3 Glorious Sojourns in New Zealand

Abel Tasman National Park

Abel Tasman National Park

Heli-Surfing

Heli-Surfing

Make your epic surf dreams a reality with Black Tomato on a heli-surfing adventure (US$17,215 for nine nights for departures from the US) around New Zealand, the country now synonymous with The Hobbit and The Lord of The Rings movies. Available year-round, the itinerary includes about 3 to 4h of flying time per day via your private helicopter for bird’s eye views of the glaciers, waterfalls and rainforest with private access to the most remote wave breaks, so you’ll enjoy having all the best barrels to yourself. Alternatively, bungee jump off the Auckland Harbour Bridge, sail the Waitemata Harbour on an America’s Cup yacht, feel the heat emanate from the region’s best geysers lakes and hot pools in Lake Rotorura. Gain exclusive views of the White Island’s cone volcano, World Heritage-designated Franz Josef Glacier when travelling by helicopter (itinerary from Black Tomato starts from US$7,625 per person with New York City departures).

A Maori at Tamaki Maori Village, Rotorua, Image courtesy of Robert Lindell

A Maori at Tamaki Maori Village, Rotorua, Image courtesy of Robert Lindell

Immerse yourself in the local Māori culture with TIME Unlimited Tours. The full-day Marae Experience (about US$308) will take travellers into the Auckland region, accompanied by the Kaiarahi Māori guide. New Zealand, which was populated by the Māori 1,000 years ago, was referred to as the ‘land of the long white cloud’ or Aotearora. Visit and stay in a marae (meeting house) to participate in the welcome ceremony powhiri. Travellers can learn basic Māori phrases, customs and traditions. Prepare a meal over the hangi, dance the Haka made famous by the All Blacks rugby team, or try your hand at indigenous crafts like flax weaving or wood carving.

Discover the best of the country’s local produce with the Ultimate Dinner Party arranged by Exclusively NZ, a trip supported and endorsed by celebrity chef, television presenter and writer Al Brown and OneNineFive specialist Greg Norris. This nine-day trip will start on 1 March 2015, and will cost about US$28,216. Travel around the country onboard a DC3 aircraft and indulge in tasks like foraging in the region to acquire the herbs and vegetables necessary for the dinner menu that evening. The group of up to 16 guests will be escorted by professional guides, local personalities and producers for an unforgettable travel experience.