Banner image
New Zealand touring reviews & feedback
Breadcrumb
Text basic

Reviews from Fine Tours New Zealand guests

The reviews and feedback below are unedited

Testimonial list
Jeff & Aileen Tewksbury, Philip & Karen Camfield, The Natural Wonders Of New Zealand, Travelled on 1 March 2020

Nicole did an excellent job arranging our holiday. The events were exactly what we asked for and lodging was very good. Nicole excelled in her efforts to accommodate our specific needs. Great job by Nicole and great trip.

Wendy MacPherson & Scott Anderson, Spectacular New Zealand - North & South Island Highlights, Travelled on 29 February 2020

Amazing trip, we loved NZ and Nichole did a great job with accommodations, the timing between locations and activities. It was like she knew us! It went better than we expected and as well as I had hoped. Thank you!

Amber & Dray Petrik, A New Zealand Explorer, Travelled on 22 February 2020

Fine Tours did an impeccable job at arranging every aspect of our trip! Our travel dates were perfect 2/24/20 - 3/18/20, not too cold and not too hot. Christina was our travel agent at Fine Tours. Christina was patient with the planning our trip. She was very detail-oriented and accommodated our every need. During this time period, we stayed at 15 different places - we were moving around quite a bit in order to tour the beautiful country of NZ. Our main focus was the South Island; however, we did spend 3 days on the North Island. The absolute highlight of the trip was the Helihike of the Tasman Glacier. I was a bit concerned that I would not be able to do this due to anxiety and being a bit claustrophobic. Christina took the time to provide me with every detail of what to expect from clothing to wear, to weather and including the different maneuvering elements while on the glacier. I was the oldest one on the hike (53), but it was definitely the utmost fun. It's an experience that I will never forget. And, thanks to Christina - I made it! We chose to go with a private driver versus touring on a bus. This was the way to go! Kevin was our private driver for about 8 or 9 days straight -he was like a walking encyclopedia. Kevin was well versed on all the history of NZ and such a great welcoming person. During our tour, we never had any incidents! Every driver was on time and waiting for our arrival. Every hotel was magnificent! This was my second time to travel to New Zealand, and I will definitely be back. I give Fine Tours 5+ stars, Christina 5+ stars and Kevin 5+ stars. They all clearly LOVE what they do and have a passion for their industry. THANK YOU for the fantastic memories!!!

William & Mary Hollinshead, Explore New Zealand, Travelled on 11th February 2020

It was good to meet you in Wanaka after our various electronic messages. Now that we are home (and healthy) we want to thank you for guiding us through a really good trip. We enjoyed learning huge amounts of natural history and cultural history, all amid spectacular beauty and rich experiences. We have tried to identify our favourite parts, which turns out to be very difficult. Probably the boat trip on Doubtful Sound was the nest, with just-caught lobsters and fish, and a joyful pod of dolphins. But kayaking and swimming at Abel Tasman plus vulcanism and Maoris at Rotorua were also memorable. We could go on! As you advise others, FYI we also enjoyed the night canopy walk in the redwoods at Rotorua (admittedly, not everyone's cup of tea), and especially the night nature walk at Zealandia in Wellington, where we saw kiwis in the wild. Not only was your itinerary comprehensive and suited to our needs and abilities, but your choices for lodging were also exceptional. From Doolans in Rotorua to Retiro Park Lodge near Nelson and Te Anau Lodge (the train car!), you sent us to places with character - and characters! Other venues were also special, but these stand out. We also appreciated that many of the venues had laundry facilities. Finally, we send extra thanks for coordinating our itinerary with my sister Anne Berg, even quite late in our planning. It was a real treat to share five days of adventures with her. Every step of our trip, we felt that you had anticipated our needs and interests - we could not have been better served. We're already telling friends and family what a great trip you gave us.

Robert Ross & Ai Nguyen, Custom Southern Luxury Experience, Travelled on 21 January 2020

Great trip, awesome arrangements and follow up by Shelley

Robert, Maria & Sebastian Bexell, South Island Wonder Explorer, Travelled on 17 Jan 2020

We had such an amazing experience in New Zealand and it was such an excellent tour organised by Fine Tours! Even when we ran in to trouble with floodings and needed to change itinerary, we got quick, friendly and professional help. We were also very happy with the value for money we received, it saved us so much time and trouble to not have to do the planning, and we came to so many wonderful places we would have never found ourselves! A big heartfelt thank you to Shelley, Christina and the team!

Steve & Cyndi Perry, Spectacular North Island Highlights, Travelled on 18 January 2020

We loved our time that you arranged for us on the North Island. All the hotels were wonderful and centrally located. The attractions and activities you suggested and arranged for were fantastic. Your new app was a great help when we had some extra time and wanted to do something else. Thanks again for all your help!

Don & Marcella Miffitt, 19 Day Natural Discovery Tour, Travelled on 13th January 2020

Incredible trip. Everything went exactly as planned. The accommodations and tours were great. Mount Cook, Glenorchy and Arthur's Pass were the highlights but the whole south island is beautiful. If you could take the trip again, we would skip Auckland and go directly to the south island.

Al & Gail Deana, Iconic New Zealand, Travelled on 10th January 2020

Our trip to New Zealand was fantastic and my wife and I were very pleased with the service we received from Fine Tours New Zealand. I would not hesitate to use them on future trips to New Zealand. The most memorable parts of the trip were in Auckland and ferry ride to Waiheke Island and the South Island, including Mt. Cook and the Glacial Explorers Tour, Queenstown, Te Anu and the Milford Sound cruise and kayaking trip. We also enjoyed the TSS Earnslaw Steamship cruise and dinner. If I came again I would extend the trip by 4-5 days and visit the Marlborough wine region and the Southern part of the North Island.

David & Moira Grout, Ultimate New Zealand Adventure, Travelled on 10 February 2020

Brilliant trip to a brilliant country - only regret that we were there for a month - it should have been two (at least). Thanks for putting together great accommodation and trips - particularly the small group overnight on Doubtful Sound with Fiordland Expeditions - and answering questions so swiftly. Too many highlights to list.

Kathy & Wayne Awai, Natural New Zealand Tour, Travelled on 3 January 2020

Loved the trip and itinerary. Louise did a wonderful job and got us to new destinations not previously visited. Thank you Louise, we had a wonderful time and appreciated all your help. We would recommend Fine Tours New Zealand and Louise Barrett always. Thank you.

George & Heidi Coggeshall, 14 Day Classic New Zealand, Travelled on 4 January 2020

Fine Tours of New Zealand lived up to their name. Great mix of hotels, options, and suggested tours. Everything was well organized and explicitly detailed on the personalized user friendly App they provided. As an experienced traveler (NZ 51st country) I can say FTNZ did a great job!

Roselynn & Mark Lang + John & Marie Olynyk, Southern Highlights Tour, Travelled on 3rd January 2020

Let me begin by saying that everything we were told about New Zealand's South Island by friends and relatives of ours is true - it is a very beautiful part of the world filled with friendly and helpful people wherever we went. On a more practical note, while I am sure that wherever we may have travelled in the South Island there would have been lovely places to see, the suggestions you made for our itinerary were an ideal mix of fun activities, amazing sights and beautiful, relaxing locations. The accommodation locations you arranged for us were conveniently located and very comfortable - we especially enjoyed the beautiful Rainforest Retreat! Enjoying a relaxing holiday is as much about having all the travel and accommodation logistics taken care of prior to leaving as it is about the places visited. To this end, we were impressed with the professionally prepared and clearly presented trip itinerary package you provided and the fact that we had no issues with any of our accommodation or activity bookings wherever we went. Thank you for helping us have the most enjoyable and hassle-free holiday in New Zealand. We would be very happy to recommend you to our friends.

Peter Arakas & Karen Kellerman, New Zealand Grand Tour, Travelled on 2 January 2020

We had a wonderful trip. Kaz did a great job in helping us plan a unique adventure in New Zealand. All of our accommodations were great. Our visit to Stewart Island was a highlight, but it is hard to say anyone part of the trip was better than another as the entire trip was great! Before and throughout the trip we found Fine Tours NZ to be responsive to our questions and helpful in every way - and it was great having their app with our itinerary and suggestions at our finger tips. Thank you for helping make our trip a memorable experience.

Whitney Roberts and Sara Boys, The Very Best of New Zealand, Travelled on 1 January 2020

Our trip included 52 days and encompassed all three islands of New Zealand. We found the planning and execution of all phases handled by Fine Tours New Zealand to be excellent. The documents provided were clear and comprehensive. The attention to detail at each location was flawless. We will unhesitatingly recommend your firm to anyone planning a visit to New Zealand.

Denise M OConnor, Contrasts of New Zealand Tour, Travelled on 9 February 2020

The itinerary Shelley put together allowed me to see and experience everything I wanted to during my time in New Zealand. As a solo traveller of a certain age, I felt well looked after without the stress of being part of an actual tour. Thank you, Shelley. I will definitely advise anyone interested in visiting New Zealand to contact you.

Mike and Annette Mrdak, North Island Scenic Highlights, Travelled on 30th December 2019

We just wanted to drop you a quick note to say thank you for organising our recent tour of the North Island. We thoroughly enjoyed every part of our holiday and it all ran seamlessly thanks to your planning and attention to detail. We are planning on doing a tour of the South Island in the future and will not hesitate to use your services again.

Janne, Iiris, Juuli & Teemu Rajalahti and Stella Ritamäki, New Zealand Adventure Tour, Travelled on 22 December 2019

Thanks Jane for your assistance when planning our trip. We had enough to experience but not too much, like you guided us. There is still room for additional experiences from NZ, maybe in the future. Everything went well and according to the plan, exept for second car rental. They have tried to charge us afterwards for damages that we did not cause. They were not willing to come and inspect the car with us when picking up and when returning. Please give feedback to the Europecar, very unprofessional. All in all fantastic trip. Thank you.

Franco Anselmi and Maria Bertinieri, Essential South Island Holiday, Travelled on 26th December 2019

We found the tour well planned, allowing us to visit the most interesting places in the South Island and moving place to place never being in a hurry. Always enough time to enjoy each location. Everything worked out perfectly without any difficulty whatsoever. Chelsea has been very useful throughout the experience. In the beginning by proposing an excellent tour itinerary and by suggesting the best way to take advantage of our time. An excellent trip very enjoyable organized very well and without encountering any problems, we will strongly suggest to friends.

Theresa Baseski, Francine, Emily, Hannah & Julia Gabriel and Bradley Sedor, Graduation Adventure to New Zealand, Travelled on 20th December 2019

Every interaction with Fine Tours was perfect. The staff was kind, responsive and helpful. We worked very closely with Jane from Fine Tours, she was our agent. In a nutshell, OUTSTANDING!!! Very available, professional, insightful with tremendous knowledge of New Zealand and all that it has to offer. Jane actually listened to what our desires were. I knew we were going to be in good hands when Jane asked me so many questions about me and my family and what our desires were. She made excellent suggestions. She gently redirected where necessary, and her knowledge of the country, its landscape and all of the activities available shone through. I had 1 or 2 "special requests" and Jane came through beautifully. Our 3 weeks were perfect!!! We had great comfort knowing that someone from FT would be available 24/7 if needed, and in fact, were needed only once. But of course, it was off-hours, and the response was quick and accommodating and perfect. We interacted with at least 3 other travel agent types prior to committing to Fine Tours, and have to say we've got no regrets and without hesitation 100% I would recommend Fine Tours again. And, as a bonus, they came back with the lowest price per person cost than all others. We are on the east coast of the United States, and with the time difference, this all could have been pretty tough to organize. Never ever was it a problem. Everything was accurate, professional and exactly as advertised There were a few short weeks about 6 months prior to our travel, where Jane would be unavailable, and we had the opportunity to work with several others including Luke. Again, very capable, kind, professional and accommodating. He put our mind at ease, filled in the small gap beautifully, and when Jane returned, it was seamless. If you're planning on a trip to New Zealand, I cannot overstate how terrific our experience was with Fine Tours and specifically Jane.

Carol & William Daly and Shaunna Phillips, Top of North Island Tour, Travelled on 13th December 2019

You represented us well! We got our sense of Auckland back and headed to a favourite place for dinner. We enjoyed checking out the wineries on Waiheke and then we were on our way to Coromandel. That was a fantastic little town, and the Anchor Lodge was wonderful. It is very well managed, and the pod was just perfect for the three of us. We enjoyed driving all over the peninsula and saw much over the days that we were there. We got up to Russell on December 19th and were totally enchanted by the village, but especially the Arcadia Lodge. Peter and Greg provide a delightfully comfortable and impressively excellent experience. We have never seen such excellence. We easily learned our way around, and the took the ferry to Paihia so we could get our bearings on that side of the bay. We really enjoyed the Christmas Dinner that you reserved for us at the Sky Tower! It was impressive. Before we knew it, we were at Auckland Airport, waiting to fly out. You did a great job on our behalf, Kaz. This was a bittersweet trip for us, having seen so much of your beautiful country four years back with our son making us a foursome. There was not too much left on the North Island for us to see, and Coromandel was a great place to start out. Russell, however, was the perfect place to end up! Thank you so very much, well done.

Miranda Alegre & John Sablan, Auckland to Queenstown Essential Highlights Tour, Travelled on 29 November 2019

Nicole Andrews was excellent in helping us create wonderful memories and experiences while visiting New Zealand. This country is absolutely beautiful with so much to offer. In our short time there (10 days), Nicole put together an eventful itinerary for us that created the type of experience we wanted from this trip. It helped a lot that all transportation, room accommodations and activity bookings were arranged for us in advance so that we could spend our time and energy enjoying the activities and the commute between places.They were also great with sticking to our preferred budget. We were nervous about traveling to New Zealand because the country is so big and we didn't know where to start with planning our vacation. Fortunately, we booked with Fine Tours and they provided a full itinerary with all the necessary details that made the process smooth overall. We did encounter some hiccups with flight issues (unrelated to Fine Tours) and inclement weather that hindered a part of our vacation, however, Nicole and the other agents communicated with us proactively and moved things around to ensure we maximized our time. One of the best experiences for us! We highly recommend that you use Fine Tours NZ!

Alaka, Srinivasan & Rukmini Iyengar, South to North Road & Rail Tour, Travelled on 8 December 2019

Before the trip: Once contacted for information, Nicole was extremely pro-active in calling back to the US and explaining the details. She followed up whenever we had questions. This gave us high confidence in the company. Her email reminders were precise about the dates for payments and feedback about reservations. She was very flexible in understanding our requirements with a senior citizen in terms of Car and Hotel reservations. Her itinerary updates were in our hands well before our trip for us to mentally prepare for travel days and sightseeing. The trip: Upon landing, we were met by a friendly chauffeur who handed us the tour package and drove us to our hotel. When we could not go to Greymouth and Franz Josef due to flooding, we were relieved to be able to talk to a representative of New Zealand Fine Tours who put us at ease and reassured us about changes to our itinerary, even on a Sunday. Nicole was quick to call Monday morning with all changes taken care of, including refunds. Hotel accommodations through the entire trip were TOP CLASS. We were very pleasantly surprised by the care taken by the touring company and Nicole in terms of locations of the accommodations and close access to food and other amenities. Breakfast was taken care of in the hotels, which was a big plus. Refunds resulting from tour cancellations due to bad weather were resolved without us even having to talk to someone. Each place we visited left us with pleasant memories for a lifetime. We have not seen a country where we have been treated in such a friendly and affectionate manner by the locals. Overall, we want to give the highest possible satisfaction/happiness rating to New Zealand Fine Tours. Nicole's personal touch made a very big difference and the country of New Zealand left a permanent impression in our lives. Thank you for all the pleasant memories.

Joseph Birchak & Kristy Fries, Aroha of New Zealand Honeymoon Tour, Travelled on 29 November 2019

Thank you Shelley and the whole Fine Tours New Zealand team for making our honeymoon an unforgettable experience. We had so much fun exploring the country and can't wait to come back!! I recommend you all to anyone interested in visiting New Zealand. Thank you all!!!

Nancy & John Winters, A South Island Explorer Tour, Travelled on 23 November 2019

Christina was awesome in helping us plan our trip. Our hotels and itinerary were perfect and we had a wonderful time. It was great to work with someone who lives there and knows first hand about the areas. It was nice to know we had someone local in case we had any issues, which we didn't. My sister used New Zealand Fine Tours and I am glad that she recommended them to us. They are a very professional group of people.

Regan & Susan Stinnett, Customised Classic New Zealand Trip, Travelled on 4 November 2019

We loved our 19 day trip to New Zealand! What a beautiful country with amazingly wonderful and friendly people. The places that you arranged for us to stay ranged from very good to amazing. Peppers on the Point and the Hermitage were absolutely fantastic and most of the others were a pleasure to stay at. The only one that was not quite as good was the Great Ponsonby Art Hotel although the people there were friendly and helpful. The only thing that we would change a little was the three day stay at Queenstown. We really needed only two days there. Thank you all so much for doing all of the logistics for our trip. It enabled us to have a great time every day and to take home wonderful memories. We have told our children that if they ever can't find us for an extended time, just look for us in New Zealand since we will probably have gone there to live.

May & Win Van, Customized Auckland to Queenstown Highlights of New Zealand, Travelled on 31 October 2019

We just returned from a fabulous 17-day self driving tour of New Zealand arranged by Fine Tours. Besides the breathtaking beauty of the country, what made the trip such a memorable one was the excellent planning and services provided by the agency and, specifically, the agent who worked with us, Nicole Andrews. It started out with Nicole responding to our inquiry over the website in a day. This pro-activeness in recommendations and timeliness in responses became a hallmark of our dealing with Nicole. My husband and I are limited in our physical ability. It is important for us that our agent understands our needs and pays attention to our requests. In planning our itinerary, Nicole took into consideration reasonableness of the driving distance and the number of activities to undertake daily. We were able to enjoy the activities and scenery everyday without feeling rushed. It is important for us to optimize our trip so we get to see as many noted sites of this beautiful country. We believe the experience of Fine Tours is the primary reason they could quickly identify the sites we should visit and the towns we should stay. It was not possible to visit all the sites on both islands in the time we had. With their input, we felt comfortable with the trade-offs we had to make. We drove about 1,400 miles in 17 days which was manageable and we got to visit all the famous sites with plenty of time to make stops at scenic vistas. As much as possible, Nicole arranged for us to stay at hotels at the level we requested. She also tried to make sure our rooms have a good view of the lake/ocean/harbor. We saw so many beautify sunrises and sunsets during our trip. Lastly, it was the seamless collaboration of the Fine Tours team that made them a standout. We had to make a couple of minor changes when our agent was out of the office. Her colleague took care of our changes as if we were their clients. We did not feel at any given point that we had to worry about our requests not being met. I would recommend Fine Tours to arrange a tour of New Zealand in a heart beat. They have different programs for different budgets and different interests. We are grateful for their excellent planning and execution so we successfully checked off a item on our bucket list 15 years in the making.

Mary Irene & Robert Osowski, New Zealand Luxury Anniversary Trip Review, 14-Day Vacation, Kayaking Milford Sound, Mount Cook & Scenery, Travelled on 3rd November 2019

My husband and I wanted to go to New Zealand for our 20th anniversary trip but had no idea where to start nor did we have the time to do all the research. The travel planner quickly got back to us with a sample itinerary that encompassed the North and South Islands. She took the time to talk to me about our interests and preferences in accommodations. We quickly realized that we couldn't hit all the places we wanted in the 14 days. The planner patiently helped us narrow things down and came up with an itinerary that really fit our interests. We ended up spending most of our trip in the South Island and it was spectacular. This travel company was always quick to respond to any inquiries that we had and booking was very easy. The itinerary they provide was very detailed and included estimates on driving times and cost for petrol. They also provided a mobile app that laid out our entire itinerary on a day by day basis which included the accommodations, rental cars, private transfers and any booked activities as well as information about the city we were in. Before the trip, we were given instructions on what to do and where to go upon arrival at the airport. The trip went flawlessly and the itinerary was perfect. Upon arrival, we were greeted by a representative who had our trip packet. We loved every accommodation and really just wish we could've stayed longer. We have no regrets booking with Fine Tours and highly recommend them. They are pretty thorough with details and everything was very organized. Thanks travel planner and this travel company for a memorable anniversary trip. 
There are so many memorable parts to our journey! The scenery all around the South Island is just breathtaking even in rainy weather. Waking up to a view of Mount Cook and kayaking Milford Sound have to be in the top.

Carolyn Kiel & Theresa Rodrigues, Ultimate Middle Earth Tour, Travelled on 19 September 2019

Absolutely wonderful itinerary and tour!! Everything was planned and communicated extremely well by Shelley and all worked like clockwork!! Wonderful trip with many very special memories: People, scenery, LotR movie sites, tour guides, interisland ferry, accommodations, car rental, etc were all excellent and as described! No hidden costs! The documents provided were exceptionally clear and presented great detail to ensure we had the right expectations, and everything surpassed them! Really very organized and an outstanding tour! Thank you for all of your expertise and planning on our behalf, Shelley! A wonderful trip through New Zealand and once-in-lifetime trip to Middle Earth! THANK YOU!

Eddy Hermawan Group, Southern Highlights Queenstown to Christchurch Private Tour, Travelled on 14 September 2019

We had a wonderful time at South Island NZ with our friendly and patient driver guide Duncan. We're a group of mostly elderly guests and Duncan was really helpful throughout the trip.

Roy, Annalia, Gabrielle & Miguel Briones, Iconic New Zealand Whirlwind, Travelled on 19 July 2019

Our family are pretty seasoned travelers and usually took care of our travel itinerary, bookings, etc. This time we decided to use a travel agency and we were very happy with our decision! Jane Zwerrenz of Fine Tours New Zealand was very attentive, knowledgeable, and professional. She listened carefully to our expectations and provided an itinerary that allowed us to explore and admire this amazingly beautiful country. Our time frame was short - we only had 7 days to see as much as we can from our long wish list of places. We are very happy with the outcome! Our NZ vacation was wonderful! We don’t know if we will have another chance to visit NZ again, thus we are very happy we had Jane Zwerrenz and Fine Tours New Zealand help us make this trip one to remember!

Danny & Francine Crowley, Classic Upper North Island Touring Route, Travelled on 1 July 2019

My wife and I recently took on the Classic Upper North Island Touring Route. This was our 2nd trip to NZ and we again relied on the services of a customised itinerary by Fine Tours. Christina Brockie did a wonderful job and booked us into some fantastic luxury lodges and boutique motels. Everything went to plan from arriving at the airport, collecting the hire vehicle and travel maps outlining the best roads to travel. The Kiwis are at the top of the game when it comes to custom travel. The scenery was superb and the hosts at the various lodges really make our stay so much more enjoyable. Tarlton's Lodge at Paihia and Pepper's at Rotorua were something special. As it was July we did run into a bit of rain however considering our home in Western NSW is in drought it was good to see that it does actually rain. We came across a lot of fascinating towns such as Matakana, Warkworth and Maungatapere. Thanks again Christina and Fine Tours.

John and Gayle Mead, Gerald and Carol Henderson, The Customised Luxury Grand Explorer, Travelled on 17 March 2019

I'm a little delinquent in submitting a review of our trip but wanted to express how impressed we were with all of the arrangements made by Fine Tours! Traveling with another couple, we wanted to see NZ and arranged a Customized Luxury Grand Explorer trip through Fine. Everything was arranged perfectly..from the moment we arrived in Auckland on 3/17 to our Departure from Christchurch on 4/11. Driving ourselves, we started on the North Island and all of our lodging and tour activities were wonderful. We particularly loved our time at Cape Kidnappers and Queenstown. Do not miss the helicopter trip from Queenstown to Milford Sound..it is fantastic! Our original tour arranger left Fine and we were picked up by Christina Brockie who did an amazing job! Part of our trip had to be re-routed due to the flooding around Franz Joseph..so Christina got us booked into a great place in Dunedin..Finally, we felt we got excellent value for our travel dollars..it was the trip of a lifetime..THANK YOU FINE TOURS (and Christina)!

Shaival Parikh & Richa Shah (arranged by Dharmesh), Auckland to Queenstown 11 Day Honeymoon Highlights, Travelled on 6 February 2019

My husband & I wanted to visit New Zealand for our honeymoon but were lost with the number of options, as to what would be the best fit of activities and places for us to visit. Fine Tours made the experience an incredibly easy and wonderful one for us, by understanding our requirements and giving us the suggested itinerary within our budget. They were also helpful if we heard of additional activities that were not part of our itinerary but we needed some information or options to book. It was an incredibly enjoyable experience, and we feel very grateful to Fine Tours for playing a big role in facilitating the same. Thank you!

