Black Opal Travel Group Don't follow the crowd.

New Zealand vs England 2023 - 1st & 2nd Test Match Tour


If you are looking to attend the two Test Matches on New Zealand’s North Island, join our dedicated tour hosted by Gladstone Small and David Gower. Soak up the sunshine and the scenery, as well as a choice of superb accommodation, with lots of opportunity for sporting insight and debate with our experts.

At Black Opal we are proud to be an official operator for this event and can’t wait for you to join us on this fantastic Pacific getaway!

Our 1st & 2nd Test Tour :

It is an exciting time when the test matches begin on New Zealand and this is a great opportunity to join us and explore more of the country.

The Black Opal team can tailor your trip, with a choice of luxury accommodation and some fantastic extras to make lasting holiday memories. Hosted drinks reception will begin our tour in Auckland, while our ‘Stumps’ evenings mid-Test, with Q&A sessions, drinks and canapes, are a great opportunity to discuss the day’s play with like-minded travellers.

Our ‘Digest the Test’ farewell dinner will be held after the event finishes in Wellington, with our dedicated hosts on hand to offer plenty of insider insight on the action.

If you'd like to extend your adventure, ask our team about options going on to explore Queenstown and the South Island, or Bay of Islands in the North - there is so much to discover in this fabulous country.

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Inclusions :

  • International flights in economy class
  • Private transfers on arrival and departure
  • Meet & Greet on arrival
  • Group road transfers between hotels
  • Stadium transfers on each day of the Test Matches
  • Transfers to all Black Opal hosted events
  • 16 nights accommodation on bed & breakfast basis
  • Waiheke wine tour including lunch
  • Hosted welcome drinks in Auckland, Mount Maunganui & Wellington
  • Hosted 'Stumps' event mid Test in Mount Maunganui & Wellington
  • Hosted 'Digest the Test' farewell dinner in Wellington
  • Exclusive Black Opal merchandise

Please note :

Prices are based on two people sharing a standard room. Flight supplements may apply. Single supplements available on request. Match tickets are not currently included but can be added to your booking at cost prices when released. Guest hosts are subject to availability / tour numbers. Attendees will need to be fully vaccinated from COVID-19 to join the tour and provide the necessary official documentation to show this.

Our travel experts have featured this itinerary to show you the best of the region during your trip, but of course we can tailor your requests to offer alternative hotels, flights and durations, as well as curating extended stays, such as in the South Pacific and Far East – just talk to a member of our team, to create your bucket-list holiday.

Join at your chosen airport for your outbound flight to Auckland. If you wish to break up your journey with a stop over beforehand, just ask our team about the options available.


On arrival in Auckland, you’ll be met and taken by private transfer to our hotel, QT Auckland, staying for two nights. In the heart of the city, this contemporary five-star property is within easy reach of the harbour, wharf and other attractions.

If you’d like to join an exclusive walking tour, ask our team for details, or discover the city in your own time. We can also offer an upgrade option to alternative hotels, including the Park Hyatt.

From Viaduct Harbour to the Wynward Quarter and North Wharf, you can admire super yachts and visit stylish cafes, whilst in the other direction along the waterfront will bring you to the lively precinct of Britomart. We also recommend a trip to the Sky Tower observation deck to enjoy views out to the Waitakere Ranges and Hauraki Gulf.

Accommodation: QT Auckland

Enjoy our included wine tour today, taking in Waiheke Island. Taking the ferry, we'll visit three stunning boutique vineyards, enjoy a light lunch and admire the wonderful vistas along the way. The wine makers are passionate and will offer a great insight into the region’s wine heritage and culture.


Departing Auckland today, we’ll head southwards, relaxing and taking in the views as we travel. Our next stay is Tauranga, where we’ll stay for six nights at the Trinity Wharf, which boasts incredible harbour views. The location is perfect for our stay, just a short drive over the Harbour Bridge to reach the Bay Oval grounds.

