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Destination & Venue

SkyCity Convention Centre

The Conference venue (SkyCity Auckland Convention Centre) features state-of-the-art congress facilities in the heart of Auckland.

An over bridge connects the Convention Centre to the SkyCity leisure complex, including the 4+ star SKYCITY Hotel, a variety of restaurants, bars, nightclubs and the famous 328 metre tall SkyTower.

The SkyCity Grand is built directly above the Convention Centre. This 5 star hotel offers a range of 5-star facilities including a Club Lounge, Luxury Health Spa, 25 metre heated lap pool, sauna and gymnasium.

SkyCity is situated just off Queen Street - the central city's retail strip and the hub of the central business district. From the Convention Centre, it is a 10-15 minute walk to the Viaduct, Auckland’s waterfront development which is home to some of the city's most popular dining and night spots.

Come on an unforgettable journey and discover New Zealand your way!

We know you will want to make the most of your time in New Zealand so we have put together a host of information about just some off the exciting destinations that make it such a superb country to visit.
Before you get started, we invite you to look at our Beyond the Official Programme PDF to get an idea of what the different areas of New Zealand have to offer.

The free Essential New Zealand travel app from Tourism New Zealand is available from iTunes. Make the most of your stay without the need for an internet connection.

Please find below a selection of useful links and resources, itineraries and information about the best places to visit around New Zealand. We have listed a variety of destinations and activities which incorporate culture, adventure, food and wine, sightseeing and more.

Auckland

Auckland City Revealed

Experience the best sights of Auckland City in the morning.
Auckland is set on 48 dormant volcanic cones and between two harbours, the sparkling Waitemata and the brooding Manukau. Known as the City of Sails, it is New Zealand’s largest and busiest city. The morning tour is a journey of discovery designed to explore the history and sights as well as see how Aucklanders live and play.

Travel up Queen Street, through Auckland’s central business district, past the Auckland University and through the inner city park, known as the Domain. Continue on through the picturesque suburb of Ponsonby, known for its historic buildings before heading over the Harbour Bridge to Auckland’s North Shore. Stroll on Narrow Neck Beach in historic Devonport. There is time here for a coffee before continuing up to the summit of Mt Victoria with its stunning panoramic views of Auckland City.

Travel back over the Harbour Bridge to Westhaven Marina, one of the largest marinas in the Southern Hemisphere. Then visit the Auckland Fish Market, before continuing on to the Viaduct Harbour.

Click here for more information.

Best of Both Worlds

Experience the best sights of Auckland City in the morning combined with an afternoon Wilderness Experience - a day of contrasts.
Auckland is set on 48 dormant volcanic cones and between two harbours, the sparkling Waitemata and the brooding Manukau. Known as the City of Sails, it's New Zealand's largest and busiest city. The morning tour is a journey of discovery designed to explore the history and sights as well as see how Aucklanders live and play.

Join our Wilderness Experience in the afternoon to continue the tour.
Just 30 kilometres from downtown Auckland is the city's largest Regional Park - travel to the Arataki Centre, perched high in the Waitakere Ranges, where the sweeping decks give breathtaking panoramic views from the Tasman sea to the Pacific Ocean. Absorb the local history and admire the magnificent traditional Maori carvings that stand guard there.

Head further west and experience the power of the wild and rugged west coast. Feel the black sand beneath your feet as you stroll along some of the most awe-inspiring beaches the world has to offer.
With our knowledgeable and experienced guides your eco-tour continues on to the lush rainforest where you hear native birdsong as you walk the easy bush tracks amongst New Zealand's famous kauri trees and giant tree ferns.

Click here for more information.

Download a recommended itinerary for the Auckland region.

Click here to see more information about the Auckland region.

Eco Tour Auckland

Beach, bush and birds, this Auckland day tour is a nature lovers dream, beachcombers paradise and photographers ideal playground.