Scott Hiles & Michael Fonte, A Customised New Zealand Highlights, Travelled on 15 April 2019

Fine Tours New Zealand promised a great Birthday adventure and they delivered. Planning was extremely easy with Christina. In fact, it was so easy that I got nervous that this was a scam that had been rehearsed and carefully choreographed. I checked the web site numerous times for fear that I had been taken. But I had not. Everything that Christina planned worked out perfectly. Every driver showed up exactly on time, every booking at a B&B was perfectly matched to the trip goals, and every activity came off without a hitch. It amazed me that we had the same driver throughout our stay in every town and it was really entertaining to get to know a few of them. I marveled throughout the trip about how perfectly everything worked and how well timed it was. The only part of the vacation that had a problem was the flight to and from New Zealand. New Zealand Air was late, connections weren’t made, and we were rerouted to Dunedin instead of Queenstown. But once we got to our first point of the trip, everything worked perfectly. And, even during the problems of getting there, as soon as I called Fine Tours New Zealand, when we missed the first connection, I knew I was in good hands. Abby helped me in the wee hours of the morning while the offices were closed and provided a sense that she was there to help me… and indeed she did. When the office opened, Christina took over and got everything adjusted. Overall, I still feel like I stepped out of a fairy tale when this trip was done. Thank you Christina and Abby and everyone at Fine Tours New Zealand for a wonderful 50th birthday trip.

Christine & Tri Tran, Auckland to Queenstown Highlight Tour, Travelled on 1 April 2019

Our first time doing a custom tour and we are fully impressed. Abby Alexander was patient, professional, engaged and proactive. Without her, the tour would not have been as smooth. She handled all the lodgings, transfers, transportation, activities. Everything ran without a hitch. Thank you Abby for an unforgettable trip and helping us discover your beautiful country.

Peg & Jim Reiter, The Ultimate New Zealand National Parks Tour, Travelled on 21 March 2019

This was an absolutely amazing trip. Never have I experienced such natural beauty at every turn in the road or step on a trail. All of our accommodations were lovely. The activities we did exceeded our expectations. No detail was missed. This was, quite honestly, one of the most amazing vacations we've experienced. Fine Tours New Zealand did an outstanding job for us. Even when our itinerary needed to be changed due to a bridge outage, NZ Fine Tours did not disappoint! They rerouted us to beautiful accommodations and gorgeous driving routes. What a fabulous trip!

Gregory & Pauline Poulin, The Ultimate Middle Earth Tour, Travelled on 8 March 2019

Our trip to New Zealand was close to three years in the planning - thank you Laura for sticking with us and helping us plan the most amazing adventure! We opted for a self-driving tour of the North and South Islands with highlights centered around The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. IT. WAS. AMAZING! Our accommodations were perfect for every leg (I especially enjoyed our time at the Chateau Tongariro – it was like stepping into the past). The activities planned were spot on and more amazing than I’d expected, which is quite an accomplishment because I had built this trip up so much that I didn’t think it could possibly meet my expectations. We experienced landing on a glacier in a helicopter and taking off in a ski-plane. We repelled 100 meters into the Waitomo Caves, we took a jet boat up the Dart River, hiked to the top of Mount Sunday and had a champagne lunch, took an unbelievable private helicopter flight over the great forests around Queenstown, walked through an 80-million-year-old forest, and visited the most amazing museums. And although the weather in Tongariro didn’t allow us to take our aerial flight over the volcanoes, we did make up for it by taking an open-air biplane flight over wine country in Blenheim which was spectacular. Plus, how many people get to experience a birthday feast in Hobbiton?! Every stop on our journey is a memory we will never forget. I can’t say enough about New Zealand Fine Tours, they organized and planned our trip perfectly – we had no stress at all. Thank you again for truly making this our trip of a lifetime!

Brian & Linda Pankow, Customised 25 Day Essential New Zealand 2019, Travelled on 2 March 2019

We thoroughly enjoyed our trip to New Zealand!! Of the cities/places visited, we would not have changed any of them. We just would have loved to have more time to visit more of the country. Nisse did a fantastic job listening to what we liked and providing us with options. She was very prompt in getting back to me on any questions or changes we had. I would definitely recommend Nisse!!

Gord & Patti Thompson, Customised South Island Natural Wonders, Travelled on 15 March 2019

We are now back home after a wonderful month away. Our New Zealand trip was amazing! We loved the beauty of the country and the relaxed, friendly people we met along the way. Thanks Shelley for organizing every detail so beautifully! It was such a great adventure to wake up each day and explore something new. Highlights included… the overnight on Milford Sound Staying at Fiordland Lodge…gourmet meals! the eco tour in Wanaka Kayaking at Franz Joseph…quiet tranquility against the backdrop of the majestic mountains The Bay of Many Coves…what a gorgeous way to cap off the trip! We were lucky to leave Franz Joseph before the bridge collapsed. I’m sure that you were busy changing plans for your clients. The only excursion which was cancelled due to the rainstorm was the Wilsons day trip in Abel Tasman. I stopped off at their kiosk and they said that they were refunding the money to you. Please let me know if it came through. We were able to get out for a walk in Abel Tasman which was fun! Thanks again for your assistance in creating a beautiful experience for us.

Paul Shaffer & Laura Martone, A Customised Lord of the Rings Scenic Explorer, Travelled on 18 March 2019

If we had to do it over again, we probably would have gone for New Zealand's spring rather than its fall, but the self-drive tour and all of its daily excursions went exactly as planned. Out of 14 days we only had 2 days of rain and were able to get some great pictures and had some memorable adventures. My thanks to Christina for organizing all of this and working so well with the schedule changes we made as the trip grew closer! I highly recommend Fine Tours New Zealand.

The Cusacks, Shriners, Harms and Carnahans, A Quick Trip Around The South, Travelled on 16 March 2019

We had an amazing trip! We absolutely loved everything you set up for us! Everything went so smoothly and as planned! We are planning on taking our adult kids there in a couple of years and will most definitely use your services again! Thanks soooo very much for your good work!

Emily Cardillo & Josh Johnson, New Zealand Honeymoon Adventure, Travelled on 13th March 2019

Our travel planner at this travel company was professional and quick to respond with everything! She was able to adjust our reservations a few times, based on changes in what we were looking for. Each accommodation was reserved without issue, and this was a huge relief when checking in! We were able to check in quickly and go about enjoying our travels. Our travel planner gave some great recommendations on things to do in the various cities and we truly appreciated her guidance and expertise.

Marc & Rhonda Poston, New Zealand Highlights in 15 Days, Travelled on 11 March 2019

This was an incredible tour for our first time to New Zealand. There was so much more that we wanted to see, but we just didn't have the time. The small towns were the best places to stay for us.

Jordan & Valerie Kreidberg, South Island National Parks and Grand Walking Experience on the Milford Track, Travelled on 6 March 2019

Shelley thanks very much for all the organizing. We had a great time. Both the Milford and the Abel Tasman were incredible, each in its own way. The weather on the Milford was great except going over the pass, when it was raining hard, so no views at all, except of many many waterfalls. No views actually made it easier for Valerie. We have thousands of photos we are sorting through. Having drivers helped a lot. If I were to add one thing in retrospect, it would have been to add a helicopter flight to hike in the sort of terrain I was hoping to find, because we didn't really find it anywhere but we probably could have via helicopter or an extended backpacking trip. Maybe we'll do that sometime in the future.

Jeff & Charlotte, Adam & Victoria and Banks & Sara, Southern South Island Explorer, Travelled on 1 March 2019

The tour overall was fantastic with great accommodations. We particularly recommend the overnight on the Doubtful Sound and the wine tour. The glowworm cave is definitely worth doing, although the electronic pictures that they provide for $20 are of such low resolution that they are not worth it (and I followed up with them to check). This is a shame, because they don't allow you to take your own pictures inside the cave either (for good reason I allow). Thank you Fine Tours for helping us have such a nice week with our family.

Dennis & Amanda Ritchie and Stephen & Hannah Stinger, Customised Auckland to Queenstown Iconic Highlights, Travelled on 6 March 2019

As we try to get over lingering jet lag, we just wanted to thank you for making our adventure in New Zealand so successful. We had a ball, in no small part, to all the customizing you did. Your picks on hotels were all perfect. We wanted to stay an extra day for every one of them. The real treat and help for us was the comprehensive packet of information that you provided. The directions, explanations of what to expect to see on each leg of the trip, and the very good atlas all came in handy repeatedly.

Shelia and Bill Atkins & Nancy and Dean Mowrey, Essential South Island, Travelled on 2 March 2019

The tour was wonderful. Very professional and no surprises. Our Tour representative changed multiple times during the reservation process however our trip was planned perfectly. The inns and hotels were just as described and no surprises. Mt. Cook and Milford Sound was the highlight of our 2 week journey. So sad for our Christchurch new friends... The city has so much to offer and did not deserve the problems they have endured. Best place to eat in Christchurch is Fiddlesticks....we went there 3 times. Great food and great service. Hope to return again...Oh, and by the way......you will LOVE Air New Zealand..we love Zealand!

Lois Boschee & Friends, 21 Day Discover New Zealand Self-Drive Tour, Travelled on 28 February 2019

Six women took on this trip as a challenge. We all took turns driving but it was truly a joint project and I can proudly say we returned the rentals with no dents or scratches. The accommodations were adequate and located close to most activities. The trip provided a very nice variety of city and country exploring opportunities. Three weeks would seem like enough time but turned out to be not quite adequate. Would recommend the experience to anyone curious about New Zealand.

Debbie, Greg & Jenna Halvorson, Iconic New Zealand Journey, Travelled on 2nd March 2019

Our travel planner did a tremendous job with our itinerary. She captured and scheduled just enough adventures to keep us busy while still allowing some time to explore on our own.

Cal Karr & Jayne Mohr, The Best of New Zealand, Travelled on 18 February 2019

Hi Amanda We just got home after two weeks in the South Pacific and time in Hawaii. You were right on with the accommodations you provided. We were not disappointed with any of your selections. Travelers we met along the way were complaining about some of the places they were staying. 30 days was perfect giving us time and never feeling pressure to move on. We enjoyed doing our own side trips and excursions. We never had plans till we arrived and were able to figure it out as we went along. We liked the freedom. It always worked out. We did a lot of walking and hiking doing 4 to 7 miles most days. Only one thing we did differently in the 30 days was turning our car in a day early in Wellington. We do not want a car in cities as we prefer Uber. It was much easier to take Uber to the boat terminal than drive,turn the car in, and haul luggage a 100 meters. Our favorite hotels were peppers, boutique hotel in Queenstown, and the Heritage in Christchurch. We had booked one nite at the distinction which we did not like. Forgot to mention how much we liked the the accommodation at lake Tekapo. Sab and Anne Marie we amazing hosts. This was a fabulous trip and you did a amazing job putting it together and meeting our needs. Not sure I submitted this in the right place let me know. Again this whole trip was very well organized and planned perfectly. Thank you.

Jean Radtke & Erik Madisen, Behind The Scenes Experience, Travelled on 15 February 2019

Thank you for giving my husband and me the most remarkable and beautiful vacation of our lifetime. From the great cities like Auckland and Queenstown, to the beauty of mountains, vineyards and stargazing, to adventures like Hobbiton, Whale-watching and the Kiwi Encounter, it was the most enjoyable vacation we've ever had. The people (Kiwi) and the place are beautiful!

Dirk & Marian Edmiston, Customised 17 Day Essential Wine Adventure, Travelled on 26 January 2019

Very much enjoyed the trip and your follow up. Couple of thoughts: 1. Would have stayed at least two nights at each location, one nighters are tough. 2. Ratings by us of lodgings: Top to bottom.. Peppers on Point, Q'Town, Peppertree, Bolton, Sofitel, Montreal, Wanaka Home, Hermitage, McHardy, Beaufort. 3. After Christchurch should have gone to Dunedin area. 4. Wine was great!

Jim Malter & Elaine Gadzicki, Making the Most of New Zealand's Nature and Wildlife, Travelled on 16 February 2019

We were promptly greeted by the driver who took us to and from Auckland. He was very polite and prompt. There seemed to big a mix-up on the departure time back to the airport on 19Feb, his manager apparently contacted him and told him to be at the M Social at 5 AM. Our 5:45 AM pick up got us there with plenty of time to spare. This also happened in Queenstown when the driver picked us up for the "Funyaks safari" trip and dropped us off downtown, he wasn't happy...Regarding the M Social, you were right, it was in a great location. The concierge was excellent and steered us to 2 very good restaurants and we found the 3rd and he concurred. The hotel housekeeping was just okay, basically they just made the bed each day. Tirtiri Matangi was fabulous and another great day in nature. I was also glad that you told us to book in advance. The ferry was sold out. Cycling in the Catlins was so much fun and probably our favorite part of the trip. Snow from Trail Journeys and his wife Jude were wonderful and we had a lot of fun together. They had not cycled here before and neither did anyone from their company. It was up and down big hills with views of the coastline and the countryside. He also took us to other places in the area. It was breathtakingly beautiful and we saw a lot of birds and other wildlife along the way. We all agreed that the accommodations were nice. In Curio Bay the hotel was clean but there are some cottages along the beach as well that were very quaint and inexpensive. The Whistling Frog was very nice but the 4 of us agreed that restaurant food was not up to par. This is the only place to eat! And Happy Hour was 4-5! One note about the cycling--we were heading west into strong winds everyday and we all agreed that it makes sense to try the trip going east. Jim and I were riding regular bikes but they had electric bikes and Jude was able to climb the steep hill easily! Te Anau was lovely and so was the drive to get there. The B&B was perfect. The Milford Sound was beautiful and we wondered about all the other fiords along this coast and whether they were accessible. We did not care for Southern Discoveries, it was rather touristy and the kayaking was a very short trip and not worth it. Queenstown was fun and we enjoyed the Kiwi Birdlife Park. The trip down the Dart River was very worth it despite all the gear we had to wear! It was a beautiful day. The Queenstown House Boutique Hotel was nice but we did not have a room in the main building. Our room part of another building and it was very small room with no view although the hotel was up on a hill and had a great view! We enjoyed a delicious dinner at Rata and was in fact our best meal on the trip. We visited a winery and spent some shopping time in Arrowtown. All in all, it was a great trip for us and thank you for your help in putting it together Shelley!

Evan & Kaitlin Easley, The Ultimate Customised Middle Earth Tour, travelled on 9th January 2019

I have so many wonderful things to say about Fine Tours New Zealand. My husband and I had been planning a trip to New Zealand for years and with Fine Tours, our trip was even better than we could have even imagined. Laura was amazing at coordinating everything. It took the stress out of the specifics of planning. I just had to pick areas we wanted to go and Laura would suggest activities and pick hotels in our budget. We flew into Auckland. The airport transfer was easy and smooth. Receiving the rental car two days later went perfectly. The guidebook was wonderful with all of the directions if the GPS was unclear. We could just relax and enjoy the vacation following all of Laura’s instructions laid out. All but two of the hotels we stayed at were absolutely amazing. The other two were just decent. However, Laura picked hotels that were easy walking distance to town centers with dining, shopping and activities. Her planning made the trip so easy and enjoyable. I would have had a hard time finding that good of hotel deals in our budget. Then there were the activities. Each was better than the next. Some were things we wouldn’t have thought to do but we are so glad we did-caving in Waitomo? It was amazing. The Edoras Lord of the Rings bus tour was so beautiful. Even if someone didn’t enjoy Lord of the Rings, the scenery on that trip was just breathtaking. I am so grateful to Fine Tours for flawlessly arranging such an amazing trip for us. 

Gregg Bradstock, Stephanie, Zoe & Zach Aldrich, Essential South Island Tour, travelled on 30 December 2018

Awesome trip overall - we all really enjoyed it. We do have a few suggestions for improving the experience for future customers.  Our biggest comment was that In Queenstown, it would have been nice to know that the hotel we were staying at was a 30-minute water taxi away from the downtown area.  It was a nice hotel, but I think we'd have preferred staying in Queenstown proper

Other comments:

1) We LOVED the George in Christchurch, and its concierge, Mark, who had some great suggestions for our time there and found us a last minute dinner reservation on New Year's Eve (that is one place I feel you dropped the ball - you and talked about your making a reservation, but it wasn't done; someone else in the office helped out, but it was Mark who found the perfect place for us.)

2) Suggested stops and hikes along our drive were great – we especially loved Lake Tekapo and the Observatory.

3) Mt. Cook was a real highlight - and the excursion was awesome.

4) The Milford Sound day was wonderful, in spite of having our flight back cancelled.

5) Absolutely loved Wanaka - esp the Tin Tub lodge, and could easily have spent more time here.

6) Franz Joseph was disappointing b/c we didn't get to see the glacier, but we did get great massages at the hotel.

7) We liked the Tranzalpine train, but honestly, as a non-driver on the trip, I got as much from our drive days as I did from the train ride.  I liked it but I wouldn't say it was a highlight. 

8) We had you schedule our flight back to Auckland, and it gave us a 6-hour layover in Auckland - my bad for not asking you about flight times, but I would have opted for a shorter layover even if it cost more.  It would have been nice to have had the options offered and been able to make the choice.

9) All the transfer drivers were lovely and on time.

Like I said, only very small disappointments on an overall fantastic trip.  thank you so much for all you help

Alastair and Alison Burt, Customised North Island Food and Wine Explorer, travelled on 4th January 2019

Just a short note to say what a wonderful trip we had in the North Island. It all exceeded expectations. We particularly liked Martinborough and the Foodie tour there, we will be back!  Thanks for all your help, a very smooth and well organised holiday.

Jean-Louis Castro-Malaspina & Elizabeth Penn, A Customized Tour, Travelled on 27th December 2018

Our travel consultant was extremely responsive and helpful throughout the entirety of our trip. Everything was very thoroughly documented and very well organized. The very few times we had questions she was able to handle it very rapidly and professionally. So glad we booked our honeymoon through Zicasso and Fine Tours New Zealand.

Susan, Leo and Joe Pospichal, Auckland to Queenstown Highlights, travelled on 26th December 2018

I have been meaning to send you an email to thank you once again for all you did to plan our New Zealand trip.  Everything went smoothly, that is until our last adventure to Milford Sound.  We were really bummed that day because the weather seemed so good at the time in Queenstown, but we do understand that one cannot control the weather, and we would rather be safe than sorry.  Our only day of really bad weather (rainy and cloudy) was the Sunday when we dropped Joe at the airport.  We had nothing on our agenda that day so it became a day of rest and relaxation… we checked out some local stores & the local bowling alley, and took a nap.

We were happy with all of our accommodations. We liked the variety that you booked for us… from the executive suites in Blenheim to the comfy motel rooms with the great views at Mt. Cook to the quiet location and cabin-feel of the Kinross Cottages to the city hotels with great locations in Rotorua, Wellington, and Queenstown. Great job!

I just wanted to thank you personally for planning our trip and taking time to chat with me when I had questions at the start.  We thoroughly enjoyed our time in New Zealand.  We liked the freedom of being able to make little photo stops when we were driving through the countryside and along the coast.  We saw SO MUCH!  (BTW, I noticed the Fine Tours office location in Wanaka when we visited.  Sorry, but no time to stop in to say “hello” and “thanks”.)

Thanks again for making our 2018/2019 winter break a memorable one.

Pankaj, Anamika, Amisha & Avya Shukla, 9 Day New Zealand Contrasts, Travelled on 25th December 2018

Extremely helpful, and well planned, Zero Hitches!! The Jane was a totally professional and she customized the trip to our requirement. The most enjoyable parts of our trip was Whitianga, Mt Cook and Queenstown. Can skip christchurch.  If we did this trip again we would make no changes, very well organized,

Kathy, David, Michelle & Jason Blackburn, Mountains, Lakes and Fiords, Travelled on 22 December 2018

I would highly recommend Fine Tours New Zealand! Jane did an excellent job of listening to me on how we like to vacation, and she put together an itinerary that matched it! We traveled from Queenstown to Christchurch and the itinerary worked out perfectly. Milford Sound and Mt. Cook were the hi-lights of the trip, but we enjoyed all of it! If I get the chance to go back and explore more of New Zealand, I will definitely use Fine Tours! Thanks for an amazing trip!

Chan, Koh & Ngiam Families, New Zealand Family Adventure, travelled on 2nd December 2018

Thank you Jane for the excellent and prompt service starting from the planning and advice on the design of the trip to the support rendered during the trip and post trip. It has been a most wonderful and enjoyable experience in NZ. 

Family from Hong Kong, Essential South Island Highlights tours, travelled on 22nd December 2018

I would highly recommend Fine Tours - we had a fabulous 10-day trip to the south island, and Laura put together an incredible itinerary for us that was detailed, just right, and catered to our every need. She booked tours for us that were run by very good operators, we were met and picked up at airports/hotels efficiently - everything was made easy and ran smoothly. We plan to return and north island this year, and will definitely want to work with Laura again’’

Theresa & Jimmy Parson, New Zealand Contrasts, Travelled on 18th November 2018

The travel representative was amazing we loved her and she did a great job finding activities we loved all the hiking and the beautiful views. If I came again I would do the South Island first and then the north.

John, Lorna & Elizabeth Preece, South Island and National Parks Tour, travelled on 25th November 2018

1st of all, We had a wonderful NZ experience 2nd – We had a wonderful NZ experience.

I am glad we limited our vacation to the part that we did, I can’t imagine doing North & South islands in this amount of time.  We saw a lot of wonderful NZ scenery, and our timing was perfect for the spring flowers.  Weather cooperated with rain at night and light drizzle a couple of days but not enough to stop me from taking over 1300 pictures.  Lots of nice memories, IT WAS the trip of a lifetime for us.  Thank you for facilitating this wonderful time.  Both Milford Sound and Glacier Boat tours were great, our guides all commented on the perfect weather for viewing both of these areas and commented that 1 out of 3 trips on Milford were rainy and cloudy – ours was perfect, partially cloudy; the glacier boat guide commented that he hadn’t seen the surrounding mountains for 2.5 weeks due to clouds covering the mountain tops!  So were blessed all the way along our journey.

 

 

Christina & Alexandria Felts, Customised 15 Day New Zealand Grand, Travelled on 14 November 2018

Shelley - You did a fabulous job in creating an itinerary for Alex and I. This trip was a dream come true. One thing that would be helpful to note is that the Split Apple Lodge and the Rough and Tumble Lodge showed that laundry facilities were onsite which is not correct. We were planning for that and had to make some alternate arrangements but other than that, the trip was amazing. If you have guests that are active and are interested in seeing the Glow Worms, the Black Water Rafting trip is definitely better than the Waitomo Caves in our opinion. We were definitely sad to leave your beautiful country. Hope you had a Merry Christmas and if I hear of anyone flying to New Zealand, I will definitely send them your way!

Ray & Atsuko Klein, South Island Anniversary Celebration, Travelled on 13th November 2018

Our travel specialist was always responsive and available while organizing and arranging, as well as during the trip.  She crafted a great itinerary as well as booking excellent accommodation and car.  The process was relaxing and made it a real vacation. The drive through the countryside was nice.  The accommodations in Queenstown and Fiordland were exceptional.  The Doubtful Sound day tour was unique and a first time experience. If I took the trip again I'd skip the extra day night and drive to Mt Cook and spend an extra day/night in Fiordland.

Benjamin & Brenda Gooden, Return to the South Island Wildlife Discovery Tour, travelled on 01 November 2018

We had the most amazing trip with Duncan.  What was our favorite part? All of it, absolutely all of it.  We wouldn't change a thing.

Highlights that stand out for me (Brenda):  the wildlife from the Fiordland Crested Penguins, Little Blues, and Yellow-eyed Penguins, to the 7 Kiwis we saw in the wild and everything in between.  I also loved the scenery.  All the many walks were unique and beautiful.  The waterfalls were awe-inspiring.  The jet boat rides were great. I loved the star-gazing in Queenstown and the behind the scenes tour in Franz Josef, seeing the recently hatched Kiwi Chicks.  All of the accommodations were very nice.  Some of the beds were a little smaller than our United States version of a queen size.  Our meals were really good and we really enjoyed eating at the pub with the locals watching our 1st rugby match (New Zealand won).  One of the favorite places we stayed was Ratanui Lodge and the Kowhai Lodge on Stewart Island. And of course, the Wilderness Lodge.  But as I said, all the accommodations were really good and many with amazing views. The weather was beautiful for us 95% of the time and the rain never slowed us down. 

