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19 Day Active Outdoors South Island

19 Day Active Outdoors South Island

19 Day Active Outdoors South Island

19 Day Active Outdoors South Island

19 Day Active Outdoors South Island

19 Day Active Outdoors South Island

ITINERARY

Day 1: Arrive Christchurch
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: Pick up your rental car at Christchurch airport on arrival. The remainder of your day is free to explore the Garden City, perhaps stroll the tree-lined pathways of Hagley Park and the Botanic Gardens, take a tour on a double decker bus or a punt on the River Avon.
Day 2: Christchurch - Hanmer Springs
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: The short drive north crosses the braided Waimakariri river and takes you past the beaches of Woodend, Waikuku, Leithfield and Amberley, which are wide open and foaming with surf to the Waipara region known for its vineyards and olive groves. The highway continues through farm land and the Weka Pass with its grand limestone rock formations and rolling tussock hills. Drive through the quaint rural towns of Waikari and Culverden as you continue across the Amuri Plain before reaching, Hanmer Springs. Surrounded by dramatic mountains and towering forests this charismatic alpine town is bustling with outdoor activities, from forest hiking to mountain biking, to jet boating, and even bungy jumping for some high octane outdoor adventure. Once you've caught your breath, a soak in the hot spring pools is highly recommended
  • and if you're looking to really relax, treat yourself at their spa.

    Christchurch to Hanmer Springs driving time
  • approx 2 hours
Day 3: Hanmer Springs - Kaiteriteri
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: Lush beech forests and snow-capped Alps feature during the drive across the Lewis Pass to Springs Junction, follow the Maruia River past the natural hot pools of Maruia Springs to the rural town of Murchison. Murchison looks after the farming community and also has a fantastic range of outdoor activities including rafting and kayaking. The Kahurangi National Park dominates the drive north to the town of Motueka, renowned for its arty culture & surrounding vineyards. The fruit orchards of the picturesque Motueka River Valley surrounding Motueka take you to the idyllic beachside settlement of Kaiteriteri
  • gateway to the Abel Tasman National Park.

    Hanmer Springs to Kaiteriteri driving time: approx 4 hours, 15 mins
Day 4: Kaiteriteri - Abel Tasman National Park
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: This small, beach side settlement with it's amazing golden sand beaches is gateway to stunning bush walks including the famous Abel Tasman National Park track.
    Take a scenic cruise to an idyllic beach for swimming and relaxing, or take a gentle hike to nearby bays to be picked up by boat again later in the day (included). Enjoy the tranquil views across Tasman Bay to the Marlborough Sounds.
Day 5: Kaiteriteri - Westport
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: Follow the picturesque Motueka River valley road to Kohatu, continue south to Murchison, skirting the lush green of Kahurangi National Park. Follow the rugged Buller River gorge with its spectacular swing bridge (New Zealand's longest), to the coastal township of Westport. As the West Coast's oldest town, with its rich mining history, mild climate and location at the Buller River mouth, Westport is an ideal base to explore Cape Foulwind Walkway with its superb coastal panoramas and the seal colony viewing platform at Tauranga Bay.

    Kaiteriteri to Westport driving time: approx 3 hours, 40 mins.
Day 6: Westport - Hokitika
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: Today's drive is one of New Zealand's finest coastal roads, flanked by the dense green of bush forest of the Paparoa National Park and featuring the remarkable pieces of natural sculpture that are the Punakaiki Pancake Rocks and Blowholes. Continue through Greymouth to cool little town of Hokitika, with its rich gold rush heritage, wild beach, no traffic lights and awesome sunsets.

    Westport to Hokitika driving time: approx 2 hours
Day 7 : Hokitika - Franz Josef Glacier Glacier Valley Walk
  • Highlights: The small township of Franz Josef is home to the Franz Josef Glacier, a huge river of ice that has squeezed down the valleys to just 250m above sea level. Enjoy an optional scenic flight or one of the many short walks around the village or relax in the hot pools complex set within the rain forest. Included is a guided Glacier Valley Walk, taking you up alongside the mighty Waiho River bed, following the glacier's path as it winds its way through this remarkable landscape. Learn about the glaciers history, see what this majestic giant leaves behind, and learn the legend of Ka Roimata o Hinehukatere. Near the terminal face, after a brief climb you will be rewarded with spectacular views of the glacier’s rapidly changing terminal face.

    Hokitika to Franz Josef driving time approx 1 hour 45 mins
Day 8: Franz Josef - Wanaka
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: Pass through the alpine village of Fox Glacier, perhaps take to visit the glacier or nearby Lake Mathieson, famous for reflecting a near-perfect image of Aoraki Mount Cook. Continue your drive south past Lake Paringa and Lake Moeraki to the rugged Tasman Sea coastline. A stop at Knights Point offers dramatic views. Through the Gates of Haast, follow the Haast River into the extraordinary, remote beauty of the Mount Aspiring National Park. Skirt the shores of Lake Wanaka and Lake Hawea to the resort town of Wanaka with its mirror lake shores and rugged mountainous backdrop. The perfect destination for outdoor adventure
  • from jet boating up the Matukituki River, outback 4WD safaris, mountain biking and tandem paragliding for those who want a bit of adventure, to more leisurely attractions such as Puzzling World, a round of golf with stunning lake views, a scenic lake cruise or a guided tour of local vineyards. A lakeside stroll offers impressive views up the lake towards the remote Mt Aspiring National Park.