Leave the city life behind for the day and see the REAL NEW ZEALAND. Join us for an Eco-Tour with a difference and soak up Tawharanui, one of New Zealand's best kept secrets. This magical place will have you never wanting to leave as you explore the wildlife and flora of the forest and experience the breath-taking beach and glittering waters.

For more information and to book, please visit www.habitattours.co.nz.

 

Christchurch

 

Discover Christchurch City Tour

On tour we will view some of the areas affected by the earthquakes, see how Christchurch is preserving some of its iconic heritage buildings and hear about the exciting vision to rebuild and restore the inner city.Avon River

Your experience includes a 1 hour Tour around central Christchurch on New Zealand’s only Open Top Double Decker and a 2 hour Tour on a closed top Double Decker visiting places of interest in greater Christchurch.

HIGHLIGHTS
Hagley Park, Avon River, Botanic Gardens, Canterbury Museum, Arts Centre, Christchurch Art Gallery, Provincial Chambers, Friendship Corner, Catholic Basilica, Bridge of Remembrance, ReStart Shipping Container Mall in Cashel St

Click here for more information.

Waipara Wine Valley

Our Waipara Wine Tour takes you to four award-winning Waipara wineries, such as Pegasus Bay Winery, Mud House Wines, Waipara Springs Winery, Torlesse Wines, Muddy Water Wine, Terrace Edge Wines, Black Estate Wine, Bishops Head Wine, where you will taste many wines and view the vineyards.

Our wine tour includes a guided tour through the largest commercial winery in the Waipara Valley, where you will see where the wine is made and learn about how it is made. You will also be taken on a short biodiversity trail to learn about non-pesticide and sustainable solutions that help protect Waipara's vineyards. A delicious lunch platter at one of the wineries is also included.

Click here for more information.

Akaroa Cruise

The historic French Village of Akaroa and its spectacular harbour is just a 90 minutes drive from Christchurch. Here you can cruise around an extinct volcanic crater and experience majestic scenery and stunning wildlife on daily harbour cruises.

Your cruise is packed with highlights including the rare, NZ native dolphin - the Hector's Dolphin, as well as penguins and other sea birds. And you'll see giant volcanic sea cliffs and hear about Akaroa's fascinating past. Cruises depart every day, weather permitting.

Your modern catamaran, the 60 foot /20 metre Black Cat (previously the Canterbury Cat), is perfect for viewing the natural wonders of Akaroa Harbour. Our vessel is the largest and most luxurious on the harbour.

Click here for more information.

Download a recommended itinerary for the Canterbury region.

Click here for more information on the Canterbury region.

To enhance your stay in New Zealand, we suggest the following activities outside of Christchurch and Auckland:

North Island

Northland & Bay of Islands

  

 Known as the 'winterless north', the subtropical Northland region is renowned for its unspoilt coastline, its lush orchards and plentiful seafood. The Bay of Islands is a marine paradise, with crystal-clear waters and hundreds of miles of secluded white-sand beaches and harbours. Along with world-class diving and big game fishing, Northland is home to the famous Kauri Cliffs golf course and the ancient kauri forest of Waipoua. Known as the birthplace of New Zealand, the region is rich with historic sites from the early days of Maori and European exchange, including Waitangi, where the nation's founding treaty was signed in 1840.

Download a recommended itinerary for Northland and the Bay of Islands (departing Auckland).

 

Tour of the Hobbiton Movie Set

  Hobbiton

Discover the most picturesque private farmland near Matamata in the North Island of New Zealand, where you can visit the Hobbiton Movie Set from The Lord of the Rings film trilogy in a fascinating two-hour guided tour.

The set has been completely rebuilt and will remain as it was seen in The Lord of the Rings trilogy. There are spectacular views across to the Kaimai Ranges from the rolling green hills of the movie set, which is still a working sheep and beef farm. And as the Hobbiton Movie Set is located on a real New Zealand farm, you can cuddle and bottle feed the pet lambs.

