Fly nonstop to Auckland for $1298 roundtrip, including taxes, from Los Angeles or San Francisco and save as much as $470 on peak summer fares.
Travel May 5 - June 8 during the fall season when crowds thin. For $50 more, fly to Christchurch, Wellington or Queenstown. New Zealand is home to lush landscapes and snow-capped mountains that served as the backdrop for "The Hobbit," the prequel to the "Lord of the Rings" films.
Named Air Transport World magazine's 2012 Airline of the Year, Air New Zealand features seats equipped with personal entertainment centers offering movies, games and music. Travelers are served fresh and innovative cuisine, alongside a wide array of New Zealand wines.