Exploring New Zealands North & South Islands« All Oceanic Discoverer (LI) cruise options
- Day 1 Queenstown, New Zealand
- Day 2 Milford Sound / Embark Oceanic Discoverer
- Days 3-4 Doubtful & Dusky Sounds
- Day 5 Stewart Island
- Day 6 Dunedin
- Day 7 Akaroa
- Day 8 Kaikoura
- Day 9 Wellington
- Day 10 At Sea
- Day 11 Napier
- Day 12 Gisborne
- Day 13 White Island
- Day 14 Auckland
- Day 15 Auckland / Return Home
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-Single costs are 1.5 times the twin rate
Day 1 Queenstown, New Zealand
Arrive in Queenstown, on New Zealandís South Island, and transfer to the fine Crowne Plaza. In the afternoon, walk through the town and take the gondola for a panoramic view over the city, Lake Wakatipu and the surrounding peaks. Gather tonight for a welcome dinner. (D)
Day 2 Milford Sound / Embark Oceanic Discoverer
In the morning, drive, with a stop at Lake Te Anau, to incomparable Milford Sound, the best known and perhaps the most spectacular of all New Zealandís fjords. Embark Oceanic Discoverer, and spend the afternoon exploring Milford. You will be surrounded by sheer peaks, of which the tallest and best known is Mitre Peak. Look for dolphins and New Zealand fur seals and see the cascades of Stirling Falls. (B,L,D)
Days 3-4 Doubtful & Dusky Sounds
Sail on Doubtful Sound, which got its name because Captain Cook was uncertain whether the winds would be sufficient to allow him to exit. Itís the largest of New Zealandís fjords and a place where magnificent vistas extend in every direction. Plan to land on one of the beaches to explore, seeing the native plants up close and looking for unique birdlife including the Fiordland crested penguin, the worldís rarest penguin. A cruise in the Xplorer shows you some of the landscapes for which the fjords are famous. Dusky Sound is among the most remote of New Zealandís fjords, and can be reached only on foot or by sea. It has a special place in New Zealand history, as Captain Cook stayed here for five weeks in 1773. (B,L,D)
Day 5 Stewart Island
Stewart, the southernmost of New Zealandís major islands, has a population of just 380 and the feel of a frontier outpost. A highlight is a walk on the sanctuary of Ulva Island, with outstanding birdlife that includes the weka (a flightless rail), the kaka (a forest parrot), the confiding New Zealand robin and perhaps even a brown kiwi. In the afternoon, you can choose to explore Stewart Island by road or take a walk with your naturalists. Stewart Islandís only town, Oban, has a relaxed waterfront atmosphere. (B,L,D)
Day 6 Dunedin
Lively Dunedin combines outstanding natural history with a rich cultural heritage. Explore the town, seeing the ornate Edwardian railway station and the Octagon plaza at the center of town. You can choose to visit the Otago Peninsula, looking for fur seals, yellow-eyed and little blue penguins and royal albatross; or else (if available) you can take the railroad along the coast for splendid views. (B,L,D)
Day 7 Akaroa
Youíll spend the day at Akaroa, near the head of the scenic Banks Peninsula. Its history is unique in New Zealand. Originally inhabited by Maori, it was settled by French immigrants in 1840, and many early houses still stand in the town. You have a number of choices for exploring Akaroa: taking an excursion boat in the bay to observe Hectorís dolphins; taking a guided walk through the town; visiting a nearby farm to see how sheep are raised and sheared; and a more strenuous walk in the countryside above the town. (B,L,D)
Day 8 Kaikoura
The continental shelf drops off rapidly just off Kaikoura, producing upwelling that creates ideal conditions for marine mammals, notably enormous sperm whales, dolphins and pelagic birds. Your choices here include taking a local boat in search of whales; another excursion to look for albatrosses and other birds; swimming with gregarious dusky dolphins (all equipment is supplied); visiting a fur sea colony; and walking along the cliff tops of the Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway, with spectacular views of mountains, cliffs and the Pacific, including a visit to Fyffe House, a small museum that was originally the home of whalers. (B,L,D)
Day 9 Wellington
Vibrant Wellington is New Zealandís capital and second largest city, although the town center, with a lively waterfront, is compact and readily explored. Explore Wellington, including a visit to the superb Te Papa Museum, opened in 1998 as a showplace for New Zealandís diverse cultures. In the afternoon, you may explore on your own or enjoy a visit to the Zealandia Sanctuary, where the elimination of predators has allowed native birds and plants to get reestablished. (B,L,D)
Day 10 At Sea
Spend an enjoyable day at sea, with talks by your expedition staff, preparing for the days ahead. (B,L,D)
Day 11 Napier
After the devastating earthquake of 1931 leveled Napier, residents decided to rebuild it as a shining example of contemporary architecture. The result is many of the finest showpieces of Art Deco, Art Nouveau and related styles in the world. They fill the town. Have a guided exploration of the town and its history, and also visit the worldís largest gannet colony at Cape Kidnappers outside Napier ó where 5,000 pairs of birds raise their young. Youíll be able to get remarkably close. (B,L,D)
