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New Zealand Cruises

Travel made your way
New Zealand
  • 32 Cruises
Lupines on the shore of Lake Tekapo
  • 10 Cruises
Rottnest Island
Auckland Islands
  • 8 Cruises
Wandering albatross, Enderby Island
Campbell Island
  • 10 Cruises
Gentoo penguins greeting the Corinthian II
  • 13 Cruises
A quiet morning near Dunedin
  • 11 Cruises
Cruising Milford Sound, New Zealand
Milford Sound
  • 13 Cruises
Nathalie Michel
Milford Sound in New Zealand
The Snares
  • 10 Cruises
Clear Water and Tropical Island
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Cruise on small ship through New Zealand's most remote islands brimming with wildlife and spectacular scenery. Explore the ports of Auckland, Wellington, and stunning Milford Sound as you cruise around NZ. As the temperatures drop, the adventure rises! The Subantarctic Islands of New Zealand will not disappoint. Your cruise may take you to the UNESCO World Heritage sites of the Southern Islands, like Auckland Islands, the Snares, Campbell Island, and the Antipodes Islands. Each of these destinations hosts fascinating bird species, such as the Royal penguin, endemic parakeet species, and a menagerie of other birds,  plus native mammals like elephant and fur seals and sea lions. NZ also serves as a doorway to the frigid Antarctic. Contact our New Zealand experts to assist in planning your adventure in the Southern Ocean!
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10 Best Cruises Around New Zealand for 2022-2023

Trip NameFromDaysNext DepartureSummary
New Zealand's East Coast$774513Dec 23, 2023Discover New Zealand's diverse wildlife and fascinating Maori culture on a 13-day voyage onboard the Coral Geographer. The itinerary covers over …
Expedition to the Albatross Latitudes: The Subantarctic & Chatham Islands$965017Jan 4, 2024Journey into the wilds of New Zealand’s Southern Ocean from the deep and quiet fiords of Murihiku – Southland – to the mysterious and protected …
Southern Odyssey$2937020Dec 29, 2022Board the National Geographic Orion and sail the Southern Odyssey route from Auckland to Dunedin and experience the pristine coastlines and natural …
New Zealand's East Coast$774513Jan 7, 2023Explore more than 7,000 km of New Zealand's stunning coastline on this 13-day cruise aboard the Coral Adventurer. Learn about Maori culture and see …
Coastal New Zealand: Auckland to Milford Sound$2029014Feb 3, 2023Board the National Geographic Orion and set off on a 14-day expedition of New Zealand's beautiful coasts, sailing from Auckland to Milford Sound. …
Galapagos of the Southern Ocean: New Zealand and Australia's Subantarctic Islands$845012Nov 23, 2022Take a 13-day wildlife trip on the Spirit of Enderby through New Zealand's Subantarctic Islands: the Snares, Auckland, Macquarie, and Campbell. These …
New Zealand Coastal Odyssey: The Ultimate Expedition Cruise of the New Zealand Coast$449511Nov 14, 2022Visit the hidden gems of New Zealand on this unforgettable 11-day expedition cruise of coastal New Zealand. Visit the three main islands the North …
Islands of the Hauraki Gulf: Expedition Cruising the Hauraki Gulf and Bay of Islands$39558Jan 7, 2023Explore the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park and the Bay of Islands' iconic islands and coasts while learning about the region's early New Zealand history. …
Ancient Fjords and Unspoiled Islands of Southern New Zealand$796012Jan 11, 2023Board Le Soleal for a 12-day cruise through the South Islands of New Zealand. Explore the magnificent Fiordland National Park, learn about its …
Beyond Fiordland - New Zealand's Wildest Islands$799512Dec 28, 2022On this 12-day cruise aboard Heritage Adventurer starting and ending in the beautiful city of Invercargill, admire some of New Zealand's best pelagic …

Get Inspired to Cruise Around New Zealand

Top 4 Small Ships Cruising NZ in 2022-2023

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New Zealand Cruise Guide & Travel Tips

How do I get to New Zealand?

Check out New Zealand's advice and requirements for travel.

The United States - There are 1 stop flights from Los Angeles, San Francisco, and New York to the capital city of Auckland. Other than that there are many 2-3 stop options to many New Zealand cities. Check the United States government advice for international travel.

Australia - There are non-stop flights from Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane to Auckland. Other than that there are many 2-3 stop options that are also more economic. Check Australia's government advice for international travel.

