Call us free in New Zealand on 1844 215 8210
Fine Tours New Zealand - expert travel agents for NZ vacations Qualmark Quality Assured Find us on Facebook

Similar itineraries

18 Day Mountains of Aotearoa Adventure

18 days starting in Auckland, finishing in Christchurch
Accommodation style: Boutique lodges & hotels

 

18 Day Forests and Coasts Walking Experience add +

18 Day Forests and Coasts Walking Experience
18 Day Forests and Coasts Walking Experience
18 Day Forests and Coasts Walking Experience
18 Day Forests and Coasts Walking Experience

We’ve combined two walking tours at opposite ends of the country into one magnificent walking wilderness holiday for you.

The highlights are guided tours of the ranges and coastline of the Coromandel Peninsula and the remote lakes and rivers of the Hollyford Valley.  With hotel and lodge accommodation, there’s no roughing it here and many of the walking days are flexible to suit your energy levels on the day. When you’re not strolling through rainforest clad valleys or along coastal walks, there’s boat trips and a scenic flight to enjoy.

The approximate total driving distance and time for this itinerary is: 1102 kms / 683 miles, 12.9 hours

You can expect to spend around NZ$177 in fuel cost on this itinerary based on an intermediate sized car.

 

Day 1

Welcome to Auckland

Personal meet and greet, and private transfer to your accommodation

On arrival you will be met by one of our team and driven to your Auckland accommodation.

Your tour documentation pack and support

Your tour documentation pack and support
Your tour documentation pack and support
Your tour documentation pack and support
Your tour documentation pack and support

Your tour pack will be hand delivered by one of our trusted representatives. Containing all the documentation you’ll need for the duration of your tour, this comprehensive bag includes a bound version of your itinerary complete with driving instructions and maps for each travel leg. You’ll also receive the reservation details for your accommodation and activities - as well as a New Zealand touring atlas and relevant brochures on the destinations you’ll be visiting. While travelling throughout New Zealand we offer 24 hour support should you need any help at all.

Complimentary New Zealand cell phone for your holiday

You will receive a New Zealand cell phone for the duration of your tour, with $50 credit pre-loaded. The number is allocated around 14 days before your arrival so you can let friends and family know your contact details ahead of time if you wish. Receiving calls (including international) doesn't cost anything so there are no expensive roaming charges. It's a great option to help you make dinner reservations, book an activity, call ahead to your accommodation or for getting in touch with us if you need any help. The $50 loaded credit will give you around 100 minutes of local and international talking time.

Accommodation

Stamford Plaza, Auckland

Room type: Luxury Lodges & hotels

Stamford Plaza, Auckland
Stamford Plaza, Auckland
Stamford Plaza, Auckland
Stamford Plaza, Auckland

Accommodation features

  • Check in time: 3 pm
  • Check out time: 11 am
  • Walk time to shops/restaurants: 1-2 mins
  • Parking: valet paid parking NZ$20-NZ$30 per 24 hrs
  • Internet facilities: In room free access
  • Restaurant on site
  • Bar on site
  • Tea/coffee facilities in room
  • Room service available
  • Hairdryer
  • Laundry facilities: Drycleaning service available
  • Swimming pool
  • Gym/fitness centre
  • All rooms non smoking
 

Day 2

You'll join a small group for your drive to Rotorua, stopping at Hobbiton Movie Set on the way

Driving distance and time: 0 kms / 0 miles : 0.0 hours

 

Times are based on averages for this specific route and allow for stops. Use these times as guidelines and to assist in the planning for your day.