    Franz Josef to Wanaka driving time, approx: 4 hours, 50 mins
Day 9: Wanaka - "Go Wild" Wild Wire
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: The perfect destination for outdoor adventure.
    Included is a 3 hour Wild Wire "Go Wild Waterfall" Climb. Your adventure begins in Wanaka with a spectacular drive through the mountains to the base of the Twin Falls waterfall. You will learn safety skills and then climb via the ferrata alongside this spectacular waterfall. Along the way you will cross wire bridges, discover hidden pools to finish at a beautiful picnic spot with stunning views. You descend by trail before heading back to Wanaka. This tour includes approximately 1 hour of climbing. The round trip will take approximately 3 hours from Wanaka. Suitable for active beginners, no experience required. A late afternoon lakeside stroll offers impressive views up the lake towards the remote Mt Aspiring National Park.
Day 10: Wanaka - Arrowtown/Queenstown
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: Meander through the fruit growing district surrounding Cromwell, perhaps call into historic Old Cromwell Town for a browse of local art galleries and cafes. The dramatic Kawarau Gorge opens to the wide Gibbston Valley with its hillsides of ruler straight grape vines. Arrive in the resort town of Queenstown, hugging the shores of crystal clear Lake Wakatipu and surrounded by spectacular mountain peaks.

    Driving time Wanaka to Queenstown, approx: 1 hour
Day 11: Queenstown - Horse Trekking
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: Included today is a beautiful 2 hour horse ride at the head of Lake Wakatipu. Riding alongside braided, glacial fed rivers this adventure offers river crossings and spectacular scenery, including views of The Misty Mountains, The Wizard’s Vale and The Mighty Methedras of LOTR fame. Depending on the weather, ride to either the Rees or Dart river valleys from the base at the end of Mt Alfred. The scenery in both directions is amazing and an unforgettable experience for all levels of rider. Other optional activities can include a scenic lake cruise in the historic TSS Earnslaw, visit a high country farm, ride on the Skyline Gondola for breathtaking views, explore historic Arrowtown for insights into the early gold mining days. Queenstowns enticing cafes, restaurants and nightlife will complete the day.
Day 12: Queenstown - Te Anau
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: Leave Queenstown and follow the road to Te Anau as it winds round the gentle curves of Lake Wakatipu. The scenery here is stunning. Lakeside vistas are framed by the rugged face of the magnificent Remarkables mountain range. Easy rolling countryside soon leads you to the shores of Lake Te Anau, the biggest of the South Island’s many lakes. Nestled on the shores of the lake is the township of Te Anau which offers a picturesque landscape with its blue lakes, spectacular mountains and lush forests as well as being the gateway Milford's spectacular walking tracks and famous fiords.

    Queenstown to Te Anau driving time, approx 2 hours, 25 mins
Day 13: Milford Sound Nature Cruise
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: World renowned Milford Sound is one of the many highlights of this trip. Included today is the 3 hour Discover More Cruise which includes entry to the Discovery Centre and Underwater Observatory. Picnic or BBQ lunch included. The longest and best value daytime cruise in Milford Sound enables you to really explore the beauty of the fiord. Local, knowledgeable nature guides ensure you discover the wildlife, nature and history of this remarkable sanctuary.

    An optional overnight cruise on either Milford Sound or Doubtful Sound is possible this evening
    ask us for details.

    Te Anau to Milford driving time, approx 2 hours
Day 14: Te Anau - Kaka Point - Catlins Coast
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: Head south across the outstretching green Southland Plain with its abundance of sheep and dairy farmland. Continue to the commercial hub of Southland, the city of Invercargill. This genteel South Coast city with is strong Scottish heritage has a legacy of wide tree-lined streets, elegant villas and bungalows and richly embellished buildings, churches and memorials. Leaving Invercargill behind meander along the impressively wild Catlins coastline. This wooded, wild coastal corner is the most unsung of South Island regions. The Purakaunui Falls cascades 20 metres in three tiers while the most amusing waterfall is the Niagara Falls which falls less than a metre. Beyond the captivating scenery there are also many activities for the visitor. At Curio Bay, you can see the petrified remains of a forest that’s over 160 million years old. Journey on to Nugget Point and you will see amazing wildlife including fur seals, Hooker’s sea lions and sea elephants as well as yellow—eyed and blue penguins and often, Hector’s dolphins playing in the waves.

    Te Anau to Kaka Point driving time, approx 4 hours, 10 mins
Day 15: Kaka Point - Dunedin
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: Leave Southland behind and travel north into the Otago region, passing through the tranquil river town of Balclutha, memorable for its arched concrete bridge, under which flows the mighty Clutha River, which is largest waterway in New Zealand by volume. Traverse across the low laying Taieri Plans, past Lake Waihola to Dunedin. Dunedin is said to be the Edinburgh of New Zealand with its well preserved Victorian and Edwardian heritage present throughout the city. Surrounded by hills and featuring a wide harbour, Dunedin's Taieri Gorge, Railway and Speights Brewery are rewarding visits. A scenic drive along the Peninsula with its rugged beaches and local wildlife is recommended.

