When it comes to luxury holiday destinations, New Zealand has a priceless natural asset in its landscape - spectacular mountain peaks, crystal-clear lakes and rivers, miles of coastline and sparkling blue sea, secluded islands and untouched native forest.
In these stunning locations not found anywhere else in the world, New Zealand also offers a great choice of luxurious lodge and hotel accommodation - from Blanket Bay at Glenorchy on Lake Wakatipu, or Whare Kea beside Lake Wanaka, in the South Island, to Huka Lodge on the mighty Waikato River at Lake Taupo, or The Farm on Cape Kidnappers in Hawke's Bay, in the North Island.
For the ultimate getaway, some locations are only accessible by helicopter or boat - high on a mountainside, nestled deep in a forest, or surrounded by sea.
New Zealand's luxury hotels feature world-class wine and food, a never ending range of indoor and outdoor activities, and typically friendly but attentive Kiwi staff.
Other luxurious options including chartering a superyacht or arriving by cruise liner.
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Built with native New Zealand timber and stone, the Lodge at Blanket Bay is a place to enjoy perfect peace and solitude or full-on outdoor adventure. Skiing, heli-fishing, fly-fishing, hiking and horse-riding are just some of the possibilities. Guests can choose to arrive by helicopter or drive from Queenstown airport.
Photo credit: Blanket Bay
Designed by American Tom Doak, the golf course at Cape Kidnappers plays above the ocean, atop dramatic cliffs. The ridge and valley landscape provides an epic game, and you can keep an eye out for gannets while you navigate the course. The sixth hole at Cape Kidnappers is widely regarded as one of the great golf holes of the world.
Photo credit: Chris McLennan / Cape Kidnappers
Whare Kea Chalet elevates the luxury and comfort of Whare Kea Lodge to a breathtaking mountain-top high in the Buchanan mountain range, beside Mt Aspiring national park. The chalet - accessible by scenic helicopter flight from lakeside Whare Kea Lodge - has been constructed to respect the remote wild environment. The north-facing site enjoys day-long sunshine, and expansive views of the Southern Alps, from Mt Cook on the north east horizon to Mt Aspiring on the west.
Photo credit: Gilbert van Reenen, Clean Green Images Ltd
The Lodge at Kauri Cliffs, in Matauri Bay, Northland is one of New Zealand's foremost luxury lodges.
The lodge entrance is expansive and welcoming. A white-columned veranda with rocking chairs wraps around the pale-grey weatherboard facade, floor-to-ceiling French doors and large bay windows.
Inside, the rooms are enormous and airy with huge fireplaces, some rough-hewn from railroad sleepers.
Photo credit: Kauri Cliffs