Tour South 3
The big South Island Tour
Tailor made tours are also available!
If you would like to discover the beauties of the South Island into depth, come with us along this marvellous tour you will never forget. Explore the alps of Switzerland, the fjordlands of Norway, the idyllic coastline of Ireland, the sandy beaches of France and Italy, and all within New Zealand. This 21 day tour has been designed to cover a big part of the South Island and to show you the most remote and beautiful spots.
Drive around the island from the tip to toe and take what you can get.
Making our way from Te Kuiti down to Wellington through the night and catch the first ferry in the morning. Drive along the Queen Charlotte Drive towards Marahau, where the Abel Tasman Track starts. Here we make ourselves at home and relax the rest of the day at the beach and have a good Dinner.
We catch the early water taxi into Anchorage Bay, have a little break and start our way back to the camp. Have lunch at one of the beautiful beaches along the way, stop for a swim, may do some seakajaking at the afternoon or just sit back and relax.
After a good breakfast and making our lunch for the day we get back on the bus and head for Greymouth, or first station at the Westcoast. We pass the Buller Gorge with stunning views and great landscapes, and have a stop at Punakaiki to have a look at the Pancake Rocks with their blowholes.
Going down along the coastline we will see the White Heron, one of New Zealand's native Birds. You got the opportunity to go on a jet boat ride or we continue our journey further on to the glaciers where we stay overnight.
If the weather is good, we get up early in the morning and go out to Lake Matheson which provides unsurpassed reflective views of Mount Cook and Mount Tasman. Just like you can see on any postcard. Afterwards you decide if you rather want an easy day by flying over the closest glaciers towards the ocean, circle around Mount Cook and Mount Tasman or if you want to experience a climb up the Fox Glacier or Franz Josef Glacier. How ever, you won't forget this day.
On the road again... Passing Haast, the last town at the Westcoast, we make our way along a beautiful scenery with heaps of waterfalls to look at. Having lunch at Lake Wanaka, you may decide to do some canyoning and then we finish our journey today at the restored early gold-mining settlement called Arrowtown.
Queenstown! The "adventure capital of the world" offers everything you would like to do. From breathtaking bungyjumps, over parachuting, paragliding, white water rafting, jet boating, canyoning or just some slow walks up to the Gondola with the stunning view towards The Remarkables or walks along lake Wakatipu.
After a day of excitement we are going back to Arrowtown, have a nice dinner and reflect on our impressions of the last few days.
Today you have two options.
If the weather condition is good for the next days and you decided beforehand to done of the great walks, you have the possibility to walk the Routeburn Track. It will take you 3 days/ 2 nights. we drop you off at the starting point close to Queenstown and pick you up on our way to Milford Sound.
We hit the road again and make our way to Lake Manapouri. This remote area offers you some easy walks after half a day travelling in the bus and as well a nice place to stay overnight.
For those who decided to go on the track, well you still will be walking surrounded by pure nature. But for those, who decided to hop on the bus, this will be another unforgettable day. We head towards Te Anau, may have a look at their Caves with waterfalls,
whirlpools and glowworms, which are only accessible from the lakeside. Afterwards we spoil ourselves with a scenic helicopter flight over the Doubtful Sound and with the topping off landing on one of the snowfields. If the weather is not looking good we stay the night in Te Anau, but if the sun is with us, we make ourselves a lovely campsite along the Milford Road, with an open fire at sunset.
Along the road we stop where ever we want to take some photos of this breathtaking landscape. Then it is time to pick up our "Trackies" and go further on to Milford Sound where we stay overnight and watch this sun going down on Mitre Peak.
Day Cruise on the Milford Sound! An unforgettable scenery will blow you away today. Make sure, you have enough pictures on your camera left for this special trip. If the sandflies haven't eaten us at lunch time, we may have another short walk otherwise we make our way out through the Homer Tunnel, hope that no Kea hops on our car and head back to Te Anau.
Today you will have the opportunity to stand at the southernmost point of the South Island. First under the "Stirling Point signpost", which tells you how far it is to other spots in the world and than we come to Slope Point. The Catlins are very remote and untouched, even though it has been a very busy region during the milling time around 1870. Therefore the road is very windy, we shall see how far we come today. And the weather is not with us at all, we cancel the Catlins and you decide if would like to go and see some Penguins and may do some shopping in Dunedin.
Day 13/ 14
Back towards the heart of the South Island. Lake Tekapo with his awesome view, many walks through the nature invites us to stay a day or two, dependent if we stayed at the Catlins. Time to stroll around and breath some fresh air.
If we still haven't had a chance to swim with seals or dolphins, we take our chance at Akaroa. We start early in the morning and spend the time after lunch laying at the beach.
Very early in the morning the boat will take us out and you get the possibility for your everlasting swim. Afterwards we have some lunch and just relax again at the beach or drive around Banks Peninsula and have a good look around. The night we sleep again on a spot, which overlooks Akaroa and its Bay.
Christchurch is our next stop. You might want to have a look around town with its craft markets, museum, botanical garden, or just sit in a cafe and watch the world moving by. We might get lucky and can watch a real NZ Rugby Game at night after we had dinner at a very good "all-you-can-eat-for-20$-restaurant".
The most speculates train ride over the alps is waiting for you today. You will never forget the scenery, flatland at the beginning, climbing your way up to Arthur's pass and going all the way down to Greymouth, the little town you already know by heart. Stand on the viewing platform during the ride and take as many photos as you can.
Depending of the time you may have to fly out, you might want to go for another look around Christchurch or visit the Antarctic Centre close to the Airport. Otherwise we make our way up to Kaikoura to watch just another wonder of the ocean, the whales. Arriving here at lunchtime, you have enough time to walk through town and get ready for the giants. Afterwards we spoil ourselves with real good seafood at a very nice restaurant.
Heading back to Picton, we look at the seals along the way, we might stop at one of the famous Marlborough Wineries for wine-tasting and if time and weather is right, we may go for some skydiving above the Marlborough Sounds.
Leaving Picton early in the morning, having a short look into Te Papa Museum for those who haven't been there before, have some lunch and go back to Te Kuiti.
Having a good sleep in and a rest after those days with full of impressions. From here we take you back to Auckland Airport.
This Tour is flexible in time and activities because we always have to go with the weather. And as already know, you only have to provide is some kind of enthusiasm and the possibility to open up for all those beautiful things we are going to let you be part of.