Day 12 Gisborne
Enjoy a special, intimate reception at the meeting houses of one of the small Maori communities, where youíll learn of the residentsí history and traditions, with a chance to meet some of the people who live here. In the afternoon explore the marvelous Eastwoodhill arboretum, with trees and plants from all over the world, planted over a period of decades by the eccentric New Zealander Douglas Cook. (B,L,D)
Day 13 White Island
Today visit White Island, an astonishingly active marine volcano with powerful steam vents, boiling mud pots and a highly acidic crater lake. At this unique site, clouds of steam and rivulets of hot water are everywhere, as is the roar from the vents. Youíll also see the remains of the sulfur mining operations that were abandoned in 1933. (B,L,D)
Day 14 Auckland
Arrive Auckland, disembark Oceanic Discoverer and tour the city, taking in the views from the renowned Sky Tower and seeing the marvelous exhibits on Maori culture and natural history at the Auckland Museum. Check in to the Crowne Plaza, in the heart of the city. The afternoon is at leisure to shop or explore further. In the evening, gather for a farewell dinner. (B,D)
Day 15 Auckland / Return Home
The day is free until your departure for the airport for connecting flights home. (B)
Itinerary NotesCosts Include:
All accommodations aboard ships or in hotels per itinerary or similar, all meals and nonalcoholic beverages aboard ship, meals on land as indicated, air transportation where indicated as included, shore excursions, sightseeing and entrance fees, special access permits, use of snorkeling equipment and wet suits, use of kayaks (where available), gratuities (except to shipís crew), taxes and service charges, services of a ship physician on most voyages, and services of expedition staff.
Air transportation, extensions, passport, visa, immigration fees, scuba diving (where available), meals not indicated, baggage/accident/travel protection plan, items of a personal nature, such as alcoholic beverages, e-mail, and laundry. Gratuities to ship's crew at your discretion.
Deposit & Payment
Initial deposit is varies by departure, and most travelers will call our office and pay the deposit with a credit card. We accept Visa, Mastercard, AmEx, and Discover. Alternatively, you can send a check to our Missoula, Montana, office or register online at: https://www.adventure-life.com/forms/fourways.php
Final payment is due 100 days prior to departure.
Final payment by Visa, Mastercard, Discover or AmEx.
Booking last minute? No problem! Please contact one of our trip planners, and we can get you on your way if booking less than 100 days prior to departure.
Click here to see a copy of our Terms and Conditions.
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Oceanic Discoverer (LI)
- Ship Highlights
- Passengers : 68
- Luxury Expedition Ship
Built for comfort & safety, the Oceanic Discoverer is large enough to provide the luxury & convenience of a larger cruise ship yet with a maximum of 68 guests. Oceanic Discoverer is small enough to enable access to sites beyond the reach or larger vessels & all shore excursions are carried out on our specially designed excursion vessel ĎExplorerí, 3 Zodiacs and spacious glass bottom coral viewing boat.
There is a lounge with well-stocked library, full-service bar and facilities for films, slide shows and presentations; Sun Deck with chairs and a hot tub; and an outdoor area at the stern of the Bridge Deck with tables and chairs. The "Open Bridge" provides guests an opportunity to meet the Officers and Captain and learn about navigation.
Meals are served in single seatings with unassigned tables for an informal atmosphere and easy mingling. Breakfast is a wide selection buffet and lunch is typically a buffet. The menu features wholesome foods with local ingredients.
Onboard accommodation comprises 35 spacious modern staterooms. You can select from Bridge, Promenade or Main Deck staterooms offering a choice of twin through to junior king-size doubles. All staterooms have an ocean view as all face outside with windows (two portholes in C01-03), en-suite bath facilities, settee, large wardrobe, desk, luggage storage, individual air-conditioning control, and are serviced daily.
Most excursions and landings are conveniently done aboard the "Xplorer", a covered expedition boat that accommodates all guests at once.
There is limited guest e-mail access, and laundry can be done on board at additional cost. Cabins and public spaces are attractively designed and furnished, with ample space for storage.
Main Deck C01-C03. Two lower beds, writing desk, sofa, two viewing portholes.
Main Deck C04-C09. Lower beds, writing desk, sofa, two windows.
Promenade Deck B03-B22. Lower beds, writing desk, sofa and window.
Twin or double, oceanview, private facilities, individual air-conditioning control.
Promenade Deck B01. Lower double bed, desk and window.