Off the Beaten Track New Zealand

Marlborough & Nelson, Wellington & Wairarapa, West Coast & Abel Tasman National Park

Duration: 14 nights

Price: From £7,850 per person in low season based on two adults travelling together and including all flights in economy class, accommodation, some meals, car hire, boat transportation and taxes

We all know about New Zealand’s big hitters – and with good reason – but what about its numerous hidden gems, which the average holidaymaker doesn’t often get to see? Discover some of the best ones on this off the beaten track luxury holiday which takes in secluded beaches, ancient forests, beautiful coastlines, and some of our favourite luxury hideaways to relax in, as well as the vibrant capital, Wellington.
Perfect forThose who prefer not to follow the herd and who are keen to explore an alternative New Zealand – including making the most of the spectacular landscapes with hiking, biking and heading out on the water.
In the knowHopping in a helicopter to find even more isolated, hidden and beautiful spots around Abel Tasman National Park.

Best for

  • Off the Beaten Track
  • Couples
  • Eco-tourism
  • Food & Wine

All Exsus Travel holidays are tailor-made

All itineraries on our website are designed as a starting point. Tell us your budget/wishlist/preferred length of stay and we'll help you select the best hotels and experiences, so your holiday is totally personalised.

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Itinerary details



Start your New Zealand holiday in Wellington, a beautiful waterfront city that’s full of character, with inviting bars and restaurants spilling onto the streets, boutique shops and an eclectic and thriving arts scene. Stroll along the waterfront, where colourful timber houses rise up the hills overlooking the bay, and visit the lovely beaches, before stopping off in an arty bar or café for a craft beer or an excellent cup of artisan coffee. The elegant Museum Art Hotel reflects Wellington’s style, with its intoxicating mix of antique charm and contemporary artworks, and is right opposite the highly recommended Te Papa museum. After a day’s sightseeing, enjoy a refreshing cocktail in the hotel’s bar.
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Enjoy a scenic drive to Ocean Beach, east of Wellington, and Wharekauhau Lodge, a blissfully secluded haven that sits in thousands of acres of ancient forests, green pastures, lakes and the beautiful coastlines of Palliser Bay, with gorgeous views of the Pacific Ocean and the Rimutaka mountains. If you can drag yourself away, enjoy a tour of the sheep farm, stroll along the black sand beach, hike through the forest, go horse riding or quad biking, and head along the rugged coastline to visit the historic, pretty fishing village of Ngawi – and make the most of the region’s gourmet food and wine in and around the lodge.
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Paraparaumu is the main town on the Kapiti Coast, just north of Wellington, and is known for its gourmet farm-fresh food, such as cheese, olives and honey, as well as the wines of the nearby Wairarapa vineyards. This is also a good spot for hiking and biking around the coast and the endless sandy beaches, as well as enjoying scenic cruises and flights. Native birds such as tuis, wood pigeons and fantails can be spotted here, including at the bird sanctuary on Kapiti Island. In between, do some shopping or follow in the footsteps (or golf clubs) of Tiger Woods and play a round of golf on the local course.   Relax in the forest-surrounded hot tub at the Greenmantle Estate Lodge, and wake up to a delicious multi-course breakfast – perfect fuel before heading out for the day.
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It’s on to the South Island via a drive to Wellington, a flight to Picton and a water taxi to the Bay of Many Coves in the north of the South Island, in the heart of the Marlborough Sounds. The Bay of Many Coves Resort is set in pristine landscapes reaching down to the bay. From swimming with dolphins and kayaking to bush walking and wine tours, experienced guides are on hand to help you make the most of this beautiful natural setting. If you’d prefer to just relax, simply chill out and take in the views and do some birdwatching from your balcony, and visit the spa - or while away an afternoon on a private, secluded beach, which you’ll have all to yourself.
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Abel Tasman National Park is New Zealand’s smallest national park but is packed with endless treasures - this is a natural paradise of curved golden beaches, limestone cliffs and beautiful coastlines. Head out on the beautiful Coast Track, one of New Zealand’s finest walks, camera in hand, or kayak or cruise around the coast for alternative (but equally stunning) viewpoints, discovering hidden coves, native forests and panoramic coastal vistas of postcard perfect golden sand and aquamarine waters.   The Split Apple Retreat sits high above Tasman Bay, where you can enjoy more panoramic views from the infinity pool, and take advantage of private access to secluded beaches.
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