 

Auckland to Rotorua via Hobbiton Movie Set

Auckland to Rotorua via Hobbiton Movie Set
Auckland to Rotorua via Hobbiton Movie Set
Auckland to Rotorua via Hobbiton Movie Set
Auckland to Rotorua via Hobbiton Movie Set

This trip from Auckland to Rotorua includes the Hobbiton Express Tour. Departing from Auckland city at 7am, this is a wonderful way to get to Rotorua and include a magical journey through Middle-earth to the Hobbiton Movie Set from "The Lord of the Rings" and "The Hobbit" films. Travel south from Auckland over the Bombay Hills to the rich farmland of the Waikato region. You travel through the heritage town of Cambridge where tree-lined streets add to the English-style atmosphere. From here your journey takes you through undulating green hills as you enter the world of Hobbiton Shire. On arrival at Shire’s Rest you embark on your Hobbiton movie set tour. This location is the largest “green set” in the world and the only place where you get an emotional response with a movie set in a natural setting. You see 44 hobbit holes, the Mill and double arch bridge, the party tree and visit the Green Dragon Inn (where a complimentary beer, cider or ginger ale is included). At this stunning location you can take a photo at the door of Bilbo’s house, “Bag End”, looking out over the whole of Hobbiton to the hills in the distance. At the end of your Hobbiton movie set tour you will travel on to Rotorua, arriving at approximately 1.15pm.

Accommodation

Millennium Hotel Rotorua

Room type: Hotel 4 star

Meals included: Breakfast

Millennium Hotel Rotorua
Millennium Hotel Rotorua
Millennium Hotel Rotorua
Millennium Hotel Rotorua

Accommodation features

  • Check in time: 2 pm
  • Check out time: 10 am
  • Walk time to shops/restaurants: 2-5 mins
  • Parking: onsite free parking
  • Internet facilities: In room paid access
  • Restaurant on site
  • Bar on site
  • Tea/coffee facilities in room
  • Room service available
  • Hairdryer
  • Laundry facilities: Drycleaning service available
  • Swimming pool
  • Gym/fitness centre
  • All rooms non smoking
 

Day 3

Today you are picked up from Rotorua and taken through to the Coromandel Peninsula for your guided walking tour

Coromandel Explorer 4 Day Guided Walk

Coromandel Explorer 4 Day Guided Walk
Coromandel Explorer 4 Day Guided Walk
Coromandel Explorer 4 Day Guided Walk
Coromandel Explorer 4 Day Guided Walk

Come and experience the breathtaking beauty of the Coromandel that most people never see! Jagged mountain peaks, stunning coastal views, waterfalls, abandoned gold mines and glistening white sand beaches make this a uniquely “kiwi” walking holiday. You will carry a daypack only; your guides take care of the rest.  Walking times vary between 3 to 7 hours per day and in the evening you return to a beautiful boutique lodge just outside of Coromandel township with gorgeous bush views and delightful alfresco dining areas.  Day one you are collected from your Rotorua or Thames accommodation and driven to the scenic Coromandel Peninsula, along the way a variety of short walks provide a great introduction to this diverse landscape.  Day 2 you will walk the stunning Coastal Walkway, day 3 hike to 'The Pinnacles' for 360 degree views of the entire peninsula and day 4 you'll explore the east coast before returning to Rotorua. Difficulty: moderate

Includes: Rotorua return transport; park fees; 3 nights twin share lodge accommodation; linen, towels, soap; hiking equipment (packs, raincoats, etc.); knowledgeable and experienced NZ guides. All meals, snacks, pre-dinner drinks and nibbles are included, except for one restaurant dinner and drinks on Day 3. Dinners are hearty 2 course meals with a focus on NZ style cuisine. Breakfasts have cooked and continental options. Packed lunches are made fresh daily.

