We're forever reminded that New Zealand is one of the world's favourite destinations.

Dramatic landscapes, cosy baches and pristine nature has made Aotearoa the toast of holidaymakers and Hollywood alike.

As Air New Zealand announced their $9 GrabaSeat deals this morning, it's time for Kiwis to start planning a trip to see the rellies down the line - or plot an escape from them, into a distant corner of Aotearoa.

But there's no need for urban residents to rush out into the bush to find their oasis of tranquillity.

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We've collected a list of our top tips and hotels to make the most of a New Zealand staycation.

A guide to Auckland

The Big Smoke of the north is also the gateway to New Zealand's best food, culture and the islands of the Hauraki Gulf. Hayley McLarin has put together her eight top tips for making the most of a break in the city of sails.

Where to stay:
The Hilton Hotel is right on the action of Auckland's Harbour. Read Kim Knight's ode to solitude and her hotel review here.

Other world-class accommodation on the Auckland waterfront includes the Sofitel Viaduct Harbour; what's good enough for Barack Obama is good enough for Stacey Morrison, as she reviews the urban 5-star hotel.

200 in Wellington

In the capital with 24 hours and $200 burning a hole in your pocket? We've got a guide of how to make your budget stretch the length of Cuba Street and beyond.

Escape to Dunedin

Why should the metropolis of the North get all the attention? Dunedin is the complete package with views of Otago Harbour and the chocolate capital of New Zealand.

Dunedin's Larnach Castle is just one part of a city that's easy to fall in love with. Photo / Alexia Santamaria
Dunedin's Larnach Castle is just one part of a city that's easy to fall in love with. Photo / Alexia Santamaria

Alexia Santamaria says Dunners is an absolute must visit for all New Zealanders.

Back of beyond

You don't have to hop on a long-haul flight to find your place of sanctuary. As relaxing as a retreat on a Himalayan mountainside, and almost as remote, Lorna Subritzky reviews the Maruia River Retreat in the Murchison ranges.

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Unwind at the Maruia River Retreat. Photo / Supplied
Unwind at the Maruia River Retreat. Photo / Supplied

Two hours' drive from Nelson, if 'peace and quiet' isn't your thing, Murchison is also the country's river-rafting capital.

Invercargill will get your motor running

The last stop before Antarctica, Southland's main city is being reimagined as a spot on the tourist trailroad.

Bill Richardson's Transport World. Photo / Thomas Bywater
Bill Richardson's Transport World. Photo / Thomas Bywater

With the Bill Richardson Motor Museum, the world's fastest Indian at E Hayes, and Dig This giving visitors a chance to get their hands dirty behind the controls of some excavators - Invercargill's direct connections from Auckland will give you plenty of holiday ideas to get your motor running.