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New Zealand

15th Feb - 3rd Mar 2019

Departure Guaranteed

This is a 17 day tour

£8,005

Sgl Supp: £1,995

$11,515

(Excluding flights)
Sgl Supp: $1,500

New Zealand is a country blessed with spectacular natural scenery and open spaces. Wine regions are found from the north of the North Island to the south of the South Island. The climate, which ranges from near sub-tropical in the north to ‘cool’ in alpine foothills in the south, allows for a wide variety of wine styles.

The wine industry here is tightly knit and the quality is universally high as the industry made a unique decision to only produce quality wines. A forward thinking approach, constant research and travelling throughout the world’s wine regions, mean that New Zealand’s wine-makers embrace opportunities presented by new wine-making practices and experiment with unusual grape varieties. This special tour covers most of the country and visits many of the renowned beauty spots. It offers you a privileged insight – meeting wine-makers who put the country on the wine-world map.

Known for its unique and dynamic culture, traditions run deep here and they influence everything from art and language to food. Its indigenous Māori people play a major role in everyday and modern life, and New Zealanders tend to have a love of the outdoors.

An island country means that the cuisine to be found in New Zealand benefits from its glorious surroundings. Fresh seafood and local meat make up the main diet here, as well as exciting fusion cuisine as brought to the world’s stage by chef Peter Gordon.

 

The range of wines that can be found here are unrivalled. Sauvignon Blanc and Burgundian style Pinot Noirs should be at the top of every wine tourist’s list, and the temperate maritime climate allows for a wide variety of wines to be produced – and very well, too.

Itinerary

Day 1 & 2 – London to Auckland

We leave London on Day One and spend the next 48 hours making our way to Auckland, New Zealand.

Day 3 – Auckland

Upon arrival in the city, you have a free afternoon to explore Auckland or perhaps simply enjoy your first glass of regional Sauvignon Blanc! We convene this evening for our first meal together at a great local restaurant a short walk away.
Hotel: Crowne Plaza Auckland
Dinner included

Day 4 – Auckland

Our first visit today is to Kumeu River, home to wine-maker Michael Brajkovich MW, New Zealand’s first Master of Wine.
Our lunchtime visit is at Coopers Creek which was founded in 1980 and where we will enjoy a tasting followed by a picnic lunch. We return to Auckland late afternoon and the rest of both the day and evening is free to spend at leisure.
Hotel: Crowne Plaza Auckland
Breakfast & lunch included

Day 5 – Waiheke Island

This morning we take the short ferry journey from Auckland’s ferry terminal to Waiheke Island, where our local bus meets us. Stonyridge, where Stephen White produces Stonyridge Larose, is one of New Zealand’s most prestigious and expensive wines. We will enjoy a tasting here. Afterwards, we have lunch at a winery restaurant with stunning views, before returning to Auckland at the end of the afternoon. This evening is free for you to make your own choice of restaurant.
Hotel: Crowne Plaza Auckland
Breakfast & lunch included

Day 6 – Taupo

We have a very early start this morning as we depart Auckland and head south to the Bay of Plenty. Mills Reef is housed in a wonderful Art Deco building with lovely views from the garden. Whilst most of the grapes come from Hawke’s Bay,
it makes for a convenient stopping point en route to Lake Taupo. After lunch we depart for Lake Taupo. En route to Taupo there is the option of visiting the geothermal reserve of Waiotapu. Unique features include the world famous Champagne Pool, naturally coloured springs, bubbling mud, steaming ground, expansive vistas, huge volcanic craters and sinter terrace formations. On arrival into Taupo we check into our hotel which is right on the shores of Lake Taupo. Dinner is included tonight at the hotel’s restaurant.
Hotel: Manuels Millennium Taupo
All meals included

Day 7 – Napier

This morning we check out and head east to Napier, stopping at Esk Valley en route. Esk Valley Estate is a long-established winery, which has a large area of vineyards in this region producing Bordeaux blend, Rosé and Chenin Blanc.
We will enjoy a tasting with Gordon Russell, one of the region’s most respected wine-makers, followed by a simple lunch at their Cellar Door facility just before we reach Napier. After lunch, we transfer to Napier and check in to our hotel which is right in the heart of the city. This afternoon and evening is free.
Hotel: Art Deco Masonic
Breakfast & lunch included