Day 1 – Journey from Rotorua to Coromandel and enjoy a variety of short walks

You'll be collected for your Coromandel adventure from your Rotorua accommodation at approximately 8:30am. During your drive to the Coromandel you'll enjoy a warm up walk with a 4km hike to the top of Wairere Falls, and view the verdant Waikato basin from two lookouts over hanging 90 metres of thunderous waterfall.  As you continue north, enjoy views out over the mussel farms of the Hauraki Gulf from one of New Zealand’s classic coastal drives, the Coromandel west coast. Make a brief stop at Waiomu for refreshments before exploring the Waiomu Kauri Grove - this little known trail heads deep into a protected ecological reserve scattered with majestic Kauri trees – New Zealand’s very own forest giants that grow up to 50 metres tall. Drive further up the Coromandel Peninsula in the late afternoon to reach your lovely accommodation, and watch the sunset from the verandah with a glass of wine or ice cold brew.

Accommodation

Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge

Room type:

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge
Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge
Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge
Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge
 

Day 4

Explore the Coromandel Coastline

Day 2 – The Coastal Walkway

Day 2 – The Coastal Walkway
Day 2 – The Coastal Walkway
Day 2 – The Coastal Walkway
Day 2 – The Coastal Walkway

Relish a delicious breakfast in the alfresco dining area of the lodge, surrounded by native bush and birdsong. Head north to the tip of the Coromandel Peninsula to hike one of the best coastal walks in the country. The views from the track of the Pacific Ocean, Great Barrier Island and Mt. Moehau are well worth the climb. The track passes through  farmland and native bush to reach the remote and beautiful Stony Bay. This stretch of coastline offers all the dramatic views that encapsulate the Coromandel. Return to the lodge for another relaxing evening of dinner and drinks. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included. Today's duration of walking is 6 hours.

Accommodation

Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge

Room type:

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge
Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge
Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge
Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge
 

Day 5

Today you'll tackle the Pinnacles, you're rewarded with fantastic views from the top

Day 3 – The Pinnacles

Day 3 – The Pinnacles
Day 3 – The Pinnacles
Day 3 – The Pinnacles
Day 3 – The Pinnacles

Enter the hidden world of the Kauaeranga Valley, home to the majestic Pinnacles range. The entire length of the Coromandel Peninsula was once a chain of volcanic cones. This chain has since been eroded and weathered to form the spectacular series of outcrops you see today. The Pinnacles trail climbs through re-generating kauri forest, passing one of NZ’s best preserved kauri dams, eventually cresting the top of the range to reach the Pinnacles Hut. From the hut, a scramble to the top of the Pinnacles rock formation rewards you with 360° views of the entire Coromandel Peninsula and beyond. If the Pinnacles isn't your style and you would prefer a more relaxing day you have the option of staying in and exploring Coromandel Township. Highlights include the Driving Creek Railway, local artisan workshops, short walks, cafes, and culture. Take the time to relax in paradise. A fabulous day is topped off with a celebratory meal at one of Coromandel town’s fine restaurants. Breakfast and Lunch are included. Duration of walking today is 5 to 7 hours.

Accommodation

Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge

Room type:

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge
Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge
Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge
Coromandel Walking Legends Lodge
 

Day 6

Explore the Beaches and Bays before returning to Rotorua

Day 4 – The Eastern epic and return to Rotorua

Day 4 – The Eastern epic and return to Rotorua
Day 4 – The Eastern epic and return to Rotorua
Day 4 – The Eastern epic and return to Rotorua
Day 4 – The Eastern epic and return to Rotorua

This morning we visit one of the top twenty beaches in the world, New Chums Beach. An unforgettable white sand, crescent moon-shaped beach, fringed by pohutukawa and nikau palms. Finding a secluded beach with no signs of man is an experience not to be missed. We head into the laid-back coastal town Whitianga to catch a short ferry across the harbour and walk towards Shakespeare’s Cliff, which overlooks the beach where Captain Cook first set foot on New Zealand shores. Enjoy amazing views over Mercury Bay and Cooks Beach. We’ll stop for a picnic lunch above the spectacular Cathedral Cove, before walking down to the amazing natural archway, a must visit for anyone coming to the Coromandel. We’ll drop you off in Rotorua relaxed and refreshed, with some fantastic memories! Today you'll walk between 3 to 4 hours and return to Rotorua at approximately 6pm.

