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Auckland, New Zealand-port

Auckland, “The City Of Sails”, is spread over a narrow isthmus between the sparkling waters of the Waitemata and Manukau Harbours on New Zealand’s North Island. It earns its sobriquet from having more boats per capita than any other city in the world. The first settlers here were the Maori, and are still a vibrant component of its cosmopolitan population. Auckland offers the visitor all the amenities of a world-class city. Browse the shops of Queen Street or the Parnell area with its galleries and boutiques in quaintly restored Victorian buildings. For a magnificent panorama of the city travel to Mount Eden, the city’s highest point, or visit the Skytower for loftier views. Minutes from downtown you can relax on a black sand beach, or explore the America’s Cup Yachting Village. Further afield there are the spectacular pine-clad Waitakere Mountains, the amazing Waitomo Glowworm Caves and the verdant vineyards of Kumeu River Wines.

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  • PROMO-POST - NEW ZEALAND COUNTRYSIDE AND WINERIES
  • PRE New Zealand Countryside and Wineries

PROMO-POST - NEW ZEALAND COUNTRYSIDE AND WINERIES

Code: AKLL03

Experience life in the countryside surrounding Auckland by observing a gannet colony, watching a sheep-shearing demonstration at a working farm, and cruising to Waiheke Island for tastings of its distinct olive oils and wines.

DAY 1

After disembarking from the ship, you will enjoy a brief orientation tour of Auckland that includes driving along the waterfront. A stop will be made at Bastion Point for scenic views over the harbor before continuing to St Heliers Bay, through the eastern suburbs, and past the Auckland Domain, the city's oldest park.

Following your arrival at the Langham Hotel, the remainder of the day is at your leisure. Feel free to venture out, as your room may not be ready until 3pm. Dinner is on your own, and there are wonderful restaurants in the hotel and plenty of other fine choices nearby.

This will be the first of three evenings spent in the Langham Hotel or similar.

DAY 2

Following breakfast at the hotel, you will drive into the fertile farmland and wine-growing areas of Kumeu and Huapai before reaching Muriwai Beach on the rugged west coast. Here, you will stop and walk approximately 250 meters (275 yards) to a special lookout above one of the world's few mainland gannet colonies.

As you will be very close to the white seabirds, you will be able to watch them nesting, feeding and flying in the updrafts offshore. Their behavior will depend on the season and time of day, but regardless of what the activity, you can expect it to be hugely entertaining, especially if they are diving for fish. There should be hundreds, if not thousands of gannets in the colony, all of them clustered about the cliffs side by side.

Continuing on, you will travel through more beautiful countryside to Haumoana, a 200-acre working farm on the lovely Kaipara Peninsula. Situated high on a hill, the property offera splendid views over the rolling land and out to the harbor. The farm raises sheep and beef and supports a herd of friendly fallow deer that will usually come when called. It makes for an excellent photo opportunity.

Then, following a hearty lunch, you will watch a sheep-shearing demonstration. In the hands of a skilled farmhand, a sheep can typically be sheared head to tail in about three minutes.

After the demonstration, you will drive back to Auckland via a different route through farming areas, across the Auckland Harbor Bridge, and into the shopping district downtown. Upon arriving at the hotel, you will have the remainder of the day at your leisure with dinner on your own.

DAY 3

Following breakfast at the hotel, you will drive to the ferry terminal and board the Fullers Ferry for Waiheke Island. After approximately 35 minutes of cruising, you will meet your guide on the island and drive toward the beautiful Mudbrick Vineyard near the sea where plantings currently include Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Syrah Chardonnay and Viognier. Handpicking, hand plunging and gentle basket pressing reflect in the character of their wines.

Next, you will visit Stonyridge Vineyard for a delightful wine tasting. Founded in 1982, Stonyridge is a world-class wine producer that is especially known for its Cabernet blends. You will sample a selection of the vineyard's most distinct wines that may include a Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Your next tasting and lunch will take place at Goldie Wines, a pioneering vineyard established in 1978. Using traditional winemaking techniques, together with modern technology and fine French oak, Goldie Wines produces individually handcrafted wines with vibrant fruit characters, harmonious balance, elegant structure and exceptional concentration. They include Cabernet Merlot Franc, Syrah, Viognier and Pinto Gris.

After lunch you will visit one more winery - Wild on Waiheke for both wine and beer tastings. Following your visit there you will retrace your route to Auckland by ferry and motor coach and return to the hotel. The remainder of the day is at your leisure with dinner on your own.

DAY 4

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and transfer to the airport based on your flight schedule.

Land Program Step by Step:

The order of sites visited may vary to avoid congestion. The times indicated are only approximate, are given here for general reference purposes, and are subject to change.

