14 Day Relaxing Journey South Island
14 Day Relaxing Journey in the South
Ideally balanced for the traveler wishing to relax and unwind entirely, this relaxing journey around the South Island of New Zealand showcases the most spectacular scenery of New Zealand from the comforts of a comfortable coach, and allows ample time to explore the stunning beauty of the South Island's most precious jewels.
HighlightsAbel Tasman Cruise and Wine Tour Hokitika Gorge West Coast Glaciers Milford Sound Day Tour and Cruise Heli Wine tour Queenstown
Aoraki/ Mt Cook National Park
Terms and Conditions
Prices are based on twin share occupancy in a double room, and are subject to availability. If anything comes back unavailable, we will endeavor to find you a suitable alternative.
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Day 1 : Christchurch
On arrival you will be picked up at the airport and transferred to your first night’s accommodation, where you will receive your detailed tour information pack.
Take the rest of the day to relax and explore the inner city, with its famous botanical gardens. The city has bounced back from the devastating 2010 earthquake and is once again a very vibrant place.
- Christchurch tramway 4 course dinner tour
- Visit the city's famous botanical gardens
- The Canterbury museum, where you can experience New Zealand's rich cultural and natural history.
Day 2 : Christchurch - Kaikoura
Heading towards Kaikoura the road hugs the rugged coastline between the Pacific Ocean and the Kaikoura Ranges and the views are truly spectacular.
In the afternoon you can explore Kaikoura’s bountiful marine wildlife - a result of the ocean canyon close offshore, on a Whale Watching cruise.
- Kaikoura Museum : This award winning Museum offers a modern and relaxed environment with a contemporary and fun approach to telling the stories of Kaikoura’s natural, social and cultural journey.
- Do ensure you sample New Zealand's finest crayfish.
Day 3 : Kaikoura - Blenheim - Nelson
This morning board your coach for your journey north, passing world-class wine producing vineyards in the Marlborough region and into sunny Nelson the sunshine capital of New Zealand.
Suggested activities Nelson:
- World of wearable art and classic car museum : showcasing an iconic collection of must see classic cars alongside incredible wearable works of art from international artists situated in Nelson.
- Nelson provincial museum, showcasing Nelson and Tasman regions' history, from geological origins to the stories of individuals and families.
Day 4 : Abel Tasman Cruise and Wine Tour
Abel Tasman Cruise and Wine Tour is a full day out departing at 7.30am from Nelson. The tour includes a cruise, a snack lunch and wine tasting. You will be picked from your accommodation at 7.30am and have an informative drive out to Kaiteriteri where you will be met by the Wilsons Abel Tasman team. From here you will take a cruise or water taxi ride to Anchorage departing at 9.20am (approximately 45min cruise each way). On arrival, you can take a short scenic walk or just relax on the beach and take in the picturesque scenery while enjoying your snack lunch.
On arrival back in Kaiteriteri, you will continue on the tour, travelling to two of Nelsons award winning wineries and tasting some great wines. You will also stop in at the historic Mapua Wharf that now holds some of the region’s best boutique stores. Overall the tour is approximately 8 hours and truly is a great day out if you’re short on time here. There is the possibility to swim during your time at Anchorage so please feel free to bring swim-wear and a change of clothing if you would like to swim. Depending on the weather it is also recommended to bring a windbreaker and warm hat with you.
Day 5 : Nelson - Hokitika
Hokitika is a cool little town and a 'must-stay' destination on the West Coast, South Island, New Zealand. When you think of the West Coast, you think untamed natural wilderness, genuine experiences and friendly characters that love to share a story. Hokitika is all that and more.
- Visit the Hokitika Gorge with its incredible turquoise waters.
- In the heart of Hokitika, The National Kiwi Centre offers the opportunity to see the endangered and very special national icon, the Kiwi, along will lots of other native creatures, including the tuatara, which has been around since the dinosaur age - so they're pretty special too.
- Visit one of the numerous famous jade (NZ pounamu) galleries dotted across the picturesque town
- Located 15 minutes south of Hokitika next to Lake Mahinapua, the West Coast Treetop Walk is a stunning treetop adventure amongst the native forest canopy of ancient Rimu and Kamahi trees. Look down on the spectacular giant ferns from above as you stroll through the suspended forest canopy walkway.
Day 6 : Hokitika - Franz Josef
Today your journey takes you to the glacier country in Westland National Park, so explore the glaciers at your own pace today. There are numerous short walks up to the base of the Glaciers.
- Soak and relax in the Glacier Hot Pools
- Stroll around beautiful Lake Matheson, providing stunning reflections in the water of Mt Cook.
- A short walk up to the base of Franz Josef Glacier
- A heli-flight with snow landing on Franz Josef Glacier (please note that if you would like to include this activity, you will probably need to stay in Franz Josef for another day, instead of an extra day in Wanaka, due to the arrival late afternoon)
Day 7 : Franz Josef - Wanaka
Your journey today takes you through a number of national parks. The road between Frans Josef and Haast winds its way along the rugged West Coast with lush native bush and rainforest. Haast is located in the heart of Te Wāhipounamu World Heritage Area, with national parks to the north, south and east. You'll head inland and into the Mt Aspiring National Park with its towering mountains and glaciel fed rivers with crystal clear waters. The road then takes you along Lake Hawea before arriving into Wanaka.