Accommodation

Millennium Hotel Rotorua

Room type: Hotel 4 star

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Millennium Hotel Rotorua
Millennium Hotel Rotorua
Millennium Hotel Rotorua
Millennium Hotel Rotorua
 

Day 7

Fly from Rotorua to Queenstown today

Driving distance and time: 0 kms / 0 miles : 0.0 hours

 

Times are based on averages for this specific route and allow for stops. Use these times as guidelines and to assist in the planning for your day.

 

Rotorua Accommodation to Rotorua Airport

You will be collected from your accommodation and transferred to Rotorua Airport in time for your flight.

Air New Zealand flight Rotorua to Queenstown

Welcome to Queenstown

Renowned for its adrenaline inducing activities 'Queenstown' is synonymous with adventure. Parked on the shores of Lake Wakatipu this small alpine town is nestled below soaring vistas of The Remarkables Mountain Range. While arguably the brightest gem in New Zealand’s crown, Queenstown offers far more than an action-packed getaway. Spend time on the Gibbston valley wine trail and end with a meal at Michelin star chef Josh Emett’s restaurant, Rata. Take a trip down memory lane on a 100 year old steamship the TSS Earnslaw. Soak in the scenery on your walk around the lake, or venture further afield into Fiordland National Park. Head over the hill to resort town Wanaka, or re-live scenes from Lord Of The Rings by four wheel drive. But - if you really do want that rush - head out on the Shotover Jet, dive off the Nevis Bungy, freefall on the Canyon swing or Zip line the Gondola. Just be sure it's done on an empty stomach  – don’t say we didn’t warn you!

 

 

Today collect your rental vehicle for your Fine Tours New Zealand holiday

Today collect your rental vehicle for your Fine Tours New Zealand holiday
Today collect your rental vehicle for your Fine Tours New Zealand holiday
Today collect your rental vehicle for your Fine Tours New Zealand holiday
Today collect your rental vehicle for your Fine Tours New Zealand holiday

Collect your rental vehicle for your Fine Tours New Zealand holiday.  You can choose from an extensive range of late model cars and 4WD vehicles, from Europcar, Budget or Hertz.

GPS navigation system

Use the latest GPS technology as you tour New Zealand. Your portable GPS features a simple touch screen interface with automatic route calculation and turn-by-turn voice-prompted directions including street name announcement. The automotive-grade GPS unit is easy to use and has multiple language options.

Accommodation

The Rees Hotel

Room type: Hotel 4 star

Meals included: Breakfast

The Rees Hotel
The Rees Hotel
The Rees Hotel
The Rees Hotel

Accommodation features

  • Check in time: 3 pm
  • Check out time: 11 am
  • Parking: onsite free parking
  • Internet facilities: In room free access
  • Restaurant on site
  • Breakfast service available
  • Gym/fitness centre
 

Day 8

Relax in Queenstown today or try one of the many activities on offer

Enjoy your free day exploring Queenstown and the surrounding countryside

Enjoy your free day exploring Queenstown and the surrounding countryside
Enjoy your free day exploring Queenstown and the surrounding countryside
Enjoy your free day exploring Queenstown and the surrounding countryside
Enjoy your free day exploring Queenstown and the surrounding countryside

Although celebrated as New Zealand's ‘adventure capital’ Queenstown offers far more than a fast paced action-packed holiday. Settled on the shores of Lake Wakatipu beneath a soaring panorama of the Remarkables Mountain Range, this alpine town is surrounded by a plethora of historic, gastronomic and scenic wonders.

Head down the Gibbston valley wine trail to sample some of the region’s best Pinot or catch a ride on the 100 year old Steamship - the TSS Earnslaw -  to Walter Peak Station for dinner and a farm tour. Browse the waterfront cafes and have lunch at Michelin star chef Josh Emett's ‘Rata.’ Check out nearby historic Arrowtown and enhance your experience with a four wheel drive trip to Macetown.

