November 22, 2018
By Beacon_PR

New Zealand specialist launches 2019 Captain Cook 250 holidays

Purely New Zealand specialist Silver Fern Holidays has unveiled an independent tour of New Zealand to mark the 250th anniversary of Captain James Cook’s first landing in New Zealand, which was in October 1769.

The itinerary showcases North Island’s beautiful coastline and locations associated with Cook, including Gisborne, Poverty Bay and the Bay of Plenty in the East Cape; the Coromandel peninsula; the Bay of Islands, plus Ship Cove in the Marlborough Sounds, which is accessible only by boat or on foot.

“Ship Cove was Cook’s favourite anchorage for Endeavour and he re-provisioned the ship there five times during his three voyages,” says Silver Fern Holidays’ managing director John Lightwood.

“Our itinerary includes an overnight in this beautiful spot, with the option of walking a section of the Queen Charlotte Track, one of New Zealand’s Great Walks.”

The 29-day ‘Discover Captain Cook’s New Zealand’ itinerary is aimed at couples or friends travelling together, and combines car hire with scheduled rail, coach and ferry travel for variety.

New Zealand’s ‘must see’ locations of geothermal Rotorua, the Southern Alps and Fiordland are also integrated into the holiday, which costs from £4,299 per person based on two people travelling together and sharing a room on a B&B basis at lodges, guest houses and character hotels. This price excludes international flights, which can be arranged as part of an ATOL-bonded package.

The UK has already started celebrating Cook’s achievements, with exhibitions this summer at the British Library and the Royal Museums Greenwich, while ‘Oceania’ opened at the Royal Academy at the end of September.

The New Zealand government has given the name ‘Tuia Encounters 250’ to the anniversary that reflects the duality of the country’s history, weaving Maori and Pakeha (non-indigenous) stories together. Commemorations range from new public art commissions to newly-signposted heritage trails for 2019.

Special events in New Zealand between October and November 2019 (the New Zealand spring) include a replica of Endeavour charting Cook’s course from Gisborne to the Bay of Islands, calling at historic landing sites along the way. A flotilla of Maori waka (canoes) and other sailing vessels will welcome the ship at each port.

“The East Cape rarely features in itineraries for international visitors,” says John, “yet it is one of the country’s most authentic regions, having a large Maori population, and we are delighted to introduce UK-based travellers to this beautiful area.”

“2019 will be a huge year for travel to New Zealand,” says John Lightwood, “with the public imagination fired by media coverage ranging from BBC arts programmes to the recent news that marine archaeologists may have found the hull of Endeavour on the sea bed off the east coast of America.

“Our new itinerary can depart on any day during 2019 and can be tailor-made to suit different durations and budgets. However, we do urge those who want to be in the East Cape on 8 October – the actual 250th anniversary date – to book early!”

Silver Fern Holidays 01636 813 544,


Release issued by Jane Williams at Beacon PR 01572 748 800

Download Silver Fern Holidays Cook 250 itinerary:

About Captain Cook 250 anniversary

  • Cook was born in Yorkshire in 1728, apprenticed in Whitby before joining the Royal Navy and serving in the Seven Years War: he is probably Britain’s greatest explorer.
  • Cook made three Pacific voyages, visiting Polynesia and Australia as well as New Zealand. He spent 328 days charting New Zealand’s extraordinary coastline with an amazing degree of accuracy.
  • Exhibitions at the British Library, the Royal Museums in Greenwich, and museums in Whitby (Cook’s home town) have already been held to mark the 250th anniversary of the Endeavour’s departure from the UK in 1768.
  • In New Zealand, the anniversary is known as Tuia Encounters 250 and commemorates the first meeting between the indigenous Maori and the British, who subsequently settled in New Zealand. Tuia means to weave or bind together, reflecting the dual history (and future) of the country.


About Silver Fern Holidays

  • 100% New Zealand specialists (worldwide stopovers and tour extensions in Australia and the Pacific)
  • Tailor-made itineraries (for couples, friends, families)
  • Unique escorted small group tours (max 16 per departure, packed with great experiences)
  • Smaller, friendly places to stay (from boutique B&Bs to homestays)
  • Tour by car, rail, coach and boat (mix and match travel options)
  • Authentic, local experiences (personal recommendations, responsible travel focus)
  • 24-support in New Zealand (through its own office in Hamilton)
  • ABTA and ATOL bonded
  • Members of AITO, The Specialist Travel Association




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