New Zealand must-do experiences

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From glaciers to beaches, whale-watching to wine-tasting, New Zealand has so much to offer. Not sure where to begin? Get started with these places.

Go wild in Queenstown

Queenstown is the perfect place for an adventure. Experience jet boat rides, skiing, river rafting, hiking and biking, or go bungy jumping where it all began. Not for you? Try wine-tasting, spa treatments or alfresco dining for a relaxing alternative. See more Queenstown experiences.

Try wine-tasting on Waiheke

Home to a magical blend of vineyards, olive groves, beaches, art studios and funky cafes, Waiheke Island is an enchanting oasis. Sip New Zealand’s finest wines at one of the many vineyards while enjoying sea views. See more Auckland experiences.

Say 'Kia Ora' to culture

Soak up Maori culture and hospitality in Rotorua, the cultural heart of New Zealand. Visit an authentic pre-European Maori village for a cultural show. After a delicious ‘hangi’ feast, the thermal hot pools will be calling. See more Rotorua experiences.

Bask in Milford Sound's scale

Depart from Queenstown or Te Anau and enjoy an afternoon cruise around Milford Sound's dramatic fiords, spectacular waterfalls and snow-capped peaks. Other ways to see the "Eighth Wonder of the World" is by flightseeing, kayaking or overnight boat ride. See more Fiordland experiences.

Explore geothermal phenomena

Geysers, boiling mud pools & huge volcanic craters are in Rotorua, where nature's forces escape by bubbling, steaming & hissing from the inner earth. Discover the sights and wonders of this city sitting squarely on the Pacific Ring of Fire.

Make furry-footed friends

Ever since the first The Lord of the Rings movie was released in 2001, New Zealand has been known as the home of Middle‑earth. Take a guided tour of the Hobbiton Movie Set in Matamata, land of The Shire's lush pastures.

Heli-hike a glacier

Wild rivers, rainforests, glaciers and rugged beaches invite exploration on the stunning, unspoiled region of the West Coast. Take a helicopter to the top of a glacier for a guided walk onto the Franz Josef or Fox Glacier. See more West Coast experiences.

Kayak the Bay of Islands

Just 3.5 hours from Auckland is Paihia, a great base to explore this aquatic playground of 144 beautiful islands. Swim with dolphins, take a cruise, relax on golden beaches and visit the historic Waitangi Treaty Grounds. Must-do Northland experiences

Cruise with whales in Kaikoura

Just two hours north of Christchurch, picturesque Kaikoura is all about sea adventures. Have an up-close encounter with the Giant Sperm Whales and pods of Dusky dolphins on a cruise or go snorkeling with friendly New Zealand fur seals. 

Sip wine among the vines

New Zealand is world famous for Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc and Central Otago Pinot Noir. But what’s even better is that New Zealand’s main wine growing areas are also some of the most spectacularly beautiful parts of the country. Take a road trip and meet local winegrowers along the Classic New Zealand Wine Trail.

Hike ancient lava flows

The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is often described as New Zealand's best day walk. The 19km hike traverses ancient volcanic terrain, winding its way past emerald lakes, old lava flows and even an active crater. Views of Lake Taupo and the Ruapehu region are magnificent, and make the hike well worth the effort!

Relax on Cathedral Cove beaches

Pack a picnic, follow the coastal trail and enjoy an idyllic day at The Coromandel's Cathedral Cove. Go for a swim, snorkel, kayak or just relax in the sand. From beautiful Hahei Beach you can walk to Cathedral Cove, where a naturally formed archway deserves photographic attention. The Coromandel's top experiences.

Start your New Zealand adventure

For more "must do" ideas, check out #NZMustDo on Instagram

Where to next?

Must-do North Island experiences →

Must-do South Island experiences →

Must-do Free Experiences in New Zealand →