Cruising New Zealand with the Chimas
Updated: Apr 2
New Zealand is an island nation that's absolutely packed with things to do, and Rod & Cinda got to experience its beauty firsthand on a Holland America cruise. One of the best things about this country is that it really does have something for people of all ages.
If you're considering visiting Oceania, New Zealand is the perfect place to start. Rod & Cinda's cruise tour gave us a great look at some of the best things the country has to offer.
They began in spectacular Auckland. New Zealand's largest city boasts everything from a stunning rose garden to the Auckland War Memorial Museum. It's home to world-class food producers, an exciting promenade, and even a famous island that's a dormant volcano. Whether you love water sports, land activities, or both, you'll never be bored in Auckland.
While cruise ships can only reach coastal areas, cruise lines are beginning to increase their cruise tour options. Cruise tours are land tours you can add to your cruise so you can experience both inland and coastal destinations, not just tours of coastal areas.
Tauranga is a beautiful harbor side city on the North Island that makes the perfect beach town. It has plenty of historic buildings while also offering countless modern cafés, pubs, and restaurants.
If you're cruising and have some time in Tauranga then you absolutely have to take a cruise tour of Rotorua. If you're doing a land tour then Rotorua is not to be missed! Set on a lake, it's famous for Māori culture and geothermal activity that makes for great natural hot springs, mud pools, and shooting geysers.
Dubbed "the coolest little capital in the world", a tour of the North Island wouldn't be complete without a visit to Wellington. It's a capital city full of cultural experiences, and lovers of art, history, and food are guaranteed to have an amazing time. For the adventurists, you can do everything from mountain biking to sea-water kayaking.
A ride on Wellington's famous cable car will take you to a lookout that offers amazing views and easy access to sites like the Cable Museum, the Botanic Garden, and the shuttle to Zealandia, "Earth's Hidden Continent".
Wellington sits at the southern end of the North Island. A 3-hour ferry takes you to Picton where you can start exploring the South Island. The South Island is larger than the North Island and thought to be more beautiful, even though the North Island is absolutely stunning. The South Island has a more rugged and agricultural feel than the North Island which has more of a city vibe depending on where you are.
Because the South Island is bursting with natural beauty, it has a wider variety of activities. While you're free to go dirt biking or jet skiing, the South Island also lets you ski in the Southern Alps, take a helicopter flight to a glacier, and ice climb at Mount Cook.
Even though Auckland and Wellington are two of New Zealand's most notable cities, the South Island has a number of places that deserve a visit as well - Christchurch, Dunedin, Queenstown, Invercargill, and Nelson, just to name a few.
More and more people are reaching out to us about wanting to explore New Zealand and Australia. If you're one of those people, please give us a call or stop by. We'd absolutely love to help you get to know the best of Oceania.