December in New Zealand: A Plethora of Fun! Choose Your Reasons and Start Planning Your Trip Today!

by operator

New Zealand in December becomes more festive as Christmas approaches, and the sunny days attract both beach lovers and thrill-seekers. The country is fortunate to have a diverse landscape and culture. Whether it’s majestic peaks or towering skyscrapers, the scenery here is contrasting and captivating.

If you’re wondering what to do in New Zealand in December 2022, this article provides all the answers and suggests the best location for each activity. In addition to activities, it covers top tourist destinations, weather conditions, package prices, and recommended duration of stay.

Climate in New Zealand During December 2022

New Zealand in December

December in New Zealand marks the summer season. It is one of the warmest months in the country, with average temperatures ranging between 20 and 30 degrees Celsius. In fact, for those who love snow, there are regions in the South Island that can cater to your preference. The weather in New Zealand in December is generally sunny in most parts, with occasional rainfall. This climate allows travelers to participate in a variety of activities, as there is plenty to do in New Zealand in December.

Sunny days can be reserved for water sports, hiking, and exploring different beaches. Rainy days are ideal for nature trails, as everything becomes greener and waterfalls flow abundantly. There are also many indoor activities to enjoy during rainy days, such as shopping in malls and going to clubs.

Queenstown in New Zealand

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New Zealand Map

New Zealand consists primarily of two islands, namely the North Island and the South Island. In addition to these main landmasses, there are about 600 smaller islands that are also part of New Zealand.

Top Attractions in New Zealand to Visit in December

When planning a vacation in New Zealand, be sure not to miss these renowned attractions in December. These places will take you on a journey to explore the adventurous getaways and cultural treasures of the country.

1. Queenstown – For All The Adventure You Desire

wellington cable car

Known as the Adventure Capital of the World, Queenstown is a must-visit destination in New Zealand in December 2022 for adrenaline junkies. Whether you’re seeking a mild adventure or an activity that will send your heart racing, this is the place for you. Here, you can enjoy activities such as jet boating, skiing, and bungee jumping. In fact, Queenstown was the first location in the world to offer commercial bungee jumping sites, and there are many more to explore in New Zealand during December.

Aside from its thrilling offerings, Queenstown captivates visitors with its breathtaking scenery and delightful dining options!

Points of interest in Queenstown:

  • Leap of faith from Kawarau Bridge
  • Excursion of Milford Sound
  • Parachuting
  • Vineyard visits at Amisfield Bistro & Cellar Door
  • Glistening lakes like Lake Wanaka and Lake Wakatipu

Top accommodations in Queenstown: Rydges Lakeland Resort, Heritage Queenstown, and Crowne Plaza

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Auckland cityscape

2. Wellington – New Zealand’s Picturesque Capital

The capital of the country, Wellington is known as the trendiest small capital in the world according to Lonely Planet. The city is famed for its scenic beauty and rich heritage. Wellington’s shimmering harbor and rolling verdant hills create a soulful landscape that will certainly inspire you to travel and explore the finest places to visit during the Christmas holiday in New Zealand. While in the city, immerse yourself in the local culture by visiting various art galleries and theaters, or engage in activities such as kayaking and biking.

Points of interest in Wellington:

  • Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
  • Wellington Botanic Garden
  • Trekking up to the summit of Mount Victoria
  • Ride Wellington Cable Car
  • Discover wildlife at Zealandia

Top accommodations in Wellington: ibis Wellington, Rydges, and InterContinental

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Bay of Islands in New Zealand

3. Auckland – Showcasing an Iconic Cityscape

The largest city in New Zealand, Auckland’s skyline is dominated by the towering Sky Tower, which indeed adds to the city’s iconic scenery. However, this city is not just about skyscrapers; it is New Zealand’s most diverse city, encompassing a variety of cultures, landscapes, and attractions. Whether you seek vibrant nightlife, shopping, hiking, wine tasting, or adventure, Auckland is the place to be.