Ben's highlights include: the Ngarua Marble Cave (great tour), the Ship Creek Walk was just beautiful with our guide supplied by Wilderness Lodge (I think his name was John), the Eco World Aquarium, Pancake Rocks, and especially the Grove Scenic Reserve at Clifton with its giant boulders and beautiful grove of Nikau Palms and other plants (gorgeous).  We were glad that we repeated the White Heron Sanctuary.

Also we felt that the Charleston Cave was more of an adventure hike than a scenic cave hike.  It was a lot of stooping over to get through the passages with very little time to appreciate the few formations (especially when compared to Ngarua Cave).

All in all, this was by far the best trip to New Zealand that we have done.  Thank you, Shelley, and New Zealand Fine Touring for putting this together for us.  And we never want to visit New Zealand without Duncan - He is the BEST!


Read more
Judy and Allan Harless, Customised 14 Day Auckland to Wellington Tour, Travelled on 3 November 2018

Annelise was incredibly helpful in arranging our itinerary! It was really wonderful to get off of our flight and be met by a driver, provided all of our activity and accommodation details and confirmation numbers, and a phone! We very much enjoyed all of our activities and locations, with the exception of Waitomo. The hotel looked nothing like the pictures. It was horribly outdated and in need of upkeep. When we arrived at Waitomo, we realized there were several options for exploring the caves and would have like to have the ability to choose. The estimated activity time was two hours and we were out in less than 30 minutes. If we had to do it over again, we would have skipped Waitomo. The Bay of Islands, tall ship, and Cape Reinga air and land tour were by far our most treasured memories. Thank you for helping to make our anniversary trip a very special one! Judy and Allan Harless

Rob and Gail Danby, 17 Day North Island Luxury Explorer, travelled 11 October 2019

Gail & I loved our trip. Great accommodation & it all worked smoothly. (This was Rob and Gail's fifth holiday with Fine Tours New Zealand)

Thiet The & Hoan My Luu and Caroline Hao Tanaka, Auckland and Bay of Islands Explorer, travelled on 10 October 2018

I could not thank you enough for organizing such a beautiful trip for us.  We loved Auckland especially the Sofitel hotel, the gourmet wine tour and especially the Bay of islands tour.  Everything went so well and we had such beautiful weather and ate the best food especially the green lipped mussels in a Belgian bistro in Downtown Auckland. Thanks again and we hope to visit the South island of NZ with you one day.

Elaine & Alan Spitzer, Customised South Island National Parks Grand Tour, Travelled on 9 October 2018

Our trip was simply superb. From the beginning to the end, it was ideal and exactly what we wanted. Our only disappointment was that it had to end! Thanks to everyone at Fine Tours New Zealand for an incredible trip!

Allen & Judy Carter, 21 Day Classic New Zealand tour, 9th October 2018

First of all we had a great time in New Zealand.  The hotels (we call them motels, unless they are over 3 floors), were terrific.  The "mom and pop" ones were the best, the owners were so  welcoming and accommodating, something we never see on the US.  The 2 hotels, Auckland and Wellington, were nice as well and typical of large, quality hotels the world over. The trip was filled with adventure and beauty.  It seemed everywhere we went was more beautiful than the last.  I think it would be better if we had a couple more weeks to savor all NZ has, however, unfortunately we didn't. But I think the best was the people of NZ, everyone we encountered, no exceptions, was friendly, helpful and welcoming. Lastly, the planning was impeccable.  From the pickup of our Van's to the train ride across the South Island.  Everything was in order and having all the reservation info and numbers in our little books made check ins a breeze. So our trip was outstanding! We wish we had met you in person, to express our appreciation personally.  One way I personally evaluate locations though the world is asking myself - would I live there?  NZ - definitely!

Bruce & Rene Herndon, Auckland to Christchurch Must Do Tour, Travelled on 4 October 2018

Overall we had a very easy tour. The hotels all were very nice and the excursions were enjoyable and well worth exploring. We think we have done New Zealand well and the trip exceeded our expectations.

Bernard, Sherri & Daniel Goldberg, Goldberg Family South Island Tour, travelled on 24 September 2018

We had a great time in New Zealand. Beautiful country, very clean, people extremely friendly, and sheep everywhere. The mount cook helitour was fantastic and such an amazing experience- highly recommend it. And the doubtful sound day trip was also great. Driving worked out and the scenery breathtaking. 2 bedroom apt in Queenstown very good , actually preferred that to the Novotel where the room was really small. The Walter peak dinner excursion was delicious. Thanks for all your help.


Read more
Wu Long Nian William and Esther Teo, Bay of Islands Short Break, travelled on 10 September 2018

Amanda has been amazing. The arrangements she made was prefect and we thoroughly enjoyed the short break. Thanks Fine Tours New Zealand

Kirt & Julie Saville, South to North Scenic Highlights, Travelled on 13 May 2018

Laura Davidson did a wonderful job planning our 10-day self-driving NZ tour. She was great to work with and did a fantastic job having everything organized and planned so we were able to travel without any worries. We found NZ to be the most beautiful country we have ever visited - and we have been all over the world. We like to be on our own, not with a tour group, but it is a lot of work researching where to visit plus planning hotels, cars, & flights. Laura made it easy for us with her recommendations and detailed planning. On a scale of 1 to 10, this was a 10. If we have the opportunity to visit NZ again (there are places we didn't get to that we would like to see), we will use Fine Tours again.

Julie Wythes, Wendy Hennessy, Helen Nicholson & Neisha Dean, A Customised South Island Explorer, Travelled on 2 May 2018

Thank you Fine Tours for a great itinerary. Everything worked very smoothly and we enjoyed every minute of the holiday. A beautiful country.

Annette & Robert Biffin, The Essential North Island, Travelled on 29 April 2018

Thanks Erynn for a great holiday. We had a fantastic time, beautiful scenery, great accommodation, and the weather was glorious. We only had about 3 days of rain out of the 14, but it didn't stop us from doing anything. All the tours that were booked were fantastic.

Darren and Carrie Espey, Customised South Island Scenic Explorer, Travelled on 21 April 2018

Our first significant overseas journey was a two week trip to the South Island of New Zealand. Not having extensive experience traveling internationally, Shelley at Fine Tours New Zealand made everything easy. Our trip was amazing, with each day being better than the previous one. We did not have a single issue and would recommend Shelley to anyone, as well as use her again for our next NZ adventure.

David M Wiener, Customised Southern Lakes and Tranz Alpine, Travelled on 2 April 2018

Hi Lauren, I wanted to let you know that Beverly and Susan and I had a wonderful trip through the South Island. We really appreciate all the help that you gave us in planning and setting up this trip. It was an experience that we will always cherish. Thank you so much.

Jeffrey, Kelli & Michael Lim and Marcia Nagao, Contrasts of New Zealand Highlights Tour, Travelled on 20 March 2018

Hi Erynn, Just wanted to say thank you so much for planning us such a wonderful trip! We all had an amazing time, thanks to your hard work and planning! We have memories to last a lifetime. Thank you so much, from all of us!! Kelli

Cindy and Greg Dawson, 11 Day Southern Adventure, Travelled on 8 March 2018

Natalie from NZ Fine Tours designed the perfect trip for us. She offered suggestions and made arrangements that worked flawlessly. Thanks!

Steve Tilmann & Adrian Bass, Henry and Cyndy Boynton, Customized North and South Island Tour, Travelled on 3 March 2018

Fine Tours New Zealand met and exceeded our expectations! From the first thing - Natalie called us at home in the U.S. when we emailed an inquiry, to the last, of giving us a prepaid envelope for our cell phones, every detail was attended to. Personally (Adrian), I loved the wide variety of different places Natalie arranged for our overnight accommodations. Despite the rain, the Caitlans Beach house was a dry, warm, and cozy house with a view of the ocean. We were dazzled at the luxury villa at Wanaka, and without mentioning each place, I enjoyed them all! The highlights for Steve were the overnight boat on Doubtful Sound (fishing in the rain then eating our fish) and of course the helicopter trip to White Island. It was nice to meet Natalie and take her to dinner, and we will certainly recommend you to any friends wanting to travel in New Zealand. We will send more photos but we are still organizing them. Can't talk about much else to friends about our travels. Thank you!

Ian & Alison Hogg, South to North Ultimate Adventure, Travelled on 23 February 2018

Hi Lauren As we approach the end of our stay here in New Zealand we thought that that we would like to thank you and NZFT for the excellent itinerary that you put together for us. We think that the country is outstandingly beautiful, even if the cost of living here appears to be extraordinarily high. With the exception of the hotel at Mount Cook, all accommodations met expectations, with some well above average. In the later category special mention should be made of those in Te Anau and Queenstown. One in particular, McHardy Lodge in Napier, scored a perfect “10” with us (only the second time this has happened: the first was for a B&B we were lucky enough to find when walking the river Thames in 2006). The bottom line is that we were very impressed with the service that we received from you and NZFT, and would recommend your services if we were to encounter others wishing to tour your fine country. Regards Ian & Alison Hogg

Joseph & Paulette Bogan, Customised Essential New Zealand, Travelled on 20 February 2018

We give them a 5-star rating!! We could not have been happier with the itinerary, lodgings, and special activities that Shelley planned for our 5-week trip in NZ! It was perfect from beginning to end! It would have taken us months to do the research necessary to plan such a trip and we would never have been able to accurately plan the time needed to get from point A to point B and see the sights in between. That was invaluable! Almost all of our accommodations were luxurious, with great views, and many had kitchens and laundry facilities. The activities she suggested (such as kayaking, cruises, hikes, hangis, thermal pools, and helicopter rides) were so memorable and very well organized. My only suggestion is a minor point - to include the day's driving directions with the day's itinerary description in the Customized Itinerary so you don't have to flip back and forth between sections. We cannot recommend Shelley and New Zealand Fine Tours highly enough!

Betty & James Reed, William & Patricia Horan, Customised Christchurch to Auckland Essential Highlights, Travelled on 6 February 2018

This was a marvelous trip, all coordinated by Fine Tours. Everything was arranged ahead of time, so all we had to do was the driving. The hotels were superb as was all of the activities. Alarna was in close communication with us before the trip, and everything we wanted was taken care of. I give this company a 5-star rating! Betty Reed

Skip and Fran Ryder, 15 Day South Island Rail, Air and Sea Voyage, Travelled on 5 February 2018

If you're looking for a self-drive tour in New Zealand, Fine Tours is excellent. We worked with Lauren to design a 2-week trip of South Island. The trip we took was amazing and Lauren easily modified the tour were we wanted to make changes. We took and upgraded package that included bi-plane flights, a ski plan at Mt Cook and several other upgrades. Throughout the trip planning was perfect. Fine Tours made sure we had all the materials we needed including a detailed driving guide and recommendations for additional activities. The hotels were great as were included meals. Lauren and Fine Tours really made our vacation special. Kudos for a job well done!

Deanna, Frederic, Jordan, Stephanie and Hannah Rasch, The Fruitful New Zealand Escape, Travelled on 26 February 2018

We traveled thru Fine Tours with Narissa. She made our trip the best we have ever had. I am so glad I stumbled across Fine Tours online. Narissa was in contact several times with me to ensure our trip was going to be what we wanted. We were greeted at the airport upon arrival and taken to our first destination along with a cooler pack filled with all of our information we needed for our trip. Each hotel motel and apartment manager greeted us warmly. Really nice places she set us up in. Clean and welcoming. Knowing that our trip was completely planned out really gave us piece of mind. We feel we really seen a lot in the two weeks we had seeing great spots on the north and south Islands. When we definitely return we will know exactly where we want to go. We truly loved New Zealand and were extremely happy to have had Narissa help with the planning. I highly recommend Fine Tours New Zealand and plan on using Narissa again.

Shauna, Don and Kimberly Mote and Alexandria Donnellon (David Mote and Jennifer Sardinia), The Customised North and South Island Adventure, Travelled on 9 December 2017

Traveling to New Zealand was a dream vacation for us as our adult children and their significant others were traveling with us. Narissa did a wonderful job accommodating a diverse group with different destination ideas and activity levels. Adding to the mix was the need for wheelchair accessibility which included inclusive activities for everyone. We chose not to drive between cities but flew domestically to save time. Narissa did a wonderful job with accommodations for me and was available quickly to answer questions and concerns. I travel often so expected to run into issues as usually happens. Other than one excursion canceling due to weather, the trip went smoother than anticipated.I was very pleased with the professional presentations and results using Fine Tours. I highly recommend Fine Tours and will definitely call Narissa for the next trip to New Zealand. After such a wonderful experience all around there must be a return visit!

Fiona, David, Elloise (Ella), Finn Cottee and Adam Bertino, The Ultimate Luxury South Island Tour, Travelled on 26 January 2018

Thank you Narissa for organising our NZ adventure. Despite Cyclone Fehi (which was also exciting) we have taken away the best memories to keep for a lifetime. There were so many highlights but the Airbus Chopper experience to the glacier was right up there. An unforgettable family experience.

Judy & Kurt Vandeventer, A Customised Southbound Adventure, Travelled on 23 February 2018

Christina planned a custom trip for us including the accommodations, rental cars, and activities. It was perfect! She worked with me on the phone planning the trip for more than 8 hours total.

She was available to us during the trip to help with a different rental car and cancelling an excursion due to bad weather. Our favorite activities were the glacier helihike in Franz Josef and the hang gliding in Queenstown. The whole country is beautiful with friendly people to help along the way. It was an unforgettable trip and I will be telling all my friends to give Christina a call at Fine Tours New Zealand to plan their own adventure!

Read more
Tracey Thompson, Laurie Unger, Susan Reed and Mike Rehder, A Customised Essence of New Zealand, Travelled on 12 February 2018

I've never before used a tour company, and i was anticipating many hiccups. There was not a one!

Christina is amazing. She worked us through weather issues to rearrange some tours. Every place we stayed was fabulous, but two were magical: Colleith Lodge is Tairua and Lakestone Lodge on Lake Pukaki. The only lodging I didn't care for was the hotel in Christchurch. All the tours were fabulous. The best trip I've ever been on!

Read more
Mike and Patty Wyatt, Customised 17 Day Essential New Zealand Anniversary Explorer, Travelled on 10 February 2018

Shelley at NZ Fine tours was simply wonderful at helping us design and navigate our recent self-driving trip to NZ. I met several people on the trip who were also using NZ Fine tours and very happy, as well.

I was especially pleased that they contacted one of the B&B's where we were staying to offer to cover cost of nightly dinners there, I assume because we were unable to participate in the Akaroa Harbour cruise the day before, thanks to Cyclone Gita! That was a lovely and much appreciated gesture. I would highly recommend NZ fine tours--they did an awesome job for us.

Read more
Matthew and Michael Schmieding, Customised Behind The Scenes Experience, Travelled on 18 January 2018

Just wanted to say thanks to Lauren and everyone at FTNZ for all their help as we had the trip of a lifetime!

I'd say everything went smoothly, only a few things were the lack of AC in most of the accomodations (it was hot!) and the Weta Workshop tour we drove to but apparently somone was supposed to pick us up but that was detailed in our itinerary. The excursions were nice, the scenery beautiful and the people were so nice. Can't wait to come back!!!

Read more
Deidra Barsotti, Essential Luxury New Zealand, Travelled on 13 January 2018

Well we had a GREAT trip!! When I started planning our trip to NZ I thought I would plan it myself....I spent hours and hours reading and researching and THEN...I discovered Fine Tours NZ and Lauren!

After a few iterations we had a perfect itinerary! Lauren considered our interests, time constraints, level of accommodations, etc. We traveled with 3 couples and really had a spectacular time. The pace of the trip was good and the activities were really fun. Best of all we had terrific lodges and hotels that we could never have done ourselves! Outstanding properties and people- excellent food, etc. We will return to several of these lodges. Thank you for the excellent experience.

Read more
Leslie & Michael May, South Island Highlights, Travelled on 7 January 2018

I wanted to tell you personally how very pleased we were with the trip you organized for us. Everything went off PERFECTLY, starting with the nice courier who picked me up at the bus station and took me to the Christchurch hotel.

The travel documents he gave me then and explained were so well organized and provided everything we needed - the maps were great! My heart fell a little when I saw that it all came in a new piece of luggage that I'd have to carry, but in fact, that little bag was GREAT, and will be going with us on future trips. Mike and I said this trip to New Zealand was a once-in-a- lifetime event ( he did see all his albatrosses), but now we're talking about “ if we did go back”. If we do go back, we will certainly call on you to plan things for us, and would enthusiastically recommend you to friends. Warmly, Leslie ( and Michael) May

Read more
David Fitt & Sue Stapely, Making the most of Aotearoa, Travelled on 7 December 2017

A most enjoyable and well-planned holiday in your beautiful country and its interesting and friendly people. A particular highlight was the

excellent b&b’s, where if we take the categories of (1) attractive and comfortable accommodation, (2) interesting and helpful hosts, (3) good food, and (4) great location, all would merit 5* in at least two categories, with Arcadia Lodge (Russell) and Beaufort House (Akaroa) being outstanding in all four. All were aware of Sue’s lack of mobility, and had provided accommodation accordingly. With hindsight, we could probably have avoided the flight from Dunedin to Christchurch – packing up the suitcases (again!) for an early start is a hassle, and driving would not have taken any longer. A detail on the Hertz package – the satnav provided was poor and easily out-performed by Google maps on our iphone. The recommended excursions were all enjoyable, with the half-day cruise in Russell excellent. Doubtful Sound was a wonderful experience, and having been before, I felt that the overnight trip was clearly superior to the day option, and provided the best moments of the entire tour in the silence and beauty of the early morning. We had only one problem, unfortunately with us at a low ebb when after our 24 hour flights we arrived at the Ponsonby accommodation to find that our extra day’s reservation for our morning arrival was not available. It was in fact a failure of communication within the b&b itself, and a call to Fine Tours quickly sorted the problem. The cell phone you provided was invaluable for this – later it proved to have very poor battery life which made its infrequent use frustrating. I had provided the main itinerary structure, and after reading up on the whole country while we were there, the only city we felt we would have wanted to see was Napier – but that would have been difficult to squeeze into the time we had. The only practical change that might have worked better for us would be one day fewer in Queenstown – for all its scenic delights, we weren’t really into the local adventure activities, and Sue’s mobility meant that getting down (and back up!) the hill to our B&B made eating at the lake-side restaurants a bit of a problem. I found the town of Qtown slightly tacky this time (nothing to do with Fine Tours) – choosing accommodation there by finding out your clients’ real preferences might have helped. Shelley’s thoughtful contribution was much appreciated (especially my birthday congratulations and prezzies in Auckland) and we would certainly recommend your services to friends.

Read more
Jeff, Jamie, Daniel Harris & Karly Moll, Customised Luxury Essence of New Zealand, Travelled on 25 December 2017

Excellent vacation. All of the arrangements were thoughtful and well-executed. We particularly liked the Wilderness Lodge and Millbrook resort. The Point Villas was terrific and Peg was very helpful. We were very happy with the entire experience. Thank you for making it so memorable.

Jeff, Linda & Brian Lucht and Jennifer & Josh Sacks, New Zealand Summer Christmas, Travelled on 18 December 2017

We had a wonderful time on our 2-week trip through NZ and couldn't have been happier with the planning and booking assistance we received from Salli Smith at Fine Tours NZ.

We were traveling in a group of 5 - my wife and I and our grown children. Salli listened carefully to our ideas/preferences and customized an itinerary for us that turned out to be perfect. We spent almost the entire time on the South Island and loved it. We stayed in a mix of accommodations - motels and B&Bs - and found everyplace we stayed to be perfect for our needs. Every detail that Salli handled (rental car, lodging, activity recommendations) turned out perfect but I also had confidence that if anything ever went wrong, I could give Salli a call and she would take care of us. I even made a point of stopping in the Fine Tours office in Wanaka to meet Salli to thank her for everything - her planning really helped create a very special and memorable trip. I highly recommend Salli and Fine Tours.

Read more
Sean Dougherty & Penelope Hoar & Ella, John, Mark, Anna Dougherty, Customised Essential South Island National Parks Tour, Travelled on 13 December 2017

We are a family of six (mum and dad with kids ranging from 9 to 17 years). We started in Queenstown, drove up to Frans Josef, and then Punakaiki, across to Christchurch, then to Mount Cook and back to Queenstown.

We had an absolutely brilliant time, going to the most incredibly beautiful places. Highlights include jet boating in the Shotover river near Queenstown. Rafting down the Dart River to Glenorchy is brilliant. Glowworm Caverafting near Punakaiki is a never forget experience. Mount Cook national park is incredible (possibly our favourite destination) and the Tasman lake glaciers are mindblowing. We also flew to Milford Sound from Queenstown - beautiful flight and we were lucky to get fantastic weather in Milford so great experience. Brilliant holiday and thanks very much to Fine Tours - couldn't have been organized better and worked like clockwork.

Read more
Annie, Leonard, Alie, & Jaxon Dittman, The Classic 9 Day Southern Experience, Travelled on 15 December 2017

We had a wonderful experience & a great time, it's such a long drive but worth it! Bungy was absolutely fantastic! Mildford sound was such

a wonderful experience, we had the best of both weather, rain then sunshine. The hotels we stayed in were ok. Activities we booked were great, I'll give it a 5 star. And I'll give you 5 star too for a great job! Thank you for your service and have a wonderful New Year!

Read more
Lau Hock Tye, Essential South Island Family Tour, Travelled on 6 December 2017

Both my family & KPs' family arrived safely back home today with one of our travel dream fulfilled. All your planning went smoothly as planned with excellent recommendations for our accommodations which were clean and well located. We came for Lupins and we got more than expected of them in giant size and on full bloom with the picture attached taken at a field just before reaching Lake Tekapo. Every location we went to gave us a new experience and different excitement. We hope you guys continue to introduce NZ as you did for us and make others understand too why we need to preserve the beauty of our mother Earth the way NZ does it! Cheers and stay COOL...

Richard & Maureen Jones, A Customised Grand Explorer, Travelled on 3 November 2017

Some comments: 1. Christina was fantastic 2. Everything worked perfectly, except the phone was not baby boomer friendly, we never really mastered how it worked. 3. Only activity that we did not enjoy was the Nomad Tour, Maureen because Spider Canyon was too high and precarious, Richard because it was too uncomfortable and hot. 4. The accommodations were uniformly fine, the only one we did not like was McHardy Lodge in Napier. On the other hand, we especially enjoyed The Appledore Lodge and the B&B in Picton. 5. A couple of days were too long in the car, notably Picton to Christchurch and Queenstown to Mt. Cook. 6. We found that the driving times were consistently optimistic. Without stops, we were always 15-20% longer than advertised in the guidebook. This caused us some difficulties until we learned to adjust. 7. Similarly, driving instructions had no guidance as to distances between instructions, so it was very difficult to use them. 8. Our GPS, we named "Bertha", was best left in the glove box; it sent us the wrong way at every given opportunity, to the point where we stopped using it.

Joyce and Bob Green, A Customised Northbound Scenic Holiday, Travelled on 2 November 2017

My husband and I had a wonderful trip to New Zealand. Our 21 days were jam packed with beautiful scenery and wonderful adventures. We can't thank Christina Brockie who put our trip together.

She planned our trip listening to what we wanted to see and do along with her ideas about places that we should see. Her enthusiasm and pride of her country was obvious every time we spoke when planning our trip. We were very happy with all of our hotels and the adventures she booked in advance for us. When the weather didn't cooperate with our glacier helicopter tour she booked us at another glacier so that we were able to take the tour. Christina was always just a phone call away during our entire trip. Thank you Christina for everything you did to make our trip wonderful!

Read more
Carol & Sarah Collins, Discover New Zealand & the RouteburnTrack, Travelled on 2 November 2017

Your service was great, efficient and just what we needed. We had a lovely time. Spectacular visit with my friend and the Routeburn was a surprise. We got the worst of the weather but traded a hiking day for a fabulous helicopter ride so that made up for the weather challenges. All good; we would love to visit NZ again! Carol and Sarah and of course I would recommend you!

