14 Day South to North Explorer

14 Day South to North Explorer

The best adventures begin slowly… unless you’re going to New Zealand. On this 14 day tour you will visit New Zealand’s tallest mountain, explore Queenstown, see the spectacular Milford Sound, discover the cool blue splendour of glacial towers and journey on the TranzAlpine train on the South Island. You will then fly to the North Island and stop in the geothermal city of Rotorua before ending your trip in Auckland.

Book your independent coach tour this month and receive a discount of 7.5%. If you pay by 30 September 2018.

Tour Info

Tour Type: Coach & Fly Tour
From: Christchurch to Auckland
Departures: Feb 2018 to May 2019
Price:
From (NZD) $3856 per person
Tour Operator: Relaxing Journeys
Duration: 14 Days
Tour Code: RJ315

Inclusions

13 nights accommodation
All Coach, Ferry & Rail Transport & Transfers
Internal Flight from Christchurch to Rotorua
Optional Breakfasts
Daily Departures
Milford Sound Day Tour & Cruise (including lunch)
TranzAlpine Train Journey
Maori Village Experience, Hangi & Concert in Rotorua
Te Puia Geothermal Experience
Rainbow Springs Nature Park
Agrodome Farm Show
Waitomo Glowworm Caves

Book your independent coach tour this month and receive a discount of 7.5%. If you pay by 30 September 2018.

* Note: Prices shown are per person (based on two people travelling). Prices are valid for travel until September 2018

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Day by Day Tour Itinerary

Day 1
Arrive Christchurch

“Haere Mai” Welcome to Christchurch – the Garden City! Disembark, pass through customs and collect your luggage – it’s time to start your holiday. You will be met by one of our representatives, ready to whisk you away to your centrally located accommodation. What should you do with the rest of the day? Take it slow, sit back and relax, punting down the River Avon through the stunning Christchurch Botanic Gardens.

Day 2
Christchurch - Mt Cook

Today you depart from Christchurch, and travel across the Canterbury plains and through diverse farmland to Lake Tekapo, where you can view the Church of the Good Shepherd by the lake shore. The altar window offers awe inspiring views of the lake and mountains of the Mackenzie Country. Your tour continues along Lake Pukaki before arriving at Aoraki/Mt Cook – New Zealand’s tallest mountain. (2 nights)

Day 3
Mt Cook

Aoraki Mt Cook is New Zealand’s tallest peak, surrounded by spectacular glaciers and lies within the Southern Alps that form the backbone of the South Island. There are a myriad of activities for all ages to enjoy. For those who wish to relax and take in the spectacular alpine scenery there are a number of accessible mountain walks where you can view the wonderful varieties of flowering native plants as well as the unique insect and bird life.

For the more adventurous there are scenic flights with ski-plane landings and a MAC boat tour of the Tasman Glacier Terminal Lake. Whatever you decide to do today, your experience of this awe-inspiring national park is sure to be one of breathtaking beauty.

Day 4
Mt Cook - Queenstown

You have some more free time this morning to finish exploring Mt Cook, and after lunch head off towards Twizel and onto Omarama before travelling over the Lindis Pass. Follow the shores of Lake Dunstan to Cromwell and into the Kawarau Gorge to arrive in Queenstown in the early evening. (3 nights)

Day 5
Queenstown

It’s time to make memories in Queenstown, the capital of adrenaline, beauty and local foodie culture. 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.

Or, 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.

Day 6
Milford Sound Cruise

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 breath taking 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)

Day UP
Milford Sound Return Flight Upgrade Package (from NZ$395pp)

Upgrade your itinerary to return to Queenstown on a scenic flight taking in magnificent views of the alps, glaciers, lakes and forests of Fiordland National Park – a quick and convenient way to return to Queenstown. (Duration 35mins)

The flight shaves off 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.

Day 7
Queenstown - Franz Josef

Depart Queenstown this morning, travel along the shores of Wanaka and Lake Hawea to the Haast Pass, gateway to World Heritage Westland National Park. Then continue up the West Coast past spectacular mountain ranges, native forests and lakes to Franz Josef Glacier arriving in the early evening. (2 nights)

Day 8
Franz Josef

Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers are unique in the fact that they descend from the Southern Alps to just 240 metres above sea level amidst the greenery and lushness of a temperate rainforest. Today you have a whole day at leisure to explore.

Perhaps enjoy an optional guided walk on the glacier, a heli-hike or a scenic flight, or an unguided walk to the terminal face. The terminal face of the Franz Josef glacier is just 5 kms from the Franz Josef township.

Day UP
Glaciers Upgrade Package

Treat yourself and upgrade your accommodation in Franz Josef to the 5 star Te Waonui Forest Retreat, a luxury lodge hotel nestled amongst native West Coast rainforest. Our upgrade package includes luxurious accommodation, dinner on the first night – an indulgent 5 course degustation menu in The Canopy Restaurant, and a la carte breakfast both mornings. We’ve also included a stunning Franz Josef Heli Hike to help you make the most of your time in the region. Ask us for a price!

Day 9
Franz Josef - Punakaiki

Head north along the Coast Road, one of the most spectacular coastal drives in the world passing through the coastal town of Hokitika and on to Greymouth which is the largest town on and commercial centre for the West Coast.

