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1

WELCOME TO Christchurch, NEW ZEALAND!

‘Haere Mai’ and welcome to Christchurch, New Zealand’s second-largest city and the South Island's capital. A transfer has been arranged from the airport to your hotel.

Bordered by the Pacific Ocean, Christchurch is our "Garden City", blessed with beautiful parks and gardens right in the heart of town. English heritage buildings sit side by side with innovative post-earthquake regeneration in this vibrant place.

After settling in, why not relax with a punting trip down the Avon River? Gliding gently along in a flat-bottomed boat, you will take in Christchurch's 'must-see' historic attractions and botanic gardens away from the hustle and bustle of the streets.

Some suggested excursions if you have time.

Easygoing Cycling Tour   Punting the Avon River   Lyttelton Harbour Wildlife Cruise
Māori Cultural Evening French Akaroa Tour Southern Alps Ballooning
Christchurch Gondola Clearwater Golf Arthur's Pass TranzAlpine Hike


Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: All Stars Inn on Bealey (or similar) - 1 Night

Accommodation:

Hyper modern All Stars Inn offers high quality accommodation for big and small groups, though private rooms are also available. The building is located a short walk from the city centre and has a bus stop directly in front as well. With Speight's Ale House next door guests are also spoiled with special offers on great food and drinks. In addition there is a comfortable courtyard where guests can hang out or use the barbeque.

All Stars Christchurch

2

Kaikoura - Serengeti of the Sea

Today you'll journey through North Canterbury's beautiful rural scenery to the town of Kaikoura, a marine wonderland where towering mountains meet the sea.

Kaikoura's most famous residents are the many whales and dolphins who feast on the abundant seafood in its waters. Sperm whales visit year-round, while the mighty humpback is a regular visitor in June and July.

Suggested Wildlife Encounters in Kaikoura

Whale Watching Cruise

   Swim with the Seals in Kaikoura

Whale Watching Flight     

   Dusky Dolphin Viewing or Swimming

Kayaking with Fur Seals

   Albatross & Pelagic Bird Watching


Meals: Breakfast​

Accommodation: Dusky Lodge - 1 Night (or similar)

Accommodation:

Unwinding at the pools with a spectacular sunset - that's one of the features that makes the Dusky Lodge very enjoyable. With a very homely atmosphere and many facilities such as the pool, spa, sauna, three large kitchens and a BBQ on the outside deck, having a good time with fellow guests will become inevitable.

Dusky Accommodation

3

ABEL TASMAN NATIONAL PARK

Travel north up the South Island, travel to Marahau at the start of the Park and then transfer by water taxi into Abel Tasman National Park.

Abel Tasman National Park

Golden beaches border the translucent turquoise sea, and sandy estuaries fringed by natural forests. The walking tracks here, both in land and costal, are world famous for their outstanding beauty. Walking and Kayaking and then just kicking back on one of the many unspoilt beaches you will discover along the way is what its all about. Plus you have the added bonus of face-to-face encounters with marine wildlife and birds. The Abel Tasman National Park is home to the ever-entertaining seal colony and who knows you may be lucky enough to spot visiting dolphins and Orcas playing in the Abel Tasman National Park waters.

Meals: Breakfast & Dinner

Accommodation: Aquapackers 1 night (or similar)

Welcome To New Zealand's only floating backpackers & private accommodation, and experience the only floating backpackers accommodation in New Zealand. Enjoy the peace and quiet of New Zealand's Abel Tasman National Park from the deck of our specially converted catamaran and relax in your own private cabin or share in a backpackers dorm. ​This unique Abel Tasman floating hostel is on board our catamaran called 'Cat-a-rac' - specially refitted for this purpose.


4

KAYAK THE ABEL TASMAN/NELSON

Abel Tasman National Park at a pleasant pace by sea kayak. Take part in a safety briefing and preparation, then head out into the water to glide in and out of the bays and islets on the route to Marahau. Look for nesting seabirds and tiny islands, and enjoy amazing views along the way. Take time to explore deserted golden sand bleaches of this beautiful National Park. 

Accommodation: The Hotel Nelson - 1 night (or similar)

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation:
Situated across 2 floors, each of the 76 studios and spacious apartments offer a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. Each studio offers a refrigerator and tea and coffee making facilities. Some apartments also include a fully equipped kitchen and a spa bath. The Hotel Nelson is a 4-star Qualmark rated property within walking distance of Nelson Saturday Market, and the main business, shopping and entertainment precinct. It offers an outdoor heated swimming pool, complimentary newspapers, and free WiFi.
Hotel Nelson

5

Seal's, Pancake Rocks and Lake Brunner

Seal Colony Visit: Cape Foulwind

Stop by a viewing platform over a New Zealand fur seal colony at Cape Foulwind. Female seals will live in the same colony for the duration of their lives, whereas male seals move around more. The males visit the Cape Foulwind colony between late November and mid-January for mating season. All seasons offer plenty of activity to check out, from mating to the raising of baby pups and feeding out at sea.

