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New Zealand

adventure packed

Kia Ora and welcome to New Zealand! Get ready to push your limits with Infuse Travel’s educational programs in the land of rich cultures, extreme sports and breathtaking landscapes. Our team of experienced educators and local guides ensures that our fully customizable programs are designed to meet the specific learning objectives of each school, with an emphasis on promoting environmental sustainability, cultural awareness, and personal growth. From hiking through ancient forests and glaciers, kayaking in the awe-inspiring fiords, learning about the rich traditions of the Māori people and participating in community service projects, Infuse Travels’ programs provide an unforgettable and transformative experience for students. Get ready to expand your horizons and become a global citizen with Infuse Travels’ New Zealand programs!

New Zealand At a Glance

Capital City

Wellington

Population

5.1 Million

Currency

New Zealand Dollar (NZD)

Time Zone

New Zealand Standard Time (NZST), UTC + 12

Languages

English, Māori and New Zealand Sign Language

How to say hello

Kia ora, Hello

Service Projects

Environmental service and sustainability: Help monitor, maintain and preserve New Zealand’s fragile natural environment. Participate in general park maintenance such as graveling pathways, collecting and propagating seeds and planting trees to help reforest and ensure native wildlife thrive.

Social and community service: Engage in the community, connect with not-for-profit organisations helping everyday New Zealanders through hardships. Prepare meals for those experiencing homelessness, help sort pre-loved clothing to go to families in need, learn about social injustice and be empowered to contribute positively to communities.

Endangered wildlife conservation: Learn about critical issues endangering New Zealand’s wildlife such as the iconic kiwi, tuatara, South Island kākā. Join a local Wildlife Sanctuary in their efforts to restore and maintain the species natural habitat. There is always work to do cleaning aviaries, removing invasive weeds and planting native trees instead.

Cultural Exploration

Aotearoa New Zealand is a small and relatively young country when it comes to human settlement, yet it offers a rich and diverse culture. Students will understand the significance of the Māori people and their integral role in the country’s everyday life. From trying a succulent Hāngī, marvelling at ancient wooden and jade carvings or witnessing a spine-chilling Haka at a local rugby game, the groups will find themselves completely immersed in New Zealands culture.

Māori Cultural Activities: Explore areas of significant meaning for the Māori such as the Bay of Plenty in the North Island and Karitane in the South Island. Spend time getting to know the local tribe, their connections to the land and current challenges as they welcome you to spend the night at their Marae.

Rugby and The All Blacks: Experience the thrill of a rugby union match and learn about the All Blacks, which hold a special place in New Zealand's sporting culture. Rugby is more than just a game, in New Zealand, it's a source of national pride and an integral part of the nation’s identity.

Adventure and Challenge

New Zealand is globally renowned for its wide range of world class adventure offerings. If you are looking to physically challenge your students or push their comfort-zone boundaries through a specific activity, you may opt to include:

Multi Day Hikes – New Zealand is home to some of the most mesmerizing landscapes and offers a wide range of multi-day hikes suited for all level of experience.

Skiing – Surrounded by stunning views and known as the Adventure Capital of the World, Queenstown is the gateway to New Zealand Southern Alps and arguably South Pacific’s best skiing fields!

Caving – Hidden up to 35 metres underground, Waitomo Caves in the North Island offer the opportunity to explore a whole different world of incredible rock formations and mesmerising glow worm ecosystems.

Bungee Jump – New Zealand is the birthplace of commercial bungee, pioneered by legendary Allan John “A. J.” Hackett in the 1980s. Nowadays there are dozens of bungee sites and students can experience anything from 30 metres to 134 metres high bungee jumps!

Whitewater Rafting - Throw on a lifejacket and head for a thrilling adventure down the Kaituna River and its 7-meter Tutea Falls, the highest commercially rafted waterfall in the world!

Skydiving – The ultimate adrenaline-pumping experience paired with unparallel views from over 15,000 feet high.

Accommodations

Cabins in caravan parks: Camp in style in a 3 to 6-person shared cabin, ensuite bathroom and kitchenette.

Hostels: Stay in a hostel, students will share a bunk style accommodation, ranging from 4-person to 8-person shared rooms, with either a shared or communal ensuite.

Lodges, Guesthouses and Hotels: Live in comfortable guesthouses, hotels or lodges. Students will share twin rooms, triple rooms or quad share rooms, all rooms come with an ensuite bathroom and towels.

Māori Marae: The opportunity to experience a Marae Stay can be an educational introduction to Māori culture. Accommodation is provided within the sacred ancestral meeting house, the focal point of any Māori community.  Students normally sleep in the large open area on mattresses.  Meals are generally taken in a separate dining area which can be part of the main building or may be adjacent.