Points of interest in Auckland:

  • Embark on the SkyWalk at the Sky Tower
  • Enjoy private cruises
  • Kayak to Rangitoto Island
  • Experience marine mammal eco-safaris with Auckland Whale & Dolphin Safari
  • Take a wine tour of Waiheke Island

Top accommodations in Auckland: Auckland City Hotel, Waldorf Stadium Apartment Hotel, and Hotel Sofitel Auckland

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Waimangu near Rotorua in New Zealand

Bay Of Islands – Adorned With The Colors Of The Sea

One of New Zealand’s premier destinations, the Bay of Islands is comprised of 144 islands, and is a must-visit if you’re traveling to New Zealand in December. The verdant gem, known as the Bay of Islands, is a paradise where you’ll encounter various aquatic creatures while sailing, such as whales, dolphins, penguins, and marlins. Not only can you enjoy the marine life, but you can also immerse yourself in the cultural and historical charm of the Bay of Islands through interactions with the Maori people.

Points of interest in the Bay of Islands:

  • Waitangi heritage tour
  • Excursion to the Hole in the rock
  • Spotting dolphins and whales
  • Exploring shipwreck sites during a scuba diving expedition

A person exploring the natural beauty of New Zealand

Finest accommodations in the Bay of Islands: Paihia often serves as a hub for visitors exploring the Bay of Islands. Admiral’s View Lodge & Motel, Scenic Hotel Bay of Islands, and Paihia Beach Resort & Spa are among the top places to stay in Paihia.

5. Rotorua – Thermal Springs And Culture

The Trendiest Hotspot Destination of New Zealand, Rotorua is renowned for its thermal springs, geysers, and mud pools. However, that’s not all – Rotorua also proudly showcases the Maori culture, which delights visitors. Delving into Maori cuisine or getting a Ta Moko tattoo from experts will allow you to truly experience this captivating culture.

There is also excitement to be found in activities like mountain biking and whitewater rafting during your trip to New Zealand in December.

Attractions in Rotorua:

  • Geothermal tours to Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, Waimangu Volcanic Valley, and Hell’s Gate, among others
  • Tour of Maori heritage and history
  • Engage in activities such as white water rafting, ziplining, and fly fishing
  • Wildlife encounters at Paradise Valley Springs
  • Rejuvenate in nature’s own spas like Kerosene Creek

Night Sky In New Zealand

Top accommodations in Rotorua: Rydges Rotorua, Holiday Inn Rotorua, and Novotel Rotorua Lakeside

Activities To Undertake In New Zealand In December

There are numerous captivating activities to partake in while visiting New Zealand in December. Take a look.

1. Trekking

The globe acknowledges that New Zealand can be incredibly deadly and mesmerizing with its natural scenery. Losing oneself amidst its nature scenery is one of the finest activities to undertake in New Zealand. The country has been blessed with a stunning contrast of mountains, plains, lakes, beaches, and volcanic craters. Simply strolling through the countryside of New Zealand will reveal a plethora of distinct sights. At one moment, you may come across waterfalls, only to find yourself in a grassy field; walking further will unveil rolling hills or perhaps playful turquoise ocean waves.

Top destinations in New Zealand for nature trails and hikes: Tongariro National Park, Mount Cook National Park, Mt. Victoria, and Fiordland National Park

A woman shopping

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2. Nightlife in New Zealand

Image Source

During your December trip to New Zealand, you must indulge in the vibrant nightlife, surrounded by wonderful individuals. Nightlife in New Zealand is not merely about disco balls and loud music; there are actually numerous ways to experience the night. Aside from pub crawls, fine dining, cruising on a yacht, or attending a live show in a night market are alternative ways to enjoy the nightlife in New Zealand.