In winters skiers from all over the world flock to Wanaka for its great skiing, and in summer the impressive mountains provide for a range of activities.
Day 8 : Wanaka
Today is a free day at your leisure to explore beautiful Wanaka.
- Visit Puzzling World, with its The Illusion Rooms, Puzzle Centre and Maze which will leave you baffled.
- National Transport and Toy Museum: With over half a century of collecting and preserving pieces from the past, the museum boasts rare and unusual aircraft, cars, trucks, motorcycles, fire appliances, military vehicles and tractors.
- Visit one of the world-class vineyards or boutique breweries.
- Jetboat and wilderness walk in Mt Aspiring National Park
Day 9 : Wanaka - Queenstown
Today you will not be traveling far. The road over the Crown Range between Wanaka and Queenstown only takes a little over an hour, so you'll have plenty of time to spend the day in Queenstown.
Queenstown is synonymous with adventure, it is dubbed the "adventure capital of the world". Regardless of the season, Queenstown gets your adrenaline flowing year round, and the options are endlesss. Want to throw yourself out of a plane in amazing scenery, jump off a bridge in the birthplace of Bungy, jetboat, raft down a river, you name it...Queenstown has it all.
- Embark on the iconic TSS Earnslaw for a cruise on Lake Wakatipu
- Take a ride up to the Gondola offering fantastic views of the town and the surrounding mountains.
- Visit the Kiwi birdlife park
- Spend some time in charming and quirky Arrowtown, a delightful gold rush village nestled below the beautiful peaks that surround the sparkling Arrow River.
Day 10 : Milford Sound Day Tour
Visit Milford Sound today and experience a world of cascading waterfalls, sheer rock faces and dense rainforest. Your journey along the shores of Lake Wakatipu takes you further south to Te Anau first. You will travel along the Milford Road – one of the world's most scenic roads – and through the Homer Tunnel, before arriving for your Milford Sound Cruise. Enjoy striking views of iconic Mitre Peak from the head of the Sound – it rises 1,692 metres from the south shore and is named for its resemblance to a bishop’s mitre.
The pristine Milford Sound is part of the World Heritage Fiordland National Park, in the south west of the South Island, and is famed for its pristine natural beauty and remote atmosphere. It is New Zealand’s best known fiord and the only one that can be reached by road. The fiord extends 15km inland from the wild Tasman Sea and is regularly visited by wildlife including penguins, seals and dolphins.
Day 11 : Queenstown
You'll spend another day in Queenstown today, where you'll join a unique heli-wine experience which includes:
- Helicopter flight, sightseeing and landing on mountain range before being dropped off at Gibbston Valley Winery.
- Tastings at two wineries.
- Underground wine cave tour.
- Wine & food paired lunch + formal cheese presentation & tastings.
- Courtesy pick up and drop off at selected accommodation or central Queenstown.
Day 12 : Queenstown - Mt Cook
Journey deep into the Southern Alps on a half day sightseeing tour from Queenstown to Mount Cook.
Set off from Queenstown in a luxury coach, enjoying the commentary from your local driver guide as you travel north. Pass through the historic gold mining district of the rugged Kawarau River Gorge and the famous fruit growing region of Cromwell. Skirting the shores of Lake Dunstan, your tour crosses the Lindis Pass into Omarama for morning tea (own expense).
Continue through the rugged high country landscape of the Mackenzie Basin to arrive at Aoraki / Mount Cook National Park, home to Australasia's highest mountain at 3,724 metres. Sit down to a delicious lunch (optional extra) at the Hermitage Hotel in Mount Cook Village, where you can enjoy stunning uninterrupted views of Mount Cook and the other high peaks that make up the Southern Alps. You can also take the chance to see this alpine region from above with a scenic flight (own expense – this flight can be arranged with your driver/guide on the day).
Day 13 : Mt Cook - Christchurch
Today you will leave Mount Cook to your final destination that is Christchurch, but you will pass thru Lake Tekapo, where you can see from the bus he tiny Church of the Good Shepherd. Then cross the fertile Canterbury Plains to Christchurch and enjoy an afternoon at leisure as you bid farewell to your newfound friends in the Garden City.
Day 14 : Christchurch
Today your tour of the South Island comes to an end, and you will be transferred to Christchurch Airport.
- 13 Nights accommodation in 4 star rated hotels
- Complimentary airport transfers
- Detailed tour pack upon arrival at first night's accommodation.
- Abel Tasman National Park Cruise and Wine Tour
- Milford Sound Day Tour and Cruise
- Queenstown Heli-Wine tour
- Queenstown - Mt Cook day tour
- >45 days prior to departure - deposit paid
- 45-30 days prior to departure - 25%
- 30-7 days or less prior to departure - 50%
- 7 days or less prior to departure - 100%
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