The Best Time to Visit New Zealand

© NZPocketGuide.com

When to Visit New Zealand

Let’s get one thing straight: there’s never really a bad time to visit New Zealand. It all depends on your preferences, budget, what type of activities you want to do, and, well, when you have the time to visit! In this guide to the best time to visit New Zealand, we give you an overview of the seasons, the weather, the best places to visit and more.

For more details on each month in New Zealand, take a look at the Month-By-Month Guide to the Best Places to Visit in New Zealand.

3 Things to Consider When Choosing a Time to Visit New Zealand

1. The Weather & Season

Some people care about the weather. A hot day means that you can hit all of the New Zealand beaches you’ve dreamed of, while those seeking snow will want to chase the New Zealand winter season. The weather and season are extremely important if you are coming to New Zealand to do a certain activity.

2. The Crowds

If you prefer to avoid the crowds, then you might want to consider when the public and school holidays are in New Zealand, as well as when the low and high seasons are for tourists.

3. The Cost

The local hotels, vehicle rental companies and even airlines know when most tourists want to come to New Zealand, so they take advantage of this by upping their prices. If you’re on a tight budget, you might want to consider one of the low seasons.

We’ll address these factors and more in the sections below!

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New Zealand Summer

Months: December, January and February
Tourist Season: High Season

Weather in Summer

North Island Temperature: 20-24?C (68-75?F)
South Island Temperature: 19-23?C (66-73?F)
North Island Rainfall: 60-100mm
South Island Rainfall: 35-60mm

Find out about the weather in each month in:

About New Zealand Summer

Summer is by far the most popular time to visit New Zealand. The weather is generally the best it’s going to be for outdoor activities. However, this also makes New Zealand’s the most crowded time of the year to travel, where it’s essential for travellers to book accommodation and even some activities in advance to avoid disappointment. Not only is this a popular time for international travellers to visit New Zealand, but you’ll find that this is when many Kiwis travel the country too. Be aware of the school holidays, which you might want to avoid if you want less bustle, by checking out the New Zealand Ministry of Education website. Be also aware that summer is the most expensive time of year to visit New Zealand in terms of car rental, flight and hotel rates.

Best Places to Visit in Summer
  • Bay of Islands, North Island
  • New Plymouth, North Island
  • Gisborne, North Island
  • Mt Maunganui, North Island
  • Waiheke Island, North Island

Find out why in the 5 Places to Visit in Summer in New Zealand.

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New Zealand Autumn

Months: March, April and May
Tourist Season: High to Shoulder Season

Weather in Autumn

North Island Temperature: 17-22?C (62-71?F)
South Island Temperature: 13-19?C (55-66?F)
North Island Rainfall: 90-130mm
South Island Rainfall: 60-100mm

Find out about the weather in each month in:

About New Zealand Autumn

If you’re looking for a quieter time to travel to New Zealand, while still experiencing decent weather, then autumn is a good time to visit New Zealand. New Zealand still feels a little busy in March, but April and May quieten down along with the prices of car rental, flights and hotels. The days might be getting a little cooler, but it’s still comfortable enough ensuring you have plenty of layers for the ever-changing weather. Toward April and May, you may also get the chance to see the brown and orange autumn colours.

Best Places to Visit in Autumn
  • Wanaka, South Island
  • Hawke’s Bay, North Island
  • MacKenzie Region, South Island
  • Gisborne, North Island
  • Marlborough, South Island

Find out why in the 5 Places to Visit in Autumn in New Zealand.

© NZPocketGuide.com

New Zealand Winter

Months: June, July and August
Tourist Season: Low Season

Weather in Winter

North Island Temperature: 11-15?C (51-59?F)
South Island Temperature: 7-12?C (44-53?F)
North Island Rainfall: 120-150mm
South Island Rainfall: 70-130mm

Find out about the weather in each month in:

About New Zealand Winter

Cool and crisp in New Zealand’s drier regions and wet and mild in the country’s more coastal areas: that just about sums up the weather in winter. The weather is also a little unpredictable in winter, so it’s not always ideal for the outdoor activities you’ve inevitably come to experience in New Zealand. Nevertheless, many don’t tend to mind, especially with the country being so uncrowded during this time. All you need to do is wrap up warm and have a good rain jacket! Winter is also one of the best seasons to see snow on the mountains and go skiing. Prices for car rentals, hotels and flights are also usually at their lowest.

Best Places to Visit in Winter
  • Queenstown, South Island
  • Rotorua, North Island
  • Ohakune, North Island
  • Arthur’s Pass, South Island
  • Hanmer Springs, South Island

Find out why in the 5 Places to Visit in Winter in New Zealand.

Pixabay© Pixabay

New Zealand Spring

Months: September, October and November
Tourist Season: Low to Shoulder Season

Weather in Spring

North Island Temperature: 16-20?C (60-68?F)
South Island Temperature: 13-19?C (55-66?F)
North Island Rainfall: 90-120mm
South Island Rainfall: 60-100mm

Find out about the weather in each month in:

About New Zealand Spring

Spring is always a refreshing time in New Zealand when the clocks go forward, the sun starts to warm everything up again, and the days get longer. In early spring, you can make the most of the last of the winter sports and travel around New Zealand still seeing snow on the mountains. October is when spring really starts to get into full swing, with the chance to see lambs (although this means that some walking trails may be closed, so be sure to check before you set out). Things don’t feel busy until mid-November, so make the most of the uncrowded attractions and walking trails before then! Prices for hotels, car rentals and flights are also reasonable until mid-November.

Best Places to Visit in Spring
  • Lake Tekapo, South Island
  • Rotorua, North Island
  • Hamilton, North Island
  • Kaikoura, South Island
  • Canterbury, South Island

Find out why in the 5 Places to Visit in Spring in New Zealand.

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