Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland)

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ends on 22 Jul 2018
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Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland) - Topdeck
Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland) - Topdeck
Tom "It was a really amazing experience, I am really thankful for a good job Scotty and Craig did. Apart some small things like no wifi on the bus and crazy priced one at accommodations everything was really good. Really felt in love with Queenstown, Wellington , Milford Sound. However, I think , that some activities should be included , otherwise a day is spent doing nothing. E.g. Fox glacier, if you ..."
8 reviews


Start in Auckland and end in Christchurch! With the in-depth cultural tour Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland), you have a 16 day tour package taking you from Auckland to Christchurch and through Auckland, New Zealand and 15 other destinations in New Zealand. Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland) includes accommodation in a hotel and hostel as well as an expert guide, meals, transport and more.
Age range
18 to 39 year olds
Hostel, Hotel, Berth / Cabin, Lodge, Temple, Motel
Coach / Bus, Ship
Travel style
In-depth Cultural

8 Reviews

Rather Poor
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  • MK
    Written on January 7, 2018
    3.0 - Average

    The trip itself was fine. The main issue was our guide who: - was unreachable in case of a problem - made sure that we have the worst deal (several times take us to the most expensive places) - skipped several included activities (seal colony in Kaikoura or telling us that the tongariro crossing was cancelled while we found out it wasn’t) - didn’t wait for people several times - Mock several person because they want a bathroom break - Always using Facebook as a communication platform regardless the fact some people didn’t have Facebook In the other hand, he took good decisions regarding: - hobbiton: there was an issue with it he solve that out - whakapapa: we were stuck in the middle of nowhere, I tool us out Also, regarding the accommodation, most of them were fine. We had an issue in wellington. Topdeck booked rooms in a fancy hotel and like often it was a triple room. Except that hotel didn’t have triple rooms. Instead, they gave queens bed and worst, they made up a triple room out of a double room! That would be an issue if the room was big enough. It wasn’t the case. We couldn’t put our baggage in ( for 3) but even worse, we had difficulties to go from one bed to another. We complained to our guide that was unacceptable to be parked like cattle. Before he could answer, another Topdeck guide came and said to us that the tour was backpacking. Except we never asked to be in a fancy hotel. During that trip, we’ve been in several hostel why not in wellington. After a big fight, they finally agreed to a proper twin room. This story shows the lack of consideration of the participates by some guide and Topdeck. Otherwise the tour itself was amazing. Wonderful landscape, good weather in general (except Tongariro)
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  • E
    Written on November 4, 2017
    4.0 - Good

    It was amazing!! Can't believe how good the guides and bus drivers were! Definitely recommend
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  • KT
    Written on October 23, 2017
    5.0 - Excellent

    I did the Kiwi Encounter with Taimi Maidla as my guide. It was Amazing! The bus was brilliant and so comfy, and the accomodation was always really great. The places we went to were all fantastic, and everything we could've wanted was included or available while still being flexible and good value for money. Taimi and our driver, Vickie Gane, were both knowledgable, helpful and fun. They knew all the good places to go as well as tvs locals, and were there for anything we needed.
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  • Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland) reviewer 4
    Written on October 21, 2017
    4.0 - Good

    I had a great time in NZ and would defiently go back. Amazing scenery, a variety of activities to do and pretty good accomodation (you get a variety but it is usually if a very high quality). Taimi was a great trip leader (very knowledgeable, friendly and super organised). Chris the driver wasn’t too bad either
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    Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland) customer review photo 1Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland) customer review photo 2Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland) customer review photo 3Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland) customer review photo 4
  • WW
    Written on January 27, 2017
    2.0 - Rather poor

    After travelling NZ before I was looking forward to seeing the beautiful country again. This tour does not touch on much. The accomodation is horrible. Our tour guide had minimal local knowledge and couldn't even crack a smile on our first day meeting everyone. We spent many travel days getting to places that had no where to go and no optional activities. We had a quarter of the activities than I had previously on Contiki. The bus had no wifi and after further searching online, I see this has been a problem for many years. Our bus driver was fab and should have swapped places with the tour guide. Please do thorough research before selecting a Topdeck tour.
    Topdeck commented on this review
    Hi Wonder Woman, Thank you for your feedback and sorry to hear that some aspects of your trip fell short of your expectations. Our feedback team would like to hear for you regarding your comments. It is their aim to resolve your concerns in a timely fashion. You are able to reach out to them at We look forward to hearing from you. Many Thanks, Team Topdeck
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  • Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland) reviewer 6
    Written on December 6, 2016
    3.0 - Average

    I did this back in late dec 2015 And topdeck never answered back to me later after finishing the tour n pointing out that though the itinerary said to inlude Bay of Islands They DO NOT go here at all but stay in Pihia.. Thus false advertising. No reply back about it nor any refund given for at least those days spent in Pihia! Topdeck has gone down hill since 2013 I have had compensation/refund when done adventure tours OZ when they id ot ot was unable to go to kalbarri NP due to road works but was charged that day . They refunded me the NP fees
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  • Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland) reviewer 7
    Written on October 5, 2013
    4.5 - Excellent