The United Kingdom - Currently there is only 1 stop flight available from London to Auckland, other than that there are many 2 stop flights from different cities to New Zealand. Check the United Kingdom's government advice for international travel.
Follow in the footsteps of legendary explorers like Shackleton as you journey through the Subantarctic Islands aboard a luxurious cruise ship. Along the way, you will encounter a veritable rainbow of wildlife, including entire "penguin cities," an aviary of native and endemic bird species, and the lounging elephant seals. Your New Zealand excursion will bring you to the most popular and even some of the more hidden islands in this part of the South Pacific.
Here's Adventure Life's top New Zealand Islands for a Wildlife Cruise
  • The Snares – You will see millions of sooty shearwaters and petrels and also the famous crested penguin along the steep cliffs of this small chain.
  • Auckland Islands – Land and sea birds abound in these islands, which were formed by two long-extinct volcanoes and broken apart by glaciers. This is also home to a stunning 19 endemic invertebrate species. 
  • Macquarie Island – Here, you will see the exclusive breeding spot of the royal penguin, along with three other species of penguins.
  • Campbell Island – This ruggedly steep island forms an important part of the UNESCO protected area of the southern islands, and with such biodiversity, you will see why!
  • Antipodes IslandDespite being an isolated destination, the Antipodes host the endemic pitpit & snipe among other curious bird species.

Best New Zealand Small Ship Cruise Lines for 2022-2023

  • Ponant - boasts of a butler service reserved for passengers traveling in one of the suites situated on Deck 6 aboard Le Boréal, L'Austral, Le Soléal or Le Lyrial, as well as all the Owner suites, Deluxe Suites, Privilege Suites and the Prestige Suites situated on Deck 6 aboard the explorer ships. Attentive and discreet, your butler provides fully personalized service, ensuring a bespoke and carefree voyage. Join Le Laperouse on Oceania and Pacific islands cruises that provide exceptional snorkeling and admire some of the most beautiful seabed environments in the world. 
  • Lindblad Expeditions - is a 100% carbon neutral company committed to green business operations and preserving our planet for future generations. Explore dramatic peaks, scenic fjords, and white-sand beaches of New Zealand aboard the National Geographic Orion, experiencing a wide array of natural wonders, wildlife, and culture along the way
  • Heritage Expeditions - a cruise operator based in Christchurch, New Zealand, ambassadors for conservation, pioneers of discovery, and leaders in expedition travel to the world's best-kept secrets. Perfect for small-ship expedition cruising, Spirit of Enderby and Heritage Explorer explores New Zealand's awe-inspiring fiords, gold-sand beaches, hidden coves, tranquil waterways, native forests, and marine reserves.
  • Coral Expeditions - is Australia's pioneering expedition cruise company, sailing for nearly four decades. New Zealand's 15000 km of meandering coastline makes it uniquely suited to small ship expedition cruising. Coral Adventurer takes you deep into the intriguing history, vibrant culture, and rare wildlife of South Island. 


New Zealand Travel FAQs

Do I need a visa to travel to New Zealand?

Up to three months, you do not need a tourist visa, however, your passport must have validity beyond three months from your departure date.

Is tipping customary in New Zealand?

For servers: 10-15 percent.
At hotels: You can give porters $1 per bag, the concierge $10-20 for a favor, and housekeeping around $1.
Guides & Drivers: Tip $5-20 based on if it was a private tour or ride or if they did a particularly wonderful job.
Tipping is a relatively new (and spreading) trend in New Zealand, so be discreet when offering the tips and expect that some might refuse it.

What is internet access like in New Zealand?

You will be able to connect to the internet at most hotels and maybe restaurants, but when you are on open water on a cruise or at a lodge there probably won't be an accessible signal.

Can I use my cell phone while in New Zealand?

If you purchase a local SIM chip for your smartphone, then you might get a signal while you are in the more developed regions of New Zealand, but once you are in the more isolated areas, it's not likely that you will get a signal.

Do I need power adapters?

New Zealand has 220-240v power and AS-3112 outlets (three flat slanted prongs), which means that if you have a 110v device that is not compatible with this, you will need both a plug adapter and a step-down converter.

What are the toilets like in New Zealand?

New Zealand has modern flushing toilets. If you are in a more isolated area, then you may encounter a latrine.

Can I drink the water in New Zealand?

Yes, New Zealand has safe tap water. There will also be bottled water available to you as well.

Are credit cards accepted in New Zealand? Will I be able to find ATMs?

You will be able to find ATMs and businesses that accept credit cards while you are in the more developed parts of New Zealand. Not so much in the more rural areas, but fortunately, your trip is all-inclusive and there aren't that many things to purchase in these remote parts of the itinerary.

Should I purchase travel insurance?

Yes, purchasing travel insurance is a responsible way to travel on any vacation. Our associates, TravelGuard, have some great deals on the Once You're Booked page.
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