Take a leisurely lakeside stroll or ride the gondola for breathtaking views. Venture further afield into the Fiordland National Park or head over the Crown Range to Wanaka. Drive through Lord Of The Rings country - or for the really fanatic, jump aboard one of many dedicated LOTR tours. And after all of that - if you do really want the adrenaline rush Queenstown is known for, take your pick from the Shotover Jet, Nevis Bungy, Canyon Swing, Zipline, Luge or Heli-ski.

Accommodation

The Rees Hotel

Room type: Hotel 4 star

Meals included: Breakfast

The Rees Hotel
The Rees Hotel
The Rees Hotel
The Rees Hotel
 

Day 9

Journey south through rolling Southland countryside to Te Anau, gateway to Fiordland National Park

Driving distance and time: 164 kms / 102 miles : 1.9 hours

 

Times are based on averages for this specific route and allow for stops. Use these times as guidelines and to assist in the planning for your day.

 

Queenstown to Te Anau

Queenstown to Te Anau
Queenstown to Te Anau
Queenstown to Te Anau
Queenstown to Te Anau

Following the shores of Lake Wakatipu, The Remarkables mountain range towers over you as you approach township of Kingston. You'll venture into Southland before crossing the rolling tussock-lands of Mossburn (deer capital of New Zealand) and shortly arriving into Te Anau, gateway to Fiordland National Park.

Hollyford Track 3 day Wilderness Journey - pre walk briefing

Your pre departure briefing begins at 5:30pm. This is a chance for you to meet your guide and fellow walkers. Your guide will "walk" you through the next three unforgettable days, on the Hollyford Track. Backpacks will be provided at this briefing to those who require them.

Accommodation

Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas

Room type: Hotel 4 star

Meals included: Breakfast

Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas
Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas
Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas
Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas

Accommodation features

  • Check in time: 2 pm
  • Check out time: 10 am
  • Walk time to shops/restaurants: 2-5 mins
  • Parking: onsite free parking
  • Internet facilities: In room free access
  • Restaurant on site
  • Bar on site
  • Tea/coffee facilities in room
  • Room service available
  • Hairdryer
  • Swimming pool
  • All rooms non smoking
 

Day 10

Your first day on the Hollyford track takes you through beech forest and past sparkling waterfalls

Hollyford Track 3 day Wilderness Journey

Hollyford Track 3 day Wilderness Journey
Hollyford Track 3 day Wilderness Journey
Hollyford Track 3 day Wilderness Journey
Hollyford Track 3 day Wilderness Journey

The Hollyford 3 Day Wilderness Journey is an all inclusive spectacular walk from the mountains to the sea that is suitable for a wide range of fitness levels. Unlike any other walk, the scenery is geologically spectacular and ever changing - snow capped mountains, glaciers, rainforests, rivers, lakes, waterfalls, reefs, sand dunes and surf. The experiences are diverse- hiking, wildlife interaction, historical tales, jet boating, and a magnificent scenic flight to Milford Sound. Included in the package is return transport from Queenstown or Te Anau to the track, meals, snacks, accommodation, and use of backpacks and rain jackets. Accommodation is in well appointed lodges with twin share rooms. Expert guides will ensure your group (maximum 16 people) experience New Zealand's wilderness at its best.

Day 1 - Waterfalls, Pyke River Lodge, Glow Worms

Depart Queenstown by 7am, travel along side the beautiful Lake Wakatipu and on to Te Anau. Those starting in Te Anau join the trip at 9 am. After a brief stop, depart for the Hollyford Valley and travel through the majestic Eglington Valley to the start of the Track in the Hollyford Valley visiting Gunn's Camp museum on the way. Then re-trace the footsteps of early explorers along the Hollyford River to Pyke River Lodge. As the Track undulates gently through native beech forest and beside tumbling waterfalls enjoy interesting historical tales and interpretation of the forest and bird life. In the evening you can visit our nearby glow-worm colony.  Walking Distance: Approx 19.5kms (12miles).