Lorana and Kerry Dexter, 23 Day Classic New Zealand Tour, Travelled on 1 November 2017

We loved every minute of our New Zealand tour. Everything went like clockwork. Our accommodation was a mix of motels with cooking facilities and nicer hotels or B&B’s. All but a couple motels were nicer than we expected, and even those that weren’t still met our expectations with the lone exception being Motel on York in Dunedin. We expected a kitchenette but the hob in our room had been permanently covered over and only a microwave and an electric skillet were available to cook with. Also there were very few utensils, which made it difficult to cook anything. There was also only a heater in the room, so to cool it off at night, we had to open the windows, and being right in town it was pretty noisy. I don’t think we would stay there again. Our favorite place to stay was the Dunluce B&B. It was fabulous!

The only glitch that occurred in the trip was after taking the Interislander to Picton, the Budget car rental office was slammed with 14 people all waiting to pick up a vehicle with only one clerk on duty. It took over an hour to get our vehicle, and then we had a long drive to Hanmer Springs as the coast road via Kaikoura was still closed. But that was Budget’s issue not FTNZ. We lucked out on the weather and had beautiful cloudless sunny days even in Milford Sound. Not a cloud was in the sky for our Big Sky Stargazing tour at Mt. Cook either. I would tie that as our favorite tour along with the Milford Sound boat. The only thing about the Milford Sound tour that I wish we had done differently would have been to book the VIP tour with the small van to get to the Sound, rather than the Real Journeys Bus. The bus was absolutely packed with people who got on at Queenstown, and our “reserved seats” for the 5 of us who got on at Te Anau were across the very last row in the back of the bus. It was a pretty bumpy ride back there, and I think we would have enjoyed being in a smaller group much more.

The Redwoods tree walk was a lot of fun, as was the Hobbiton tour. The Mitai Maori Village was a great experience. We very much enjoyed touring Larnach Castle, and also Penguin Place. The packet we were given with all the reservation information and sightseeing suggestions was fantastic, and we were also extremely grateful for the road atlas as the GPS we were given with the rental car needed to be updated. The phone was useful, but would suggest an upgrade to a basic smart phone with a pay as you go data plan. It would have been nice to look up restaurants or gas stations etc on the fly. We have already recommended FTNZ to friends and would not hesitate to use you again if we are lucky enough to be able to come back to beautiful New Zealand.

William and Jenny Clay, Customised Essential New Zealand Self Drive Tour, Travelled on 17 October 2017

We loved our tour of New Zealand. Hobbiton, Hawkes Bay, Milford Sound and Mt Cook - amazing. Thank you. People ask us what the best thing was about New Zealand - It was all the wonderful. Have a great summer. Bill and Jenny

Barry and Mrs Thall and Vivienne Suss, Essential New Zealand Tour, Travelled on 16 October 2017

Our trip was wonderful. There was help available whenever we needed it (the included cell phone was great!). The route was exactly what we had asked Lauren for, and the accommodations were varied in style, but each one was terrific. I would recommend Essential New Zealand tours without reservation. It wasn't cheap, but we got our money's worth and more. Thanks, Lauren!!!

Lewis and Terri Kanter, The Essence of New Zealand, Travelled on 10 September 2017

We have recently spent almost 3 weeks on tour of New Zealand and Natalie at Fine Tours did a great job communicating and being available for questions. She helped us customize a wonderful itinerary. They are efficient and very helpful.

Josh & Dirce Gillin, Behind The Scenes Experience, Travelled on 3 September 2017

We ABSOLUTELY LOVED our time in New Zealand!! Shelley was the most helpful in planning our itinerary as well. She planned out everything to the detail. It was so helpful! It was the trip of a life time and we already want to go back! We would HIGHLY recommend Fine Tours New Zealand to any and everyone looking to visit this magical land.

Reinhardt & Inne-Marie Koen and Jacques & Leanie de Korte, Customised 14 Day Essential Wine Adventure, Travelled on 2 September 2017

We had a great time in your beautiful country and thoroughly enjoyed the well organised and exceptional tour you arranged for us. Except for the disappointment of the Milford Sound excursion due to the inclement weather everything went like clockwork and we appreciate the effort. The accommodation was excellent and the staff and owners very friendly and efficient. Excellent service from Shelley and the team at Fine Tours Thank you for a memorable tour.

Frankie Yee, New Zealand Scenic Discovery, Travelled on 3 August 2017

This was my first visit to New Zealand and I would like to thank Fine Tours for making my trip so memorable. The hotels provided were very good and comfortable. The locations of these hotels made travelling around the towns very convenient for tourists. I particularly liked Queenstown and Mt Cook. I would also like to thank Salli for providing a personalised service. Very approachable, she would attempt to answer all queries promptly. I will not hesitate to recommend any to choose Fine Tours should they intend to visit New Zealand.

Claire and Rebecca Shallcross, Lord of the Rings and Hobbit Explorer, Travelled on 12 August 2017

Hi Natalie we have been amazed by the outstanding service provided by New Zealand Fine Touring, especially Natalie who has catered brilliantly to our every request. We found New Zealand Fine Touring by complete chance and did not expect to have booked a trip but we could not find anything in the UK that could top the excursions available. As we were booking from the UK, we were skeptical of what to expect and how everything would work but our worries were always respected and we were reassured by the excellent service. I will certainly be returning to New Zealand and there is no other company I would rather use! Kind regards, Claire Shallcross

Simon Tyrrell, Wellington to Auckland Adventure - North Island tour of New Zealand, Travelled on 2 July 2017

Dear Lauren We had a terrific trip and everything that you organised worked like clockwork. Most importantly the kids were very happy, which meant we were happy and there were no hassles, worries or delays. I will definitely use you next time. A great experience. Simon

Eglal & Sadek Nasser, A Customised North and South Island Highlights, Travelled on 26 June 2017

On our way to Australia we had a 10 day stay in beautiful New Zealand. We are still under the spell of this enchanting country. Fine Tours New Zealand arranged everything for my husband and I, with their flawless customized North and South Island Tour. The good fairy orchestrating our trip is Christina Brockie a charming passionate young lady who was so eager to please us and make the best of this memorable trip. We stayed at the Sky City Hotel in Auckland, Novotel in Rotorua and Christchurh, and the Hermitage in Mount Cook, we were extremely satisfied with all our hotels. Our sincere thanks to Great Sights coach company and especially to Rachel, a topnotch driver, excellent guide and an incredible story teller. We absolutely loved all the excursions recommended by Christina. We will certainly go back to New Zealand as we did not get enough of its breath taking nature, pure and clean air, excellent cuisine, and of course the courteous and charming New Zealanders.

Geoffrey Jr, Monica, Geoffrey III and Lauren Brown, Customised Nature Wonders of the South, Travelled on 25 June 2017

Hi Shelley, We have been back a week now and are still talking about our wonderful trip. Thank you so much for all your help with the planning. Everything went smoothly and we did not have any issues at all. You really did a wonderful job! The Wellington transfer was perfect. Thank you so much. I am happy to provide some feedback for you. Our favorite spots were Mount Cook and Wanaka. We had the most amazing rooms at The Hermitage (top floor with balcony) and although the restaurants were under renovation and the food options not the best, we loved our stay there. Such amazing views and some wonderful hikes. Queenstown was a bit of a disappointment. The town was super crowded and touristy and the location of the accommodation was not the best. However, the lake view was very nice. We did a wonderful excursion biking to the wineries which was the highlight of the Queenstown stay. The accommodations at Te Anau was very nice and the lady who checked us in was extremely helpful. We did the glow worm tour which was interesting and the cinema was nice. Our day at Milford Sound was amazing. The cruise was wonderful and the area was stunning. The drive was stunning and we stopped quite a few times for short hikes on the drive back. The apartment in Wanaka was so wonderful. Such amazing views and a perfect location and so comfortable. The Mt Iron and Roy’s peak hikes were beautiful and the restaurants and shops were great. We hated to leave. Franz Josef glacier helihike was so much fun. Everyone was so friendly and the weather was perfect. The accommodations were nice. The Okarito hike was superb. Punakaiki was our least favorite stop. The pancake rocks etc were great but the Flax Havenz house was not very comfortable. It was so cold in the house that we could barely stand it. Even with the heaters on. The wifi did not work either. The Bronte County Estate was really a beautiful property but honestly, it wasn’t what I was anticipating. When we arrived the owner informed me that they had just returned from a funeral and that all the boxes and mess at the entry was because they had just sold the property. She showed us the cottage and it was very well stocked and extremely comfortable and very lovely. We had a quick walk around the whole property but didn’t really feel comfortable or that welcomed. As we drove through Nelson on the way to Wellington, we all agreed that we probably would have enjoyed staying in the town more. We opted to add the kayaking onto our excursion to Abel Tasman. It was wonderful So much fun and I would highly recommend it. The ferry to Wellington was a very nice way to end our trip. The hotel in Wellington was fine as well. Overall we had such an amazing trip. The people of New Zealand were so friendly and the food and wine were wonderful! It was a trip we will all remember! Thank you again for all your expertise. The trip couldn’t have been better! I have already recommended your services to others. :) All the best, Monica

Julian, Adriana, Alejandro & Sofia Sanchez, A Customised Family Adventure, Travelled on 8 June 2017

Hi Christina, You guys did a great job…hotels were great, transfers were seamless (nice drivers), great itinerary. Loved the map and the binder. Our favorite city was Queenstown by far. Drives were manageable. The Kiwis have a great road system. I will get on your facebook page and give you guys some props. Only negative and it has nothing to do with you guys. Of course, my 12 yr old had an apple in his bag (I knew about the fruit and told everyone to throw out the food as we got off the plane) the kid forgot about the apple he bought 20 hours prior….yep paid the $400 NZ (not pleasant experience after a super long flight)…what I didn’t like is as they a running my credit card for the $400 a Kiwi (I am pretty sure) coming back to NZ is going thru customs and they pull an orange out of his bag another customs officer points to us and waves him thru…yep u can imagine how we felt…why are we so “special”. I point it out to the customs officer running my credit card, of course, they pretend they don’t hear me. Great Trip wonderful people magical scenery we will be back.

Terence & Cristalle Ang, Food and Wine Explorer Honeymoon, Travelled on 5 June 2017

Thank you so so much for helping arrange the holiday. The experience was really wonderful! We are already thinking about our next trip to NZ! Everything went smoothly without much of a hitch so that was great, and I think we got the holiday that we were looking for - just driving through the very picturesque countryside, enjoy some great food and wine and just slow down and enjoy what NZ has to offer. Breckenridge was a revelation and we were so glad that you included it in the itinerary. Malcolm's cooking is legendary! Sincerely, Terence

Robert, Jackie, Simon and Jonathan Park & Paul, Sarah, Jack and Katie Barker, 2017 Lions Tour, Travelled on 29 June 2017

Just back to the UK after 3 weeks in New Zealand following the Lions and a couple of days in Australia on the way home. Our itinerary was organised from start to finish by Natalie DeCaro at 'Fine Tours New Zealand'. We really couldn't fault any aspect of it. Having the trip organised for you by a company that evidently know their stuff not only made the holiday very enjoyable due to the tailor made content but also removed all the hassle of organising where to be when and what to do. Nothing seemed to be too much trouble and any queries were answered immediately. It was extremely useful still to be able to chop and change things even close to our arrival. We had a potential transport issue on our visit to Sydney on our way home and even though this part of the trip hadn't been organised by Fine Tours they still went out of their way to sort it for us. The holiday in New Zealand was fabulous and credit has to be given to Fine Tours for their input into the organisation. I think it enabled to make absolute best use of the time we had there. They provided in my view a top class , hassle free , personal service at a reasonable price. I would have no hesitation in using them again or indeed recommending them to others. Park and Barker Families , Carlisle , Cumbria UK

Marissa & Travis Lentini, A Customised Luxury Anniversary, Travelled on 23 June 2017

It was so wonderful working with Christina on customizing our one year anniversary trip. She was very knowledgeable and recommended some wonderful and amazing things such as kayaking, wine and dinner tour, and helicopter tour. She was very quick to respond to emails and she was able to put together an amazing trip within our budget. I would definitely recommend Fine Tours New Zealand, everything was very easy and stress free. Thank you so much! This is a trip we will never forget!

Louis L Mussbacher, Classic New Zealand Self Drive Tour, Travelled on 18 April 2017

Natalie DeCaro of Fine Tours New Zealand and I worked together to establish a trip to remember. It was a huge success. Beside the plan we created, I added a number of extra stops along the way to get the most of my time in lovely New Zealand. In hindsight, I maybe should have added a day here or a day there to provide a little more time to see the bigger cities sites. I will however recommend if you are taking a spouse, add that extra time. I travelled alone and highly recommend a extra day or three. I toured both the North and South islands and enjoyed every minute of it. It helped I did my homework prior to arriving in NZ and it was well worth the effort. Though I was in New Zealand for the 2017 Master Games, I might however have picked a warmer time of year to travel there. As April/May it their fall season, it got a little cool in the south island. Overall, I had a great time and I traveled from the North cape to the South cape and almost everywhere in between. The tours added by Natalie were exceptional and had a great time, either sailing Auckland bay, seeing the hot pools in Rotorua, whale watching in Kaikoura or sailing the Milford sound in the south. One sight seeing point Natalie highlighted and should be added on any tour, is visiting and seeing the shire in Hobbiton, home of the Lord of the Rings Hobbit films. Worth it and more. Oh, by the way, when you are touring Fox and Franz Josef glaciers, don’t drink the water from the mountain streams. If you are high enough altitude wise you can in Canada but, would not recommend it in New Zealand. Thank you Natalie and New Zealand Fine Touring………………..till we meet again

JC and Suzi Marean, The Ultimate New Zealand Tour, Travelled on 8 April 2017

Hope all is well in Natalie’s world. We’re back home safe & sound and pretty much rested up from our NZ Tour. FYI ~ We found driving on the WRONG side of the road (well it’s not the right side) to be quite a challenge for our old brains. We think NZ is a wonderful place and you did a splendid job of organizing the tour we asked for. As stunning as NZ scenery is, our greatest joy was being with you Kiwis ~ friendliest people we have ever been around. Wasn’t the return of Suzi’s wallet a miracle!?! And we so appreciated your can do spirit when we were discussing how to deal with that situation. You are really good at what you do. If Suzi & I muster the time and energy to revisit NZ, you will be the third to know. Thanks again and all the best! JC Marean

Kristine & Andrew Crane, New Zealand Explorer, Travelled on 21 March 2017

Dear Salli, I apologize for not writing this sooner. Andrew & I had the most amazing vacation in your gorgeous country. I think the thing that stood out the most for me (besides the beauty) is how nice New Zealanders are!!! Everyone we met was just so helpful and friendly. We enjoyed all of our tours (Andrew loved all the Lord of the Rings) and all the hotels we stayed in were wonderful. The driving wasn't that bad because your traffic is so easy and the roads great. You set up the tour so perfectly. We had no trouble navigating to the different places. Andrew did his skydiving in Queenstown and he was beyond excited. It was a gorgeous day & he had an experience of a lifetime!!! The one thing I regret is that we didn't get to go to Milford Sound. Everyone said we shouldn't miss that but we ran out of time. I guess we will just have to come back. I sure hope we can do that someday. Andrew & I had so many nice comments about a 21 yr. old traveling with his Grama!! It was such a special experience to share it with him. I want to thank you again for all you did to make this trip OVER THE TOP!!! I will always carry a special place in my heart for New Zealand. Your country is spectacular!!! I pray you are doing well & God blesses you!! Thanks again and if you have any questions, I promise to answer sooner!! Kris Crane (o, and the food was amazing also!!!)

Lori and Lisa Mort, Customised Essential South Island Tour, Travelled on 17 March 2017

My daughter and I went on a mother/daughter trip which was planned expertly from start to finish by Salli. When we had to make a last minute change, Salli was extremely understanding and accommodating. The communication leading up to the trip was also excellent. If we are fortunate enough to visit this beautiful country again, we will definitely reach to Fine Tours New Zealand and Salli!

Merrilee & Roy Nowlin, A Customised South to North Itinerary, Travelled on 31 March 2017

What can I say!!!! It was absolutely FABULOUS!!!!! Fine Tours New Zealand and Christina provided us with an unforgettable experience. From bookings of hotels and tours to our written itinerary Christina was awesome. We cannot thank her enough. Touring Hobbiton has to be our favorite-- a must for anyone who has seen or read The Hobbit or The Lord of the Rings. Unforgettable!! Loved those Hobbit doors and The Green Dragon. Beer was good also. The National Museum in Wellington was great. We lucky to visit while the Gallipoli exhibit was open-- Weta (Hobbit and Lord of the Rings) did an awesome job. If more countries had such exhibits there would be no wars. The night tour at Zealandia was worth it- saw two not one kiwi, Southern Cross, glow worms and frogs. I could go on and on but it would take a small book, Thank you again Christina and Fine Tours. We would definitely have you develop another tour for us in New Zealand. Hope your Winter is going well. Our summer has been warm and the golfing good. Please use the above paragraph on your website. Take care and blessed be, Merrilee

Bob & Diane Frankle, Customised Best of Naturally New Zealand, Travelled on 11 March 2017

Fine Tours New Zealand was an exceptional partner for our New Zealand adventure. Shelley Ryder was always responsive and knowledgeable and helped us plan a spectacular itinerary which we enjoyed immensely. Every accommodation she booked for us was very conveniently located right at the center of the action, very comfortable with gracious hosts and super breakfasts, and many had lovely gardens and special touches. We benefited from Shelley and her team's experience in plotting our time spent in each location. We loved her suggestions for activities during our 3 week tour of New Zealand and all were “spot on.”

Where she suggested a particular vendor for a tour or an event, like Doubtful Sound or Milford cruises, the glow worm caves in Waitomo, or Maori dinner at Rotorua, just to mention a few, these were always a cut above the competition, really well done and worth the time. She helped us solve scheduling problems that arose during the trip adjusting, adding or cancelling tours as needed. Our trip was immeasurably enhanced by her careful planning, great choice of accommodations, and experienced advice on activities. We’d use Fine Tours New Zealand [and especially Shelley] again and recommend them to all our friends.

Read more
Carl & Gayle Marsh, The Ultimate New Zealand Naturally & National Parks Tour, Travelled on 5 March 2017

Hi Shelley, Thanks for reaching out to us. We certainly do have wonderful memories of our time in New Zealand thanks to the stunning beauty, lovely people and a great itinerary! Things that were especially nice were the premium lounge on the ferry, the Bellbird Lodge in Kaiteriteri(gourmet food, very helpful hosts,lovely setting), Hokitika Gorge, the night on Milford Sound and the Glacier Explorer trip. Things we added which we would recommend were the cable car and walk down in Wellington, the World of Wearable Art exhibit in Nelson, the return from Hokitiki Gorge by Dorothy Falls and Lake Kaniere, the Fiordland Cinema in TeAnua and the Antarctic Center in Christchurch. Things which could have been better: Rental car experience-It took almost two hours at both locations. Breakfast at the Motel on York was institutional at best. Check in at Mt Cook was confusing because you don't check in at the Hermitage for the Hermitage Chalets. The Ko Tane Maori Experience needed more cultural information. The printed driving directions in the binder need to be more detailed. They should include mileage and often did not agree with the GPS or Mapquest. It would have been nice to have received an email from you upon our arrival. All in all, it was a lovely trip which we will remember fondly. Thanks for all your help in making this trip happen for us! Gayle and Carl Marsh

Harry & Lucy English, Customised Classic New Zealand, Travelled on 22 February 2017

My wife and I have just finished a 28-day, highly-customized tour of New Zealand, organized by Fine Tours New Zealand (FTNZ). Our itinerary was loosely based around FTNZ’s “21day Classic New Zealand” itinerary, but with several significant additions. FTNZ, and in particular their excellent representative Salli Smith, were creative, professional, enthusiastic, incredibly responsive and helpful in every respect. Their service included a number of discussions with us (understanding our particular preferences and having Salli telling us candidly which of our thoughts on the itinerary were good, bad and really bad – and why!), and booking all of our car rentals, ferries, hotels, B&B’s, and most of our activity day-trips (hiking, day cruises, etc.). Inevitably we placed a lot of faith in FTNZ’s judgment and relied a lot on their recommendations, and we are happy to say that their selection of accommodation and activities was almost flawless and suited us perfectly. This was definitely the longest and most ambitious vacation that we have undertaken, and we have no doubt that it was considerably enhanced by engaging FTNZ’s services. Not only did they provide completely professional and reliable services, they were genuinely a pleasure to deal with. We would definitely recommend their services to anyone considering a New Zealand vacation.

Neal Stulberg & Leah Shahmoon, Customised New Zealand Highlights, Travelled on 14 July 2017

Shelley (and the other folks who stepped in once in a while to answer our questions) was very helpful. There were a couple of glitches -- one car pickup dropped us off at the wrong bus stop and the apartment hotel in Auckland we were booked in was depressing and we wouldn't recommend it -- but overall we were given an itinerary that worked well for the limited amount of time we had in NZ and we had a great time. All the other arrangements were fine, and we got answers to all our questions in a timely and friendly way.

Myra Turoff & Ken Weiner, 37 Day North to South Ultimate Adventure, Travelled on 26 February 2017

My husband and I just returned from 37 glorious days in this jaw-dropping beautiful country. With the expert help of Fine Tours New Zealand, we experienced the trip of a lifetime. We asked for a variety of accommodations, from the over the top Hapuku Tree Houses in Kaikoura to simple bed and breakfasts and in all cases, our expectations were exceeded. If you are looking for a customized trip where every arrangement is perfectly executed, then we highly recommend allowing Fine Tours New Zealand to make your dreams come true. Myra Turoff and Ken Weiner

Bill & Micki Meggison, Customised New Zealand Naturally Golf Experience, Travelled on 14 February 2017

Hi Shelley! Sorry it has taken a couple weeks for me to respond – it has been non-stop craziness since we arrived home on the 28th. While we were enjoying ourselves in your beautiful country, our families and friends had to deal with 5 snowstorms in 9 days, piling up over a meter of snow! And in the past 2 days, we’ve had a blizzard dump another half meter. We wish we were back in Wanaka with you! Our trip was fabulous, Shelley. The accommodations you chose for us were spacious, comfortable, well-appointed, and pleasing. We especially enjoyed our stays at The Loft, Lochiel Estate, and Morepork Lodge. The operators of these B&Bs spent much time in conversation with us and made us feel so welcome in their homes. We would definitely visit each of them again on a future trip. The apartments were also very nice – the one at Lake Tekapo Village Motel was larger in area than our home! The golf courses were excellent choices. We appreciated the nice mix of mountain, lake, and seaside views. I wish I had told you that we prefer to be paired up with others, especially locals, so you could advise the pro shops. We enjoy meeting other golfers and learn so much about them and their homelands. We were able to join up with other golfers at 5 of the courses, and it was lots of fun. We loved the towns and cities we stayed in, with the possible exception of Auckland – too much traffic, and a Pride Parade that closed all the streets around the Great Ponsonby Arthotel, making for a very late check-in. We really enjoyed mingling with the triathletes in Wanaka. We met a fellow from Timaru while having dinner at Speight’s. He explained the rules of cricket to us with great enthusiasm – we loved it! The gondola and luge in Queenstown were a blast. The night observatory tour in Tekapo was fascinating – so glad we did it. We were also very happy with the International Antarctic Exhibit – very educational, and we were able to see a penguin feeding. We enjoyed a wide range of New Zealand beers in quite a few pubs, and met many interesting and fun people. We enjoyed a couple of pubs so well that we went back a second night! As I requested, you organized our tour to allow us to see as much of New Zealand as possible in the 12 days, and we truly enjoyed it. It did result in a lot of time spent driving, so if we are able to come back, we would likely choose a few places on one island, stay several days at each, and do more than play golf. If I recall, you initially advised that kind of tour – I’ll listen to you next time! The 3 nights in Arrowtown were just right for us and would be the model for a future trip. I didn’t take enough photos at the beginning of the trip, and I forgot my camera at a couple of courses. We don’t even think about selfies, so there aren’t a lot of pics of us together. And I really wish I had taken photos of all our hosts and fellow golfers – what a regrettable miss on my part. I have several videos that are fun for us to watch but not so easy to share with others. I pulled a few pictures together into a Powerpoint slideshow that I posted as a video on my Facebook page. The .pptx file is huge (>180 MB) and too large to email. The pdf version is about 12 MB – can you receive a file that size? I’ve attached it just in case. All in all, our tour of New Zealand was one of the best travel experiences we’ve ever had thanks to your excellent organization and thoughtful selection of places, lodgings, courses, and routes. The documentation package, and in particular the map atlas, was extremely helpful and much appreciated. The atlas is a keepsake – we’ve highlighted all the routes we traveled and it amazes people to see how much of the country we covered. A tip we picked up from a fellow in Mangawhai: Maps.Me, a free smartphone app that uses only your phone’s GPS and not any data. You need Wi-Fi only to download the app and maps; once you have the map, you can shut off cellular and Wi-Fi and navigate very successfully with your phone’s GPS. We shut off the GPS supplied with the rental cars – the app was so much better since it allowed us to view entire routes and to reroute as we wished. Can’t do that with a NavMan, and it led us on some pretty strange routes at times. Feel free to use any of these comments on your website. Many thanks to you for a truly special vacation and anniversary celebration. Best wishes, Micki

Ed & Cynthia Seiffert, The Essence of New Zealand, Travelled on 24 February 2017

Christina, Well we have returned in good form and except for some Bronchitis we seem to have survived while getting over some residual jet-lag. Just a note of thanks to you for a great plan. Everything was great. Hopefully other folks will get to experience your skills as a tour provider that can really deliver a comprehensive package that gave us a real sense of what is happening in your fine country. A special note relative to all the places/locations we stayed as the hosting was out of sight and could not have been better. For you we both wish you the very best in all your future endeavors. I am not so sure about the Harley as I still carry a bit of gravel in my left elbow from years past. Be careful and stay well. R Ed and Cynthia

Farah Stokes & Randy (Bruce) Campbell, Margie & David Gibson, Richard & Betty Campbell, Scott & Robyn Campbell, Discover New Zealand Family Experience, Travelled on 20 February 2017

Our trip was everything we dreamed it would be, and better! It was such a pleasure to have everything arranged and waiting for us in advance, and all of the accommodations and transportation were wonderful. We were so fortunate to have perfect weather, too! All we had to do each day was decide what to go do, and where to eat. We all loved "Uncle", our driver in Auckland. He drove us on three trips to & from the airport, and was such a fun and caring person who helped us feel welcome. We enjoyed the Canterbury Museum and the Antarctic Center while in Christchurch, and walked all around the city and rode the trolley. We happened to be there to see the dedication of the Earthquake Memorial on the 6th anniversary of that sad day.

