19 Day Rail, Cruise and Coach Holiday

19 Day Rail, Cruise and Coach Holiday

An extremely popular tour designed specifically for rail enthusiasts to enjoy the best of New Zealand at a relaxed pace. This exceptional itinerary includes three breathtaking rail journeys and an EXCLUSIVE overnight cruise, whilst visiting many attractions and offering a wide range of prepaid activities. Travellers will enjoy the best that New Zealand has to offer on the world-famous TranzAlpine rail journey and a cruise on magnificent Milford Sound.

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Tour Info

Tour Type: Premium Coach Tour
From: Auckland to Christchurch
Departures: Sep 2018 to May 2020
Price:
From (NZD) $6204 per person
Tour Operator: Grand Pacific Tours
Duration: 19 Days
Tour Code: gpnz19r

Inclusions

18 nights superior superior hotel accommodation
18 cooked breakfasts (B) including a specialty breakfast at Stratosfare Restaurant in Rotorua
14 sumptuous dinners (D) including four specialty dinners (SD): Māori hāngī and Concert - Rotorua, Walter Peak Homestead - Queenstown, Haggis Ceremony - Dunedin, Farewell Dinner - Christchurch
1 picnic lunch and 2 delicious morning teas
Guided tour of Kauri Museum
Waitangi Treaty Grounds guided tour
Dolphin and Hole in the Rock Cruise
Skyline Rotorua Gondola and Luge
Agrodome
Thermal mud pools and geysers
Te Puia traditional Māori hāngī and concern
Te Papa, Museum of New Zealand
Coastal Pacific rail journey
International Antarctic Centre and Christchurch Tram
TranzAlpine rail journey
Cruise Lake Wakatipu on the TSS Earnslaw
Lakes District Museum
Milford Sound overnight cruise
Cruise Lake Te Anau and visit the glowworm caves
Larnach Castle

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Day by Day Tour Itinerary

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Day 1
Arrive Auckland

Fly from your homeport to Auckland where you will be met by a tour representative and transferred to your hotel (flight not included).

Stay: Grand Millennium Auckland (D)

Day 2
Auckland - Bay of Islands

Enjoy a city tour of Auckland, dubbed the ‘City of Sails’, before travelling to Matakohe to enjoy a visit and informative talk at the Kauri Museum. Travel via Whangarei to Paihia, situated in the heart of the beautiful Bay of Islands. Enjoy a guided tour of the Waitangi Treaty Grounds, the location of the signing of the treaty between the Māori and the British.

Stay: Scenic Hotel Bay of Islands (2 nights) (B, D)

Day 3
Bay of Islands

Today is a free day. Choose from the many optional activities available including the Cape Reinga coach trip via Ninety Mile Beach or a spectacular scenic flight. This evening is also free and you may like to enjoy a relaxing dinner cruise (optional). (B)

Day 4
Bay of Islands - Auckland

This morning travel aboard a luxury catamaran to Cape Brett and the famous Hole in the Rock. Keep an eye out for bottlenose and common dolphins before returning to Paihia. Enjoy a picnic lunch before travelling south via Whangarei, and call into the Parry Kauri Park to see a magnificent example of a kauri tree before arriving into Auckland’s north shore. You will see stunning views of Rangitoto Island, Auckland Harbour and the Hauraki Gulf.

Stay: Spencer on Byron (B, D)

Day 5
Auckland - Rotorua

This morning travel to Glenbrook Vintage Railway for a nostalgic 15km trip back in time on a beautifully restored vintage steam train. Visit the restoration workshop and on return to Glenbrook Station, morning tea will be served. Depart Glenbrook and travel through magnificent countryside of rolling hills and green pastures famous for dairying. Next, continue to Rotorua and visit Paradise Valley Springs, a superb wildlife park where you can hand feed rainbow trout.

Stay: Sudima Hotel Lake Rotorua (Superior Rooms) (2 nights) (B, L, D)

Day 6
Rotorua

Today begins with a gondola ride and breakfast at Skyline Rotorua. There is also time for a luge ride! Travel to the Agrodome for an action-packed hour of farming entertainment and education that’s unlike anything you’ve seen before. Enjoy some free time this afternoon before travelling to Te Puia to see the boiling mud pools and awesome geysers that Rotorua is famous for. This evening you will experience an entertaining Māori hāngī and concert. (B, SD)

Day 7
Rotorua - Wellington

Depart Rotorua and travel along the Thermal Explorer Highway before arriving at the spectacular Huka Falls. Continue to Lake Taupō, where some free time is available to enjoy this scenic lakeside town. This afternoon travel via the Tongariro National Park and see the three active peaks of Ruapehu, Tongariro, and Ngāuruhoe. Continue south along the Kapiti Coast to Wellington.