Accommodation

Hollyford Track Lodges

Room type:

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Hollyford Track Lodges
Hollyford Track Lodges
Hollyford Track Lodges
Hollyford Track Lodges
 

Day 11

Today you'll jet boat on the Hollyford River and walk through ancient podocarp forest to the Tasman Sea

Day 2 - Lakes, Jet Boating, 1000 Year Old Trees and Wildlife Experience

Day 2 - Lakes, Jet Boating, 1000 Year Old Trees and Wildlife Experience
Day 2 - Lakes, Jet Boating, 1000 Year Old Trees and Wildlife Experience
Day 2 - Lakes, Jet Boating, 1000 Year Old Trees and Wildlife Experience
Day 2 - Lakes, Jet Boating, 1000 Year Old Trees and Wildlife Experience

Begin your day with a short walk to Lake Alabaster and learn of the history and geology of the area whilst in the midst of stunning surroundings. Cross Fiordland's longest swing bridge and then enjoy a captivating jet boat journey down the Hollyford River and across Lake McKerrow to the historic site of Jamestown, the intended capital of the South Island in the late 19th century. Walk through the ancient Podocarp forest (New Zealand native pines) with huge Rimu, Totara and Kahikatea trees wrapped in massive Rata vines. Then visit the fur seal colony at Long Reef on the wild West Coast. You may see the rare Fiordland Crested Penguin. Spend the night at Martins Bay Lodge. Walking Distance: Approx 15kms (9miles).

Accommodation

Hollyford Track Lodges

Room type:

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Hollyford Track Lodges
Hollyford Track Lodges
Hollyford Track Lodges
Hollyford Track Lodges
 

Day 12

Your final day on the Hollyford, time to explore the coast before a magnificent scenic flight to Milford Sound, then back to Te Anau

Day 3 - Martins Bay Beach and Coastline /Scenic Flight to Milford Sound

Day 3 - Martins Bay Beach and Coastline /Scenic Flight to Milford Sound
Day 3 - Martins Bay Beach and Coastline /Scenic Flight to Milford Sound
Day 3 - Martins Bay Beach and Coastline /Scenic Flight to Milford Sound
Day 3 - Martins Bay Beach and Coastline /Scenic Flight to Milford Sound

Travel by jet boat to the beach and explore the seven kilometre Martins Bay Beach, sand dunes and lagoon. Learn about its history and its plant, sea and bird life. Return to Martins Bay Lodge and then enjoy a scenic flight to Milford Sound, with views of the Track route, Hollyford Valley and Mt Tutoko, Fiordland's highest peak. Board your coach for your return journey to Queenstown or Te Anau with stops of interest along the way. Arrive back in Te Anau by 5 pm and Queenstown by approximately 7.30 pm. Walking Distance: Approx 8.5 kms (5 miles).

Accommodation

Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas

Room type: Hotel 4 star

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas
Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas
Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas
Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas
 

Day 13

Head north to Dunedin, for a longer more scenic drive take the Southern Scenic Route

Driving distance and time: 285 kms / 177 miles : 3.3 hours

 

Times are based on averages for this specific route and allow for stops. Use these times as guidelines and to assist in the planning for your day.

 

Te Anau to Dunedin

Te Anau to Dunedin
Te Anau to Dunedin
Te Anau to Dunedin
Te Anau to Dunedin

The drive from Te Anau to Dunedin  takes you through classic Southland farmland scenery but if you want to spend the whole day exploring a little off the beaten path than taking the Southern Scenic Route through The Catlins is highly recommended. Following the incredible Otago coastline to Invercargill the route passes through Manapouri and onto Tuatapere before Colac Bay and the fishing town of Riverton. From Invercargill the route hugs the coastline and there are many side-trips to secluded and deserted beaches and bays to explore before you arrive into the remarkable Edwardian City of Dunedin.

