well I am biased because I live here, but if you come I suggest you do so from November to April (summer-ish). Most people fly to Auckland and get
hooked into the attractions within a few hundred miles of Auckland and miss the amazing splendour of the South Island.
Not to disrespect places like Rotorua for it's thermal wonderland and maori culture, but the south Island is the real jewel in our crown.
Don't get sucked in to visiting via Christchurch either. Come to Wellington, then take a ferry to the south island. the trip and it's scenery
through the Marlborough sounds are a treat in themselves.
On the south Island don't miss the following spots:
Nelson and Kaiterteri beach
southern Westland and the glaciers
Lake Wanaka (and Glendhu bay/Matukituki Valley)
Milford and Doubtful Sounds (Fiordland)
Dunedin is kind of pretty for an Edwardian city
You can reach Wellington from Auckland, or through Australia via Melbourne, Sydney or Brisbane.
Christchurch has direct flights from Singapore, Seoul and Kuala Lumpur aswell as Australian cities.
Where should you go in the north island ?
Waitomo caves (west of Hamilton city)
Bay of islands
Central Plateau volcanoes (mt Ruapehu/Tongarrio)
If anyone wants specific help I'd be glad to assist.
[edit on 29-5-2007 by sy.gunson]