The marae itself is a fenced-in complex of carved buildings and grounds that belongs to a particular iwi (tribe), hapū (sub-tribe) or whānau (family).  When you visit a marae in New Zealand, you will experience a pōwhiri. The pōwhiri is a traditional process of introduction and welcome that allows marae guests and hosts (tangata whenua) to get to know one another.  This can be a very powerful experience and sets the tone for your stay.

During any visit to a marae, you will have an opportunity to learn about the history, customs and traditions of the local Māori.

Country Management

Evan Wells

Operations Director – New Zealand

Born in New Zealand and now living between Australia and Fiji, Evan brings decades of experience in the student travel industry and has endless stories to share with our travellers. You will be pressed to find a place in New Zealand that Evan hasn’t been to.

Sample Itinerary

North Island

Spend a week exploring the North Island. Start with a cultural immersion and service-learning experience by sharing time with the locals. Cruise through the never-ending green landscapes, visit active thermal pools, explore life underground and participate in the diverse portfolio of adventure activities New Zealand is famous for.

Day 1: Welcome to New Zealand!

Fly into Auckland and meet your leaders who will be with you for the entire program! Settle into your accommodation, then join the group for an orientation discussion about the week ahead and an introduction to the local culture. For the first night we'll adventure out to Sky Tower, the tallest building in New Zealand, and take an add-on SkyJump or SkyWalk high above the city lights. End your first day in New Zealand at Mount Eden and admire the stunning Auckland skyline.

Overnight: Auckland Hostel

Day 2 & 3: Māori Culture and Service

Explore the Bay of Plenty and get to know some of the local people as you explore this beautiful part of New Zealand. This area is well known for pristine white sand beaches, ancient rainforests and friendly locals. You’ll be welcomed into a local Māori tribe, stay at their Marae and spend time for the next two days learning about their culture, history and traditions. You’ll have the chance to join in some local service work, as well as explore the beaches and hiking trails.

Overnight: Māori Marae

Day 4: Zorb, Agrojet, and Swoop!

IT'S ADVENTURE DAY. Flip head-over-heels on a Zorb ride! Race down the luge adventure track, then take your pick from the range of awesome options such a jetboating, The Swoop, Free Fall Extreme and the Shweeb. At night, stroll through the beautiful Redwood Forest and take in the spectacular lighting display as you walk the elevated skywalk.

Overnight: Rotorua

Day 5: Whitewater Rafting

After a big breakfast this morning, take on the mighty Kaituna River! See the highest raft-able waterfall in the world. Raft through class 3 and class 4 rapids while enjoying the canyons and rainforest above the river. It's a breathtaking place! This afternoon, you’ll travel towards lake Taupo for even more adventure.

Overnight: Māori Marae

Day 6: Explore Hidden Valley Cave and Thermal Parks

Today we'll explore an epic volcanic world. Think hot springs and bubbling mud pools. Wander through the beautiful Hidden Valley and visit the thermal Ruatapu Cave which extends more than 36 meters down to the "Pool of Mirrors!" Marvel at the boiling hot springs and vibrant colours all around you as you take a nature bush walk through this untouched geothermal paradise.

Overnight: Taupo Hostel

Day 7: Bungee Jumping or Skydiving

Today is flexible to allow everyone to take advantage of the many awesome activities offered around Taupo! For the super brave, tick an item off your bucket list by going bungee jumping or skydiving! Explore the city of Taupo or enjoy a hike with your group around the lake. Take a relaxing dip in the natural hot springs that run down along the river before driving to Auckland in the afternoon.

Overnight:  Auckland Hostel

Day 8: Goodbye, New Zealand!

Duck into the city for some final shopping and grab a bite with your mates. You'll fly home with new friends and a wonderful journey under the belt!

Sample Itinerary

South Island

An epic 10-day adventure exploring Southern New Zealand.  Fly into Queenstown and enjoy the spectacular scenery as you travel across the South Island to the historic city of Dunedin.  Enjoy a mountain biking excursion, hike some world-famous trails, get to know the locals, learn about Māori history and culture, and spend time witnessing some of the incredible wildlife that makes the South Island home.  Finally, make your way back to Queenstown for your flight home as you leave wishing you could stay longer.

Day 1 –Rockhampton to Queenstown

Fly into Queenstown and meet your leaders who will be with you for the entire program! From the airport, your group will make their way to the town of Cromwell in time for dinner.  Settle into your cabins for the evening and soak up the peaceful tranquillity of New Zealand’s rural atmosphere.  Set on beautiful Lake Dunstan and surrounded by mountains, Cromwell will feel a world away from home.

Overnight: Cabins, Cromwell Motel

Day 2 - Mountain Biking and Karitane

Enjoy a morning of mountain biking from Omakau, along 30 kilometres of the famous Central Otago Rail Trail and finishing in the township of Oturehua.

Then, drive to the coastal township of Karitane and spend the night in the local Māori Marae named Puketeraki. The group will be welcomed in the traditional way by the elders of this small community.  As is customary, the group will be expected to respond to the local speeches and singing with their own words and song.