    It was a really amazing experience, I am really thankful for a good job Scotty and Craig did. Apart some small things like no wifi on the bus and crazy priced one at accommodations everything was really good. Really felt in love with Queenstown, Wellington , Milford Sound. However, I think , that some activities should be included , otherwise a day is spent doing nothing. E.g. Fox glacier, if you do not go for a hike , there's like 3 cafes and you in the middle of nowhere , same goes for rotorua , I did rafting , because otherwise there's nothing else to do, which is king of annoying a bit. Lastly, I suggest 1 day instead of 2 in Tongariro park , because apart from walks (it was raining and foggy) there's nothing else. More time in Wellington would have been cool. Also , if possible finish tours in a different way, because the last day of tour for nearly all people (6 day and 10 day and 14 day) was driving in the morning and getting left somewhere , in our case Auckland without a tour in the city and simply a sad mood. Apart from these small things ,everthing was amazing - the team, the people I went with , didn't expect so many solo travellers which made it so good. Loved the glow worms walk in Fox glacier forest , all the things done South Island - lake Matheson was amazing , lake Ahau , furry seals and overall all! Thanks
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  • Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland) reviewer 8
    Written on October 13, 2012
    4.0 - Good

    Highly recommend this tour, had an amazing time, great group, and worth your money The only thing is do not expect top notch accommodations, many are very poor in standards But other than that great guide and driver and cant wait to go back :)
    Topdeck commented on this review
    Thank you for your feedback, we are glad that you had a great time! We are always looking at ways to improve the standard of our trips and your comment regarding accommodation caught our eye. As our trips are catered for the 18-39 age bracket we tend not to offer chain hotels on the outskirts of the city, we choose accommodation that is suited to the local surroundings, whether it's in the base village of a glacier, or a lodge sitting on the edge of a lake. We always look for and maintain that you will find clean, comfortable accommodation averaging 3-3.5 star. If you would like to tell us about a specific property that was not to your standards, please email us at Thanks again & best regards, Team Topdeck
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Download PDF Brochure
  1. Introduction
  2. Expand all
  1. Day 1: Auckland to Marae Stay
  2. Day 2: Marae to Rotorua
  3. Day 3: Rotorua to Tongariro National Park
  4. Day 4: Tongariro National Park
  5. Day 5: Tongariro to Wellington
  6. Day 6: Wellington to Nelson
  7. Day 7: Nelson
  8. Day 8: Nelson to Kaikoura
  9. Day 9: Kaikoura to Christchurch
  10. Day 10: Christchurch to Fox Glacier
  11. Day 11: Fox Glacier to Queenstown
  12. Day 12: Queenstown
  13. Day 13: Queenstown
  14. Day 14: Queenstown (Milford Sound)
  15. Day 15: Te Anau to Lake Ohau
  16. Day 16: Lake Ohau to Christchurch

What's included

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  • Accommodation

    Rated Good by past passengers
  • Guide

    Rated Good by past passengers
  • Meals

    Rated Good by past passengers
  • Transport

    Rated Excellent by past passengers
  • Additional Services

    Download PDF Brochure


    • New Zealand: Why New Zealand?
    • Ultime Travel Guide: New Zealand
    • Ski New Zealand - Topdeck Travel
    New Zealand: Why New Zealand?

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    Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland)

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    About the countries

    Useful things to know before you go


    New Zealand

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    New Zealand


    Here is an indication for which countries you might need a visa. Please contact the local embassy for help applying for visas to these places.


    Auckland is the starting point and Christchurch is the endpoint.
    Max group size
    36 is the maximum group size for Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland).
    Hold my space
    TourRadar can request Topdeck to hold spaces for you for up to 48 hours without any credit card details.
    TourRadar only requires a deposit of $200 to confirm this Topdeck booking. The remaining balance is then payable 47 days prior to the departure date. For any tour departing before 3 September 2018 the full payment of $2,299 is necessary.
    Cancellation policy
    No additional cancellation fees! You can cancel the tour up to 47 days prior to the departure date and you will not need to pay the full amount of $2299 for Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland), but the deposit of $200 is non-refundable.
    Credit Cards
    The following cards are accepted for Topdeck tours: Visa - Master Card - American Express


    Covering a total distance of approx 2,183 km.
    • Auckland (New Zealand)
    • 194 km
    • Rotorua (New Zealand)
    • 63 km
    • Taupo (New Zealand)
    • 72 km
    • Tongariro National Park (New Zealand)
    • 242 km
    • Wellington (New Zealand)
    • 125 km
    • Nelson (New Zealand)
    • 46 km
    • Abel Tasman NP (New Zealand)
    • 46 km
    • Nelson (New Zealand)
    • 130 km
    • Kaikoura (New Zealand)
    • 151 km
    • Christchurch (New Zealand)
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    8 Genuine Reviews
    All reviews are verified from travellers who went on Kiwi Encounter (ex. Auckland)