Accommodation

Scenic Hotel Southern Cross

Room type: Hotel 4 star

Meals included: Breakfast

Scenic Hotel Southern Cross
Scenic Hotel Southern Cross
Scenic Hotel Southern Cross
Scenic Hotel Southern Cross

Accommodation features

  • Check in time: 2 pm
  • Check out time: 10 am
  • Walk time to shops/restaurants: 1-2 mins
  • Parking: onsite paid parking NZ$10-NZ$15 per 24 hrs
  • Internet facilities: In room free access
  • Restaurant on site
  • Bar on site
  • Tea/coffee facilities in room
  • Room service available
  • Hairdryer
  • Laundry facilities: On site
  • Laundry facilities: Drycleaning service available
  • Gym/fitness centre
  • All rooms non smoking
 

Day 14

Discover the wildlife on Otago Peninsula

Otago Peninsula Wildlife Premier Tour

Otago Peninsula Wildlife Premier Tour
Otago Peninsula Wildlife Premier Tour
Otago Peninsula Wildlife Premier Tour
Otago Peninsula Wildlife Premier Tour

Enjoy a scenic Otago Peninsula tour by bus seeing various species of wading birds in their natural habitats. Experience a guided tour at the Royal Albatross This premier package includes the full Otago Harbour and Taiaroa Head wildlife cruise, scenic Otago Peninsula bus tour, and guided tours of the Royal Albatross Colony, the Yellow Eyed Penguin Reserve and a visit to wading bird habitats.

Accommodation

Scenic Hotel Southern Cross

Room type: Hotel 4 star

Meals included: Breakfast

Scenic Hotel Southern Cross
Scenic Hotel Southern Cross
Scenic Hotel Southern Cross
Scenic Hotel Southern Cross
 

Day 15

Drive north along the coast, then inland to Mt Cook National Park

Driving distance and time: 317 kms / 196 miles : 3.7 hours

 

Times are based on averages for this specific route and allow for stops. Use these times as guidelines and to assist in the planning for your day.

 

Dunedin to Mt. Cook National Park

Dunedin to Mt. Cook National Park
Dunedin to Mt. Cook National Park
Dunedin to Mt. Cook National Park
Dunedin to Mt. Cook National Park

Heading north from Dunedin your first stop should be Moeraki to explore the famous and unique boulders strewn on the beach. Another worthwhile stop is Fleurs in the township, one of the finest cafes in New Zealand. Before heading inland along the Waitaki Valley you pass through the historic township of Oamaru and its Stone buildings. Take time to head into the old quarter and if your timing is right you may get to see some of the local resident little blue penguins. The Waitaki Valley makes a large contribution to New Zealand's electricity supply with its 3 hydro dams. Arriving into Omarama you are now truly in the high country but don't think these vast empty lands are useless, these are some of the country's most productive merino sheep stations. The turquoise waters of Lake Pukaki guide you the final 45 minutes to Mt. Cook Village.

Accommodation

Hermitage Hotel, Aoraki Wing Premium

Room type: Hotel 4 star

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Hermitage Hotel, Aoraki Wing Premium
Hermitage Hotel, Aoraki Wing Premium
Hermitage Hotel, Aoraki Wing Premium
Hermitage Hotel, Aoraki Wing Premium

Accommodation features

  • Check in time: 2 pm
  • Check out time: 10 am
  • Walk time to shops/restaurants: 1-2 mins
  • Parking: onsite free parking
  • Internet facilities: In room free access
  • Internet facilities: On site free access
  • Restaurant on site
  • Bar on site
  • Tea/coffee facilities in room
  • Hairdryer
  • All rooms non smoking
 

Day 16

Explore Mt Cook National Park

Glacier Explorers Mt. Cook

Glacier Explorers Mt. Cook
Glacier Explorers Mt. Cook
Glacier Explorers Mt. Cook
Glacier Explorers Mt. Cook

Experience 500 year old icebergs up-close on the Mt Cook terminal lake. The Glacier Explorers tour is the only one of its kind in New Zealand - and one of only three in the world! Very few glaciers terminate into lakes and even fewer of them are accessible. See towering ice cliffs and floating icebergs from the safety of a specially designed boat.  These boats provide a safe way to view unseen and inaccessible areas of New Zealand's largest glacier - The Tasman.

