About Anzcro

ANZCRO (UK) (the Australia New Zealand Central Reservations Office) was initially established in 1990, with the UK office having been open since 2001. With our Head Office based in Southport, Australia, and offices in Queenstown New Zealand, & Truro, the company has successfully grown to become one of the largest tour operators to New Zealand, Australia & the South Pacific.   [read more..]


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Saturday: 9.00am – 5pm GMT

Sunday: Closed

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ANZCRO / Anzcro Blog  / How long does it actually take to drive New Zealand?
Road to Aoraki, Mount Cook

How long does it actually take to drive New Zealand?

Driving holidays in New Zealand belong on every bucket list. Before you’re tempted to put in for annual leave and tell the kids, take a moment to understand the specifics and pleasures of this modern road-trip capital.

The Land of the Long White Cloud is smaller than Australia, larger than England, and minute compared to the USA, so it would be logical to assume everything is relatively close by… an hour or two away at most, right?

No. Although New Zealand is small, it isn’t quite so tiny as ten minutes here and twenty minutes there. There are long, winding roads, mountain chains, river systems, large lakes and thick forests; non-stop is not an option in Aotearoa, as you’ll soon discover.


Going the Distance

To keep things in perspective, the North Island is 829km long from top to southern tip, demanding 12 hours of straight drive time between the township of Kaitaia and the southern city of Wellington. The South Island is marginally larger at 840km, taking up to 14 hours in perfect driving conditions, from the ferry port of Picton to the appropriately dubbed Bluff, balancing on the bottom edge.


Soak Up the New Zealand Scenery

Working out what to do first, second and third is the difficult part of planning a New Zealand self-driving tour. Difficult because who doesn’t want to see it all? The best, the most, the hot-spots, and little-known local gems off the well-worn path… before abandoning Google Maps completely, we recommend plotting out a starting, middle and concluding point. Or we can do it for you!

To get you started, here are some of our popular self-drive New Zealand itineraries.


Top of the South Island

Abel Tasman Guided Walk

Abel Tasman Guided Walk

Combining escape-worthy thermal pools with natural wonders, coastal walks and the smile-inducing experience of whales in their oceanic environment are all included in this itinerary.

  • Trip Length: 7 Days
  • Starting Point: Christchurch
  • Finishing Point: Christchurch
  • Highlights
    • Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools and Spa entry
    • Abel Tasman Swing Bridge, Bush and Beach Cruise and Walk
    • Kaikoura whale watch trip

View tour information


Lord of the Rings Highlights

Hobbiton Set

Hobbiton Set

A tour for movie-buffs and fun-seekers, follow in the Fellowship’s footsteps ranging New Zealand from top to tail, seeing all, doing everything, and enjoying the ultimate Lord of the Rings holiday, with a few side adventures to inspire satisfied smiles at every twist and turn.

  • Trip Length: 15 Days
  • Starting Point: Auckland
  • Finishing Point: Queenstown
  • Highlights
    • Weta Workshop tour
    • Hobbiton movie set
    • You will visit Rivendell, follow the River Amon Hen, wander the Gardens of Isengard, and walk the quarry that became Helms Deep to name just a few

View tour information


Both Islands Tour

Self-Drive NZ Sightseeing

Self-Drive NZ Sightseeing

We’ve scoured the country to create a Land of the Long White Cloud Greatest Hits Tour, capturing the essence of escapism in this ultimate thrill-ride, bursting with adventure and awe – it will steal your heart.

  • Trip Length: 22 Days
  • Starting Point: Auckland
  • Finishing Point: Christchurch
  • Highlights
    • Dolphin Cruise to the Hole in the Rock
    • Franz Joseph Glacier Hot Pools
    • Maori evening hangi and concert
    • Waitomo Glowworm Caves
    • Cadbury Chocolate Factory

View tour information


Inspired? Excited? You don’t need to do it all yourself. We’re waiting to help you plan the perfect New Zealand driving adventure for you and your family.

Contact us and we can help you book your New Zealand self-drive experience!