Documents and 24/7 Support: We've got you covered!
When you touch down in New Zealand your detailed documentation pack will be hand-delivered by one of our trusted representatives. You'll find everything you need in one handy place: your personalised itinerary, clear instructions and maps, and reservation details for your accommodation and activities.
24 Hour Assistance: We’re just a free phone call away if you encounter any issues while you're on the road - at any time of day or night. Don’t waste your precious vacation time stressing - First Light Travel are here to help you quickly when every second counts.
What's also included?
|Dedicated Travel Consultant||Detailed Daily Itinerary and Vouchers|
|Full 24 Hour Support||50 Page Essential New Zealand Guide|
Akaroa - Little France
Welcome to New Zealand!
After landing in Christchurch and collecting your rental car, a scenic drive over the Banks Peninsula transports you to Akaroa: a harbour-side village which counts the world's rarest dolphin among its neighbours.
You'll love pottering around French-settled Akaroa, with its quaint 19th-century cottages housing an array of artisan galleries & boutiques. Most streets have French names, and many descendants of the original French families continue to live here. It's a charming setting, right by the shimmering waters of the Akaroa Harbour.
Akaroa Harbour Cruise
Cruise the stunning harbour this afternoon, marvelling at the giant sea cliffs all around you. The star of the show is the tiny Hector's Dolphin, which you won't find anywhere else in the world. They are a joy to watch, darting and diving around your boat, as playful as puppies!
Indulge in a hearty meal tonight at one of Akaroa's harbourside eateries: tomorrow the mountains are calling.
Approximate Distance: 82 km | 50 miles Total Driving Time: 1 hour 22 mins
Accommodation: Akaroa - 1 Night
Lake Tekapo - Stargazing at Mt John Observatory
Driving south amid the high-country splendour of the Mackenzie Basin, you'll reach the majestic and peaceful setting of Lake Tekapo.
Tiny Tekapo boasts amazing views of the mighty Southern Alps - including Aoraki / Mount Cook, our tallest peak. Visit the little church sitting right at the edge of Lake Tekapo - couples arrive from all over the world to take their wedding photos here, with the turquoise lake and snowy mountains in the background.
Mount John Night Observatory Tour
Tekapo lies in a Dark Sky Reserve, offering unrivaled opportunities for stargazing. On clear nights, there is no better light show. Tonight you'll see the jewel-like constellations up close from the dome of Mount John Observatory. With enlightening commentary from the observatory's astronomy guides, you will discover distant galaxies and star clusters beyond anything you can imagine.
Approximate Distance: 280 km | 173 miles Total Driving Time: 3 hours 36 mins
Accommodation: Tekapo - 1 Night
Tekapo to Mt Cook – walk the Hooker valley Track
After a short journey through the Southern Alps, you'll arrive in Mt Cook Village at the heart of Aoraki / Mt Cook National Park.
Named for our country's highest mountain, Aoraki / Mt Cook National Park is exquisitely beautiful. The Maori name for Mt Cook is Aoraki, meaning ‘Cloud Piercer’: at 3,755m tall (12,016ft) this lofty peak deserves its name!
Hooker Valley Guided Hike: 5 Hours Walking
An ice-capped world of giant glaciers awaits as you embark on one of New Zealand's finest short walks: the Hooker Valley Track.
This stunning 11 km (6.8 miles) trek leads you to the terminal lake of the Hooker Glacier. The trail winds through the Hooker Valley in the shadow of Aoraki /Mount Cook, crossing the mighty Hooker River on old-fashioned swing bridges. Reaching the lake, you are rewarded by unsurpassed vistas of Aoraki / Mount Cook's south face and the surrounding glaciers.
Your knowledgeable guide brings the unique history, flora, and fauna to life as you wander.