The drivers to and from Akaroa were very pleasant, friendly, and helpful and let us make quick stops in Little River each way. The long bus ride from Christchurch to Queenstown was delightful, mostly due to our driver, Tom, who told us interesting stories about the beautiful areas we were seeing, and even sang a couple of songs! We really enjoyed the lunch at Mt. Cook and the stop at the Jones fruit stand. Queenstown was lovely, we just had a bit of a walk on the steep hills there. Two of the guys did the bungee jump at the top of the gondola and thought it was great! We all really loved Rotorua, and went to the Polynesian Spa, Te Puia and the Redwood forest. Our airport driver, Graeme, suggested those places and took us to them. We had such wonderful food the entire time, and found it all to be very tasty, fresh, creative, and just different enough to be interesting. We ate plenty of Hokey Pokey ice cream! We also enjoyed lots of great wines and craft beers. I just wish we could have brought more of that home with us! I am a former travel agent and am familiar with booking package tours. Finding a good, reputable and reliable vendor is always important, and your company really delivered! I will be glad to give an enthusiastic recommendation to anyone I know who wants a tour of New Zealand, and will share our positive experiences with them. It was a pleasure to work with Shelley, Natalie, and all your staff who assisted us. Thank you for helping us to have a fabulous adventure that will always be a cherished memory! Sincere thanks, Farah Stokes

Read more
Andrew & Claude Knights, Customised Essence of New Zealand, Travelled on 16 February 2017

Dear Shelley My wife and I arrived back in the UK safely yesterday afternoon. I am writing to thank you for all of your help and guidance for what was a trip of a lifetime. Even the weather was on our side (for most of the time). The hotels that you booked for us were amazing. The homeliness of Lonely Bay Lodge, the stunning views from Pepper’s on The Point and The Hermitage, the lake side views from the St Moritz in Queenstown. The food at The Hermitage and Hotel Montreal. The sight of the trip must be the drive from Twizel to Mount Cook along the bank of Lake Pukaki. The blue of the lake matched the blue of the sky, with Mt Cook becoming closer and closer in crystal clear blue sky. Awesome!! (As New Zealanders would say!!) The Dart River trip will always be remembered for the ‘spinning’ (my wife’s comment was “that she had never been so frightened in her life”) and the hand signal given by the guide when this was about to happen will remain a gesture that will be used by us for all future ‘thrill’ events!! The devastation in Christchurch is something that everyone should see to understand the true forces of nature. I would like, also, to make some observations that may help you in advising other travellers: Sand Flies!!! ALL lake and forest trips need to take into account these pesky blighters. On the Dart River I was attacked by a squadron of kamikaze flies. You need to highlight to everyone that they should have the minimum of exposed skin (perhaps even full protection suits!!) and even then liberally apply any and all types on repellent otherwise a week of sleepless nights lay ahead. The drive from Queenstown to Milford Sound and return took up a considerable amount of time. I am not sure that the overnight cruise was any better than could have been obtained from a day trip. I would therefore suggest (especially considering the cost of the cruise) that you propose to travellers that Milford Sound should be a day trip and make the journey from Queenstown by plane or helicopter. As most people would have been travelling by car to the area they might appreciate being off of the road for this length of time and would have the opportunity of the flight. The drive from Christchurch to Kaikoura was exhausting and very time consuming. Even with a pick-up of 8.30 in the morning we were just able to arrive in time for the whale watching and then had to leave immediately the boat trip finished to get back to Christchurch. It took 3½ hours each way. As a result we could not have any lunch or see anything of Kaikoura. I would suggest reluctantly that until the roads have been fixed this is not a good use of time (although the evidence of nature’s power in itself is an attraction). I appreciate that you try and prepare an itinerary for people of whom you have very little information and therefore it is difficult to satisfy everyone’s expectations. Having said this I can only congratulate you for satisfying all of my expectations. I will certainly recommend Fine Tours to anyone that I know that intends to vacation in New Zealand. If there are any specific questions that you may have to assist in your future trip planning I will of course be glad to respond. I wish you well for the future. Best regards Andrew Knights

Maja Virnek Zivkovic & Karlo Zivkovic, A Customised North to South Island Holiday, Travelled on 3 February 2017

Hi Christina, Absolutely every part of our trip was great, but if we had to choose I guess we would both agree that we like Queenstown the most. The best accommodation by far was Rough and Tumble Bush lodge. It is so remote and in the middle of nowhere, beautiful nature all around, we had a feeling like we were sleeping in a tree house... Peace and quiet :-) And the food there was fantastic too. We really wished we had more time there, both because of the lodge but also because we liked that northern part of the West Coast a lot. The best trip was the helicopter flight to White island (we got upgraded to a helicopter because flights on a floatplane were late that day) and getting to walk on the White Island was such a cool experience. We loved Underwater Adventure too, and the jet boat in Queenstown. We did Canopy Tour in Rotorua which was also very much fun. Our favourite stop along the way was eating salmon sashimi at Lake Pukaki :-) Kind regards, Maja

Steven, Sandy & Alexandra Good, Pure South and Far North 10 Day Adventure, Travelled on 29 January 2017

New Zealand fine Touring exceeded all my expectations. Lauren was professional and thorough. Her recommendations were spot on. All the drivers were punctual and professional. I do not have 1 criticism. I will be recommending Lauren to my friends travelling to New Zealand. I highly Recommend Lauren Nevill and the New Zealand Fine Touring team. Thank you Lauren Sincerely Steve Good

Mike Loo & Arleen Young-Loo, A Customised North Island Explorer Coach Holiday, Travelled on 25 January 2017

We really enjoyed our quick trip to the North Island. We did not realize that 5 days was way too short in regards to what to see and do in NZ. Our adventure started with "Uncle" from Uncle Hardings Tours. He picked us at the Auckland airport and immediately immersed us in Maori hospitality. Our hotel, the Waldorf Stadium, was super. We went to Countdown and bought food and drink which we could prepare in our room. Auckland is like any other big city so we walked about in the downtown area. Our trip to Rotorua was great. The Fenton Court is nice and the people are friendly. It was a long walk into town (30 minutes) but we needed the exercise. Thursday night is the night market next to Eat Street. Great food with nice people. We did not hire a car, I would recommend that once you get to Rotorua, that it would be nice to have a car so that you can visit all the attractions. We paid for a pick up and drop off on all of our excursions. The Maori experience at Te Po was terrific. The best excursion was our trip to Hobbiton. Pedestrians do not have the right of way and drivers expect pedestrians to get out of the way. This was the only uncomfortable experience as traffic can come at you from many directions. Uncle picked us up on our last trip to the Auckland Airport. A nice touch for a great trip. Many thanks to Christina for arranging a great time. We will visit the South Island on our next visit.

Bill and Lana Myers, 29 Day North to South Ultimate Adventure, Travelled on 23 January 2017

Hi Shelley, This is just a note to let you know how much we enjoyed our New Zealand experience. We are home now and recovered from the long journey. The arrangements that you had in place for us from start to finish were first class. The itinerary was just perfect for us and the accommodations were exceptional. Our tour book was very helpful for directions and planning our days. The car rental was smooth and the included GPS system very helpful in the cities as was the detailed map book. The only suggestion would be to review the expected travel times as they are all very optimistic! Overall a five star experience for us and we will certainly recommend your company to others. Thank you once again for making this a trip of a lifetime. Bill and Lana Myers

David & Tonya Pezzutti, Ultimate New Zealand Experience, Travelled on 14 January 2017

Thank you Jane Zwerrenz for working with us to develop the itinerary. You far exceeded our expectations. We appreciate your time, rapid response, patience and most of all your recommendations. You spend time getting to know before putting together "The Perfect Itinerary". The lodging was excellent, your advice to hike Tongariro with a guide... rather than do it alone... was very sage advice. We got so much more of an appreciation of the area. Although we were doubtful about Doubtful Sound, your recommendation proved to be excellent. We are very glad we didn't miss it. First Class and Excellence, describe Jane and the itinerary. Thank you Jane and other members of the Fine Tours New Zealand team. Dave and Tonya Pezzutti

William & Marcia Pace, Classic Coast to Coast Touring Route 21 Days, Travelled on 18 December 2016

It all went well. Thanks for making all the reservations. The lodging was impressive. We highly recommend the horse trek. Air New Zealand from Honolulu was very comfortable and helped avoid the long flight that most folks in the continental US dread when contemplating New Zealand. There is a lot of interest in New Zealand and we whole heartedly endorse your service. Bill Pace

Benjamin & Brenda Gooden, Natural New Zealand Return Wellington to Christchurch Experience, Travelled on 17 December 2016

Hayley, Ben and I are home, bags are unpacked, and laundry is almost done. We can’t keep from talking about our wonderful trip. The pace was perfect for us and we were able to see so much of your beautiful country. Duncan was the perfect guide/driver for us. He helped us explore and experience so many amazing things. I can’t tell you what I liked best – because I liked it all best! In the top ten I would include, of course, the dinner with the Ambassador and his family, Zealandia, Orokonuki, Somes Island, the drive down the east coast with the boulders at Moreaki and near Shag Point, dinner at Fleur’s, loved all the gardens (Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin, and Queenstown), all the animals (especially Takahe, Kaka, Kea, Weka, Parakeets, Fur Seals, Sea Lions, 3 kinds of Albatross, dolphin, the white herons, the KIWI - in captivity and in the wild, Yellow-eyed Penguins - on 3 occasions, and Little Blue Penguins), the beech tree forest walks with Duncan and the forest that was part of the Lord of the Rings tour, and the beautiful waterfalls. All of the accommodations were lovely. We dined well at Hippopotamus in Wellington, Fleur’s Place in Moeraki, Christmas dinner as part of the TSS Earnslaw Cruise in Queenstown, Tutti Bene in Christchurch, dinner at Oceanview in Hokotika, and the Curator’s House in Christchurch. We loved breakfast at Joe’s Garage in Wellington (ate there 4 mornings), even in Queenstown one morning. We also loved the surprise banquet that you provided on our anniversary. It was truly lovely to sit and watch the ocean while dining on the delicious cheeses, crackers, fig spread, etc. We felt so special during the whole trip. Ben is already talking about New Zealand trip #3. Who knows – maybe in two years???!!! We can’t thank you enough for helping to make this trip happen for us. It is one of the best trips we have ever taken! Thank you – Thank you – Thank you! Until our return - - Happy New Year! Sincerely, Brenda and Ben Gooden

Mr Tin Chak Daniel Lee & Mr Pang Eric Lam, 8 Day Southern Experience, Travelled on 25 December 2016

Dear Louise, Happy New Year! Thank you for arranging the south island tour for us and we very much enjoy our stay in New Zealand. Only that the itinerary is slightly intense in terms of driving half a day and only managed to stop over at each town just for the evening. I would rather at next time stay for 2-3 days at some towns and yet skipped some towns, for instance staying for 2-3 days at Te Anau so that we can catch the cruise to Doubtful Sound or even spend a night on the cruise etc.

Queenstown is nothing really special which is just another town, 2 days at Franz Josef Glacier where we can take helicopter flight for one day and go for walking the next day etc. By the way, our scheduled helicopter flight at Franz Josef this time was cancelled due to bad weather. The Helicopter Line staff asked us to inform you regarding the refund. In view that the agency would only pay them upon completion of the flight, therefore they cannot do the direct refund to us. Would you please kindly look into that matter? Thank you. There was a slight hiccup when we picked up our car from Christchurch airport, Hertz passed us the GPS navigation system, unfortunately the charger was not wokring at all and the battery of GPS went flat after we drove for 30 minutes to a small town which I forgot the name. We called Hertz and they asked us to return to the airport or go to nearby warehouse to get a new charger. We were so pissed coz we were in the middle of nowhere and we had no idea where the warehouse is, even more ridiculous the lady on the phone asked us to drive to Mt Cook as they have a branch there, she just asked me to follow the sign, I had my eyes rolled all the way back hearing what she said, how could I, as a stranger to a place, drive following the sign, what if I got lost further down the road? I was quite disappointed with Hertz as it is their responsibility to make sure the GPS is working before handing it to me, right? Last but not least, I would like to give my rating for the hotels we have been staying in this trip - Hotel Montreal: nice cozy hotel located near the town of Christchurch, I think it is good for staying over at arrival and prior to departure - Hermitage Hotel: Nice room, nice restaurant there, but it would be nice that the agency could recommend dining places as we do not know where to dine, somehow many good restaurants were full house owing to prior booking is required - Larnach Castle: A cozy small hotel with very comfortable room, I love that place - Flordland Lodge: The best of the best, nice food, nice view from room. - Hulbert House: Disappointing hotel for the whole trip, it was quite freezing at night time with inadequate heating inside the house. - Te Waonui Forest Resort: Another excellent hotel, unfortunately we have not yet got the time to enjoy the hotel facilities, for instance the massage and the spa. After all, this trip is good and I would recommend my friends to join as quite a number of them shows great interest to go. Thank you once again for arranging such a wonderful trip for us. Best regards, Eric

Read more
Ludger, Sussane, Anton & Leonhard Gehnen, A Loop Around the South Island, Travelled on 13 December 2016

Hi Salli, we wish you a Happy New Year. Thanks a lot for the great loop you have planned and booked for us. We had a fabulous time in New Zealand, even better than expected. If there would be one point to mention and to criticize, it’s the size of the hotel room in Dunedin. Hanmer Springs was overwhelming. Everything perfectly organized, friendly people, fantastic landscape! Just GREAT. So: Thanks again! Best regards, Ludger

Itsuya Kosaka, Travelling for Wine, Travelled on 7 December 2016

Great trip itself and especially Salli Smith who helped me with putting it all together. She was super. Very professional. I am very much satisfied with everything. The kind of service I would definitely recommend to anyone.

Paul, Matthew and Nathan Wright, New Zealand Adventure, Travelled on 8 December 2016

Would highly recommend you to anybody looking to travel and do as many activities as we done. We had a fantastic time and wouldn't have done it without you, accommodation was excellent, planning faultless, holiday and memories for a lifetime, thank you Natalie.

Bev & Bob Schuman, 13 Day Classic Explorer, Travelled on 7 November 2016

Hello Jane – Attached please find our post trip review per your request. We thoroughly enjoyed the visit. Very happy we chose Fine Tours New Zealand. Can (and will) recommend to friends. Our trip to New Zealand 7-19 November 2016....

Day 1 -- 11/7/16 – Arrived Auckland Folks that met us were right there as we came out of International Arrivals … very friendly and efficient Had not expected the roads to be so congested … quite a change since our last visit in 2004 Mercure Auckland - great location, friendly, helpful staff Document pack nicely prepared … very complete including detailed maps Day 2 -- 11/8/16 Enjoyed re-visiting some areas we had seen previously and exploring new ones Day 3 – 11/9/16 Collected our rental car – drove from Auckland to Rotoura Budget Rental Car folks very accommodating. Pick up location very good to get out of city without encountering traffic congestion Adjusted quickly to driving on your side of the road Day 4 -- 11/10/16 Busy Day Enjoyed the Waimangu Volcanic Valley Walk and Boat Cruise … and then the Tamaki Maori Village cultural tour and dinner in the evening Impressed by how NZ is working to balancing co-existence of two very different cultures Tuscany Villas – good accommodations Day 5 – 11/11/16 Air NZ Flight Rotorua to Wellington Nice to fly from a small airport … no real lines, no heavy security Brings back the memory of when flying was fun ! Quest Wellington – location was good but wouldn’t want to stay there again … room so-so, staff not available, arrived early and asked if we could check in early – person at desk said he would try to accommodate and asked if we could come back in a couple of hours – when we came back he was no longer on duty and no one had any idea of what we were talking about. Broken table lamp shooting sparks when turned on – no one was able to replace – reported again at check out as a safety issue – no confidence that there would be any follow thru. Clothes Washer & dryer are in the bathroom which has no windows. Dyer vents directly in to the bathroom which then fills with high moisture exhaust – not good ! Day 6 -- 11/12 - Interislander Ferry to Picton and Coastal Pacific Train to Christchurch Pleasant passage and enjoyable train trip to Christchurch Towers on the Park – nice accommodations but too far from center of town – limited restaurants nearby – we recognize that the 2011 earthquake took out many accommodations in the center of the city so this may have been the best location available Day 7 -- 11/13 - Christchurch We had been there in 2004 … the extent of devastation from the 2011 earthquake was shocking … nevertheless, we enjoyed our visit … impressed by the Cardboard Cathedral - we attended Church there --- we to the Container Mall … most of all impressed by the resilience of the people, the sobering fact of how long it will take to rebuild and the loss of the historic central city … and then came the 2016 earthquake – we felt it around 12:30 AM but didn’t appreciate the impact until we listened to the morning news … as you know, the impact on our plans was loss of the planned Trans Alpine Train to Greymouth and the Franz Josef Glacier … a big disappointment but certainly beyond your control. We appreciate you were able to get us a flight to Queenstown so that we could continue on the balance of our itinerary. It is good that we were using a NZ based travel agent … doubt an out-of-country group could have responded as efficiently as you did …. And, of course, the NZ issued mobile phone was especially great to have in this unforeseen situation Day 8 -- 11/14 - became the Air NZ Flight from Christchurch to Queenstown FYI Good we were on the flight we were on … we met people who were on the flight after ours and were not able to land in Queenstown because of high winds … they were rerouted to a smaller airport some distance away and then bused in to Queenstown Garden Court Suites – fortuitous that they were able to accommodate our unplanned arrival on 11/14 as they were heavily booked as were other hotels in the area due to an upcoming marathon race Day 9 & 10 -- 11/15 -- 11/16 Queenstown Garden Court Suites – best accommodations during our trip … really nice room, staff was exceptional …. Especially proactive on 11/17 when our pick up didn’t happen at 7AM for transfer to the Pukerangi Train ‘Station’ We enjoyed the exploring the Queenstown area -- we had not been there before – visited Arrowtown and the Kawaru Bridge bungy jumping site … no we didn’t have the courage to do the jump Day 11 -- 11/17 Alpine Coach Lines ? to Pukerangi then Taieri George Train to Dunedin Up and waiting before 7AM for pickup by Alpine Coachlines …. not sure what happened but it was a bit stressful by 7:30 AM when no one showed up and we couldn’t get in touch with anyone Is there really an Alpine Coachlines ? The phone # in our documentation was actually the phone # for Kiwi Trains in Dunedin – who had no idea what we were talking about ! The folks at Garden Court Suites were very supportive but were not familiar with Alpine Coachlines and could not find any contact information for them. We were eventually picked up around 8 AM by a taxi from Green Cars who took us on the long trip to Pukerangi. Probably good you didn’t tell us about Pukerangi Station …. It was a bit shocking to see a small old wooden building as we arrived in the middle of a rain storm …. But, nevertheless, a memorable experience that we enjoy tell our friends back here about Day 12 11/18 Dunedin Motel on York – good location, nice room, friendly staff Enjoyed revisiting Dunedin Had hoped to see the yellow-eyed penguins on the Otago Peninsula. Didn’t realize that that the only time to really see the penguins is in late afternoon when they return to the beach area. Found that all the afternoon tours were fully booked as there was a cruise ship in port that had gobbled up all the best tours. Sounds like there will be continuous cruise ships so you may want to forewarn your clients to book tours well in advance Flew back to Auckland Jet Park Hotel - good accommodations, helpful staff Day 13 11/19 Jet Park - allows you to stay beyond 12 Noon check out for $10.00/hour – this was very helpful to us as we have an evening flight back to the USA … not much to see around the airport Bev & Bob Schuman December 14, 2016

Read more
Tom Nolan & David Rigby, The Essence of New Zealand, Travelled on 17 November 2016

My trip to New Zealand was amazing. I did not want to go home. Michelle did an amazing job of putting together a 14 day itinerary to pack in as much as possible to make the most of a 14 day trip. I would highly recommend this trip to anyone. Thank you so much.

Jessica and Lainey Darlison, Monica Elsaesser, The Ultimate Hobbit and Lord of the Rings Tour of New Zealand, Travelled on 21 October 2016

Our three week tour of North and South Island was perfect. Natalie did a fantastic job of personalizing and expanding the basic Lord of the Rings itinerary from the moment we made contact with Fine Tours. The accommodations were an excellent mix of well-appointed city apartments in the middle of the action and small town motels with endlessly helpful proprietors. The Abel Tasman Marahau Lodge – a wonderful addition to our itinerary – was particularly beautiful and its owners especially welcoming.

We pre-booked every activity through Natalie and they were all laid out perfectly so no drive felt arduous and we were never worried about missing a thing. Even though New Zealand’s highly changeable weather thwarted a few of our plans, Natalie and the rest of Fine Tour’s team did an amazing job booking new activities on the fly so we were never without something to do. Their last minute suggestion of the Seafood Odyssea Cruise with Marlborough Tour Company resulted in a nearly private tour of the Sounds with multiple spectacular sightings of Hector’s and Bottlenose Dolphins. Natalie and Fine Tours made organizing a trip half-way around the world easy.

Read more
Lawrie and Jo Read and Martyn and Pippa Hurd, New Zealand Scenic Explorer, Travelled on 14 October 2016

Hi Natalie, you guys were wonderful in all of your arrangements for our visit to your beautiful country. The hotel selection was superb, combining larger hotels in the towns with some outstanding boutique lodging. What impressed us most was that you never seem to have 'penny pinched' on anything, you gave us great value for our money and everything worked like clockwork. It was also lovely to meet you when we came by. Thanks Lawrie Read

Michael & Mary Alice Polifka, A Customised Boutique New Zealand Holiday, Travelled on 6 October 2016

FTNZ put together a perfect itinerary. Their choice of route, places to visit, accommodations was spot on. Great personalized attention made our holiday just wonderful. Will absolutely recommend them to friends and family.

Jeffrey & Bee Keow Tan, A Customised Classic Coast to Coast Touring Route, Travelled on 15 October 2016

We are back in Singapore. It's been a great trip for us. We did manage to get the honey we wanted from a pharmacy in Riccarton - Robinson's Pharmacy on the way to the airport. Had a nice chat with the pharmacist -who recommended us to take good budget dumpling lunch 2-3 stores the street. We also like to share some feedback... The Amross Motel in Christchurch appears to be the first time your company is working with them. Yes, the property is clean, comfortable and the owners helpful. At the Edgewater Motel in Te Anau, the owner, a lady with 2 young kids, allowed us to check in earlier when we reached before noon. She gave us a unit facing the lakefront with a spa bath tub in the room! We really enjoyed the stay there. However, there was sporadic power outages at night when the water heater was used. I did alert the owner about it the next morning and I hope she managed to get somebody to look into that. But we really appreciated her nice gestures. Generally, all the motels we stayed were good.

