Mega New Zealand

Tour Overview
The remote island country of New Zealand offers untamed wilderness, rich Maori culture, world-class surfing, superb wine and stunningly dramatic Lord of the Rings scenery. The “land of the long white cloud” (New Zealand’s indigenous Maori name) also offers some truly unique birding opportunities, unmatched anywhere else on the planet.

This uniqueness is mostly due to New Zealand’s geographic isolation for 80 million years, leading to a specific and dynamic evolutionary ecology with incredibly high endemism. All bats, all reptiles, all amphibians, 80% of vascular plants and over 90% of insects are endemic to the islands. Some of these species are utterly and wonderfully bizarre!

The official bird species count for New Zealand is currently over 300. The terrestrial birds, wetland birds and seabirds in New Zealand each make up about a third of the total number of species. This is in sharp contrast to the composition of the global bird species where 90% are terrestrial. The wonderful combination of unusual land birds and fantastic marine birds is unmatched anywhere on earth.

This fantastic birding itinerary takes in much of New Zealand’s spectacular and diverse scenery, whilst maximising our chances of seeing some of the 91 endemic species currently on the country’s official list, along with 70 globally threatened species and many others. The tour also includes four exciting pelagic trips where any number of interesting species of birds and mammals may turn up!

With excellent accommodation, truly epic scenery, first world infrastructure, great food, world-class wine and friendly, sport-mad local “Kiwis”, this is sure to be a tour of a lifetime! Let’s go birding!

Get more detail about what to expect on this tour: Go to full itinerary

Safari starts in Auckland (North Island) and ends in Christchurch (South Island)
Tour duration: 21 days / 20 nights
Type of accommodation: Comfortable / Mid-range
Next departure dates: December 2024
Private and small group, customised safaris can be booked on request for your preferred travel dates
Top Attractions:
-Stunning and dramatic scenery
-Incredible birds with a high endemic count
-Pelagic trips
-Excellent accommodation
-Fantastic cuisine and wine
-Relatively short travel distances between sites
-Friendly local “Kiwis”
-First world infrastructure

Top Birds:
*Denotes Endemic species
• North Island Brown Kiwi*
• Great Spotted Kiwi*
• Southern Brown, Okarito and Little Spotted Kiwi*
• New Zealand Storm Petrel*
• Yellow-eyed and Fiordland Penguin*
• South Island Takahe*
• North Island Kokako*
• North Island and South Island Saddleback*
• Wrybill*
• Black Stilt*
• Kea*
• Blue Duck*
• New Zealand Rockwren*
• New Zealand Kaka*
• Stitchbird*

Top Mammals:
• Hector’s Dolphin
• Long-beaked and Short-beaked Common Dolphin
• New Zealand Fur Seal
• New Zealand Sea Lion
• Leopard Seal
• Sperm Whale
• Several other whale species (depending on time of the year)

Optional Activities:
• Afternoon activity in Kaikoura

Day 1 Arrival in Auckland, transfer to Kerikeri
Day 2 Kerikeri to Warkworth
Day 3 Warkworth – Hauraki Gulf Pelagic
Day 4 Warkworth to Tiritiri Matangi Island
Day 5 Tiritiri Matanga Island to Miranda
Day 6 Miranda to Whitianga
Day 7 Whitianga to Turangi
Day 8 Turangi to Napier
Day 9 Napier to Foxton
Day 10 Foxton to Picton
Day 11 Picton to Kaikoura
Day 12 Kaikoura – pelagic trip
Day 13 Kaikoura to Arthur’s Pass
Day 14 Arthur’s Pass to Franz Josef
Day 15 Franz Josef to Wanaka
Day 16 Wanaka to Te Anau
Day 17 Te Anau to Stewart Island
Day 18 Stewart Island pelagic
Day 19 Stewart Island yo Oamaru
Day 20 Oamaru to Omarama
Day 21 Omarama to Christchurch and Departure

All our tours can be customised according to your specific requirements.

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