Stay: James Cook Grand Chancellor (2 nights) (B, D)

Day 8
Wellington

A highlight this morning will be time to explore Te Papa, with exhibits that embrace both Māori and European views. Re-board your coach for an extensive city tour. Enjoy time at leisure this afternoon, and this evening is also free to explore Wellington’s lively food scene. (B)

Day 9
Wellington - Kaikōura - Christchurch

This morning board the Interislander ferry to cross Cook Strait and travel through the Marlborough Sounds to Picton. Join the Coastal Pacific, a truly spectacular rail journey that showcases the Kaikōura Mountain Range on one side and the rugged scenic coastline on the other. Travel through numerous tunnels and across several bridges before disembarking in Kaikōura. Travel south by coach through some of the finest farmland to the garden city of Christchurch.

Stay: Hotel Distinction Christchurch (2 nights) (B, D)

Day 10
Christchurch

Today visit the International Antarctic Centre, designed to provide an informative account of life in Antarctica. This is followed by an introductory city tour of Christchurch. This afternoon includes a journey on board the historic Christchurch Tram at your leisure, one of Christchurch’s leading attractions. This evening is free to explore the local cuisine. (B)

Day 11
Christchurch - Arthur's Pass - Franz Josef Glacier

This morning board the TranzAlpine, one of the great train journeys of the world. Travel over massive viaducts, river valleys and spectacular gorges as you ascend to Arthur’s Pass located in the centre of the Southern Alps. Board your coach and travel to Hokitika, famous for its pounamu (greenstone) before arriving at Franz Josef where time is available to experience a scenic flight (optional, weather permitting) over the spectacular glaciers.

Stay: Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier (Douglas Wing) (B, D)

Day 12
Franz Josef - Queenstown

See the snow-capped peaks of the Southern Alps as you continue via the Haast Pass, an area of stunning beauty before arriving into picturesque Queenstown, a year-round resort situated on the shores of magical Lake Wakatipu. This evening is free and you may choose to dine out at one of the many fine restaurants.

Stay: Copthorne Hotel and Resort Lakefront (2 nights) (B)

Day 13
Queenstown

Today is a free day. There are plenty of sightseeing options and your Coach Captain is available to assist. You may wish to enjoy the thrill of a jet boat ride, a heritage tour of the scenic Skippers Canyon, or the helicopter ride of a lifetime. This evening board the vintage steamship TSS Earnslaw and cruise across Lake Wakatipu to Walter Peak Station. On arrival sit back and relax as you are treated to the best of New Zealand’s high country cuisine in the Colonel’s Homestead. After dinner enjoy a short farm tour then re-board the TSS Earnslaw for a singalong by the piano as you cruise back to Queenstown. (B, SD)

Day 14
Queenstown - Milford Sound Overnight Cruise

This morning travel to Arrowtown and visit the Lakes District Museum. Continue via Te Anau to Milford Sound and board the Milford Mariner for your amazing overnight cruise. There is plenty of time to view the fiord’s spectacular waterfalls, rainforest, mountains and wildlife – you’re bound to encounter seals and if you’re lucky maybe dolphin and penguins. As evening falls enjoy a delicious carvery buffet prepared freshly by the on-board chef.

Stay: Milford Mariner Overnight Cruise (B, D)

Day 15
Milford Sound - Te Anau

Start the day with a hearty breakfast before heading back out to the Tasman Sea (weather permitting) and exploring more of the fiord. Return to the wharf to meet your coach and enjoy the scenic drive to Te Anau. This afternoon enjoy a cruise across Lake Te Anau to visit the Glowworm Caves where you admire the incredible limestone caverns, waterfalls, and mystery of the glowworm grotto.

Stay: Distinction Luxmore Hotel (Deluxe Rooms) (B, D)

Day 16
Te Anau - Dunedin

Travel via Gore and Balclutha to Dunedin. After time for lunch board the Silverfern railcar for a journey along spectacular clifftops overlooking the Pacific Ocean and Blueskin Bay. On return to Dunedin’s historic Edwardian Railway Station, board the coach for an informative city tour. Tonight a Scottish evening will be presented comprising of bagpipes, great food, Haggis Ceremony and gift.