Some other feedback... We did not really make good use of the cell phone with the stored value (hope your office got back the phone and charger which I mailed out at Christchurch airport on 25 Oct 17). Perhaps more useful could be some data roaming plan with your tour package. Going to Fine Tours and having you plan the itinerary for us was the right thing to do. It saved us the trouble and time to research on the places to stay, places to visit and things to do and most important to achieve all within the time span we had. We wish you all the best for the future! Regards Jeffrey Tan

Read more
Rob and Gail Danby, Wellington to Queenstown Classic Driving Route, Travelled on 24 September 2016

Hi Michelle Just a note on our trip through mainly the south island of NZ. It ran as smooth as we expected as we have travelled with Fine Tours quite a few times. From meeting us off the plane at Wellington to flying home from Queenstown we had no problems at all. we loved the accommodation the food & the drink at all venues. I also really enjoyed dealing with yourself as it was effortless for us. Everything we asked for was organised & nothing was an issue. We will be back to NZ & will definitely be using your company Thanks & best wishes Rob & Gail Danby

Alan Simmons and Charida Pansrilao, Custom 14 Day Essential Luxury New Zealand, Travelled on 29 August 2016

This was a wonderful tour - everything went like clockwork- great planning. The accommodation was excellent but the lodges were simply outstanding. The owners could not do enough to make us comfortable. Highly recommend this tour to everybody who wants an exciting, trouble free vacation.

Rick & Karen Bullock, Customised Essential South Island, Travelled on 27 August 2016

Good Morning Shelly (Good Evening for you), First of all I want to thank you for helping make our first visit to your country a very memorable experience.

The country is beautiful, a real photographers dream. I told my wife that every time we turned a corner the view was more spectacular than the last 4 pictures we had taken. Your fellow countrymen and women were very helpful, accommodating and friendly. Each venue we stayed at was top quality and every employee went out of their way to make sure we were comfortable and well informed about their local area. All of the reservations were in place so the entire trip went off without a delay.

The weather was remarkable with much cooler temperatures than we are accustom too here in New Orleans in August and September. In fact two morning we woke up to frost on the ground in Queenstown. Meanwhile back home everyone was dealing with 35 degrees Celsius. I think I might vacation in New Zealand every year in August. The only day the weather did not cooperate with our itinerary was the day we were scheduled to take the Heli-Hike in Franz Josef. We were scheduled for the morning flight on September 2. They had to cancel due to low cloud cover but they rebooked us for the afternoon flight. Unfortunately the weather had not improved and they had to cancel that flight as well.

Once again thank you so much for an absolutely wonderful experience. If we are lucky enough to travel to New Zealand again rest assured I will contact New Zealand Fine Touring to arrange our itinerary. Best Wishes,

Megan & Matthew Watson, A Customised South Island Adventure, Travelled on 3 August 2016

We had a fantastic time exploring the stunning scenery of the South Island. Everything that was organised for us ran smoothly and the trip never felt rushed. A particular highlight was getting a day pass to Abel Tasman and exploring the coastline - it felt like a mini paradise! Kayaking in Milford Sound was excellent too. We both found the stripy thermals we had to wear a good laugh and there was plenty of time on the water. We even got to see penguins and seals. The guides were super relaxed and were very interesting to chat to. We found the accommodation very reasonable throughout our stay, particularly enjoying the gorgeous views we had in Abel Tasman and Mount Cook village and the Queenstown suite was particularly luxurious! We have come home with a lot of fond memories and stunning photos!

Oscar and Karina Castro, 10 Day Auckland to Queenstown Essential Highlights, Travelled on 28 March 2016

Our NZ trip could not have been more organised! My husband and I had an amazing adventure. Prior to flying out, everything about our 10 day itinerary was clearly communicated to us, and well planned.

Our travel agent, Natalie, was a great deal of help as she took our activity preferences into consideration while building our itinerary. She was extra accommodating when we had last minute changes or requests to our trip. This tailored excursion was exactly what we could ever hope for in a NZ trip. We saw everything we wanted to see and got to do all the activities that were on our "to do" list.

From the flight out of Los Angeles, to our car rental reservations, to our booked Bed and Breakfast- absolutely everything ran smoothly and without any trouble. We already plan on going back to this special country, and would certainly book through Fine Tours again to take care of our travel needs and to build another exciting trip!-Oscar and Karina

Megan, Robert and Rebecca Parker, North and South Island Tour , Travelled on 16 April 2016

My parents and I had an absolutely fantastic time traveling New Zealand through Fine Tours New Zealand. Everything went so smoothly that is felt like a true vacation without the normal hassle it comes with planning a big trip. I definitely recommend this company for people looking to visit this beautiful country. Hopefully I'll be able to come back!

Vyjayanthi Kannan & Premananda Thedchana Moorthy, New Zealand 12 Day Self Drive Tour, Travelled on 28 April 2016

I got to know about Fine Tours NZ from my cousin who used their services 2 years ago. From my very first email, FTNZ showed how professional, informative and helpful they were. They patiently answered my numerous enquiries and continued to give suggestions and always took note of my requests. Although i received quotations from other tour companies and admittedly, some costing a little less, but we went with FTNZ for their quick responses and reliability. Once we were there, everything was in perfect order and they were always available when i needed further information. My 12 days wedding anniversary vacation to New Zealand was made even more memorable, thanks to FTNZ.

Sarah & John Riddick, Grayson Kabler & Suzanne McGrath, A Customised North to South Itinerary, Travelled on 2 April 2016

This was a fabulous adventure made easy and exciting by Fine New Zealand and Christina! This outstanding company made travel personal; there was no need to join a tour group at all. We would recommend this trip to anyone without the slightest reservation! Sarah and John Riddick

Dave & Diane Berg, Tailored Classic New Zealand , Travelled on 7 March 2016

Hi Laura New Zealand was everything we had hoped for and even more. It was a great trip. All of your preparations, reservations, bookings etc went off without a hitch. We could not have asked for a more problem free trip. With so many great adventures it is hard to give you are favorite places but Queenstown, Mount Cook and Milford Sound are at the top of the list. Close seconds is the day we spent on the Otega Peninsula. That was some of the best scenery that we had seen in the country. We really enjoyed our day there and the dinner our B& B host arranged for us at a restaurant named 1908 before we went to see the blue penguins. The best restaurant that we ate at was the Green Dolphin in Kaikoura. There were other good ones including WGK in your town of Wanaka. We did some hiking at Mt Cook, Franz Josef Glacier and Kaikoura. Our most memorable hiking was at Glenorchy near Queenstown. The driving was something we both enjoyed very much. A road trip just about every day and we would start our journey with 2 long blacks to go and the open road ahead of us. It was very relaxing and driving on the wrong side of the road started to seem normal ! One thing that we soon came to appreciate during our drive time, and were quite impressed with, was that every town, regardless of size, had public toilets that were clean and neat with running water. We have traveled to many countries and never have we seen this before. It really says that NZ values its visitors. The B&Bs that you offered all turned out to be excellent. Every place was unique for some reason. We especially liked Peppers on the Point, McHardy Lodge and Fletcher Lodge in Dunedin and Te Anau Lodge. All the owners were very helpful and every B&B served a good breakfast. It was especially interesting to have an ex London lawyer and an ex rodeo rider/horse trainer prepare and serve us breakfast. 

Now for some other points: it was very helpful to book some cushion time in Auckland before we started our driving trip. We lost a day due to weather but we had extra days in Auckland to compensate for this but there were at least 2 other couples on our flight that had to go directly to their car the next day. The extra day helped us get our bearings before heading out. Again, everything was great and we would recommend NZ Fine Tours to anyone wanting to do a driving trip in NZ but there are 2 things that we you may want to consider. The driving times you quote are aggressive for non NZ drivers. I don't think we ever achieved the times even after compensating for scenery stops. It was impossible for us to keep up with NZ drivers on most roads. Secondly. it would be helpful if you noted where there were laundry facilities along the way. When you are out for over 20 days, even the best packer has to wash some clothes. We found a laundromat in Queenstown and there is a very nice laundromat in the Hermitage at Mt Cook. Also, at the Wanaka Springs Lodge there was an on site washer and dryer that was free where they asked for a donation for the local hospice. You would really be going the extra mile if you could include these for all towns. Once again, your planning and preparations were excellent and we both really appreciate your help. We recommend to all our friends that the trip of a lifetime is to visit NZ and drive the country. Take care and thanks again for your assistance. Dave and Diane Berg

Read more
Mary and George Byrkit, The Ultimate Hobbit and Lord of the Rings Tour of New Zealand, Travelled on 28 February 2016

Thank you Fine Tours New Zealand, and especially Natalie DeCaro, for making our 25th Wedding Anniversary trip to New Zealand so spectacular. Natalie was wonderful to work with and made the whole selection and booking process so easy, customizing our itinerary for some extra places we wanted to visit. Fine Tours came right to our assistance when we were in New Zealand and had a luggage malfunction, helping us get it replaced right away. We have already recommended Fine Tours to a co-worker who will be going there on his honeymoon next year. If we ever come back to New Zealand and its wonderful people, it will be with Fine Tours. Thank You!

Cheryl & Ron Forrest, Customised 20 Day Essential New Zealand Experience, Travelled on 11 March 2016

We had a great vacation in New Zealand. The country is beautiful and people are helpful and friendly. We kept busy with sightseeing and fun activities.

We would have loved to stay another week-there is so much to see. We hope to come back in the future.

Gordon & Debra Baker, Customised Grand Explorer , Travelled on 6 February 2016

My wife and I spent February 2016 in NZ on a 2500km driving tour put together by Fine Tours NZ. They did a great job making connections, recommendations and reservations, creating a great tour package and over the top documentation to guide us along. Our agent Natalie also made timely adjustments we needed during the trip. I can't think of a better way to explore this beautiful country than working with a great tour company like FTNZ. Natalie worked hard for us to make this trip a very special memorable experience.

Here is the list of activities we highly recommend from our trip. You can find most of these on the FTNZ site.

NORTH ISLAND Taste of Waiheke Vineyard Tour America's Cup Yacht sailing Whangarei Falls Waitangi treaty grounds tour Cape Reinga flight and tour Haruru Falls Arai-Te-Uru Reserve overlook Waipoua Forest walks Baylys Beach walk Cornwall Park & Mangere Domain in Auckland Tarawera Falls hike Akaroa Sailing Wildlife Eco-Cruise

SOUTH ISLAND Christchruch Botanical Gardens Mount John at Tepaka Mount Cook self guided walk Milford Sound scenic flight and cruise TSS Earnslaw cruise to Walter Peak and dinner Fantail and Thunder Creek Falls Fox Glacier self guided walk Gillsepie Beach Franz J Glacier Valley Walk Greymouth to Christchurch scenic train ride Auckland Botanical Gardens

Read more
Diana & Roger Middleditch, 23 Day Classic New Zealand, Travelled on 1 February 2016

Dear Michelle, We were delighted with the tour you arranged for us. Everything worked like clockwork, all the pickups were there on time, and the choice of hotels was excellent.It as a very good itinerary. I think we would single out the Ponsonby Art Hotel, Fletcher guesthouse in Dunedin and the Springs guest house in Rotarua as the hotels we enjoyed most, as the welcome was so lovely and the guesthouses very comfortable. We loved the view from our hotel in Mount Cook! We were just a bit disappointed with our room in Napier, after all the fabulous rooms we had elsewhere this was a standard one and didn't have a sea view. It wasn't a very inviting hotel, really.. We found the driving times in the itinerary were optimistic- if it said 4 hours we needed to allow 6 if we were to have a loo and coffee break. It would be better to quote a longer time, the times seem to be based on keeping up a steady 80kph, and its just not possible with the other traffic on the road. The Queenstown wine tour, Appellation central, was particularly good, though we enjoyed both. Another real high point was a helicopter flight to franz Joseph glacier at 8am, when the weather was very clear and bright. Thanks for arranging everything. We had a great time. Diana and Roger

Mark & Carol Zaitz and Paul & Lisa Hoffman, 23 Day Classic South to North Explorer, Travelled on 4 February 2016

Many thanks to Jane and all at FTNZ. We completed a 23 day tour of both islands. Every detail promised was delivered perfectly. The accommodations were excellent, and the itinerary was wonderful. FTNZ eliminated the uncertainty of planning what you hope will be a "trip of a lifetime." And we had one!! With deep gratitude ... Mark and Carol Zaitz, Colorado, USA

Jeff Hughes and Vicky Papoutsis, South Island Christchurch to Christchurch Scenic Tour , Travelled on 6 January 2016

Hi Charlie Thanks so much for organising our trip and from the being met at the airport, being provided with a map book, local mobile phone and printed itinerary, as well as the driver giving us a mini tour of Christchurch center really helped us just relax knowing that everything was well organised.   When we were challenged with the weather preventing some of our activities occurring on the days planned we were able to shuffle things around, apart from the last set of events at Mt. Cook. Thanks for taking the time at the outset to provide a non automated response to my initial email enquiry, followed up by a phone call. That is what made Vicky and me decide to book through you and we were not dissapointed with our decision, This was a great trip and thanks so much for making it all go so smoothly. Regards Jeff

Andrew & Cheryl Twigger, Customised Classic New Zealand Self Drive Tour, Travelled on 12 February 2016

Hello Shelley, We very much enjoyed our holiday in New Zealand and have returned home with many wonderful memories. We very much appreciate everything going to plan and not having concerns about any of the arrangements that you made for our trip. The accommodations that you arranged were mostly of the highest quality and the hosts were both friendly and helpful. We would certainly recommend your services to any friends who were considering a self drive tour of New Zealand. While the comments below concentrate on the problems that we encountered, these did not significantly detract from the enjoyment of our holiday and were far outweighed by the positive experiences that made our time in New Zealand so enjoyable.

 Accommodation comments Almost all of the accommodation was of the highest quality and often surpassed our expectations. There were a few exceptions, however. The Bolton Hotel in Wellington - we arrived at 2:00pm and had to wait 20 mins to unload luggage and a further two hours before we had access to our room which had clearly only just been serviced as the bathroom floor was not yet dry. The foyer was littered with luggage and several other guests were also waiting for rooms which should have been available by the 3:00pm check-in time. I left a comment form at reception and asked for a response, but the hotel has not provided an apology. I declined to pay for their valet parking service on departure as they had failed to provide an acceptable service on arrival. The hotel clearly struggles to manage room servicing when there are major events (the Military Tattoo was on the weekend that we arrived) in Wellington. However, the quality of the suite was very good for a city centre hotel and the position provides easy access to tourist sites. The Admiralty Lodge in Whitianga - this provided the lowest standard of accommodation of any of the hotels on our trip. The room was a bit tired and the tiling in the bathroom was chipped and cracked in a number of places. The hotel seemed to offer either a cooked breakfast or a continental breakfast and seemed surprised when we requested both cereal and cooked items; however, they did deliver both in the morning. In comparison to the previous lovely accommodation at Russell and Matakana, this was quite a let down. The Great Ponsonby in Auckland - as I specifically requested this accommodation, I thought I should comment. The positives were that the hotel is well located near the inner circle bus route providing easy access to all attractions while not being in the centre of the city, also the room while small was well appointed and beautifully clean. The negatives were that the communal areas were rather cluttered and the breakfast service was rather muddled. The owner had forgotten to request payment for our laundry bill until I reminded him. Overall, the level of service was acceptable and we would use the hotel again, but we can understand why other guest have expressed disappointment. Car Hire and Route Comments Europcar - our first car hire in Auckland took over 90 minutes from being picked up at the Great Ponsonby to driving away from the rental facility. The car was “upgraded" to a Mercedes C class which has numerous computer features which the rental car agent was not able to operate. At our second car hire in Picton, we were initially given a Toyota Prado without a working GPS navigation system. We immediately requested a replacement vehicle with a working GPS and were given a Toyota Highlander (despite having asked not to have a 4WD vehicle). This vehicle had a damaged front bumper which seemed OK on visual inspection but had not been adequately repaired and on our journey to Mt Cook part of the lower bumper came apart from the upper bumper. We had to call roadside assistance and the bumper was properly repaired in Twizel the following day. On returning the car at Grangemouth, the rental agent seemed more concerned with examining the repair than apologising for the inconvenience that we had suffered from their inadequate inspection or repair following the previous rental damage. While these events turned out to be relatively minor irritations, I felt that the level of service provided by Europcar was below the standard that I have experienced from other car hire companies in the past twelve months. The provision of a comprehensive road map of New Zealand was invaluable; thank-you for including this in our welcome pack. As some other travellers have noted, some of the suggested driving times in the itinerary were significantly shorter than can be achieved in average traffic conditions. We found this particularly true in the North Island where a number of the routes include twisty mountain passes which increase journey times. Also, we felt that the driving directions provided would be more helpful if some indication of the distance between directions were included; it wasn’t always clear to us whether the next turn indicated in the driving instructions was a few hundred metres away or twenty kilometres further on the same road. However, we found all of the accommodations with relative ease using a combination of the driving directions, GPS navigation system and road maps. Transportation Services and Trips All of these worked exceptionally well with all of the pick-ups waiting for us when we arrived and all the tours having tickets ready for us at the service desk. Places to Visit One stop that we did make, thanks to Anne at Elizas Manor, was the reconstruction of the Bayeux Tapestry in Geraldine. This is well worth a visit if stopping for a coffee at Geraldine on the way to Mt. Cook. With best regards, Andrew & Cheryl Twigger

Read more
Cornell Kory and ElizabethTeoman, The Essence of New Zealand , Travelled on 5 January 2016

We started making plans for our NZ trip by interviewing several travel outfits. We found Natalie at Fine Tours - New Zealand and stopped looking. From the very beginning we felt we found a partner that really cared about us and one that helped us customized a great tour. We were a bit aprehensive as we did not know what to expect but our expectations were exceeded in every respect. Every activity, reservation, car rentals, hotels, air travel, bookings, a free pre-paid telephone, triptic of our route, GPS, airport greeting and transport were flawless. We had the time of our lives and enjoyed every minute of our trip. It was as if Natalie and her crew even commanded the weather, which was spectacular. We are immensely grateful of the care with which the planning, execution and follow through were performed. We wholeheartedly recommend Fine Tours and we are talking about our experience with all our friends. We will be certain to travel again with Fine Tours on our next visit to NZ. Thank you and very best wishes for continued success. Natalie, you were our gardian angel and we can not thank you enough.

Debbie, David, Stephen and Kristen Jensen, 21 Day Classic New Zealand, Travelled on 20 December 2015

We've been home for a couple of weeks now but still reliving the wonderful memories of a fantastic trip. The arrangements made by Natalie were spot on. All accommodations were well situated and easy to find with the maps and GPS. Our favorite was probably Manakau Lodge in Kaikoura; we were only there barely 12 hours but none of us wanted to leave! We had a great mix of sightseeing and activities. We only wish we could have stayed even longer!

Nathalie Deldime, Frederic Septon & Family, Original Tailored Auckland to Christchurch Family Summer Holiday, Travelled on 20 December 2015

Great trip, unbelievable country, unforgettable experience!!!

Mui Hong Teo, The Essential South Island Tour., Travelled on 7 December 2015

I really enjoyed my trip very much except for the rain and the lost luggage. All the hotels arranged was very good especially the one at Mount Cook and Queenstown. The scenery at these hotels were really beautiful. I would like to thank Andrea for all her hard work.

John & Ruth Boyle, Essential 12 Day New Zealand Experience , Travelled on 18 January 2016

Shelley was fantastic. B and B's were lovely as well as hotels selected. You need to recalculate your driving times. You state these times include stops. We did not stop long or did not stop at all in some instances. If you state 3 hours it usually is 4 hours.. Only the last two stops was it correct. Auckland to Waitomo Caves and then on to Rotorua was a along day. Especially since you are learning how to drive on the left and use your new gps. Thank goodness we had two days there. Actually 2 days would be best in most areas since you arrive on the first day late. You NEED THAT SECOND DAY IN MOST AREAS. The first Toyota car was older and did not handle well. The second one was newer and was much better. I would suggest moving up to the next larger vehicle for safety and handling. The Taipu thermal wonderland is south of Rotorua. We saw that on our way to Napier rather than drive south-return to B&B and then next day cover same road on way to Napier. Overall NZ was fantastic, People, country, food, and cleanliness of land and cities was beyond expectations. Thanks for all Shelley. JB

Atiba and Yuki Mathlin, 12 Day Essential New Zealand, Travelled on 14 October 2015

This was an absolutely wonderful tour! Everything went off without a hitch. It was a delight working with Natalie DeCaro; we gave her a few locations and things we were interested in and she arranged an exciting and enjoyable tour of both the North and South Islands.

All of the accommodations were perfect for us, our favorite being the Westwood Lodge in Franz Josef Glacier; Benson the 'Lodge Labradoodle' was an absolute delight to interact with. EuRopcar provided excellent service and the vehicles selected was perfect for us. It is very difficult to choose any single location or event that stood out among the rest; The Heli ice explorer tour at Franz Josef Glacier was awesome; my wife fell in love with Auckland and Christchurch and we even discussed the possibility of living in New Zealand.

We will definitely return to New Zealand and I have already told several friends and co-workers that this should be a place high on their list of travel destinations and FTNZ would be the perfect company to assist them in making it an enjoyable expirence. Thank you very much for making this an experience to remember! Atiba and Yuki Mathlin

Cynthia & Lanny Sprague, Custom South to North Tour, Travelled on 23 October 2015

This was fabulous trip. Everything went extremely well. We never had a problem with any of the accommodations. They were all first class. The excursions were fantastic. We were never disappointed.

Paran Jeyapalan, Premala, Dasharath and Keerthana Paran, South Island Family Tour, Travelled on 3 October 2015

Fine Tours New Zealand (Fine Tours) really listened to what we were asking for, and put together a trip with a perfect mix of adventure and relaxation.

Starting out, we knew nothing about New Zealand’s South Island and it would have been incredibly time consuming trying to research all that ourselves. Having Fine Tours take care of it for us, and pick places and things they knew we'd enjoy, made life so much easier, and saved us so much time. They picked great accommodations and activities. They also helped us to prepare for the trip by explaining what to expect.

I would absolutely trust Fine Tours in the future to help us plan our next trip to the North Island.

Karim Wazni and Danielle Hokayem, South Island Honeymoon Tour, Travelled on 31 July 2015

We spent our honeymoon in New Zealand from the 31st July 2015 to the 9th August 2015 and booked our entire trip with Fine Tours New Zealand.

I must admit that from my first correspondence with Natalie Decaro, I knew that Fine Tours was a great agency and extremely professional. We had to adjust our itinerary few days prior to landing in NZ and FTNZ was extremely proactive and helped us on the spot!

We have stayed in many lodgings and they were all great, especially Amuri Retreat in Hanmer Spring (highly recommended). We would like to thank Fine Tour and especially Natalie for everything she have done to us!!

Big Kisses from Danielle and Karim and we will definitely recommend FTNZ to all our friends.

Iain & Francesca Leslie, Auckland to Queenstown Tailored 13 Day Tour, Travelled on 25 July 2015

Hi Michelle Thanks for your note. We had a fantastic time in New Zealand, everything was brilliantly organised, thank you so much for sorting it all out.

All the accommodation we stayed in was great for what we needed. The best one in terms of amenities and the room itself was probably the Regal Palms in Rotorua. All the others were great too but this one stood out. In Rotorua we visited Te Puia as suggested. The guide was great and told us a lot about Maori history and culture and the geothermal features were fascinating.

We also visited Whakarewarewa living village. Here we didn't take a tour but just wandered around ourselves and had lunch in the cafe. We visited Wai-O-Tapu between Rotorua and Lake Taupo where we saw the Lady Knox Geyser and took one of the walks around the park. This place was really spectacular in terms of the volcanic and geothermal features.

At Taupo we visited the Huka Falls which were good. We just did this on foot as with a three year old in tow the jet boat rides weren't going to work. It was a beautiful day so we got some great views of the falls. We took Jacob swimming to the thermally heated AC Baths (the local council pools) - these were great for kids! We also visited the Craters of the Moon. To be honest this was a bit disappointing in comparison to the other geothermal parks we had already seen. I think if we had gone here first our impression would be different but having been to Te Puia and Wai-O-Tapu I think we had already seen some pretty impressive stuff.

