Next-Level New Zealand with Tauck

Susan Entringer

Susan Entringer

Advisor Stories / Susan Entringer / Next-Level New Zealand with Tauck

Tauck's escorted tours make exploring the beautiful island of New Zealand easy, engaging and endlessly fun since they take care of every detail. Attention to detail and activities are Tauck hallmarks that make your vacation enjoyable and stress free.

Susan Entringer recently took Tauck's escorted land tour entitled "Spotlight on New Zealand" that began in Christchurch and ended in Auckland, also visiting Queenstown, Napier, Mount Cook, Marlborough Sound and more along the way.

The Service Tauck is the eiptome of land tour experience. They take care of every detail, making travel on an escorted tour very enjoyable, easy and stress free. Tauck uses private air charters for the internal tour flights, which only further enhances the entire trip. We stayed at several hotels, but the best was Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Harbour, which offered the perfect location, wonderful service and a great breakfast buffet.

The Destinations I liked the balance between the natural history sights and local cultural/urban experiences on the Tauck tour. We were able to enjoy many activities with our tour group (32 people in all) as well as personal options to explore on our own. Some highlights included:

  • Walking the cities and exploring areas around our hotels when not on tours. My favorite tour was the Marlborough Sounds Private Yacht Cruise with lunch and local wines.
  • Waiheke Island near Auckland was another highlight: the ferry ride, olive grove visit, and lunch at the Mudbrick Winery were all memorable experiences.
  • Queenstown offered us yet another impressive meal, this time at Amisfield Winery, with wine pairings for each course.
  • We took a ride in the Skyline Gondola and were transported over Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu for stunning views of the area and learned about New Zealand’s farm industry and sheep shearing while touring Walter Peak Farm.

The Takeaways

  • The hardest part of the trip was the flight there and back, but that part is unavoidable. If you can, I highly recommend upgarding to Business Class or above to be comfortable on the international flights.
  • Since you’re traveling so far from home, arrive at least one day in advance to get acclimated and ready for the pace of a guided tour. The tour pace is busy, with early mornings, lots of moving around, as well as changing hotels and locations. Because the days are so filled with activities, there aren’t really late evenings unless you choose to go out on your own.
  • If you are the sort of traveler who likes to pack the bare minimum, it’s advisable to bring your own first aid and any medication you might need - cold remedies, Band-Aids, motion sickness pills, etc. - as it proved very hard to find some of these items locally. For day trips, I recommend a small backpack, which is much more comfortable and convenient than toggling a purse or tote bag from side to side.
  • Any experienced traveler knows this, but it’s worth a reminder: travel with a flexible attitude and an open mind.

That being said, Tauck makes it all very easy for their travelers. I’ve traveled with Tauck on escorted land tours and river cruises and am never disappointed. The attention to detail on my recent trip was excellent, as I’ve come to expect with Tauck.

Contact Susan about this vacation

Pictures from this trip