We're making our first voyages to New Zealand in 2016, and the anticipation is almost too much to handle. New Zealand is one of the most beautiful and unique destinations on Earth. It's the perfect place for a cruise line that breaks the industry mold with a unique focus on Destination Immersion® experiences.
We won't be in "The Land of the Long White Cloud" until January, but until then we're pouring over photos of New Zealand on Instagram. We just had to share our excitement here on the blog! Here are some of our favorites:
The Wellington Botanic Garden. Source.
Wellington is the capital of New Zealand, and has been developing a reputation as a cool, yet relaxed, cultural hub. You'll find lots of art, fantastic coffee, and spectacular views from the top of Mount Victoria.
Wellington, New Zealand. Source.
We've planned an overnight stay in Wellington, so guests will be able to experience plenty of sightseeing and the city's vibrant nightlife.
Akaroa, New Zealand. Source.
Akaroa was made for nature lovers. The scenery is out of this world (as evidenced here!) and the wildlife is delightful - think penguins, seals and dolphins.
Akaroa, New Zealand. Source.
Akaroa also offers guests the chance to travel to Christchurch on a Cruise Global, Connect LocalSM shore excursions tour, or journey into "Middle Earth" - the Southern Alps at Mount Potts High Country Station, where parts of The Lords of the Rings trilogy was filmed.
The Hobbiton™ Movie Set, near Tauranga. Source.
Tauranga is the most populous city on New Zealand's famous Bay of Plenty, and another port where we've planned an overnight stay. You can visit the incredible Hobbiton Lord of the Rings film set on a Cruise Global, Connect LocalSM shore excursions tour - trust us, this isn't just for movie buffs! The natural landscape and the "hobbit holes" will have you pulling out your camera again and again.
Tauranga, New Zealand at sunset. Source.
Tauranga is also home to Mount Maunganui and the beautiful beach nestled below. A winery, waterfalls and geothermal pools are also popular sightseeing opportunities.
Tauranga, New Zealand. Source.
Dunedin, New Zealand. Source.
Dunedin is known as "the Edinburgh of New Zealand", thanks to the city's proud Scottish heritage. It's also known for the picturesque drive up Otago Peninsula. Don't forget your camera, you'll want to capture the rugged beaches and stunning panoramas that can't be found anywhere else.
Dunedin also offers visitors great food and nightlife. You can tour the Cadbury World chocolate factory, relax in one of the city's many local pubs, cafes and restaurants, pick up a bottle of Milford (Dunedin's own single malt whiskey), or tour the Speights brewery.
Kaikoura, New Zealand. Source.
Bring your appetite to Kaikoura. The town is known for delicious seafood feasts, particular crayfish. But the best thing to do in Kaikoura is watch for whales and dolphins. Take a tour, and then enjoy dinner at a local restaurant! That's what late-night departures are all about.
A dolphin in Kaikoura. Source.
We'll be calling on Kaikoura in March of 2017. View the itinerary here.
Auckland, New Zealand. Source.
Auckland is the most populous city in New Zealand, yet features pristine beaches, farms, rainforest. You can go horseback riding or shopping; spend your day touring a sheep farm or taking in the city from atop the Sky Tower.
The nearby island of Waiheke offers wineries and art galleries for those looking to unwind. Or for something more adventurous, climb to the top of Mount Eden for breathtaking city views.
We have two voyages calling on New Zealand in 2016. This 16 Night voyage embarks from Sydney, Australia and concludes in Auckland. This 13 Night voyage embarks from Auckland, and concludes in Sydney. Can't join us? Don't worry! We'll be back in 2017. View those itineraries here and here.
Are you excited for your next Azamara voyage?
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