We all loved Napier. From here we drove out to a local winery, Black Barn, that had been recommended by a friend.We had an excellent wine tasting and lunch. Everyone here was really friendly and I would recommend it as a safe bet for anyone who doesn't have time to tour around a number of vineyards. Jacob loved the play grounds along the boardwalk - again a really good facility for kids.  We spent some time wandering around the city and popped in to the museum and shop where the ladies gave us a lot of information about the history of the city.

Queenstown was just great fun. We all loved the town itself but especially loved going skiing. Both Frankie and I are fairly advanced skiers but with living in Singapore we hadn't skied for a while so both The Remarkables and Coronet Peak had just enough terrain to ease us back in to it. This biggest thing for us here though was the Skiwi Club that we booked Jacob in to. He did one day at The Remarkables and two days at Coronet Peak, both were just fantastic with him. He came away each day absolutely exhausted having had the best time - he is still talking about it and how much he loves skiing.

It goes without saying that the mountain scenery around Queenstown is just breathtaking. We feel very lucky to have been able to spend a few days in such beautiful surroundings.

Both cars we had for our trip were great but I'm not sure Eurocar put a lot of thought into which to allocate for each place. In the north island we had a Mitsubishi Outlander which was 4WD and in the south island a Toyota Rav4 which was 2WD. Both were perfect cars but it would have made much more sense to have had the 4WD in the south and the 2WD in the north. It's a really small point and I know the rental company just allocate what they have in the class you book. I just wanted to let you know about it in case you are able to influence them for future tours. To be honest I wouldn't even have thought of it if they had given us a 2WD in both places it was just because we got a 4WD in the north that it occurred to me.

All in all though it was a fantastic trip and brilliantly organized by you - thank you very much. Kind regards Iain

Tom Cham, Hong Jiang, Ho Ka Tang, Lin Gui and party, Ultimate Luxury Tour of New Zealand , Travelled on 11 July 2015

This is the first time for both of our families to visit New Zealand. We can't thanks more for your meticulous planning and arrangements to make our journey so enjoyable.

The accommodations, food, travel plans, fitted perfectly to our kids and ourselves. You did much more than we expected. We loved all the luxury lodges you arranged as they are both family friendly & located at wonderful scenic places.

This is "The Best" tour we ever had. Thanks Verity again for all your works! We will definitely recommend you to our friends who wanted to visit NZ. Best regards From Tom Cham & Isaac Tang family Aug 10, 2015

Dennis, Janet & Cassie Ferrera, Auckland to Queenstown Essential Highlights, Travelled on 3 July 2015

Wow, what an amazing adventure we had! Thank you so much Natalie for all the work upfront and while we were on the road. We loved every minute of the places you suggested and the tours we were able to make.

The hotels were perfect for us and we were able to do laundry along the way, which was a big help! All of the arrangements went off without any glitches and we were able to communicate with you to make changes along the way.

While I was sad to miss the whale watching due to weather, I was able to spot one off the coast of Australia! We'll have to make another trip.

New Zealand is beautiful and has very helpful and wonderful people. Definitely a country we would love to comeback to! Thanks again for a trip of a lifetime! Denny and Janet Ferrera

Michael Peters & Pamela Deabreu & Family, Lord of the Rings Scenic Explorer, Travelled on 3 June 2015

What a fantastic holiday ! Everything we travelled to or booked was better than we expected.

Michelle's help in sorting the itinerary was first class and everything was booked and expected when we arrived. Really well organised. We didn't want to leave - New Zealand really is the most beautiful country we've visited and the people were all so friendly.

Satheswaran Thambyraju & Ristina Maria Dass, Customised Classic 7 day Southern Lakes, Travelled on 6 March 2015

Dear Shelley, We had the most amazing trip even though it was just 7 days. You and your team did a fantastic job to take us through to see the beautiful island as much as we could possibly think of.

We loved how you communicated so discreetly with everything so well planned and we didn't even meet! We felt like we were on a covert mission. Hahaha..

Everything went so perfectly fine and no doubt you live in the most beautiful country. Thank you all once again for your hospitality and job well done. We truly had a fantastic honeymoon :) And looking forward to many more trips there. Sathes & Ristina

Rosalind & Eric Leaming, Upper South Island Explorer Tour, Travelled on 17 April 2015

Dear Natalie,

We had a fine time. Fine Tours New Zealand provided us with excellent road directions, lovely bed and breakfasts where we enjoyed both the proprietors and guests immensely, especially Eliza's Manor in Christchurch and The Peppertree in Blenheim.

The two tours we scheduled were excellent: Wilson's in Abel Tasman and Sounds Connection for winery tour in Blenheim. Although our Whale Watch Tour in Kaikiura was cancelled due to sea conditions, we loved the seals along the coast.

Thank you Natalie. Our only criticism was that we did not receive note that the Ferry leaving Wellington was running 2 hours late. Also, Natalie, I have a Verification of Cancellation Form from the The Whale Watch Tour and request our fee be refunded to our credit card. I will mail back the cell which we did not use. Rosalind Leaming

Charles & Sally Womack, South Island 13 Day Explorer Tour, Travelled on 11 February 2015

My wife, Sally, and I have been back in the U.S. for a week after a wonderful two week loop of the South Island. We were impressed by the natural beauty in all the locations, but Wanaka is the place we would like to return and spend more time.

The accommodations were first class and our hosts went out of their way to make our stay enjoyable.

Ann & Brad Willauer, 16 day Essential Wine Adventure, Travelled on 27 January 2015

We had an amazing trip. The custom itinerary gave us a complete visit to New Zealand without being exhausting.

The diversity of tours was terrific with excellent choices of activities. We had an excellent flavor of the Cities and the countryside and the hotels were wonderful. The train was a nice break, although they need to be better with their scheduling; never on time.

We were extremely pleased with Fine Tours of New Zealand and would recommend them highly. There is a big plus to having a local from the country you are visiting plan your tour! We met others who were not so fortunate. Thank you Michelle!

Erskine & Corinne Douglas, The Length & Breadth 30 days North to South, Travelled on 27 March 2015

31 Days Length & Breath 27th March to 26th April 15 This was the longest and biggest holiday I had ever put together for my wife and I. It was to celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary and both our 60th birthdays.

Once we decided that New Zealand was going to be the destination, I did some research on specialist companies to organise our trip to NZ. Fine Tours NZ (FTNZ) was chosen because of the wide variety of holidays on offer.

From my first contact the staff could not have been more helpful. After providing budget and basic details of what we liked and might like to do FTNZ provided an initial itinerary. We made some minor amendments and booked our trip, staying in a mixture of apartments and motels. The attention to detail was of the highest standard.

Michelle the initial consultant went the extra mile to make sure that we got what we wanted; Natalie took over later in the process and made some very last minute changes to the itinerary to make one leg of our driving legs less arduous.

Arrived in Auckland on 27th March and our holiday could not have started any better. Met by a very friendly driver and delivered to our first accommodation for a three night stay, very comfortable, clean and ideally positioned, this set the tone for the rest of the holiday.

Every detail was attended to and documented is a very compressive package including a detailed itinerary, map, and all the booking references for accommodation, cars, and excursions and driving directions.

The suppliers who Fine Tours NZ used were outstanding, extremely helpful and offered upgrades where available at no extra charge that included Euro Rent a Car upgrading on both islands.

The standout accommodation was at the Quest Rotorua not just because of the standard of the accommodation, it was the extremely helpful and friendliness of the staff. This was closely followed by Sea Spay Suites Bay of Islands and Ocean View Chalets Abel Tasman. I would have to say that all the accommodation had very comfortable beds which guaranteed a very good night’s sleep.

The stand out activity; the boat trip to and the cruise of Doubt Sound truly amazing. This was closely followed by Sea Kayaking and Nature Walk in Abel Tasman. The chalet in Abel Tasman provided the most amazing night of star gazing. While driving to the accommodation my wife questioned why we were being sent so far off the beaten track, but that entire day ending with us standing outside in the pitch black for over an hour in awe of what we were seeing provided the answer.

There were many more highlights to the holiday too many to share in this testimonial it all went so smoothly thanks to Fine Tours NZ. We have visited many places with different travel companies and this stands out as the best so far. So if you want a carefree well detailed and supported holiday to NZ, Fine Tours NZ is the only company you should use, they are OUTSTANDING. We give 9 out of 10 to make sure that FTNZ continue to strive to improve. Corinne & Erskine Douglas

Stuart & Gillian Foster, 23 day New Zealand Highlights, Travelled on 11 January 2015

Your personal thorough attention made our holiday great and worry-free. Thanks so much for your painstaking preparation, the great support documentation, rapid communication and, of course your great advice on itinerary, activities and accommodation. All arrangements went like clockwork thank you.

All accommodation and trips took us straight thru with the exception of Kaikoura whale watch had a right "jobs worth" who wanted a voucher even tho we had ID and we were on his screen!!

A truly memorable holiday. We love NZ. The activities were super - Milford's Weather gave us a different experience (torrential rain), poor luck with the commentary on Kaikoura whalespotting.

The highlights for us were Glacier Helicopter, Dart River, Oamaru blue penguins and BOI discover hole in the rock trip. The cancelled White Island trip was a stroke of luck, as mentioned, as Gill wasn't a fan of geothermal stuff. The trips and beach we did that day counted as one of our most enjoyable.

Accommodation outstanding - the Establishment, Titore Lodge hotels understandably topping the list, however all motels were from good to excellent. Sea views abounded - so thanks for the trouble you took. Tauranga trinity wharf room view disappointed (as U know), Wanaka Clearbrook was OK however had a bustling busy feel coinciding with Big groups of Chinese arriving. Coromandel Harbour View was a bit basic but more than made up for it with its balcony bay view. Brown's (@QT), Bolton in Wellington and St Clair in Dunedin were excellent. Te Anau Lakefront probably topped our Motel Stays. Though very good Aspen Court (FJ), Anchor Inn (Kaikoura), Regal Palms (Rotorua). Quest in Auckland was a good stay on our final night - v nicely situated and well appointed tho' a bit tired.

We got v lucky with Europcar vehicle - I'd like to think you may've influenced - the booked RAV4 was upgraded to a Highlander for S Island. RAV4 in North. Europcar's cars (almost new), readiness and customer service was excellent. Needed to replace a faulty SatNav in Dunedin Airport. And no speeding ticket!

Finally, and to repeat, your personal thorough attention made our holiday great and worry-free. Thanks, Stu & Gill Foster

Colin & Kathy Smith, Natural South Island Tour, Travelled on 18 January 2015

We have returned from our South island Tour and just about recovered from our jetlag! Kathy and I were delighted with the itinerary you created for us and also the accommodation you recommended.

It was a great mix of motels, B&Bs, hotels and lodges. We were not disappointed with anywhere we stayed. It is difficult to pick out any individual locations but Split Apple Lodge, Dunluce B&B and Kaimata lodge (although remote!) were particular gems not only in respect of the accommodation but the friendliness and helpfulness of the owners etc.

Thanks very much for organising such a brilliant trip. It was good to see you in Wanaka. We shall certainly be in touch when we next plan anything similar in NZ.

Antoine & Karen Barthel, New Zealand Explorer Tour, Travelled on 5 February 2015

Recent trip of the Barthel family to New Zealand. They were very impressed with the excellent travel arrangements, the hotels and daily tours.

Everything went very smoothly, the people very helpful and friendly. Magnificent countryside. The whale watching and the food just great. Milford sound fantastic. Excellent Tour.

Elena Chipalova & Maxim Drogaytsev, Maya & Kira Drogaytseva, North to South Family New Zealand Explorer tour, Travelled on 20 December 2014

You fully deserve credits for all the hard work! Firstly, I think the way your company operates is extremely professional. You have user-friendly web interface which was easy to navigate. You responded to my initial query very fast and with ready proposal!

Literally every step of our journey was well taken care of! Great recommendations of places - all were suitable for the ages of our kids and well spaced. We would have unlikely found such a great tour like Nature Wonders Naturally in Dunedin on our own. And it was an amazing nature experience.

The choice of accommodation was great - I think you understood very well what kind of accommodation we enjoy the most!

Tarata Fishaway was spectacular! The place itself is probably one of the most scenic places we've ever been. Steve and Trudi ensured we had the most wonderful time. Their daughters entertained our girls with animals, and even brought 2 cute dachshund puppies for them to play. Homemade food was great and I still remember Christmas Pavlova. We had lots of fun kayaking, and overall, we wish we stayed there much longer!

The other wonderful experience we had was at The Factory. We were deeply impressed with warm hospitality that Paul and Janet extended to us. Meeting people like them left us with a very warm feeling about New Zealand people and wanting to come back again. Accommodation itself was great - the place is very well taken care of, clean and neat. We were treated with wonderful seafood which we immediately put on bbq! Paul even shared his snorkeling gear so that we can try to catch some on our own. Kids went seashell hunting and chased Sparkie, the cat, and chickens around. I also would like to acknowledge Michael Young from 858 George Street in Dunedin for being a fiendly host and also for the quality of the accommodation. Thank you once again Shelley. If we decide to visit New Zealand again (or know anyone who would ilke to) - we will have no hesitations to contact you. Max, Elena, Maya & Kira

Satheswaran Thambyraju & Ristina Maria Dass, Customised Classic 7 day Southern Lakes, Travelled on 6 March 2015

Dear Shelley,

We had the most amazing trip even though it was just 7 days.

You and your team did a fantastic job to take us through to see the beautiful island as much as we could possibly think of. We loved how you communicated so discreetly with everything so well planned and we didn't even meet! We felt like we were on a covert mission. Hahaha...

Everything went so perfectly fine and no doubt you live in the most beautiful country. Thank you all once again for your hospitality and job well done. We truly had a fantastic honeymoon :) And looking forward to many more trips there. Sathes & Ristina

Dan & Shannon Radmacher, 13 day Essential New Zealand Experience, Travelled on 18 March 2015

New Zealand was our dream trip as we wanted to experience all the scenic beauty. We had a friend who had used Fine Tours and recommended you. Our experience was wonderful from beginning to end.

Shelley was friendly and helpful with suggestions and clarification on questions we had. When a change had to be made to our itinerary due to a ferry schedule change, she let us know different options and we were still able to do everything we initially planned. All of the reservations went seamlessly--all we had to do was give our name at hotel and activity checkins and everything was ready and waiting for us.

The accommodations that Shelley arranged were well suited to our preferences and provided just what we needed. We appreciated the photo atlas, itinerary booklet with summary pages of reservation details, NZ cell phone, and most especially the very cute "chilly bin" that was waiting for us at our first hotel--that allowed us to carry food with us and save some money to spend at the wineries.

Only one thing was lacking--a warning about needing bug spray for the sandflies on the West Coast of the South Island. Nasty little buggers!

Thanks Shelley for helping us to have the best vacation ever.

Robert & Pamela Fischer, The Ultimate New Zealand National Parks Tour, Travelled on 4 January 2015

This was an absolutely amazing itinerary that worked extremely well for us, and without a hitch.

We missed the Dart River safari due to weather, but added in the White Heron Sanctuary Tour in Whataroa. Our experiences will be put in a documentary to music and shown to several hundred visitors at the Silver Bay YMCA, NY this summer. Do stop in!

Kudos to Michelle and the team that made this such a memorable and fun experience for us. We love NZ. It's a beautiful country, with lovely welcoming people, and fun adventures. The B&Bs were excellent (with a special shout-out to the kind folks at Rotorua), and the fine services at the Auckland and Wellington hotels.

One suggestion: strike the city of Dunedin as an overnight and add in blue penguin sightings. Thank you! Pam and Rob Fischer

Yaz Loukhal, 17 day New Zealand Driving Adventure, Travelled on 12 December 2014

I cannot thank enough the team from New Zealand Fine Tours! Best services ever!

They suggested the entire trip and booked the hotels, cars and entries to the National Parks. The guide book provided was very helpful and very accurate. Upon arrival, I requested changes to be made to the reservations.

The team were available even Sunday and were able to make the changes I requested. tej services was OUTSTANDING! I have had a most memorable trip thanks to New Zealand Fine Tours. cannot thank then enough. I highly recommend them to any traveller!

Peter, Linda and Sarah Dix, 16 day Essential New Zealand Experience, Travelled on 15 May 2015

We booked our tour from the UK and were lucky to deal directly with Shelley who gave us advice and help in putting together a great tour that meant we got to see the best that NZ had to offer. All our accommodation, transfers and cars were well planned and well organised.

During our holiday we had cause to contact the 24 hour emergency help line, and although answered quickly the advice was basically to look up solutions to our problem ourselves on the Internet. Whilst we were able to do this, we do feel that the service could have been rather more supportive.

That said I would recommend Fine Tours if you are after a tailor made trip.

Hina & Crumsan Nundkumar, The Ultimate New Zealand 21 day Highlights, Travelled on 1 February 2015

My husband and I were extremely pleased with the itinerary that Shelley put together for us.

All the accommodations were fabulous and the tours were very good. The whole trip was very relaxing and we thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it. We finished the three weeks without any hitches. Thank you Shelley for a wonderful itinerary to see New Zealand. Dr. and Hina Nundkumar

Colin & Virginia Bozier, Customised New Zealand Self Drive Tour, Travelled on 11 January 2015

Firstly, I would like to say Virginia and I were very happy with the trip. I cannot think of any area where we thought it could have been done in a better way. All the accommodation we stayed in was very good, with some being excellent.

The tour booklet, including the driving instructions was very helpful and also serves as a nice reminder of the trip, and we used your additional suggestions for extra stops and things to see on several occasions. All of the hotels expected us and there were no exceptions, and the excursions we had pre-booked were similarly efficient.

So in summary we were very pleased with the route and itinerary you outlined, and the logistics were excellent. Your company was held in high regard by all we spoke to and that was nicely reassuring. If we come again I will definitely use you, and I would have no reservations about recommending you to friends

Stan & Marilyn Carlson, Customised 23 day Classic New Zealand, Travelled on 3 March 2015

We had a wonderful time. Everyone asks what our favorite place was and I can't answer because it was all beautiful and unique in its own way. Shelly did a wonderful job putting our tour together.

The places we stayed at were clean, comfortable, and located in areas where we could walk if we wanted to. The staff was very helpful with directions and suggestions. Loved having someone meet us and take us to the motel until the car was delivered.

No worries. We would love to go back someday and definitely would contact Shelly again. In fact, I have recommended Fine Tours [to people] if they plan to visit New Zealand.

Beth Bostock & Nicholas Larkman, Coast to Coast Honeymoon tour, Travelled on 1 January 2015

Hope you are well. Just wanted to say thank you for all your hard work on our trip organisation. We had a fantastic time and everything was organised superbly. We particularly liked the itinerary and pack we received - and the mobile phone was extremely helpful.

We found all of the accommodation to be of a good standard and well located - with some being particularly exceptional (Nikau Lodge, Westwood Lodge, Distinction Te Anau and Scenic Suites). The Fiordland Navigator overnight cruise was completely brilliant - It was really well run with great food and very friendly staff.

The itinerary was also just right, with enough time to relax whilst also getting round the all of the places we wanted to see (there can always be more time, but in the circs we think we covered the right amount and ticked our main boxes).

We thoroughly enjoyed seal swimming, whale watching, the glacier boat trip and the glacier heli flight. All were fantastic and well worth their respective costs. We also really liked Akaroa on our last day - so beautiful.

We had great food everywhere - but notable places were: Custom House ( Dunedin), Ironic (Dunedin), the Landing (Wanaka), King Tiger (Franz Josef), Dux Dine (Christchurch), Hislops (Kaikoura), Miles Better Pies (Te Anau), Da' Tony's (Te Anau), Panorama (Mt Cook).

The car hire was incredibly no fuss and we were very happy with our car which was an upgrade. Driving in NZ was great and so easy compared to the UK! All transfers were really smooth.

You were very helpful from start to finish and it was a comfort and useful to know that there was local assistance on hand to book activities and get information. Overall, we could not be happier with the trip and the service and would not hesitate to recommend New Zealand Fine Tours (indeed, we already have). Feel free to quote any of what I've said.

Dennis, Kim and Kayla Murphy, Essential 9 days New Zealand Scenery Tour, Travelled on 4 December 2014

We recently planned a trip to New Zealand and contacted New Zealand Fine Touring to arrange the details. Our experience was one of complete satisfaction.

Our itinerary was planned with professionalism ensuring we maximized our time and interests without feeling rushed. The accommodations selected far exceeded our expectations as well as the suggestions we received for activities in both the South and North Islands.

Finally, as we were using a rental car, the meticulous documentation and cell phone provided was a great assist and demonstrated the great detail New Zealand Fine Touring provides to ensure a great customer experience!!

When planning a trip to New Zealand, I highly recommend New Zealand Fine Touring as your choice for a fabulous trip! Dennis Murphy Philadelphia, PA USA

Shamsul Nahar Awang & Family, 21 day South Island Encounter, Travelled on 30 November 2014

Dear Shelley

Thank you for helping us to plan and arrange this trip. This has to be our best vacation ever. The fact that this was self drive made it even better. We could stop wherever and whenever we felt like, be it the lookouts or the picnic benches, take detours off the route, and take our time with doing what we want to do.

We loved all the unique destinations and accommodations that were arranged for us. The scenery was beautiful, from the mountains to the forests to the beaches. Even though the unpredictable weather affected some parts of our trip and prevented us to explore Mount Cook and Abel Tasman, being there and admiring the views (even in the overcast or rainy weather) was more than enough to make up for it.

Our kids also enjoyed the short walks around Mount Cook, Arthur's Park, Kaikoura and Punakaiki. There's always something to look forward to at the end of the walk, be it a waterfall, a stunning beach, or just an amazing view. Your country is amazingly beautiful, and we've only seen the South Island.

Again, thank you Shelley and the Fine Tours team. We will definitely return to New Zealand with you the next time.

Koos, Ellie & Danie Olivier, Auckland to Queenstown Highlights, Travelled on 3 December 2014

Dear Michelle

Thanks for arranging our tour so perfectly and professionally. Travelling from the north to south island was a wonderful experience. NS is a beautiful country!

Our accommodation was good and staff at the different motels were professional and friendly.

Sharon & John Phelps, 50th wedding anniversary Tour Wellington to Auckland , Travelled on 24 October 2014

Arrived very late into Wellington on a late October evening meet and quickly taken to our hotel for the night. Spent the next 8 days(not nearly enough time) exploring on our own with our suv the north island from Napier to Lake Taupo on to Rotorua to The Shire of the Hobbits to Coromandel and Auckland for a quick night and then home to US.

The scenery breathtaking, the people friendly. So many surprises about the land and the native culture. We really felt we were able to immerse ourselves into the feeling of what is New Zealand. Being handicapped made in a challenge at times, but Verity Gemmell always was a phone call away to offer assistance. We really should have had a couple more days for a more leisurely travel time.

Napier was the biggest surprise for us, as we are Floridians and well versed in citrus...but to see orange groves next to apple, cherry, fig and olives all in bloom and growing together was a really wonderful sight for us. I am a sheep person...love seeing them, so I was delighted at every turn...especially since it was lambing season.

Spring is a great time to visit, however colder than we expected...but the kiwis said it was colder than usual even for them! WE thank New Zealand Fine Touring and the land and People for make this a wonderful 50th Anniversary trip for us. John and Sharon Phelps, Florida USA

Melinda & Andrea diSessa, Custom South Island self drive tour, Travelled on 3 October 2014

The short story: we had a WONDERFUL trip! Thank you! Everything worked flawlessly and your bookings for lodgings and activities were outstanding. Some details below, but you can be sure we will tell our friends about your services and, if per chance we visit New Zealand again, we will certainly come back to you.

The details:

1. Many of the activities and some of the lodgings asked for vouchers. We didn't have any vouchers but it turned out never to be a problem. Some places just asked for the reservation reference number instead or asked to photocopy the page from the itinerary with their booking on it. I don't know if we were supposed to have vouchers, but, as I said, it was never a problem. The bookings worked flawlessly.

2. All of the lodgings were perfect for us, tho some stood out exceptionally. The Kaimata Retreat was a complete surprise and absolutely wonderful. It was an adventure to get to (and, in all honesty, we initially wondered why you had booked us there rather than in town, but we quickly discovered that it is a completely magical, beautiful place). We had private dinners cooked for us by the chef Aidan that were remarkable. Such a novel concept to have the chef right there talking about your meal (or anything else brought up)! (An aside, the address given was not correct—you gave 267 Cape Saunders Road but 267 looked like a private drive; the Retreat was further up...perhaps 269?? anyway, a little confusing). Also the Riverrun Lodge was exceptional. Just beautiful and Meg is such a gracious and informative host. We loved it and wanted to spend even more time in Wanaka. George at the Te Anau Lodge was also a charming and friendly host who we enjoyed very much. And tho we didn't have much time in Queenstown, Browns Boutique Hotel was wonderfully located.