Short walks in and around Mt. Cook Village

Short walks in and around Mt. Cook Village
Short walks in and around Mt. Cook Village
Short walks in and around Mt. Cook Village
Short walks in and around Mt. Cook Village

There are many short scenic walks beginning in and around the Mt. Cook Village, suitable for all ages and abilities. Located within the Mount Cook Village is the Department of Conservation information centre, where updates on the track conditions and suitability is available as well as information on the history of the area and its wildlife.

Below is a snapshot of some of the walks available:

 - Bowen Bush Walk  - 10 minute return

 - Glencoe Walk - 10 minute return

 - Red Tarns Track - Two hour return

 - Kea Point Walk - Two hour return

 - Hooker Lake - Four hour return

Accommodation

Hermitage Hotel, Aoraki Wing Premium

Room type: Hotel 4 star

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Hermitage Hotel, Aoraki Wing Premium
Hermitage Hotel, Aoraki Wing Premium
Hermitage Hotel, Aoraki Wing Premium
Hermitage Hotel, Aoraki Wing Premium
 

Day 17

Travel the Inland Scenic Route to Christchurch

Driving distance and time: 327 kms / 203 miles : 3.7 hours

 

Times are based on averages for this specific route and allow for stops. Use these times as guidelines and to assist in the planning for your day.

 

Mt. Cook National Park to Christchurch

Mt. Cook National Park to Christchurch
Mt. Cook National Park to Christchurch
Mt. Cook National Park to Christchurch
Mt. Cook National Park to Christchurch

Leaving Mount Cook national park, travel a short distance before stopping at the visitor centre on the southern shores of Lake Pukaki. Learn about the formation of the region and take in the spectacular views of Mt. Cook. Lake Tekapo also displays the same reflective qualities of Lake Pukaki - making the waters a bright turquoise. You’ll go through the small town of Tekapo, home to some of the most photographed subjects in the country, the Church of the Good Shepherd and the Collie Dog statue. It's a great place to take a scenic flight, enjoy a guided horse trek, a boat trip on the pristine lake or just marvel at the magnificent views. From here you travel through Burkes Pass and into the rich farming valley that surrounds Geraldine. Continue on across the vast Canterbury Plains to arrive in Christchurch City, your destination for the night.

Accommodation

The George Hotel, Christchurch

Room type: Luxury Lodges & hotels

Meals included: Breakfast

The George Hotel, Christchurch
The George Hotel, Christchurch
The George Hotel, Christchurch
The George Hotel, Christchurch

Accommodation features

  • Check in time: 2 pm
  • Check out time: 11 am
  • Walk time to shops/restaurants: 5-10 mins
  • Parking: onsite free parking
  • Internet facilities: In room free access
  • Restaurant on site
  • Bar on site
  • Tea/coffee facilities in room
  • Room service available
  • Hairdryer
  • Laundry facilities: On site
  • Laundry facilities: Drycleaning service available
  • Gym/fitness centre
 

Day 18

Depart Christchurch today

Driving distance and time: 11 kms / 7 miles : 0.3 hours

 

Times are based on averages for this specific route and allow for stops. Use these times as guidelines and to assist in the planning for your day.

 

Depart Christchurch today

Explore more of Christchurch before dropping your rental car at the airport depot and continuing your onward journey.

 
 

Testimonials

"Many thanks to Christina for arranging a great time. We will visit the South Island on our next visit." see more