HIGH COUNTRY LAKE'S & ALP'S
Start your tour in Christchurch. After having breakfast and exploring the city centre of Christchurch, we head to Lake Tekapo. We leave the city today westwards through the Canterbury Plains, Stopping at at Lake Tekapo for a fantastic photo opportunity. Tekapo is one of three significant lakes that border the Mackenzie Valley. Golden tussock grass carpets the surrounding hillside and roll away into the distance where the Southern Alps frame the horizon. The charming 'Church of the Good Shepherd' sits alone on its shores and the views to our highest mountain, Aoraki Mt Cook are remarkable.
You may want to check out the Southern Alps in a Hot Air Balloon or take a Scenic Flight. (not included)
This who area is one of the worlds first 'Dark Sky Reserves' so stargazing is amazing.
Accommodation: Tekapo - 1 Night
TEKAPO - QUEENSTOWN
After breakfast it's a hike up Mt John to enjoy amazing views of the Southern Alps. Then we journey South from Mount Cook and through the high country towns of Twizel and Omarama before entering the beautiful Lindis Pass, the pass offers a unique mountain and tussock grassland scenery - Lindis Pass Scenic Reserve was formed in 1976 and was one of the first tussock reserves in New Zealand.
On your way you may want to Bungy Jump at Kawarau Gorge or take pictures of the amazing landscapes.
The scenery changes from rugged ranges and mirror lakes to the winding Kawarau River Gorge before emerging into the lush green farmland surrounding Queenstown.
Accommodation: Queenstown - 2 Nights
Today relax and enjoy the stunning lakes & rivers - there is a bounty of vineyards, cafes and restaurants scattered throughout the wider district of Queenstown, Arrowtown and the Gibbston Valley. You don’t have to be an adrenaline junkie to enjoy Queenstown and part of its charm is the array of less hectic quality activities on offer – but if interested Queenstown is home to the ultimate adventure bucket list – Just ask.
Recommended excursions around Queenstown.
|Routeburn Day Walk||Highest Bungey Jump||Explore Arrowtown|
|Biking Skippers Canyon||Round at Millbrook Golf Resort|
|Earnslaw Steamboat Cruise||Dart River Jetboat Safari|
OVER THE CROWN RANGE TO WANAKA
Today our first discovery is nestled beside the Arrow River - the postcard-perfect village of Arrowtown, where the pioneer gold mining era comes alive. Continuing on we drive into tussock country and climb the road into the Crown Range looking out to sweeping views of the Gibbston Valley.
Explore Lake Wanaka in the afternoon by foot, bike or boat. You either may want to choose to go Skydiving in Wanaka, to have a Tiger Moth Aerobatic Plane Ride, to do a Bike Tour or to enjoy a Lake Cruise & Island Nature Walk. (activities not included)
Accommodation: Wanaka - 1 Night
THE WEST COAST / GLACIER COUNTRY
Spend the morning enjoying Wanaka, perhaps go on a Bike Tour or a Lake Cruise & Island Nature Walk. (optional & cost not included)
Continue your journey this afternoon and travel along the rugged West Coast Road and over the Haast Pass. Discover the rich alpine rainforest the Gates of Haast is a lost world that’s so spectacular and remote that UNESCO designated it a World Heritage area.
The magnificent Franz Josef Glacier is widely regarded as the gem of New Zealand’s West Coast glaciers. Take the opportunity to experience the most spectacular glacier environment anywhere in the world, offering a range of glacier hiking options.
Accommodation: Franz Josef - 2 Nights
FRANZ JOSEF GLACIER & REGION
Today learn to carve a pounamu pendant (greenstone/jade) with your group. (included) Afterwards there is free time to explore. Many adventures await - try a Glacier Heli Hike, a Scenic Helicopter Flight with Snow Landing or how about a Kayaking Tour deep into the rain-forest. If you feel like relaxing there are steamy hot springs to chill and soak.
FRANZ JOSEF - CHRISTCHURCH
Before you know it, it’s your last day! After breakfast we head further along the beautiful west coast on another of the most spectacular drives in the country (and, some would say, the world): a rugged, primeval landscape of luxuriant rainforest juxtaposed against breathtaking beach and ocean waves.
We stop at Hokitika and visit a greenstone factory, a great place to stock up on souvenirs for your friends and family back home. Time permitting, we may also visit the National Kiwi Centre where there is guaranteed viewing of rare kiwi birds in their nocturnal house.
On the way back to Christchurch, you'll traverse the South Island on the stunning TranzAlpine Train Crossing. Travelling across the Southern Alps through Arthur’s Pass, you'll arrive in Christchurch around 6.30pm before transferring to your accommodation.
Your tour officially ends in Christchurch, so feel free to party on with your new travel buddies for as long as you like – your accommodation tonight is included so you can treat yourself to a lie-in in the morning!
*Although your accommodation for this evening is included, breakfast tomorrow morning will be at your own cost*
- TranzAlpine rail journey
- Queenstown Skyline Gongola
- Star gazing in Tekapo
- Expert Tour Guide
- All transport
- 7 x nights’ accommodation (max 6 share, upgrades available)
- All maps, passes and shuttles
- Daily breakfast
- All maps, detailed trail advice and recommendations
- Small group sizes (16 max)
- Guided tour of every location. We show you places you would miss when travelling on a bus pass
- Plus many surprise stops on the way