    Kaka Point to Dunedin driving time, approx 1 hour 25 mins
Day 16: Dunedin - Mount Cook
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: North of Dunedin a brief side trip to the unique Moreaki Boulder rock formations is worthwhile. Oamaru, recently awarded the title "Sharpest Town in New Zealand", features The Victorian Precinct, a short stroll from the main street. Magnificent limestone warehouses, hotels and commercial offices of the 1870's are now work places for retailers, artists and artisans. Oamaru is also the penguin capital of New Zealand with the Blue Penguin Colony, home to the world's smallest penguins. Follow the Waitaki River past Lake Waitaki, Lake Aviemore and Lake Benmore to the junction at Omarama then set your compass to Twizel and the turnoff to Mount Cook Village a little further on. The dramatic Mackenzie landscape, stunning glacial lakes, beautiful farm land and snow capped mountains are today's highlights. Enjoy the splendour of the Aoraki Mount Cook National Park, home to New Zealands highest peaks.

    Dunedin to Mount Cook driving time, approx 4 hours, 35 mins
Day 17: Mount Cook National Park
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: ​Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park is home to breathtaking landscapes and the kiwi spirit of adventure. You'll be spoilt for choice for hiking
  • from 10 mins to several hours. The Hooker Valley Track is 4 hours return, leading up the Hooker Valley towards Aoraki/Mount Cook, ending at the glacier lake with amazing views of the Hooker Glacier and Southern Alps. Or you can choose to take in spectacular mountain views and scenery from a thrilling scenic flight, or get close to the magnificent Tasman Glacier by a cruise on the rapidly growing terminal Tasman Lake. By night, being far from city lights, the stargazing here is magnificent, from your own front door or with a local observatory tour.
Day 18: Mount Cook - Christchurch
Hotel
Motel
  • Highlights: Skirt turquoise blue Lake Pukaki, traverse the tussock plains to Tekapo, crossing the Tekapo hydro canal en route. A walk or drive up Mt John is rewarded with spectacular panoramic views of the lake and surrounding mountains. Cross Burkes Pass and visit the rural town of Fairlie, then charming Geraldine, with its renowned chocolate shop and Barker's Jam Shop. Leaving the rolling countryside behind, the vast Canterbury Plains bring you to Christchurch. Its location between the Pacific Ocean, snow capped Southern Alps and volcanic hills of the Banks Peninsula gives Christchurch stunning landscapes and an enticing range of attractions. Ride the historic tramway, punt on the River Avon, stroll the Botanic Gardens and enjoy vibrant restaurants and cafes.

    Mount Cook to Christchurch driving time, approx 4 hours, 35 mins
Day 19: Depart Christchurch
  • Highlights: You have the day at leisure until you make your way to Christchurch Airport for your departure flight.
Fares and Pricing
Tour Code: AO
 
Hotel
Motel
Self drive - small car
Share Twin
$4238
$3595
Self drive - medium car
Share Twin
$4333
$3690
 
4 Share
N/A
N/A
Self drive - large car
Share Twin
$4523
$3880
 
4 Share
N/A
N/A
Prices valid from 01 January 2018 to 30 September 2019 and are priced in NZD per person
Includes:
  • 18 nights 3.5 and 4 star hotel/motel accommodation (as selected) on a share twin/double bed, room only basis
  • 19 days rental car (as selected) with unlimited km and standard insurance (with excess)
  • Abel Tasman National Park Cruise'n'Walk
  • Franz Josef Glacier Guided Valley Walk
  • Wildwire Wanaka, Go Wild Waterfall Guided Climb
  • The River Wild guided horse trekking with Dart River Stables
  • Discover More Milford Sound Cruise with Discovery Centre and Underwater World
  • Itinerary planning and reservations service
  • 15% Goods and Services Tax (GST)
  • Complimentary ticket wallet with your travel vouchers and driving maps


    This itinerary can be modified for families. The itinerary can be customised if you prefer shorter or longer duration, larger car size, different style of accommodation etc. Just ask us!
Includes:
  • 18 nights 3.5 and 4 star hotel/motel accommodation (as selected) on a share twin/double bed, room only basis
  • 19 days rental car (as selected) with unlimited km and standard insurance (with excess)
  • Abel Tasman National Park Cruise'n'Walk
  • Franz Josef Glacier Guided Valley Walk
  • Wildwire Wanaka, Go Wild Waterfall Guided Climb
  • The River Wild guided horse trekking with Dart River Stables
  • Discover More Milford Sound Cruise with Discovery Centre and Underwater World
  • Itinerary planning and reservations service
  • 15% Goods and Services Tax (GST)
  • Complimentary ticket wallet with your travel vouchers and driving maps


    This itinerary can be modified for families. The itinerary can be customised if you prefer shorter or longer duration, larger car size, different style of accommodation etc. Just ask us!