DAY 1

9:00am Disembark from the ship and enjoy a brief city tour

11:15am Arrive at the Langham Hotel

3:00pm Check-in at the Langham Hotel

Remainder of the day is at your leisure

Overnight at the Langham Hotel or similar hotel

DAY 2

AM Breakfast at the hotel

9:00am Depart for the Auckland countryside

10:15am Stop at a seaside gannet colony

11:15am Depart for Haumoana farm

11:45am Arrive at Haumoana farm

1:45pm Depart for Auckland

3:00pm Arrive back at your Hotel

The remainder of the day is at leisure with dinner on your own

Overnight at the Langham Hotel or similar hotel

DAY 3

AM Enjoy breakfast at the hotel.

08:45am Transfer to the ferry terminal

10:00am Depart Auckland for Waiheke Island

10:40am Arrive on the island and you are met by your guide

10:50am Depart Matiatia for Mudbrick Vineyard

11:05am Arrive at Mudbrick Vineyard for a tour and tasting

11:35am Depart Mudbrick for Stonyridge Vineyard

11:55am Visit Stoneyridge Vineyard for a tour and tasting

12:30pm Depart Stoneyridge for the Goldie Room via Onetangi Beach

1:00pm Arrive at the Goldie Room for a tour, tasting and lunch

2:45pm Depart the Goldie Room for Wild on Waiheke

3:00pm Arrive at Wild on Waiheke for wine and beer tastings

3:30pm Depart Wild on Waiheke for the Ferry Terminal

4:00pm Fullers Ferry from Waiheke to Auckland

4:45pm Arrival in Auckland and transfer to the hotel

The remainder of the day is at leisure with dinner on your own

Overnight at the Langham Hotel or similar hotel

DAY 4

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and prepare for an 11:00am check out. Your transfer to the airport will be arranged according to your flight schedule. Should you have a late flight, luggage storage will be available at the hotel.

Additional Nights: Should you book any extra nights through the cruise line, you will be transferred to the airport per your flight details. Please note that check out time is 11:00am. Meals other than breakfast, as well as additional activities are on your own, after the program ends on the morning of Day 4.

Please Note: Guests booking their own flights (independent of the cruise line) are responsible for ensuring that the cruise line has the most current and updated departure information so your transfer can be arranged. Should you book additional nights independently of the cruise line, a departure transfer is not provided.

Expected Weather:

New Zealand's seasons are the reverse of the Northern Hemisphere. This means that the warmest months are December, January and February, while the coldest are June, July and August.

What to Bring:

Dress is informal and relaxed. Smart casual clothes are acceptable at most restaurants and nightspots. Men are not expected to wear suits and ties, except in a few of the premier formal bars and restaurants.

In the summer, bring a light jacket or sweater in case the weather turns cooler or you visit higher altitudes. You can expect some rain, so include a light waterproof jacket or coat and an umbrella.

Currency:

The New Zealand Dollar is the currency. All major international credit cards can be used in New Zealand and Travelers Cheques are accepted at hotels, banks and some stores. If your credit card is encoded with a PIN, you will be able to withdraw cash from automatic teller machines (ATMs) at most banks and shopping centers.

Electricity:

Electricity throughout New Zealand is 230/240 volts (50 hertz), although most hotels and motels provide 110-volt AC sockets (rated at 20 watts) for electric razors only.

For all other equipment, an adapter/converter is necessary, unless the item has a multi-voltage option. Power outlets only accept flat three-pin or two-pin plugs, depending on whether an earth connection (ground) is fitted.

Documents and Visa Requirements:

A valid passport is required. International guests are required to check with their travel agent in regards to Visa requirements.

If a similar hotel is required due to unforeseen circumstances, it will be of equal ratings and standards.

Program includes:

3 Nights at the Langham Hotel or similar hotel, including breakfasts

Touring as outlined above

Lunch on Day 2 and Day 3

Wine tasting on Day 3

English-speaking driver and guide

Program excludes:

Any meals not listed above

All beverages

Gratuities to drivers and guides

Other hotel incidentals and personal expenses

Please note: Land programs that encompass multiple days ashore customarily include extensive and prolonged activity, while those of shorter durations typically have more moderate activity levels. However, each program varies and participants should be prepared to negotiate a mixture of surfaces, which may include inclines, cobblestones, sand, gravel and natural paths. There may also be a need to climb steps or stairs on occasion. Guests who utilize a wheelchair and those with mobility concerns are advised to check with the cruise line in advance to see if any portion of the tour program may not be considered suitable for their individual situation. Weather-appropriate clothing, hats, sunglasses, and flat comfortable walking shoes are recommended.

Free Land Programs and Land Programs from $499 is per person for guests 1 and 2 for one pre- or post-cruise program only. Hotel and Land Program pricing is not combinable with FREE 1-Night Pre-Cruise Luxury Hotel package amenity. If applicable, please contact Regent Seven Seas Cruises or your travel agent for multi-night pre-cruise hotel pricing information.