9 day southern experience
Church at Lake Tekapo
Franz Josef Glacier
Pancake Rocks at Punakaiki
Day 1: Arrive Christchurch
On arrival at the hotel the remainder of your day is at leisure to explore Christchurch. Tonight enjoy a welcome drink with your Tour Director and fellow travelling companions.
Accommodation: The Heritage Hotel, Christchurch.
Day 2: Christchurch - Mount Cook
Discover the sights of Christchurch this morning on the Christchurch Tram. Enjoy views of the colourful patchwork plains, then visit beautiful Lake Tekapo and see the Church of the Good Shepherd. Take in the scenery of Mt. Cook National Park, home to New Zealand's highest mountain and you have the chance to take a spectacular optional scenic flight (weather permitting).
Accommodation: MacKenzie Country Inn, Twizel.
Day 3: Mount Cook - Dunedin
See the pretty Oamaru region today, before journeying on to Dunedin. This afternoon is free for you to explore this charming town founded by Scottish settlers. Perhaps visit Cadbury World or take an optional Albatross & Yellow Eyed Penguin cruise.
Accommodation: Southern Cross Hotel, Dunedin.
Day 4: Dunedin – Te Anau
This morning enjoy a guided tour of Larnach Castle, followed by the highlights of Dunedin on a sightseeing tour. This afternoon we travel over the rolling grass plains of Southland, famous for sheep and deer farming. This evening stay in pretty Te Anau, located on the shores of glorious Lake Te Anau. Tonight there is an opportunity to view the Te Anau Glow Worm Caves.
Accommodation: Village Inn, Te Anau.
Day 5: Te Anau - Milford Sound - Queenstown
Experience the magnificent alpine scenery of Fiordland today. Drrive through the mile long hand hewn Homer Tunnel and see The Chasm. Later, discover spectacular Milford Sound on a memorable cruise. See Mitre Peak and Bowen Falls. This afternoon continue to Queenstown, the adventure capital of New Zealand. Why not experience the Kiwi Haka and Dinner tonight? Ride the Skyline Gondola to Bob's Peak with stunning views of Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu and enjoy a delicious buffet dinner.
Accommodation: Millenium Hotel, Queenstown, 2 nights.
Day 6: Queenstown
Explore Queenstown at your leisure today. You could enjoy an exhilarating jet boat ride, white water rafting or a relaxing garden or wine tour. Tonight board the historic steamship T.S.S. Earnslaw for a cruise across Lake Wakatipu. Explore the T.S.S. Earnslaw while enjoying the alpine scenery of Queenstown. Watch the engineers maintain the vessel, enjoy a relaxing drink on the deck or join in the sing-a-long on board. At Walter Peak Station enjoy some kiwi hospitality, a scrumptious carvery dinner in the Colonel's Homestead followed by an entertaining sheep dog demonstration before re-boarding the T.S.S. Earnslaw for the return cruise.
Day 7: Queenstown - Franz Josef
Colourful Arrowtown is our first stop today to discover the rich gold mining history and browse through the delightful shops. See the Kawarau Gorge before stopping in Cromwell for the opportunity to taste fresh stone fruit. Later pass Lake Dunstan, New Zealand's largest man made lake before viewing Lakes Hawea and Wanaka. Travel over the Haast Pass to the West Coast. View the mighty Thunder Creek Falls and take a short bush walk. Enjoy the scenery of the towering mountains and the sparkling Tasman Sea along the coastal road to Franz Josef.
Accommodation: Franz Josef Glacier Hotel, Franz Josef.
Day 8: Punakaiki – TranzAlpine - Christchurch
Discover the magnificent Franz Josef Glacier. This morning you will have the opportunity to enjoy an optional scenic flight (weather permitting) over Franz Josef and Mt Cook. Next we visit Hokitika where you can see beautiful native greenstone (jade) jewellery and artefacts. Travel past Greymouth, the largest town on the West Coast then view the fascinating Pancake Rocks and blowholes at Punakaiki. Later enjoy the alpine scenery as we climb over Arthur's Pass. At the Arthur's Pass Village, we board the TranzAlpine train for a spectacular journey over the Southern Alps. From our carriage we enjoy views of lush beech rainforest before descending over spectacular gorges and river valleys of the Waimakariri River. We travel through sixteen tunnels and five viaducts, the highest being the Staircase standing 73 metres. Later travel over the Canterbury Plains into the South island's largest city, Christchurch.
Accommodation: The Heritage Hotel, Christchurch.
Day 9: Depart Christchurch
You will be transferred to Christchurch Airport to connect with your onward flight (Flights to depart anytime).
Luxury coach transport 8 nights accommodation 8 Full Buffet Breakfasts 5 Hotel Dinners 1 Highlight Dinner Larnach Castle guided tour Milford Sound Cruise TSS Earnslaw cruise across Lake Wakatipu to Walter Peak Station with dinner at Colonel’s Homestead Franz Josef Glacier guided tour and souvenir booklet TranzAlpine Train journey Welcome Drink All purpose travel bag and map Airport transfers and porterage included
Tour ZCR: departs Christchurch, returns Christchurch
Departure Dates: click here
Operated by: AAT Kings – Tour Code: ZCR
Rates: are per person twin share, and in Australian dollars including GST.
Children: Children aged 5-15 years are charged the child rate, and must be escorted by at least one adult. Children under the ages of 5 years are ineligible to join AAT Kings Tours.