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New ZealandSouth Island road trip

  • Highlights
Get off the beaten track while still enjoying the creature comforts of superior accommodations. Enjoy the freedom of having your own vehicle and drive along the rugged coast and scenic mountain passes of the South Island. Heli-hike across a remote glacier and observe abundant marine life as you cruise through beautiful fiords. Stay in unique, boutique properties putting you in touch with local per...

Get off the beaten track while still enjoying the creature comforts of superior accommodations. Enjoy the freedom of having your own vehicle and drive along the rugged coast and scenic mountain passes of the South Island. Heli-hike across a remote glacier and observe abundant marine life as you cruise through beautiful fiords. Stay in unique, boutique properties putting you in touch with local personalities in stunning settings. 

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Tour itinerary includes
  • Lake
    Lake
  • Mountain
    Mountain
  • Walking and trekking
    Walking and trekking
  • Countryside
    Countryside
  • Water sports
    Water sports

Customisable trip itinerary

This tour idea is fully customisable

The itinerary has been created by our local agency with one idea in mind: to inspire you. Every element can be adapted to your needs and interests, from duration to accommodation and activities.

Day 1: Welcome to New Zealand!

Your adventure begins in Nelson...

• Upon arrival, collect your rental vehicle and drive to your accommodation

• Spend the rest of the day at leisure

• This region is known for year-round sunshine, golden sand beaches, national parks, boutique wineries, microbreweries and a large creative community of working artists



Visited:
Nelson
Accomodation
Clayridge House and Cottages (Nelson)

Day 2: Abel Tasman National Park 

• Hop aboard a catamaran cruise along the beautiful coastline of Abel Tasman National Park

• Enjoy a flexible cruise itinerary with opportunities to observe dolphins and fur seals

• After a light lunch you can swim, snorkel, sea kayak, go ashore for a bushwalk, or just relax onboard

Visited:
Nelson
Accomodation
Clayridge House and Cottages (Nelson)

Day 3: Punakaiki pancakes

• Enjoy a stunning drive along to the rugged West Coast of the South Island

• Stop in Punakaiki, home to the famous “pancake rocks”, an intriguing natural wonder resembling stacks of pancakes!

• Continue to Paparoa National Park for excellent bushwalks and kayaking

• Take a late-afternoon stroll along the beach to admire crashing surf and the wild beauty of it all

Accomodation
Night at Ti Kouka House (Punakaiki)

Day 4: Scenic drive to Franz Josef

• Go for a morning walk to enjoy more of the great Punakaiki scenery

• Drive further south and stop into the wonderful West Coast town of Hokitika

• Reach the town of Franz Josef

• Spend the afternoon at leisure, perhaps visit the Glacier Hot Pools for a relaxing soak in these unique rainforest hot springs

Visited:
PunakaikiFranz Josef
Accomodation
Night at Westwood Lodge (Franz Josef)

Day 5: Franz Josef Glacier heli-hike

• Experience the Franz Josef Glacier with a Heli-Hike

• This fly-in, fly-out Heli-Hike combines the excitement of walking on the glacier with the thrill of helicopter flights

• Access and explore a remote part of the glacier, spectacular ice caves and arches

• Your professional guide will lead you into the most spectacular icefall terrain that is usually seen only by experienced mountaineers

Visited:
Franz Josef
Accomodation
Night at Westwood Lodge (Franz Josef)

Day 6: Wanaka and Queenstown

• Head inland through Haast Pass, a great spot for a bushwalk

• Stop in Wanaka to appreciate the stunning mountain backdrop. Continue to Queenstown

• Spend the day at leisure wandering the lively village full of great cafes, restaurants, bars and shops

• For the adrenaline junkies we can arrange ziplining, bungy jumping or sky diving!

Visited:
Franz Josef, Queenstown
Accomodation
Night at The Dairy Private  (Queenstown)

Day 7: Scenic flight & nature cruise

Return your rental vehicle before boarding a spectacular flight over Milford Sound

• Then, join a nature cruise from the Milford Sound to the Tasman Sea

• The cruise provides excellent viewing opportunities of waterfalls, rainforest, mountains and wildlife

• Afterwards, join a small coach for an overland journey to Te Anau enjoying a series of walks along the way

Visited:
Queenstown, Milford SoundTe Anau
Accomodation
Dunluce Bed & Breakfast (Te Anau)

Day 8: Doubtful Sound cruise

• Today explore the rugged peaks, verdant rainforest and hidden inlets of Doubtful Sound

• Reach Doubtful Sound by cruising across the picturesque Lake Manapouri, followed by a land journey over Wilmot Pass - New Zealand's most majestic road

• In Doubtful Sound, board a 3 hour cruise. Observe a variety of wildlife, including dolphins, fur seals and the rare Fiordland crested penguin

Visited:
Te AnauDoubtful Sound
Accomodation
Dunluce Bed & Breakfast (Te Anau)

Day 9: Return journey to Queenstown

You will be met by your private guide for your backroad journey to Walter Peak Station

• Pass through the Mavora Lakes, which were used as filming locations in “Lord of the Rings”

• Continue through the lunar landscapes of Von Valley, the Mt Nicholas high country sheep station and along the edge of Lake Wakatipu to Walter Peak station

• Board the steam engine TSS Earnslaw and cruise to Queenstown

Accomodation
Night at The Dairy Private  (Queenstown)

Day 10: Departure day!

• Get some well deserved rest and sleep in this morning

Transfer to the airport for departure

Safe travels!


NelsonPunakaikiFranz JosefQueenstownMilford SoundTe AnauDoubtful Sound

Price details

This tour idea is fully customisable

The price reflects this specific tour itinerary and is designed to give you an idea of the budget required for this destination. Throughout the trip-planning process, our local agency will tailor your itinerary around your budget.

Approx. £2,630 / 10 days
Excluding international flights

Included in price:

  • Accommodation
  • Breakfast
  • In-trip ground transportation
  • Activities according to your customized trip
  • Airport transfers
  • 24/7 local agency support
  • Trip creation with an expert local agent
  • Car rental

Not included in price:

  • Arrival and departure flights
  • Meals and beverages not indicated
  • Personal expenses
  • Service gratuities
  • Visa fees
  • Travel insurance
Book your flights to New Zealand
International flights are not included in this trip. Thanks to our partnership with Option Way, you can take advantage of booking your flights directly with your local agent.
Check out the many benefits:
  • Competitive rates
  • All-inclusive prices with no hidden fees
  • Amanda, in New Zealand will inform you of any changes to your flights
For more information or to book your flights directly, head to our partner site.

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