8 Day North and South Highlights
8 Day North and South Highlights
You’re on the edge of adventure with this 8 day itinerary. From Auckland and Rotorua to the magnificent Milford Sound and adrenaline-packed Queenstown, you’ll be delighted at every turn, trading your everyday for an unforgettable holiday.
|Tour Type:||Coach & Fly Tour|
|From:||Auckland to Christchurch|
|Departures:||Jan 2020 - March 2021|
|Price:||From (NZD) $2552 per person|
|Tour Operator:||Relaxing Journeys|
|7 nights accommodation|
|All coach, ferry and rail transport and transfers|
|Internal flight from Rotorua to Queenstown|
|Waitomo Glowworm Caves|
|Māori cultural experience, hāngī and concert in Rotorua|
|Te Puia geothermal experience|
|Rainbow Springs Nature Park|
|Agrodome farm show|
|Milford Sound day tour and cruise (including lunch)|
Prices are per person based on twin-share, and are subject to availability. Prices are correct at the time of submission but are subject to change without notice. Valid for travel January 2020 – March 2021. Blackout periods may apply. A non-refundable deposit of $250 per person is required at time of booking.
Click here for our full terms and conditions.
Day by Day Tour Itinerary
Welcome to Auckland! Pass through customs, collect any baggage, and be met by one of our friendly representatives, ready to whisk you away to your city accommodation. After checking in and getting yourself settled, turn your roving eye outside and enjoy a free afternoon in the ‘City of Sails’. Auckland is New Zealand’s largest city, with plenty of sights, shopping and street appeal for even the pickiest of travellers.
With an early morning departure from Auckland you will be travelling southbound to reach the market garden area of Pukekohe. Continue through Hamilton, New Zealand’s fourth largest city, and the fertile Waikato region to arrive at Waitomo. For over 100 years, Waitomo Glowworm Caves have attracted millions of people from all over the world. The moment you enter this subterranean wonderland, you’ll discover an ancient underground labyrinth of limestone caves and grottos. You will experience a boat trip like no other, journeying through the starry expanse of the cave while your way is lit by a multitude of tiny glowworm lights.
On completion of this tour, continue over the forested Mamaku Ranges to reach the geothermal city of Rotorua. Tonight you’ll be treated to a Māori feast, as Te Pō’s cultural experience promises hours of fun, thought and kai (indigenous food). After a formal Māori welcome, relax and enjoy a captivating performance by the local people, including traditional songs and the renowned haka. Following a truly delectable dinner, you will be transported by people movers to enjoy the spectacular lighting of the geothermal Te Whakarewarewa Valley and an essential hot chocolate. (D) (2 nights)
This morning you will experience more Māori culture and the amazing thermal wonderland at Te Puia. Te Puia is also home to the Māori Arts and Crafts Institute, where the ancient teachings of Māori ancestors have been preserved and continue to thrive. Continue on to the Rainbow Springs Nature Park, an attraction like no other. Set in 22 acres of beautiful native trees and streams you will see a huge variety of New Zealand’s most precious inhabitants, including the Kiwi Conservation Centre. New Zealand’s thriving agricultural industry is on show at the Agrodome, where you will witness a sheep shearing display and sheep dog trials.
The afternoon is at leisure to explore some of Rotorua’s natural wonders and scenic highlights. Make your way to the internationally-renowned Whirinaki Forest, fringing Te Urewera National Park. Here you can follow a pristine river path through towering rimu, tōtara and kahikatea trees, to an impressive waterfall and breathtaking canyon.
This morning you will be transferred from your accommodation to Rotorua Airport for your southbound flight to Queenstown. Your flight is included in the tour price. Be sure not to miss the stunning scenery as you descend into Queenstown, it really will take your breath away. On arrival you will be met and transferred to your accommodation. Your afternoon is at leisure.
We would suggest that you lace up your trainers and enjoy the Lakeshore Forest and Bird guided walk, a meandering trail for those who like relaxed walks. You will be taken through majestic native beech forests, combining the best of flora and fauna with breathtaking mountain views. (3 nights)
It’s an early departure today as your coach follows the southern arm of Lake Wakitipu to Lumsden, and onward to Lake Te Anau. The scenery changes dramatically from tussock covered grasslands to glacier-hewn valleys as you enter the Eglington Valley and travel through the breathtaking man-made Homer Tunnel before reaching Milford Sound.
Upon arrival at Milford Sound, board your launch for a spectacular cruise where you will see the wonders of Mitre Peak, glacier-scarred rock walls that rise 1,200m vertically from the sea, and waterfalls that tumble from hanging valleys to crash into the sound far below. Milford Sound is nothing short of heart-stopping, inducing subconscious smiles in the hard to please and easily bored almost instantly; it’s simply magnificent. Keep an eye out for dolphins, seals and penguins!
On completion of your cruise you will return to Queenstown by coach, arriving in the evening. (L)
Upgrade your itinerary to include a return scenic flight to Queenstown, taking in the magnificent views of the alps, glaciers, lakes and forests of Fiordland National Park – a quick and convenient way to return to Queenstown. (Duration 35 mins.)
The flight shaves approximately 4 hours off a return by coach. It is, however, very weather dependent, so if the weather doesn’t play ball, then you will need to return by coach and we will refund the upgrade price.
It’s time to make memories in Queenstown. Pick and choose from a long list of adventures – from thrilling funyak tours along the Dart River and horse riding in Glenorchy, to panning for gold in Arrowtown or taking a tour of Lake Wakatipu via the TSS Earnslaw, there is certainly something for every speed.
If you’re not ready to break the spell of the last few days a scenic walk may do the trick, exploring the diverse range of stunning trails the region delivers in troves.
Depart Queenstown this morning and travel north through the historic gold mining region of the Kawarau Gorge, passing through the dramatic Lindis Pass into the Mackenzie Basin. Hug the shores of Lake Pukaki before arriving at Aoraki Mount Cook Village. This region is breathtaking and full of opportunities for the outdoor enthusiast. Enjoy an optional scenic helicopter or ski-plane flight (own expense), explore the treasures of New Zealand’s mountaineering history at the Sir Edmund Hillary Centre, or relax over a three-course lunch at the famous Hermitage Hotel (not included).
This afternoon you will continue north to the glacial-fed, turquoise Lake Tekapo, where you can take the opportunity to appreciate the majestic scenery of the Southern Alps and view the solitary Church of the Good Shepherd. Continue your journey north through the vast patchwork of the Canterbury Plains before arriving at your final destination, Christchurch.
Sadly your trip has come to an end. We hope that you have thoroughly enjoyed your experiences in New Zealand. Today you will be met at your accommodation and transferred to the airport for your onward journey. Haere rā! Have a safe trip home.
There are 12 reviews of this tour from past clients of Relaxing Journeys, averaging 4.7 out of 5.
New Zealand has a great deal of things to see and do, why not add one of our optional sightseeing activities to your trip. Prices are per adult (we'll adjust your quote for any children).
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You’re on the edge of adventure with this 8 day itinerary. From Auckland and Rotorua to the magnificent Milford Sound and adrenaline-packed Queensto... Read More
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