Rob & Patti Penrod, Auckland to Queenstown Highlights, Travelled on 11 February 2014
—Everything arranged by FTNZ went off perfectly from the airport pick-up to the final return of our rental car.
We just returned from a three week vacation organized by Fine Tours New Zealand. It was an amazing experience.
We chose to stay primarily at B&B's all of which we found to be wonderful places to stay. I would recommend three in particular.
If you go through Rotorua, I would encourage you to stay with Christine at Doolan's Country Retreat. She has a beautiful place and was a terrific host.
If you stay in Nelson, stay at the Baywick Inn. IT's a very nice place in a good location. The owners were also very helpful.
If you are going to Queenstown, and I can't imagine any trip to New Zealand without at least a few days there, stay with Kim at The Turret, right across from Lake Hayes. She was very helpful with dinner recommendations and other site seeing options.
We also would highly recommend The Westwood resort in Franz Josef.
A feature that FTNZ provided that was a very pleasant surprise was the Kruse GPS system. It obviously gave directions well but it also told very interesting stories about the history of areas as you passed through along with interesting Maori legends.
They also provided a cell phone that made it easy to make local calls for reservations and to confirm activities, plus nice to have in case of an emergency.
Activities we would recommend would be Waihiki Island wine tasting tour, river rafting in Rotorua (thrilling), you have to attend a Maori traditional dinner somewhere and the one in Rotorua is a good one, Abel Tasman kayaking, Franz Josef helicopter, and you have to bungy jump in Queenstown, along with the Shotover jet boat and rafting tour.
Everything arranged by FTNZ went off perfectly from the airport pick-up to the final return of our rental car. They also were very quick to respond to activities that were cancelled and find alternatives or give credit back.
We were 100% satisfied and look forward to using them again when we return to see some of the places we missed on this one. By the way, I would have added an extra day at many of our stops if I did it over again.
—Rob & Patti Penrod, USA
11 February 2014