Overnight: Puketeraki Marae

Day 3 - Māori Culture and Environmental Education

Today will be spent exploring the area around Karitane.  Learn about the history, get involved in local environmental projects and enjoy hiking Huriawa Peninsula.  In this area a great Maori fortress once stood, the chief Te Wera ruled, and Te Puna Wai spring kept the people of the land alive whilst under siege.  Our local friends have extensive knowledge and connection to their land, the sea and everything it supports.  Spend time learning from them and better understanding the challenges they are overcoming.

Overnight: Puketeraki Marae

Day 4 - Otago Harbour and Quarantine Island

This morning head south to Dunedin for an unforgettable cruise on the Monarch through the Otago Harbour. The MV Monarch cruises the 22km length of the harbour, passing vast tidal sand flats that are home to an astonishing diversity of bird species such as cormorants, terns, gulls and Little Blue Penguins. Fur seals and sea lions can also be seen foraging along the sandbanks.  Once at the coast the Monarch then gives unrivalled access to the resident colony of Royal Albatross, which can be seen gliding above, taking off and landing at the world’s only mainland colony of albatross!

Spend the night on Quarantine Island, which covers an area of 15 hectares (37 acres), and has a rich history, both for Māori and early European settlers. The group will stay in the only remaining structure.  Whilst very basic, it serves to give sense of what life was like more than a century ago for newly arrived settlers to Southern New Zealand.

Overnight: Dorm rooms, Quarantine Island

Day 5 - Dunedin and Arrowtown

Start the day with a yoga session as you watch the sunrise over Otago Peninsula.  After breakfast, set to work helping with a range of project work around the buildings on Quarantine Island. The upkeep of these historic buildings is funded entirely by donations and the groups’ work this morning will be very much appreciated.

Once back on the mainland, enjoy a relaxing lunch overlooking the water before heading out of Dunedin and making our way back towards the historic gold mining town of Arrowtown.

Overnight:  Dorm rooms, Arrowtown Holiday Park

Day 6 - Queenstown and Luge

Today, take the 20 minute drive over to Queenstown and take the famous gondola up 450 meters to the top of Bob’s Peak. From here, witness the famous view of Queenstown, Lake Wakatipu, and The Remarkables – it’s stunning!  Enjoy racing on the luge course, a gravity-pulled go-kart that will have you racing down a range of tracks on the side of the mountain!

After lunch at the world famous Fergburger downtown, take a short hike along the shoreline of Lake Wakatipu.  This afternoon will also be the last opportunity to gather any remaining supplies before commencing the hike tomorrow.

Overnight: Dorm rooms, Arrowtown Holiday Park

Days 7 to 9 - The Routeburn Track

Over the next three days, embark on a small section of the famous Routeburn Track that is safe and accessible during winter.

Day 7 – Queenstown to Routeburn Falls Hut (9.8kms, 3-4 hrs)

From Queenstown, drive approximately an hour to the start of the trail. The track begins at Routeburn Shelter, gently winding alongside the crystal-clear Route Burn (river). After passing Sugarloaf Stream, climb to Bridal Veil Waterfall and continue above the gorge. A swing bridge leads to open grassed flats, and the Routeburn Flats Hut and Campsite. The track then climbs steadily through stunning beech forest, providing views of the Humboldt Mountains. End the day at Routeburn Falls Hut, on the edge of the bushline and close to the impressive Routeburn Falls cascade.

Overnight: Routeburn Falls Hut, Mt Aspiring National Park

Day 8 – Day Hike to Harris Saddle (7km return, 4-6 hrs)

Climb steadily up the valley, through wetlands and tussock-covered flats, before sidling along the bluffs above Lake Harris to reach the highest point on the track at Harris Saddle/ Tarahaka Whakatipu (1,255 metres). Take in the spectacular views of glaciated mountains such as Mount Crosscut, Sabre, Adelaide and Gifford. Extend today with a side trek to some other lookouts if time and weather permits before returning to Routeburn Falls Hut this afternoon.

Overnight: Routeburn Falls Hut, Mt Aspiring National Park

Day 9 – Hike out to Routeburn Shelter (9.8kms, 3-4 hrs)

Pack up camp and hike back out to our starting point. Congratulations for hiking a section of one of NZ’s most iconic trails. Return to Queenstown this evening.

Overnight: Dorm rooms, Queenstown

Day 10 - Departure

Today, students have a few hours to explore the shops around Queenstown and walk along the foreshore of Lake Wakatipu a final time before making their way to the airport and starting their journey home.


Special Requests

Please chat to us if you have any special requests that you would like included in your journey.

There is nothing too big, small, or out-of-the-box that we can’t handle.

What Next?

Please contact us to start designing your journey!

We would be delighted to partner with your school to support the global education of your students.