Pancake Rocks Trek: Punakaiki

Walk along a loop trail with informative signs detailing how the 'Pancake Rocks' were formed millions of years ago. When the trail reaches the coast, there are many lookouts for photo stops and beautiful views of the coast, the rocks and the blowholes found along the area.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Accommodation:
Hotel Lake Brunner - 1 night (or similar)

Accommodation:
Lake Brunner Hotel is located in the Moana Village West Coast of New Zealand.Comprising of studio suites and apartments the new modern accommodation sits directly behind the historic Lake Brunner hotel. Offering guests easy access to reception and the “King Fisher” restaurant & bar. All guests are treated to unparalleled views of stunning Lake Brunner and the Southern Alps of New Zealand. With the hotel's handy location it is only a short walk to the Lake Brunner foreshore, and two superb rainforest lake walks, one crossing the Kotuku Awa/Arnold river.
Hotel Lake Brunner

6

Okarito Lagoon and Glacier Country

Transfer to Franz Josef, stopping for a walk at the wildlife mecca of Okarito Lagoon en route. Enjoy free time for optional activities such as hiking and checking out the stunning Franz Josef Glacier.

Continue south along the coast towards Franz Josef, stopping for an invigorating walk at the wildlife mecca of Okarito Lagoon. Spend 2 nights staying amongst verdant temperate rainforest.

Okarito Lagoon Walk

Walkthrough the wetlands of Okarito Lagoon, bordered by forest and surrounded by nature. Enjoy spectacular views all the way up to the mountains on a clear day. Take the time to soak in the scenery – the walk is a short climb up to a viewpoint that includes a variety of landscapes on the path through the estuary out through the wetlands.

Meals: Breakfast 

Accommodation: Rainforest Retreat (or similar) - 2 nights 

Rainforest Retreat is centrally located in the heart of Franz Josef Village , Secluded yet handy to every local activity. Nestled in six acres of idyllic native bush at the foot of precipitous mountains the Rainforest Retreat is a inviting place to stay. Each unit was built exclusively to embrace its beautiful, secluded, natural environment providing guests with choices of either forest floor or mid canopy bush views.
Rainforest Retreat

7

FRANZ JOSEF GLACIER

Spend the day exploring the stunning region around Franz Josef. Opt for various hiking adventures in the area, the most popular being a glacier trek. If relaxing is more your style, there are shorter day hikes and bush walks or local hot pools to take a dip. You are in the heart of Westland National Park, considered to be the most diverse and beautiful area in New Zealand.

Excursions available in and around the Franz Josef area:

Kayak Okarito Lagoon   

   Glacier Hot Pools       Glacier Scenic Flight

Horseback Riding  

   Walk to Glacier Face    Glacier Heli-hike

 

Meals: Breakfast 


8

Beautiful Lake Wanaka

Transfer to Wanaka, where there are a variety of optional activities available.

Opt to go mountain biking, skydiving, or check out the giant maze and optical illusions of Puzzling World. Travel through Te Wahi Pounamu World Heritage Area to Makarora, where you can spend the afternoon exploring the area by foot, or opt for a jet boat excursion or scenic flight. See for yourself the views that make New Zealand famous - jagged mountains, snowy peaks, and clear blue waters. Wander among fjords, rocky coasts, towering cliffs, lakes, and waterfalls, and enjoy breathtaking scenery. Don't forget your camera!

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Wanaka Hotel - 1 night (or similar)

Accommodation:

Right in the heart of beautiful Wanaka, this hotel is located as the most central hotel of town. Lake Wanaka and the town centre are only a minute divided from this spot. Lake Wanaka and the beautiful mountainous landscape are part of this hotel's magnificent view!
Enjoy a delicious breakfast at the Beanie cafe and choose in the evenings between the Bullock Bar Grill for great steaks or go for Amigos Mexican Grill.

Wanaka Hotel

9

QUEENSTOWN

Travel into the heart of Central Otago, onto the "adventure capital of the world," Queenstown.

Enjoy a free day for optional activities in Queenstown. There's plenty to see and do in Queenstown, and we wanted to make sure that you had some time to take it all in. Feel free to relax or try optional activities like mountain biking, bungee jumping, and jet boating. Your experienced guide has more ideas if you need them. Just ask!

Recommended excursions around Queenstown:

Routeburn Day Walk Highest Bungey Jump Explore Arrowtown

Wine Tasting Central Otago      

Biking Skippers Canyon       Round at Millbrook Golf Resort
Earnslaw Steamboat Cruise   Dart River Jetboat Safari      

Gibbston Valley Wine Trails


Meals: Breakfast)

Accommodation: 
Heartland Hotel Queenstown (or similar) - 3 nights 

Heartland Hotel Queenstown offers panoramic views over Lake Wakatipu to the mountains. The friendly Swiss-style Heartland Hotel boasting one of the best central locations in Queenstown. Access a range of leisure activities from bungy jumping to shopping from one of the best accommodation locations in Queenstown. Featuring 81 well-appointed guest rooms, many with spectacular mountain and/or lake views, restaurant & bar, extensive guest services and facilities, the Heartland Hotel Queenstown is the perfect place to base your stay in this premier resort town.
Heartland Hotel Queenstown

10

Routeburn Track

Head out for a day of hiking along the stunning Routeburn Track. Start on a gradual incline through a 130 million year old forest, with incredible views of snow capped mountains, cascading waterfalls, crystal clear streams, and alpine meadows. After enjoying a picnic lunch, continue on the forgotten paths of the Maori while travelling along their old 'Greenstone' trails. With incredible scenery and historical significance, this hike is not one to miss!