3. We felt so fortunate with regard to the weather we had. I know you are not responsible for that but we had brilliant opportunities to see NZ in its many moods and caught sunshine at pivotal moments, so Andy, the photographer, came home with about 1700 photos! We even got sun the day we drove to Mt. Cook National Park so we saw Mt. Cook, those breathtaking glacial lakes, and even took a time lapse of sunset on Mt. Cook.

4. The choices of activities suited us very very well. David, I recall you suggested we include the Otago Peninsula, and that was completely brilliant. It is gorgeous and turned out to be one of our favorite places. Thanks for that. We skipped the Larnach Castle and could have skipped the Wildlife Cruise and Penguin Reserve. We enjoyed just hiking around the area, and the cruise and reserve were not that interesting and involved quite a lot of driving to and fro. I know I already tailored some of our itinerary to just wandering on our own, and probably I should have done just a tad more of that, but we really have no quarrel with the itinerary we had. The overnight cruise on Doubtful Sound was spectacular; the crew was outstanding and the breadth of time to experience the fiords was perfect. The wine tour at Wanaka was like a taste of home, and the helihike was outstanding. We had a very moody day on Milford Sound but it was different enough from Doubtful to be completely enjoyable. I missed the little map you had included of the Milford Road. We managed just fine because, of course, it is well signed, but...a suggestion...it might be nice to include that map right in the itinerary.

5. The Photo Atlas you included was wonderful to have. The GPS served us well inside the cities and towns, but in between we preferred to use the Atlas. So nice to have the broad context of the areas we were visiting and follow along the route. An excellent part of the packet. And tho we didn't use the phone much, it was good to have the few times we did use it. We left it at the Sudima to mail off and I assume/hope it got back to you.

6. There were a couple of times we would have appreciated more information...like to bring your own towels to the glacier pools, and that the Rob Roy Track, which we had had our eyes on, was more demanding than described (Meg provided delightful alternatives for us).

So... we enjoyed ourselves completely and found NZ to be a beautiful, friendly country. I'm so glad I found you on the web! You did a very fine job!

Travis & Renee Turner, Customised 19 day New Zealand Explorer, Travelled on 6 May 2014

My wife and I had a great time in New Zealand and it was all because of the great planning and support provided to us by Shelley from Fine Tours. Every step of the trip was meticulously worked out which allowed us to enjoy our vacation stress-free.

There were a couple of occasions when we had inclement weather and were unable to do the planned excursion for that day. Shelley helped us rebook other excursions in order to continue our holiday unhindered.

All in all, a wonderful vacation, beautiful country, friendly people, and great support from Shelley and Fine Tours. We will definitely recommend your services to anyone planning on traveling to New Zealand. Thanks again! Travis and Renee Turner

Channa & Buddhima Welihinda, Southern Highlights Wellington to the Southern Alps, Travelled on 10 May 2014

We, myself and my wife had the privilege of getting Fine Tours New Zealand arrange our self drive tour in New Zealand. Our experience in dealing with Fine Tours from day 1 was extremely satisfying as they, (our consultant was Shelley Bates, Thank You, Shelley) we're really professional in answering our queries and providing excellent advice.

The tour arrangements were perfectly made with no hic-ups. We enjoyed every minute of our stay inThis beautiful country, New Zealand. We have no hesitation in recommending Fine Tours for anyone wishing to travel to New Zealand. Thank you fine Tours team for making our holiday a memorable one!

Frank & Margaret Pearson, New Zealand Scenic Highlights Anniversary Tour, Travelled on 30 January 2014

Dear Shelley,

Apologies for the late posting. Your personal attention to detail and prompt response to our questions really set the scene for our 40th Wedding Anniversary adventure. And what an adventure.... it was truly wonderful.

Our memories are many - from seeing a nursery pod of dolphins at Paihia to whale watching at Kaikoura. The stunning vistas of Mount Cook and the Tranzalpine train journey (coast to coast). The excellent accommodation which you sourced and booked for us within our budget and the individual route you planned which made allowances for us to stop off and visit friends. Try doing that with a coach tour!

We particularly enjoyed the Dart River Jet Safari and the cruise on the TSS Earnslaw followed by the excellent evening meal at Walter Peak farm.

Without going through a daily log of our holiday, it would be true to say it was one of the best we have ever had. Your planning, attention to detail and care whilst we were there is surely unrivalled. I would not hesitate to recommend Fine Tours and you as an individual for such dedicated care and attention. 110% Thank you and hopefully it won't be too long before we are calling on your services again. Best wishes Frank & Margaret

Magda & David Baggett, Auckland to Christchurch 9 day highlights, Travelled on 17 May 2014

Dear Shelley, Our visit to New Zealand was extraordinary! Thank you for assisting us in planning our time there.

The self drive tour was perfect - we especially enjoyed the freedom it offered. This type of tour allowed us to stop in small towns, take pictures whenever we found something of interest, join organized tours if we wanted to, visit wineries, restaurants, shops and museums not usually on tour routes (National Army Museum), and enjoy vistas while picnicking along the roads. The weather was absolutely perfect!

The Regent in Rotorua was our favorite of all the hotels we stayed at. The room was modern and comfortable; the staff extra helpful and friendly.

Thank you again for the services you provided us. We will refer to you any friends traveling that way.

Thomas & Suzie Tuggle, 11 day Northern Explorer Self Drive Tour, Travelled on 1 March 2014

Our trip on the North Island was fascinating. The history, culture and beauty were waiting for us at the beginning of each day!

Thanks to Shelley at Fine Tours New Zealand we had a perfect itinerary for our goals. So many options and suggestions were presented for each area we visited. Even the agent at the rental car pick-up in Auckland....Europcar went out of his way to get us acclimated to driving on the opposite side of the road.

We are sold on FTNZ! The Tuggles USA

Robin Williams & Daphne McCartney-Williams, 21 day New Zealand Diversity Explorer, Travelled on 22 February 2014

A huge thank you to Fine Tours New Zealand for arranging an itinerary ideally suited to our brief.

With over 50 years of international travel experience this was our best vacation and we will certainly be returning to a wonderful country and people.

Mr John & Mrs Linda Drapeau, Custom Southern Alps to Northern Highlights, Travelled on 28 February 2014

Our South Island driving tour and transfer up to Tauranga was most enjoyable. It was well-planned by Fine Tours and we had no trouble finding our way or staying on schedule.

The accommodations were all very pleasing, especially the Hapuku Lodge and Treehouses, just North of Kaikoura. Our suite there was luxurious and they have a wonderful chef.

We can recommend Fine Tours N.Z.

Daniel Mead & Lisa Edhouse, The Essential South Island, Travelled on 7 March 2014

Thanks very much to Michelle and all at New Zealand Fine Touring for organising our holiday. We very much enjoyed seeing New Zealand, the weather was perfect and everything went as smoothly as possible. Michelle was very accommodating when doing the initial planning and got the whole trip sorted at quite short notice.

The private transfers to/from the airport were an excellent way to start and end the journey. The itinerary package was comprehensive and the Kruse GPS unit was a great way to learn more about the areas we passed through.

All the activity bookings etc. went as planned and we were treated very well throughout our entire trip. The accommodation was mostly very good. We especially enjoyed the George in Christchurch where the food was excellent and the service absolutely top notch.

Jeanne & Mario Lucciarini, New Zealand Scenic Explorer , Travelled on 8 February 2014

We just want to thank Fine Tours for their attention to detail as we spent 28 days exploring the North and South Islands.

We had so much fun working with Shelley on the perfect itinerary for everything we wanted to accomplish. We booked our first trip to NZ in 2013 through Fine Tours and we were so impressed (with the country and Fine Tours) that we decided to return in 2014.

All of the accommodations were great, in beautiful locations and many of them had kitchenettes and laundry facilities. We were away from home for 2 months so these features were really important to us. We were especially impressed with Shelley’s responsiveness as we customized our itinerary and we were able to change things right up to the last minute.

I highly recommend Fine Tours New Zealand to anyone that is traveling to NZ and is somewhat unfamiliar with the country. In fact, we will be returning in 2015 and, of course, will be booking our perfect trip with the help of Fine Tours.

Donna & Gary Brooks, Customised Itinerary for Brooks Party, Travelled on 12 February 2014

We had a wonderful 23-day trip around New Zealand, and really appreciated Michelle’s assistance in organizing everything for us, particularly as we were a bit last-minute in getting it booked, so weren’t up to the task of trying to do it all ourselves.

Fine Tours NZ also provides a lot of added value in terms of information, tools and support; I’m glad we used them and would recommend to others, even if you usually make your own arrangements as we do.

The website was very helpful in identifying our interests and desired activities, and is a brilliant way to get started. We were able to customize our itinerary and in most cases went with the accommodations suggested by Michelle, with only a couple of modifications based on our research.

We were very pleased with everywhere we stayed; as promised on the website, they were all in good locations which I think is key. The Bolton in Wellington was the most out of the way, being a good walk to most of the restaurants and waterfront, but only by a few blocks – and it was a lovely hotel. Our favorite was Fletcher Lodge in Dunedin. Generally, Michelle understood what sort of accommodations we were looking for and was able to quickly recommend and book what we wanted, saving us hours of effort. Detailed reviews for each property are on Trip Advisor.

We pre-booked activities for the first couple days of our trip, which was great as we didn’t have to think about it. The wine tour was perfect, and we got very lucky with the weather for our day at Milford Sound. A fellow passenger said she’d spent a lot of time researching all the tour companies that go to Milford before picking this one; I felt fortunate we were able to rely on FTNZ to do all that for us!

At the other end of our trip, we didn’t pre-book the Americas Cup sail in Auckland, as we wanted to be flexible regarding the weather, which turned out to be a good idea since it was so windy that it was cancelled the first two days we were there.

Being met at the airport on arrival in Queenstown, with a bag full of materials for our trip, was a great way to start. The full-color road atlas was wonderful, and so helpful as we were driving around the country, even more than the bound copy of our itinerary and driving instructions for each leg of the trip. Having all the brochures about the cities we were visiting, and the cuisine guide, was also a nice touch.

The provided cell phone with airtime credit was also good to have, as we were able to give an emergency contact number to our family before we left (although thankfully no one used it!) and it was handy for making local calls – or if we’d needed to call back to the US, at the same rate as local calls, surprisingly. I did bring an unlocked smartphone and bought a NZ SIM card so we would have internet access, which I highly recommend – for only $20 I was able to check maps and other info while we were driving, as well as access e-mail, even when WiFi was unavailable or not working well (our one frustration with New Zealand).

The Kruse Travel Guide GPS system is a great idea, although the technology seems to be in need of an update. Our first unit was almost unusable as the touchscreen was going bad. I called Michelle (thanks again for the phone!) and she immediately arranged to have a replacement unit sent to our next destination – great customer service, and so nice to have that kind of support. The second unit was much better.

As a GPS, it is a very rudimentary system, lacking many of the features one might be accustomed to, such as the ability to see an overview of the route, time/distance to destination, or save addresses. And sometimes it seemed to be sending us in a questionable or wrong direction – heading from Queenstown to Dunedin, I questioned a turn and checked Google Maps, then we stopped to ask a local and she turned us around and pointed us back in the direction Google Maps indicated, rather than continuing to follow the Kruse directions. Perhaps we would have gotten there eventually but it seemed like a much longer backroad route.

Most of the time, however, it was very useful, and certainly much better than not having a GPS – I would just recommend supplementing it with printed maps and/or a smartphone to be sure. And the travel guide commentary was a unique and special benefit; it really added to our overall experience to listen to bits of local history and Maori legends as we drove.

Stephen and Janet Banfield, Discover New Zealand , Travelled on 8 February 2014

Just back from a lovely month in this beautiful country and very happy with the organization, help and support provided by"Fine Touring".

It's always difficult deciding where to go and what to see to make the most of your time in a new location but this company put together an excellent itinerary for us covering both North and South islands.

Also importantly the accommodation selected for us was superb - mostly small boutique places where nothing was too much trouble and standard of accommodation was exceptional.

We were very impressed with the cleanliness of the country and the friendliness of the people. In Rotorua we were standing outside a supermarket waiting for a rain storm to ease when we were offered a lift back to our hotel by a lady we had never met.

Lovely just driving around this beautiful country but take advantage of some of the trips offered by Fine Tours and you will have a holiday of a lifetime! Our highlight was a helicopter trip landing on a glacier just after a snowfall - awesome! Would recommend Fine Tours as a responsible professional company who will be there for you not only in the organisation but also importantly during your time in New Zealand.

Richard & Betty O'Harren, The Heart of the North, Travelled on 16 February 2014

We loved our short trip to the north island. All very organized, and complete, we had enough time to veer off the main road and enjoy some scenery close by.

The hotels were fine, next time would love to stay at Huka lodge. Uncle Harding was right on time, such a great welcome to your beautiful country. Many thanks for the great atlas. We will return.

Rob & Patti Penrod, Auckland to Queenstown Highlights, Travelled on 11 February 2014

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.

Richard & Julie Moxley, Fiords, Glaciers and Mountains self drive tour, Travelled on 5 February 2014

Dear Jessica and all at Fine Tours, Many thanks for organising a great trip. Everything worked out well from the super hired car to the terrific accommodation. It was lovely to be chauffeured from and to the airport, as well as being picked up from the station after the Trans Alpine ride back into Christchurch.

We were lucky to have perfect weather most of the time so we saw your beautiful country at its very best. We would certainly recommend your company to anyone planning a trip to NZ. Thanks to all involved in providing us with such a lovely holiday. Julie & Richard Moxley

Richard & Alyson Wise, Custom 15 day North Island Natural Experience, Travelled 17th January 2014

We are very pleased to provide some feedback . We particularly liked the B & B in Kerikeri, good position & well placed for touring the area with a friendly host.

The motel accommodation in Napier exceeded expectations , very large room, great position & the owners , again , very helpful & welcoming.

On our return visit to Trinity Wharf , Tauranga , we thought the hotel better than our last visit and got some free wifi . Room very nice overlooking the water .

Taupo hotel OK . Good public areas but thought room was rather small .

Again nice position overlooking the lake .

Uncle met us promptly from the ship and was helpful & friendly . Also many thanks for the use of the mobile , just a small point , the phone battery needed completely charging on receipt .

Thank you personally Shelley for arranging our tour so efficiently , you were most helpful and accommodating . Everything worked perfectly . As you know we have used Fine Tours before and would do so again and would have no hesitation in recommending fine Tours to any first time travelers.

Best wishes ,

Richard & Alyson

 

Craig & Andrew Beyler, Lakes and Mountains Self Drive Tour, Travelled 02 February 2014

Shelley,

We had a wonderful week touring the south island. You have a very beautiful country, very nice people, and great hospitality.

We were glad we added the extra night in Dunedin to allow us to come to understand the peninsula better and do some additional tracking. We especially enjoyed one walk where we found ourselves on the beach with seals and sea lions.

I wish we had time to take the more southerly route to the west coast.

While nice enough, the drive to the west coast was long and primarily agricultural rather than scenic as I understand the more southerly route is.

The drive to Milford sound and the cruise were great! We stopped for some random walks in both directions and we found some really wonderful old growth forest areas with 2 meter plus trees, ferns, and mosses everywhere.

The sound was amazing and the tour company did a very good job.

The drive to Queenstown was long. Frankly, Queenstown was the least interesting part of the trip for us. The tour was just ok, though the people were very nice indeed. Queenstown was too much of a ski town for our tastes. We did get out of town to nearby areas with nice natural and historic sights, we stopped in an old mining town now tourist area where we had a nice walk and a great meal.

The glacier was very interesting and we had a good guide. My only regret was that there were too many people and some were really not up to the tour so they were a drag on the group.

Everywhere we went we found excellent walking paths and friendly people.

I was a bit disappointed that the drive to Greymouth had less coastal views than I had imagined. We would have made better use of the ones we had if we recognized how few there would be.

The train across the alps was amazing and a great end to the trip. I think Andrew took 1500 photos during our two weeks in NZ! Christchurch was nice but they are still very much in the early stages of recovery from the earthquake. It's a long road back to what it was. Yet Andrew had a great time hiking and biking while I did my symposium.

Overall, it was a great trip. Thx for your help and guidance. By the way the gps unit was helpful  but by the end of the week it was very repetitive. We only used the cell phone to confirm reservations as called out in your instructions, but it was good to know we had it if we had needed it.

Thx Craig

Peter and Anne Sharpe, South Island Hightlights Tour, Travelled 02 February 2014

Thanks for the follow up note.  Overall the trip went very smoothly, and we were very happy with the plan and  accommodations and most of the activities (more on that later).  The Tiger Moths was probably the highlight of the trip (at least for me).  Couldn’t have asked for a better day, and the whole feel of the “vintage” aspect was excellent.

Auckland was exactly what I wanted – one night in a nice hotel, perfect weather, and got a nice feel for the town.  The hotel staff was super friendly, and my wife says the king-size bed was the most comfortable of the whole trip.

Christchurch – The hotel was very nice, large rooms, and great location…… pre-earthquake.   The hotel still has no food/beverage service, and Downtown Christchurch is very depressing, lots of chain link fence, crumbling or torn down buildings, and not many things open (especially in the evening).  The town has a long way to go for recovery.   I would think that unless people need to fly out of the airport, you would guide them away from Christchurch especially if time was limited.  We were disappointed that we had two nights there, rather than one night somewhere else (but also recognize there was nothing we could really do about it considering my flight plan).

Mt Cook was fabulous – Hermitage had an awesome room with a great view.  Activities were excellent, and food/beverage service was good.  Mountaineering café was a great dinner choice.

Queenstown was beautiful, and the Novotel was a great choice.  Location was great, and the room was very nice with a balcony, and they had nice drink specials in the bar.  Not sure why the other hotels rate higher in Tripadvisor, but we thought the Novotel was perfect – thanks for insisting!!

Franz Josef was ok, but we only did the Glacier Hot Pools – which were kind of disappointing.  They were not natural pools, but fancy concrete hot tubs set in a garden.  Not exactly what we were expecting, and unfortunately we skipped walking to Lake Matheson because we didn’t think we had time to get to the Hot Pools before they closed.   However, the Westwood Lodge was fantastic – just right for the glacier/mountain feel.  The host (owner?), Kaz, was very engaging, and even though the lodge was full it felt like we were the only ones there.   Rooms were huge!  Dinner in FJ was also good (can’t think of the name of the restaurant right now), with free wifi  (as it turns out we had plenty of wifi connectivity all week, and never had to pay).

The train ride back was a nice end to the South Island tour.

We had an excellent time, and really appreciated not having to worry about the accommodations, directions, plan, etc.  The phone came in handy a few times, and the Kruse was a nice touch (but it could get annoying when it didn’t agree with the road itinerary).  We even got a free upgrade from a Ford Focus to a brand new (and very nice) Ford Territory SUV !!    Travel time between sites took longer than expected, which stressed me a little (and driving on the ‘wrong’ side of the road may have slowed us down also !).   We found the New Zealanders to be extremely welcoming and friendly, and the food portions in all the restaurants was absolutely huge (although we are somewhat used to that in America, I have been living in China for two years, so really enjoyed the meals in NZ).

I am working on Tripadvisor reports for the trip, and will gladly recommend New Zealand Fine Touring to anyone who asks!

Thanks again.

 

Auckland was exactly what I wanted – one night in a nice hotel, perfect weather, and got a nice feel for the town.  The hotel staff was super friendly, and my wife says the king-size bed was the most comfortable of the whole trip J

Christchurch – The hotel was very nice, large rooms, and great location…… pre-earthquake.   The hotel still has no food/beverage service, and Downtown Christchurch is very depressing, lots of chain link fence, crumbling or torn down buildings, and not many things open (especially in the evening).  The town has a long way to go for recovery.   I would think that unless people need to fly out of the airport, you would guide them away from Christchurch especially if time was limited.  We were disappointed that we had two nights there, rather than one night somewhere else (but also recognize there was nothing we could really do about it considering my flight plan).

Mt Cook was fabulous – Hermitage had an awesome room with a great view.  Activities were excellent, and food/beverage service was good.  Mountaineering café was a great dinner choice.

Queenstown was beautiful, and the Novotel was a great choice.  Location was great, and the room was very nice with a balcony, and they had nice drink specials in the bar J.  Not sure why the other hotels rate higher in Tripadvisor, but we thought the Novotel was perfect – thanks for insisting!!

Franz Josef was ok, but we only did the Glacier Hot Pools – which were kind of disappointing.  They were not natural pools, but  fancy concrete hot tubs set in a garden.  Not exactly what we were expecting, and unfortunately we skipped walking to Lake Matheson because we didn’t think we had time to get to the Hot Pools before they closed.   However, the Westwood Lodge was fantastic – just right for the glacier/mountain feel.  The host (owner?), Kaz, was very engaging, and even though the lodge was full it felt like we were the only ones there.   Rooms were huge!  Dinner in FJ was also good (can’t think of the name of the restaurant right now), with free wifi  (as it turns out we had plenty of wifi connectivity all week, and never had to pay).

The train ride back was a nice end to the South Island tour.

We had an excellent time, and really appreciated not having to worry about the accommodations, directions, plan, etc.  The phone came in handy a few times, and the Kruse was a nice touch (but it could get annoying when it didn’t agree with the road itinerary).  We even got a free upgrade from a Ford Focus to a brand new (and very nice) Ford Territory SUV !!    Travel time between sites took longer than expected, which stressed me a little (and driving on the ‘wrong’ side of the road may have slowed us down also !).   We found the New Zealanders to be extremely welcoming and friendly, and the food portions in all the restaurants was absolutely huge (although we are somewhat used to that in America, I have been living in China for two years, so really enjoyed the meals in NZ).

I am working on Tripadvisor reports for the trip, and will gladly recommend New Zealand Fine Touring to anyone who asks!

Thanks again.

Peter

Read more
Ken Franklin and Mavis O’Nions Explore New Zealand Tour Travelled December 20 2014

With hindsight we would have preferred just one night in Rotorua.  We booked the Mitai Maori Village evening and thoroughly enjoyed it.  The only other activity that was of interest was the thermal wonderland, which as your itinerary suggested we visited en route to  Tarata Fishaway.  

We would have loved to have a second night here in preference to the 2nd night in Rotorua.  It is a fantastic location, and the owner offers rafting trips and other exiting activities that we did not have time to sample.  It really does not make sense to treat this as a one night stop over between Rotorua and Wellington. 

Without exception, the accommodation you recommended was superb.  To ask for favorites is indeed difficult.  Again with hindsight, two nights in Matakana Country Lodge, followed by two nights in White House would have helped us get the full benefit of all that Matakana Lodge has to offer.  The diversion to Hanmer Springs gave us no time to really appreciate the town; and possibly a lodge on the direct route would have been better than the Heritage Hotel. Westwood Lodge was great, but Franz Josef has little to offer in continuous rain!   Wanaka Springs Lodge has new owners, who were keeping up the traditions of the previous owners, and their wine and nibbles reception stands out in the memory.  The Dairy is superb, but ought to be at the price!  Fletcher Lodge is stunning.  The premium plus room in the Hermitage gave us superb views of Mt Cook on the day of arrival, but disappeared overnight as yet more rain meant the cancellation of an independently booked flight over the Glaciers.  The welcome at Elizas in Christchurch was delightful, and we were amazed to find it rebuilt to its original glory after the tragic earthquake.

I certainly agree that the Restaurant Manager at the Hilton made hard work of the dinner reservation, particularly as it was not full on the night!  It was a very nice buffet dinner which we both enjoyed.

The car on North Island was a Ford Focus, which we liked better than the Corolla that was supplied on South Island.  We also found a number of your estimated driving times to be very optimistic.   The Kruse GPS was great, and after 24 days we know some of the Maori legends off by heart. Supplying us with a mobile phone was also a nice touch, which we used to make a few bookings.

This is the second trip you have organized for me.   I have enjoyed a long career in the travel business, and would have no hesitation in recommending Fine Tours to anyone intending to tour New Zealand  by car.

 Kindest regards

 Ken Franklin and Mavis O’Nions.