Approximate Distance: 82 km | 50 miles Total Driving Time: 55 mins
Accommodation: Mount Cook Village - 1 Night
Mount Cook to Lake Wanaka: Mountain Majesty
On the shores of New Zealand's second largest lake, the town of Wanaka is often described as Queenstown's quieter little sister: the lake and mountain views are equally incredible, and many visitors count it as a favourite location on their New Zealand tour.
This lovely little township is easily explored on foot, with fine food & wine and boutique stores aplenty. A stroll or bike ride around the peaceful shores of Lake Wanaka is a must.
Spectacular hikes, skiing, water sports, and boating options will delight outdoor-lovers. The dramatic mountain backdrop is perfect for a for a skydive or even a flight in a vintage Tiger Moth plane.
Charming in all seasons, we're pretty sure you'll fall in love with Wanaka.
Approximate Distance: 184 km | 114 miles Total Driving Time: 2 hours 5 mins
Accommodation: Wanaka - 1 Night
Lake Wanaka to Arrowtown: Gold-Rush Glory
Sitting alongside the gold-bearing Arrow River, one of the most picturesque settlements in New Zealand. Welcome to historic Arrowtown.
This lovely township was established in 1862 after a local sheep shearer struck gold. Within a year, over 1500 miners flooded here to try their luck, constructing wooden cottages, shops, and churches, many of which remain today. The result is a town overflowing with character, surrounded by shadowy forested mountains.
Come in autumn and you'll see the hillsides ablaze with a covering of crimson and golden leaves. It's a photographer's delight!
Try panning for gold yourself on the Arrow River's shores. Who knows, you might strike it rich! Either way, you can reward your efforts tonight with world-class dining: Arrowtown is a much-loved foodie haven with a wealth of exciting eateries to choose from.
Approximate Distance: 56 km | 34 miles Total Driving Time: 54 mins
Accommodation: Queenstown - 2 Nights
Milford Sound - 'the eighth wonder of the world.'
Milford Sound Nature Cruise and Scenic Flight
No visit to New Zealand is complete without a pilgrimage to the "Eighth Natural Wonder of the World": Milford Sound.
The Milford Road takes you from Te Anau to Milford Sound on one of the most scenic drives on the planet. A glorious labyrinth of soaring peaks is punctuated by unspoiled rainforest, plunging valleys, azure lakes, waterfalls, and glaciers.
Keep a lookout for our cheeky alpine parrot, the Kea. These super-intelligent and mischievous birds are a delight to see in the wild.
Arriving in Milford, you will board your purpose-built cruise vessel and sail the length of the Sound, dwarfed by towering cliffs and waterfalls all around you. The onboard nature guide will tell you all about the seals, penguins, and dolphins who frequently visit this mesmerising location.
Wildlife to watch out for: Bottlenose, Dusky and Hector's Dolphins, Whio (blue duck), NZ Fur Seal, Little Blue Penguin, Fiordland Crested Penguin, Kea, Oystercatcher, Sooty Shearwater
Scenic flight to Queenstown over Milford Sound
Fly to Queenstown via Fiordland National Park in style on a scenic flight over the lakes, rivers, mountains and forests of this breathtaking region.
Approximate Distance: 288 km | 178 miles Total Driving Time: 3 hours 42 mins
Queenstown at Leisure & Bon Voyage
Before you head home today, be sure to soak up Queenstown and its surrounds at your leisure.
Nestled by the shores of Lake Wakatipu, this breathtaking town is paradise for nature lovers. Take the gondola (cable car) to the top of Bob's Peak for glorious alpine views and excellent short mountain walks. Tick that bungy jump off your bucket list or simply relax by the waterfront with a glass of award-winning local Pinot Noir.
The options are endless: chat to our travel specialists for more great suggestions for your perfect Queenstown day.
Recommended excursions in and 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|
"Haere rā" Goodbye! and Bon Voyage!
Today we say farewell. We take care of your transfer to Queenstown Airport where you will board your onward flight, taking with you the magical memories of a truly exceptional New Zealand holiday.