Fun with Kiwis!

I am so excited! I am finally planning my dream trip to Australia and New Zealand. Both countries have been on the top of the list of places to visit for years but they seemed out of reach budget-wise for so long. Finally a flash airfare deal came along and now my dream vacation is within reach and also affordable!

One immediate problem is both counties have so much to do and see that I really have to narrow the focus down to a few main interests and cities.  I am going with a couple of friends so we all agree that beaches, hiking, caving, rainforests, bars and nightlife are a must for the agenda!  The initial thoughts on some of the attractions to see are the  Great Barrier Reef and Daintree Rainforest in Australia. Then for New Zealand we are focusing on the North island. Main highlights there are the Mud spas in Rotorua, hiking in Tongariro crossing, the Waitomo Cave tours and Auckland.

So going to two countries in one trip poses a number of challenges. There are too many cities and places to visit!  Narrowing down what we want to see in the time we have is essential. We decided to focus on beaches, hiking and some city breaks.

Here is the initial plan:


8-Leave Chicago!

9-Lose a day (where does this day go?)

10 Fly into Brisbane, Australia

11 Brisbane-Check out Brisbane

12 Fly to Cairns-One of the highlights for me is visiting the GBR!

13 Cairns – Head out to the Great Barrier Reef

14 Cairns – Visit to Daintree Rainforest

15 Cairns – Fitzroy Island-Night visit one of the Cairns Night Markets!

16 Fly to Auckland

17 Auckland-check out Britomart!

18 Drive to Coramandel; Visit Hot water beach and cove!

19 Coramandel- Pinnacles hike if we have time.

20 Drive to Hobbiton/Rorotua-Check out my post on my 9-day driving tour of New Zealand.

21 Rotorua -Hot Mud Spas and Hobbits!

22 Rotorua-Drive to Turangi, spend the night and rest up for the hike the following day.

23 Tongariro Hike-Do it 19 kilometers ….

Spend night in Waitomo

24 Waitomo Cave tour

Spend the night in Hamilton!

25 Drive to Auckland…It’s Kristen’s Birthday! Do something super fun!

26-29 Auckland- check out the beaches and islands around New Zealand!

If you are planning a trip to New Zealand or Queensland Australia too and have any questions or comments please feel free to email me!

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