PLEASE NOTE: The seasons in the Southern Hemisphere run counter to our North American orientation: Spring (September-November), Summer (December-February), Autumn (March-May) & Winter (June-August)
New Zealand is a year-round destination. The weather in New Zealand is generally warm year round, but for a landmass so small in scale the country hosts varying climactic zones and temperatures can change rapidly. It's considered subtropical, with warm, balmy summer days on the North Island. Yet cool, sometimes bitterly cold, winter nights can hit the South Island. There's no specific rainy season; it rains off and on year round, so best to take rain gear with you whenever you travel. A narrow section of the South Island along the west coast is the wettest, with an average annual rainfall of more than 250 inches in the lush fjords of Milford Sound.
Spring is best if you want to avoid crowds. It's also lambing season and the time when flowers and blossoming trees are in full bloom.
Summer is great for hiking, camping and water sports.
Fall is slightly cooler, but the flaming fall foliage makes it a delightful time for travel. It's best to avoid the Easter holidays and the two-week New Zealand school holiday in May, as many places are booked with locals during those times.
Winter is the perfect travel time for skiers and snowboarders who want to experience southern hemisphere slopes at their best. The mild New Zealand weather won't limit many of your activities and you'll benefit from fewer crowds.
Be aware, however, that some of the best hiking routes, such as the Milford Track, are only open from November-April. Let us know when you'd like to visit New Zealand, and we'll put together the best itinerary for the time of year you wish to travel.