A plethora of natural wonders and iconic landscapes await when you embark on a journey through New Zealand’s South Island. Join a local expert as they share with you the wonder of Tasman Glacier, New Zealand’s longest glacier, before embarking on a scenic journey through the forests, flats and meadows of Fiordland National Park and out to the unmissable Milford Sound. Indulge in the culinary and cultural delights of the South as you enjoy a Be My Guest lunch at Morelea.
Planning your holiday is easy,and speak to your friendly Consultant.
Day 1: Welcome to Wellington
Welcome to Wellington, New Zealand’s Capital City. Flights can arrive any time prior to 4.00pm and you will be transferred from the airport to your Wellington hotel. This evening, meet your fellow travellers and your AAT Kings Travel Director at a welcome reception at your hotel.
Hotel: Novotel Wellington Hotel, 2 nights
Day 2: Wellington
This morning you will head out with a local specialist on a walking tour of quirky cultural capital of Wellington. You’ll discover an in-depth guide to Wellington’s culture and the vibrant food and drink scene. This afternoon, you’ll have free time to explore Wellington on your own.
Day 3: Wellington – Marlborough
This morning, you will board the Interislander for a cruise across the Cook Strait, from the North Island to the South. Surprisingly it takes longer to cruise up the Tory Channel and Queen Charlotte Sound to Picton than it does to cross the open ocean of Cook Strait. You will meander through a maze of arms and inlets into the sleepy seaside village of Picton. Later it’s onto Blenheim for an orientation tour before heading to your accommodation. Later we visit one of the regions famous wineries, Hans Herzog Estate for a 3-course dinner with wine matching. (winery may change).
Hotel: Scenic Hotel Marlborough, 2 nights
Day 4: Marlborough ‘Day at leisure’
Today explore the Marlborough region your way. You could choose to indulge in a half day winery tour of the best wineries in the region or embark on a Marlborough Icons tour, Indulge in Marlborough sauvignon blanc, the Marlborough Sounds and fresh local seafood. Your Travel Director can assist with booking your chosen excursion. Tonight, enjoy dinner at your hotel.
Day 5: Marlborough – Christchurch
Travel to Kaikoura, where Sperm Whales can often be seen not far from shore (an optional whale-watching flight is available). Travel along the Pacific Ocean coast and across the colourful Canterbury Plains to Christchurch. Upon arrival see how Christchurch is rebuilding after the devastating earthquakes of 2010 and 2011, and pop into the Transitional Cathedral in Latimer Square, the temporary home of the Christchurch Cathedral. It is the world’s only cathedral made substantially of cardboard and has to be seen to be believed. Tonight, speak with your Travel Director about dining recommendations in Christchurch’s inner city.
Hotel: Novotel Christchurch
Day 6: Christchurch – Mt Cook
Today is another day to get some warm kiwi hospitality at Morelea, the home of Angie and Stan Taylor, indulge in a Be My Guest barbecue lunch and hear about a lifetime spent farming in New Zealand. The famous Pavlova 50 dessert will also be on offer and you’ll also get to witness how this is made by Angie. From here it’s on towards the spectacular scenery of the Southern Alps and then along the shores of majestic Lake Pukaki, before arriving in Aoraki Mount Cook National Park. Mt. Cook, the mountain that helped Sir Edmund Hillary hone his skills in preparation for his conquest of Everest. Tonight, enjoy dinner with a breathtaking mountain view.
Hotel: The Hermitage Hotel, 2 nights
Day 7: Mt Cook
First up you’ll get to experience the Tasman Glacier – New Zealand’s largest glacier by boat. After a half hour walk to the terminal lake of the Tasman Glacier, explore the melting ice face of the Tasman Glacier and icebergs that have carved into its murky waters. The lake feels eerie and magical as the boat cruises slowly for one hour, from one point of interest to the next whilst the guide shares the history of the glacier, lake and Mount Cook National Park, allowing you to build your own picture to the unique nature of the area. All this plus an awesome backdrop of New Zealand’s highest and most spectacular mountains, including Mount Cook and Mount Tasman. Later you will have time to enjoy your surroundings back at the Hermitage, before you spend the night star gazing. (optional experience).
Day 8: Mt Cook – Te Anau
Today is another scenic day where you will travel over the Lindis Pass through Central Otago. You’ll get to visit Cromwell, situated next to the sparkling pristine waters of Lake Dunstan, where you will stop in at a local orchard for a taste of some of the town’s delicious stone fruit. On the way into Queenstown, you will stop and visit the perfectly restored gold mining settlement of Arrowtown. As you amble down the beautiful tree-lined avenues, past the 19th century wooden buildings, you will feel like you have stepped into a movie set. After, make your way to Fiordland National Park to the South Island’s biggest lake and the town of Te Anau. This afternoon, you’ll have the opportunity to enjoy the thrill of jet boating down the majestic trout filled Waiau River, to the serene Lake Manapouri, step foot into ancient beach forests and learn all about this unique location among Fiordland National Park. Tonight, enjoy dinner at your hotel.
Hotel: Distinction Te Anau Hotel and Villas
Day 9: Te Anau – Milford Sound – Queenstown
After leaving Te Anau, you will journey through the Fiordland National Park and out to Milford Sound on one of the most scenic roads you could hope for. Travel through native rainforests, beech forests, alluvial flats and meadows. You will stop at Mirror Lakes where, as the name suggests, you can see the stunning mountain scenery perfectly reflected in the waters of the lakes. Then on to the Homer Tunnel, man’s attempt to master the sheer rocky ranges, still left rough-hewn around the edges. As you emerge out the other side of the tunnel, you are presented with one of the world’s most dramatic alpine drives, down through the Cleddau Valley. You will have a stop at the Chasm, where the roaring Cleddau River has carved its way through solid rock, and then it’s on to South Island’s unmissable Milford Sound, where you will cruise the waters of this natural wonder. Your cruise meanders down the sound, taking in the Bowen and Stirling Falls as they plummet from glacial hanging valleys sharply into the sea, and the sheer pinnacle of Mitre Peak, rising from the deep waters of the fiord. After this unforgettable experience, you will travel on to the beautiful sights of the adventure capital, Queenstown. An orientation tour around the shores of Lake Wakatipu, takes you into the city centre before arriving at your hotel.
Hotel: Millennium Hotel, Queenstown, 2 nights
Day 10: Queenstown Included Choice
Today choose from a range of optional sightseeing experiences. You could ride the world famous’ Shotover Jet or enjoy a cruise across Lake Wakatipu aboard the TSS Earnslaw to Walter Peak High Country Farm for a gourmet barbecue lunch at the Colonel’s Homestead. This evening, join your Travel Director for dinner at Queenstown’s Boatshed. Set in the restored historic Railway Shipping Office and relocated to its lakefront setting in 1936, The Boatshed with its spectacular views of Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkables, it is the perfect venue for your exclusive farewell dinner with wine.
Day 11: Farewell Queenstown
Say farewell to your fellow travellers when your holiday comes to an end this morning after breakfast. Throughout today you will be transferred Queenstown Airport for your onward flight.
|2021 Dates & Prices||Twin Share||Solo Traveller|
|January: 09, 23||$5,425.00||$7,025.00|
|February: 06, 20||$5,425.00||$7,025.00|
|2022 Dates & Prices|
|January: 08, 22||$5,460.00||$7,060.00|
|Meals:||10 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 6 dinners|
|Transport:||Airport Transfers & Travel by luxury coach|
|Accommodation:||10 nights accommodation|
|Guide:||Experienced Travel Director & Driver Guide|
|Entrance Fees & Touring:||Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary|
* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking.
* Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.