Meals: Breakfast


11

MILFORD SOUND Scenic Cruise

Travel to the fjords of the South Island. Enjoy the stunning scenery of Fiordland National Park and Milford Sound from the deck of a boat. Recharge your camera and be ready to shoot stunning photos of waterfalls, mountains stretching up to the sky and down to the sea and then search for dolphins and seals. This place is any artist's dream! Then we are heading back to Queenstown for the night.
 


12

Twizel - Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park

Head through the centre of the South Island to Twizel, near New Zealand's highest peak, Mt Cook. Visit Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park. The town of Twizel was purpose-built in the 1960s to provide a home for workers involved with the Upper Waitaki Power Scheme. Today it is a well-positioned base for mountain climbing, kayaking, mountain biking, skiing, horse trekking, and hiking.

The peaks and trails of Mount Cook National Park are just up the road. You can fish for salmon and trout in the local rivers, canals, and lakes. If you don’t have any luck, call into the salmon farm and buy a fish - fresh or smoked. In summer Twizel’s population more than trebles, as holiday houses and campgrounds fill to capacity.

Meals: Breakfast 

Accommodation: Mountain Chalet Twizel (or similar) - 2 Nights

Accommodation:

The mountain chalets in the village of Twizel are set up together in a park. Around Twizel beautiful scenic views can be seen, for example looking over lake Ruataniwha and lake Pukaki. During winter this accommodation offers great possibilities for snow sport lovers, while in summer travellers can golf or explore the beautiful surroundings by hiking or helicopter rides.


14

Hiking & Cycling Mt Cook National Park

Prepare for an action packed day! Start on two-wheels on a mountain biking excursion around the Aoraki/Mt Cook region. In the afternoon, discover stunning landscapes on foot.

Aoraki/Mt Cook Mountain Biking

Hop on a bike and experience the beautiful scenery of New Zealand's Alps 2 Ocean cycle trail.

Aoraki/Mt Cook Hiking

Hike in the shadow of Mt Cook.

Meals: Breakfast 


13

Lake Tekapo - CHRISTCHURCH

Tekapo is one of three significant, neighboring lakes that border the Mackenzie Valley in New Zealand's South Island. 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 Lake Takapo's shores and the views to our highest mountain, Mt Cook, are remarkable. Then the landscape transforms itself into leafy farmland that follows you all the way to the Garden City of Christchurch.

Resourceful Ōtautahi Walking Tour

Explore lesser-known paths around Christchurch on this walking tour of the city led by a member of Rekindle — a social enterprise where resourcefulness skills are shared among members to build self-confidence and create art out of under-valued materials. The hands-on, workshop-based environment keeps everyone engaged and helps to strengthen the community.

Meal: Breakfast

Accommodation: 
All Stars Inn on Bealey (or similar) - 2 Nights

Accommodation:

Hyper modern All Stars Inn offers high quality accommodation for big and small groups, though private rooms are also available. The building is located a short walk from the city centre and has a bus stop directly in front as well. With Speight's Ale House next door guests are also spoiled with special offers on great food and drinks. In addition there is a comfortable courtyard where guests can hang out or use the barbeque.

All Stars Christchurch

15

HOMEWARD BOUND

Haere rā and Bon Voyage!

We know you will love this tour of New Zealand and our promise is to make your travels through New Zealand as hassle-free and hospitable as possible - ensuring that today you leave with a memory card full of photos, and huge smiles on your faces when recalling your time in New Zealand! Have a great homeward journey, farewell and hope to see you again soon in Aotearoa, New Zealand. 

Meals: Breakfast


NOTES

Included Highlights

  • Kayak in the waters of Abel Tasman National Park
  • Try exhilarating adventures in Queenstown
  • Cruise on Milford Sound
  • Cycle along the Alps to Ocean
  • Hike the Routeburn Track.

Inclusions

  • Water taxi to Abel Tasman
  • Sea kayak in Abel Tasman
  • Trek in Paparoa NP
  • Full-day Routeburn Track hiking excursion
  • Cruise on Milford Sound
  • Cycle the Alps to Ocean
  • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.

See Pricing Options
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What Judith says about this tour: Recommended for the energetic, adventurous type, this South Island tour will get you out cycling, kayaking, hiking and cruising. Your small group will be confidently escorted by a friendly guide. Heaps of fun to be had here.
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