Across the harbour is Mount Maunganui, a popular holiday destination along with Papamoa, which is popular surfing beach. At the ‘Mount’, you can soak in hot salt water pools and climb to the summit, which offers amazing views of the surrounding city and ocean.

Accommodation: Trinity Wharf

Today is the start of the 1st Test, so sit back and enjoy the cricket at Mount Maunganui’s Bay Oval, as New Zealand take on England. Situated on Blake Park, this is the regional cricket ground for the Bay of Plenty, with seating for up to 10,000 spectators.


Continuing southwards, we leave the coast and travel to the heart of the North Island to Lake Taupo, where we stay at the Hilton for two nights. Just a short walk to the lake shore or drive to the town of Taupo, this is an idyllic spot, with a host of fantastic outdoor activities available in the surrounding region, from cycling to sky diving.

Ask about optional excursions that we can arrange in the area, such as exploring thermal parks or  Maori culture.

If you’ve already visited this region or wish to stay and relax by the coast, why not ask our travel experts for a stay instead on Hawke’s Bay, where we can offer some fantastic accommodation, at Napier or Te Awanga.

Accommodation: Hilton Lake Taupo


We’ll continue our scenic route today, through the centre of New Zealand’s North Island, down to capital Wellington, on the southernmost tip, where we stay for six nights at the QT Museum Wellington.

Close to the harbour and sights, this opulent hotel is perfectly located for us, even within walking distance of the Basin Reserve grounds.

This compact city is easy to explore – visit the vibrant waterfront where modern buildings contrast with traditional wooden houses on the hillsides beyond and see see the country’s unusually shaped Parliament Building. Ride the Wellington cable car to visit the Botanical Gardens and Carter Observatory, or for a wildlife experience head to the Zealandia eco-sanctuary.

On Friday and Saturday evenings, experience a melting pot of cultures at the night markets, where performances by musicians also complement the buzzing atmosphere, whilst on Sunday morning the harbourside market is filled with fresh product stalls.

Accommodation: QT Wellington


The 2nd Test now takes place at the Basin Reserve, nestled between Mount Victoria and Mount Cook, in central Wellington. The ground is protected by an Act or Parliament and is New Zealand’s only sporting ground on the National Heritage List.

Black Opal will be with you to cheer on the England team and hopefully come away with a victory!

Today we bid farewell to our tour companions and head to Wellington airport for the return flight home.

If you’d like to extend your stay or break up your journey with a stopover, our team would be delighted to look at some options for you, to help complete this adventure.

EXTENSION STAY – QUEENSTOWN 4 DAYS from £980 per person sharing

Fly from Wellington down to Queenstown, staying for three nights at the contemporary QT Queenstown.

Set on the shores of Lake Wakatipu, you can take in the dramatic alpine ranges of the surrounding mountains and rivers - we recommend riding the gondola to Bob’s Peak, to take in the views.

We can also arrange car hire to explore more of this stunning region. Drive at your leisure to enjoy the landscapes of the Central Otago, Paradise Valley and Mount Aspiring National Park – there is so much to see and do! Black Opal can help to arrange other exciting excursions, such as a helicopter tour to see Milford Sound and glaciers.

EXTENSION STAY – BAY OF ISLANDS 4 DAYS from £1,480 per person sharing

Fly up to Kerikeri, staying for three nights at one of our hand-picked properties, to take in the magnificent scenery of this subtropical region, with it's pristine beaches, glistening waterfalls, lush forests and awesome rock formations. This is quintessential New Zealand at its finest here, with a rich heritage of Maori myths and legends too.

Make the most of your stay, exploring by joining a coastal tour by yacht, or taking in the views from a helicopter trip - the Black Opal team can help plan all of your sightseeing.

Accommodation: QT Queenstown

Our hand-picked luxury accommodation

At Black Opal, we know our clients want the very best accommodation to accompany their luxury sports travel experience. That’s why we endeavour to secure the very best accommodation available within convenient proximity to your chosen event. Our recommendations are below, but should you wish to stay elsewhere simply give us a call on 0330 041 4888 or contact us online.