alternatively you can simply contact us.

For a comprehensive list of all activities available in each location featured in this tour, please refer to the "Destination Guide" found at the top of this page.

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