Stay: Scenic Hotel Dunedin City (2 nights) (B, SD)

Day 17
Dunedin

This morning travel along the Otago Peninsula to Larnach Castle where you hear of the tragic and scandalous history on a guided tour. Enjoy time to wander around this Garden of International Significance followed by a delicious Devonshire Tea. Return to the city for some free time. You might choose to board the Taieri Gorge Railway for a journey through spectacular scenery only accessible by rail (optional). (B, D)

Day 18
Dunedin - Christchurch

This morning visit Olveston House, a prestigious historic home, before travelling to Ōamaru, famous for its limestone. This evening enjoy a farewell dinner with your newfound friends.

Stay: Sudima Christchurch (B, SD)

Day 19
Depart Christchurch

Time to say goodbye. You will be transferred to the airport for your flight home after a memorable New Zealand holiday. (B)

4.6/5.0

There are 41 reviews of this tour from past clients of Relaxing Journeys, averaging 4.6 out of 5.

Overall Tour Rating
Value For Money
Accommodation
Tour Pace
Relaxing Journeys Experience

Tour Reviews

4
15/02/2018
We had a good overview of the culture and geography of NZ. We would have loved to spend more time in some areas but we know that would be the limitation of a coach tour.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
12/02/2017
Making reservation with Mani at Relaxing Journeys was very easy. He provided excellent service. Grand Pacific tour company planned the activities of their New Zealand tour very well. We would like to go back there someday.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
4
31/01/2017
Tour guide, coach captains were very good and helpful. Hotels were all very good and the food was top quality. Tours were excellent. It was a shame that 2 of the train trips were cancelled due to \"acts of God\", but not the tour operators fault.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
01/01/2017
Hotels and attractions were first class. Guide did a wonderful job.
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Value For Money

Accommodation

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Relaxing Journeys Experience
4
10/04/2016
There were some very interesting inclusions in the itinerary. e.g. lunch at the sheep farm, visiting a castle, visiting an historic home, overnighting on Milford Sound - just to mention a few. New Zealand is a very beautiful country and we were blessed with perfect weather for the 3 weeks of touring.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
06/04/2016
Excellent tour that far exceeded our expectations. Terrific itinerary with great included activities. Great choice of interesting optional tours as well. A very busy pace, we sure appreciated when we had more than 1 night in a hotel. In particular we really enjoyed the train journeys and the overnight on Milford Sound. Terrific driver and host. Efficient service from Toni at Relaxing Journeys, was easy to deal with even though we were in North America. We have recommended this particular itinerary to our friends as well as the services of Relaxing Journeys.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
4
02/03/2016
If I was going to recommend this tour to someone, I would say do it from Christchurch to Auckland. The pacing of driving and activities in the South Island is very hectic, so I'd suggest doing that first before relaxing in the North Island.
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5
15/02/2016
It was an amazing tour, real value for money. We could never do a tour like this ourselves and see so many beautiful places. We like our stay at Donegal House, Kaikoura as it was a very unique place and we thought it was well worth a visit.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
4
08/02/2016
We loved the itinerary and the hotels were very good apart from Donegal House. There were 2 days which we felt could be improved upon. The day we spent touring Christchurch where we were left at a shopping centre built from containers. Certainly different but a guided tour of this sad city may have been more interesting. The other was the day we travelled to Dunedin and went on a train journey, which was far too long and could have been shortened or missed altogether. We could then have had more free time in Dunedin. There was a lot of traveling but our tour captain Steve lightened the time with his jokes and Peter and Linda kept us occupied with interesting commentaries. Thank you for a lovely holiday.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
08/02/2016
We had a wonderful time in New Zealand. Our 19 day excursion through your beautiful land was fabulous and will long be remembered.
Overall Tour Rating

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Enquire about our 19 Day Rail, Cruise and Coach Holiday

19 Day Rail, Cruise and Coach Holiday
Premium Coach Tour
Tour Code: gpnz19r
From (NZD) $6204 per person
Save (NZD) $935 per person
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Departures: Sep 2018 to May 2020
Rating:
41 reviews (4.6/5)

An extremely popular tour designed specifically for rail enthusiasts to enjoy the best of New Zealand at a relaxed pace. This exceptional itinerary in... Read More

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