Hands down, autumn is our favourite time to travel around Aotearoa. Between the technicolour golden leaves and the crisp, cool breeze, the atmosphere of autumn is unmatched by any other season.
It's also the perfect excuse to finally book that epic accommodation you've been eyeing up. Whether it's a rural glass cabin or a luxury glamping spot, there's no doubt it will be stunning in autumn.
Wondering where to start? We've teamed up with 100% Pure New Zealand to curate the definitive list of New Zealand's most unique places to stay.
Kāpiti coast, Kaikoura, Greta Valley, Waipara, Port Levy
There's no doubt you'll be in awe of a PurePod upon arrival. Dotted around the country, these glass pods are about connecting with the landscape and all its natural wonders. Each pod is primarily made of glass, kitted out in premium bedding and indulgent amenities. The locations are serene and private, positioning you to soak in spectacular views, whether it's soaring mountain ranges, rugged coastlines or a sparkling night sky.
Shack up in style with a wondrous getaway to Fiordland Lodge. As the name suggests, this is the ideal spot to base yourself for a Fiordland escape, exploring the World Heritage national park, Milford Sound and Doubtful Sound. The lodge delivers nothing short of perfection, with dramatic architecture making way for panoramic views of Lake Te Anau. Pour yourself a Pinot, cosy up by the open fire or take a dip in the private spa—the choice is yours.
Beyond the glitzy hotels of central Auckland lies a hidden gem sure to surprise you. Warblers Retreat is an eco-lodge nestled among the rural landscapes of Paremoremo. The team's specialty here is couple escapes; duck away for a night of romance complete with wine, treats, two-course dining and candlelit forest bathing.
Step away from your packed schedule with a well-deserved trip to The Huts in Ahipara. These considered spaces are crafted with the intention of slow living, encouraging appreciation of the simple things. There are plenty of those to enjoy here: calming natural materials, sweeping views over Shipwreck Bay and organic breakfast treats. If you're rocking up for a few nights, check out their extras on offer, too—Māori healing (bodywork), sunrise yoga or a weaving workshop.
If you still haven't stayed in one of those dreamy geo domes, consider this your official sign to do so. Book in a night (or three) at Cross Hill Glamping over in Lake Hawea. Their domes are designed to bring you closer to nature, but with all the luxuries of a five-star stay. Catch a glimpse of the sun rising over the mountain ranges, slide into the outdoor hot tub or book in a three-course degustation. Pure bliss.
If you're looking for lakefront opulence, you can't go wrong with a few nights at EcoScapes. It won't surprise you that EcoScapes do things with the planet in mind; the rooms are built with green technology and use minimal energy. But that's not at the expense of comfort. Expect cosy interiors crafted with local artisan goods and expansive windows drawing in the striking mountain views.
Te Wepu Glamping
About an hour outside Christchurch, you'll find the enchanting Banks Peninsula, a natural wonderland dotted with scenic bays and hidden stays. One such place is Te Wepu, a working farm with a history dating back to the 1840s. Now, it's also home to an exclusive glamping set-up with three well-appointed wooden pods nestled throughout the farm. Each boasts a wood-fired hot tub for those relaxing evenings spent under the stars.
Turn your Oamaru trip into a full-on experience with a stay at the elegant Poshtel. This architecturally-designed space offers plenty of surprises to be uncovered. Each room has its own distinct style and personality; there's a tasteful space for you, whether you're into music or bowling. While you're there, stop by the in-house art gallery or settle in for a tipple on the leather sofa—and that's all before you even step out the front door.
Hokitika Fire Station
Check into a slice of Kiwi history over at Hokitika Fire Station. You guessed it, this is a beautifully restored historic building that has been transformed into tasteful accommodation right in the centre of town. Each self-contained apartment is decked out in modern amenities, with stylistic touches hinting at the fire station's heritage. Snuggle up in your space or opt for an adventure—you'll be perfectly positioned to get among the West Coast's natural splendour.
Already packing your bags? We feel you. Indulge in the finer things this autumn with a glamorous getaway—go on, you deserve it. Head here to get more autumn inspo.
Image credit: PurePods via Instagram, Fiordland Lodge via Instagram, Warblers Retreat via Instagram, CrossHill via Instagram, EcoScapes via Instagram, Te Wepu Pods via Instagram, Poshtel via Instagram, Hokitika Firestation Apartments via Instagram