- The tour was very diverse and I felt that we saw a lot of the country and learnt a lot about its history, wildlife, vegetation and agriculture. Highlights for me were the Coromandel peninsula, the penguin-spotting trip and the west coast of the south island, which was spectacular. Although I enjoyed Hobbiton and the Maori feast, I would have preferred it if other activities had been included instead. Our trip to Milford Sound was somewhat marred by the food provided on the boat. It was not labelled and I had to wait some time for a chef to come out to advise which dishes did not contain meat. He suggested eating the Indian food, which I did, but this did not seem to be readily accessible and another member of the group was prevented from entering the area where it was being served. I would suggest either a boat trip without the lunch or ensuring that arrangements are made for any dietary requirements. The accommodation was generally of a good standard and the Admiralty Lodge in Whitianga was particularly impressive. I was also impressed by the efficiency of the local tour operator in making alternative arrangements after the earthquake affected our itinerary.
Published on: 28 November 2016