Top cities in New Zealand to experience the nightlife: Auckland, Wellington, Queenstown, and Christchurch

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A beach in New Zealand

3. Shopping

Of course, engaging in shopping while on vacation is something no one can resist, especially for those visiting New Zealand in December. When shopping in this beautiful country, you will discover a variety in everything from fashion to electronics, and the quality of each product is remarkable as well.

If you’re seeking to purchase gifts, it is recommended to buy pounamu (jade) ornaments, woodcraft, and possum knitwear and sheepskins.

Top destinations to visit in New Zealand for shopping: Auckland, Christchurch, and Queenstown

A group skydiving

4. Surfing

The astonishing coastline of New Zealand satisfies everyone globally. The emerald ocean waves caressing the sandy shores appear as though they are straight out of a reverie. Do you desire secluded beach locations to unwind and reconnect with nature? New Zealand has got you covered. Do you want to party all night by the ocean? New Zealand will invigorate you. Do you crave the exhilaration of adrenaline? There are numerous water sports you can engage in while on a vacation in New Zealand in December.

Finest beaches in New Zealand: Awaroa Beach, Wharariki Beach, Bioluminescent Mosquito Bay, and Kaiteriteri Beach are among New Zealand’s unparalleled beaches.

Fireworks in the sky

5. Skydiving

Skydiving in New Zealand is a paramount desire of every thrill-seeker. And as mentioned regarding the nightlife in this nation, there are various options for skydiving, such as Tandem, Accelerated Freefall, and Static Line.

Top destinations in New Zealand for skydiving: Fox Glacier, Auckland, Bay of Islands, and Abel Tasman.

Landscape of New Zealand

6. Christmas And New Year Festivities

Image Source

What’s a visit to New Zealand in December without celebrating Christmas and New Year here? The Santa Parades in numerous towns often commence in November itself. Sometimes Santa doesn’t even dress traditionally; he adds a New Zealand touch by wearing jandals (New Zealand sandals) and even rugby shirts. There are special performances of carols and light displays to enhance the festive spirit. The New Year period also becomes vibrant, with parties, music festivals, and fireworks.

Top destinations in New Zealand to visit during Xmas and New Year: Auckland, Wellington, Gisborne, and Christchurch.

Ideal Trip Duration And Package Cost For A New Zealand Vacation

The perfect length of stay in New Zealand is 10 nights and 11 days. This will allow you to visit the premier tourist destinations of New Zealand and engage in the finest activities in the country.

If you have more time available, you can combine your visit to New Zealand with Australia and relish the best of both worlds.

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Mentioning New Zealand tours, the typical expense of the same would be INR 1,00,00 per person on double occupancy basis. This cost usually includes accommodation, meals, airport transfers, and airport pickup drop. Furthermore, the price of the package varies depending on the season.

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Frequently Asked Questions About New Zealand In December

What are the activities to engage in during December in New Zealand?

Engaging in beach athletics, island hopping, wine sampling, partying, shopping, hiking, and parachuting are just a few of the activities one can partake in while on a vacation in New Zealand during December.

Is December a warm month in New Zealand?

For the most part, December in New Zealand experiences pleasant warmth, with temperatures ranging from 20 to 30 degrees Celsius. Nevertheless, this may vary based on the specific region you are traveling to.

When is the optimal time to visit New Zealand?

The optimal time to visit New Zealand is in early December.

Where is the best location to try bungee jumping in New Zealand?

The finest location for bungee jumping is the Kawarau Bridge.

Is it recommended to visit New Zealand during Christmas?

Visiting New Zealand during Christmas is highly recommended.

How chilly does it get in New Zealand during December?

In December, New Zealand enjoys the summer season, with moderate to pleasantly warm weather conditions in most areas, particularly the North Island and tropical regions, offering excellent New Zealand Packages.

What attire is suitable for New Zealand in December?


Snow attire, thermal wear, hats, jackets, jeans, warm socks, knitwear, gloves, and shoes are among the essential items to pack when going on a winter vacation in New Zealand.

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