Day 8 – Napier

Our first visit today is to a Bordeaux and Syrah specialist before moving on to Craggy Range, which is renowned for producing world class Merlot, Cabernet and Syrah. In the Gimblett Gravels wine-growing district in Hawke’s Bay,
Craggy Range has 100 hectares of stony soils located away from the cooling breeze of the South Pacific. We enjoy lunch in their restaurant before returning to Napier, where the rest of the afternoon and evening is free to spend as you wish.
Hotel: Art Deco Masonic
Breakfast & lunch included

Day 9 – Martinborough Hotel

We leave very early this morning as we have a long journey south, to Martinborough. On arrival, there is free time over lunch before checking into the Martinborough Hotel and then we depart for an afternoon visit to a Pinot Noir specialist.
Hotel: Martinborough Hotel
Breakfast & dinner included

Day 10 – Wellington & Blenheim

There will be a few hours to explore the city of Wellington, perhaps visit the Te Papa Museum or take the Cable Car to the Botanical Gardens. We cross from the North Island to South Island (Wellington-Picton) this afternoon. On arrival into Picton we transfer by coach to Blenheim. After checking into our hotel, the rest of the evening is free for you to make your own choice of restaurant.
Hotel: Château Marlborough
Breakfast included

Day 11 – Blenheim

This morning we visit Cloudy Bay. Originally renowned for its Sauvignon Blanc, Cloudy Bay is also known for its Pelorus Méthode Champenoise and Chardonnay, which also rate as among the country’s finest. Lunch is at Hunter’s Wines, where we always receive a warm welcome from owner Jane Hunter, OBE. We return to Blenheim late afternoon. Dinner is included tonight at a great local restaurant.
Hotel: Château Marlborough
All meals included

Day 12 – Christchurch

We hope to squeeze in a winery tasting this morning before flying to Christchurch. On arrival into Christchurch we transfer to our hotel. The rest of the evening is free for you to relax and make your own choice of restaurant.
Hotel: Crowne Plaza Christchurch
Breakfast included

Day 13 – Christchurch

Our first visit today is at Greystone, which is farmed organically. The wine-making process includes wild ferments started in the vineyard. In 2016, they were named Vineyard of the Year in the New Zealand Organic Wine Awards. This is followed by Pegasus Bay, where the Donaldson family produce some spectacular wines. We will enjoy lunch before returning to Christchurch for the remainder of the afternoon. Dinner is included tonight at a local Christchurch restaurant.
Hotel: Crowne Plaza Christchurch
All meals included

Day 14 – Queenstown

We have a free morning in Christchurch for you to explore – maybe visit the Botanical Gardens, take a tram ride or even enjoy a punt on the River Avon. We depart at lunchtime for our internal fight from Christchurch to Queenstown. On arrival into Queenstown, we go straight to a winery for a tasting and this is followed by an included early dinner. Afterwards, we check into our hotel, well located in the heart of Queenstown.
Hotel: Crowne Plaza Queenstown
Breakfast & dinner included

Day 15 – Queenstown

Our first visit this morning is to Felton Road. The winery is situated in the Bannockburn region and produces outstanding Pinot Noir as well as excellent Chardonnay and Riesling. Our lunchtime appointment is at Mount Difficulty, home to some of the oldest vineyards in Bannockburn. We enjoy a tasting followed by lunch in their on-site restaurant, which also boasts stunning views. We return to Queenstown in the late afternoon and enjoy a farewell dinner together before our travel day tomorrow.
Hotel: Crowne Plaza Christchurch
All meals included

Day 16 & 17 – Queenstown to London

We check out after breakfast to transfer to the airport for our return flights back to London. For those not on our group flight, the tour will come to an end in Queenstown.

Guides

Bob Campbell MW is a New Zealand wine specialist, author, and educator. He has tutored over 20,000 students on his self-written wine diploma course, running since 1986. He has also judged professionally at wine competitions all over the world.

Bob Campbell MW

Wine Guide

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Flights London to Auckland; Queenstown to London*

*For UK bookings only

hotel-icon

Crowne Plaza, Auckland
Manuels Millennium, Taupo
Art Deco Masonic, Napier
Martinborough Hotel
Château Marlborough
Crowne Plaza, Christchurch

meals-icon

All breakfasts, 8 lunches & 7 dinners with wine

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Visits and tastings as per the itinerary

guide-icon

Wine Guide & Tour Manager

 

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Contact Details

The Clock Tower,
Unit 4
Oakridge Office Park,
Southampton Road, Whaddon,
Salisbury, England, UK
SP5 3HT
01730 263111 (UK)
888-479-6040 (US)
sales@arblasterandclarke.com

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Registered in England and Wales, no. 1969761