Auckland: look at the ferry schedule for Kawau Island, Rotorua Island, Waiheke Island, or Tiritiri Matangi Island. Cornwall Park in town. Auckland zoo, the museum, MOTAT, the sky tower, the bridge climb. North Auckland has amazing beaches, and we have amazing West Coast beaches like Bethells beach or Muriwai. There is a TONNE to do here, the viaduct is lovely in summer, so is Ponsonby.
Northland is beautiful, so is the Coromandel and Bay of Islands. Rotorua is amazing and will give you an awesome Maori cultural experience. There’s the gondola and luge, natural hot springs, and definitely go to Paradise Valley Springs to see the lion feed – so cool!
Taupo is perfect, I’m building a house there! The lake is an obvious must, Huka falls and the prawn park. If you want a really nice luxury night drive down to the Tongariro National Park and stay at the Chateau. Divine.
Wellington is an awesome city, they have a pretty cool zoo and there’s the museum. On the waterfront near the museum is this little cafe that has two wakas in it… They do the best eggs benedict, served on really typical old NZ plates.
Marlborough sounds is pretty, so is the West Coast. Haven’t been to Queenstown, it doesn’t really interest me. Would bypass Canterbury completely.
I’ve lived in the North Island and the South Island and wouldn’t bother much with the South – North Island rocks!
At at that time of the year be prepared for rain or sun. Sorry for spelling and random words, etc. My iPad has started inserting random words and changing correct spelling to random nonsense. I try and pick them all up, but do miss mistakes from time to time!