Central North Island

Winding through the heart of the North Island is the Thermal Explorer Highway, a touring route taking in the weird, the wonderful and the simply spectacular. The magnificent Tongariro Crossing hiking trail takes you through the active volcanic region of Tongariro National Park, past waterfalls, lava formations and crater lakes, with awe-inspiring views at your feet. Elsewhere you can experience wine trails in Hawkes Bay, golf and trout fishing in Taupo and glow worm caves and black water rafting at Waitomo. An essential stop is Rotorua, location of fascinating geothermal reserves and the heartland of New Zealand's Maori culture.

Download a recommended itinerary for the Hamilton and Waikato region.

Download a recommended itinerary for the thermal highlights of the North Island.

 

The Wellington Region

 

Nestled between a picturesque harbour and forest clad hills, the views are everywhere. Wellington has pioneered museums, public galleries and civic space to give the city an easy-living style. Boutique shops, chic cafés and restaurants are always busy. The compact city is a pleasure to walk around with a lively waterfront and bays all around the harbour to enjoy.

View a recommended itinerary for the Wellington region.

 

 

South Island  

Milford Sound & Southern Lakes                                                                                                     

  

Sharing a stunning backdrop of alpine peaks and glacier-carved valleys, Lake Wakatipu, Lake Wanaka and the dramatic waters of Fiordland make up the Southern Lakes region. The picturesque towns of Wanaka and Queenstown are gateways to a breathtaking range of adventure and scenic experiences. Activities range from high-adrenaline jet boating to serene boat cruises among the towering cliffs of Milford Sound. On the southeastern coast, the remote, rugged Catlins area offers an abundance of wildlife, including rare forest and sea birds, yellow-eyed penguins, fur seals, sea lions and endangered Hector's dolphins.

Nelson, Marlborough & Kaikoura

The Nelson and Marlborough regions are renowned for wine, food, a thriving arts culture and superb outdoor adventure locations. Hundreds of working artists and craftspeople live in the Nelson region, many of whom welcome studio visits. Blenheim and its surrounds make up one of New Zealand's premium winemaking areas, famed worldwide for its sauvignon blanc. The Abel Tasman National Park, Nelson Lakes and Marlborough Sounds all offer spectacular kayaking and hiking itineraries. Further down the coast, Kaikoura is the gateway to wildlife experiences of all kinds, including whale and dolphin watching and fur seal colony visits.

West Coast & Aoraki Mount Cook
Departing daily from Christchurch to Greymouth on the West Coast is the TranzAlpine train. One of the world's greatest train journeys, the route winds through the gorges and valleys of the Waimakariri River and over the magnificent Southern Alps. The West Coast is known for its pioneering and gold mining history and its wild landscape of rivers, rainforests and distinctive rock formations. Here too you'll find the remarkable Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers. Aoraki Mount Cook National Park is home to New Zealand's highest peak, this alpine park offers many adventures including hiking, scenic ski-plane flights and boating on the glacier lakes.

Download a recommended itinerary for the South Island glaciers.

Download a recommended itinerary for the South Island.

Download a recommended itinerary for the Dunedin region.

If you want to do it all and see as many of New Zealand’s highlights as possible in a limited amount of time we recommend the following itinerary which takes in Auckland, Waitomo, Rotorua, Queenstown, Milford Sound and Doubtful Sound in a 7 day whirlwind adventure.

Download the Essential New Zealand itinerary.

Resources

 

Useful Links

For an overview of travelling in New Zealand please visit the official Tourism New Zealand website here.

Car Rental

If you require a rental car while you are visiting New Zealand Avis Rent a Car is offering its corporate rates to conference delegates. Just call the local Avis office in your country and quote the booking reference number: AWD Z994400.

Travel Insurance

We strongly recommend that you arrange travel insurance for your trip to New Zealand prior to departing your home country.

Your New Zealand experience

We hope that the information provided on this page has provided you with a good foundation to start planning your New Zealand itinerary.

 

If you have any additional queries, please contact us by emailing scar2014@tcc.co.nz

If you are disabled and wish to find out about access and assistance during your trip we would be happy to provide specific information for you.  Please email us at scar2014@tcc.co.nz to enquire.