Within a short drive you arrive into Punakaiki which is best known for its Pancake Rocks and Blowholes. The best time to visit the blowholes is at high tide when they are at their most powerful.

Day 10
Punakaiki - TranzAlpine Train - Christchurch

The morning is at your leisure. The Truman Track is a short walk worth doing while you’re here – nearing the coast it passes through typical West Coast flax flats before emerging onto a sprawling headland with stunning views up and down the local shoreline. This afternoon depart Franz Josef and travel further north along the rugged West Coast to Greymouth. You’ll be spoiled by some spectacular countryside with the rugged Tasman Sea to the west and the stunning Southern Alps to the east.

On arrival in Greymouth, you will check in for your train journey to Christchurch. The TranzAlpine is described as “The Great New Zealand Rail Adventure” and is rated as one of the top six scenic train journeys in the world – with accolades like those, you know it will be good.

Ascend through lush beech forests past the beautiful Lake Brunner via the alpine village of Arthur’s Pass situated 737 metres above sea level, before crossing the spectacular Southern Alps. The TranzAlpine then winds its way over massive viaducts, through spectacular river gorges and the stunning Waimakariri River valley before arriving in Christchurch.

Day 11
Christchurch - Internal Flight - Rotorua

Today you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Rotorua, the renowned heartland of Maori culture. Your flight is included in the tour price. On arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel. The afternoon is at leisure to explore the town, perhaps make your way to the Polynesian Spa to soak in one of the 26 hot mineral bathing pools varying in temperature from 36ºC to 43ºC. (2 nights)

Day 12
Rotorua

This morning you will experience Maori culture and the amazing thermal wonderland at Te Puia. Te Puia is also home to the Arts and Crafts Institute where the ancient teachings of Maori 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.

As the evening settles in and the stars brighten the sky, you’ll be treated to a Maori feast, as Te Po’s cultural experience promises hours of fun, thought and Maori kai (indigenous food). After a formal Maori welcome, relax and enjoy a captivating performance by the local people, including traditional songs as well as the renowned haka. Following a truly delectable dinner, you will be transported by people movers to enjoy the spectacular lighting of the Whakarewarewa Geothermal Valley. (D)

Day 13
Rotorua - Waitomo Glowworm Caves - Auckland

After an early morning departure from Rotorua you’ll be travelling west through lush farmland towards Waitomo. Enjoy a guided tour through the world famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves with their amazing stalactites, stalagmites and other limestone formations.

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’ll experience a boat trip like no other, journeying through the starry expanse of the Glowworm cave while your way is lit by a multitude of tiny glowworm lights

After the tour you will continue on to Auckland arriving in the city mid-afternoon.

Day 14
Depart Auckland

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. Have a safe trip home.

4.7/5.0

There are 7 reviews of this tour from past clients of Relaxing Journeys, averaging 4.7 out of 5.

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

Tour Reviews

4
04/04/2018
The booking process is quite smooth, especially with the help of Toni Harris. There were 12 of us traveling as a group with different arrival and departure times from various part of the world. Toni worked with me to get everything organized. There was no "bad" surprises throughout the 14 days. All the arrangements are well through out and hotel accommodations met our expectations.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
16/01/2018
The tour that was put together was varied and gave me a great picture of the diversity of the country. The travelling was long but comfortable. The trip from Queenstown to Milford sound in one day was particularly long but worth it as I loved that area. The hotels were all very comfortable and the staff very helpful. The airport pickups were really good apart from the last one from my hotel in Auckland to the airport. Due to people not being ready at hotels, road works and taking people to collect a camper van I was quite late getting to the airport and had to do some queue jumping to get to the gate on time but I did make it.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
21/07/2017
Everything was so well laid out. Every single driver was on time. The trip and itinerary flowed seamlessly. Typically I stress about getting places while traveling, however I was relaxed the entire time!
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
02/05/2017
The trip was amazing, 10 out of 10. Not one thing negative to report. All transfers were on time, comfortable and courteous. All hotels were AMAZING. It seemed like we got one of the best rooms/views in every place we stayed. And the side trips/attractions you booked were perfect. Glad you did, otherwise, we may have missed them. Thank you for your diligence and great work through this whole process. We will be recommending this to our friends back in Canada.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
4
19/06/2016
A great way to see as much of New Zealand as time allows in 2 weeks. Well planned itinerary allowing for travel & sight seeing. Organisation of hotels & transport was first class which made for a very \"relaxing journey\". The flexibility of this tour with regards to which events you would like to attend or take part in allows you to pace the holiday as you would like it to be. The events that were part of the package are all ones that you would not want to miss. Whilst some of the journeys are lengthy the commentary & sights along the way more than make up for this. Thanks Marie for making this holiday so easy to arrange.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
19/06/2016
The itinerary was excellent and covered the highlights of NZ attractions as offered by Relaxing Journeys! We saw and experienced a wonderful cross section of NZ. Everything was well organized, both transport and accommodation. Very easy to follow all details of the trip. Thanks Mani and Relaxing Journeys for your reliable and perfect organization of the tour. We will surely recommend it to our friends!
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
02/11/2015
Our vacation trip to New Zealand was a dream trip fulfilled. Relaxing Journeys did an outstanding job with helping us create the perfect itinerary. Our trip went smoothly and nearly flawless. New Zealand is an incredibly beautiful country and we have a lifetime of memories from our visit. We would not hesitate to recommend Relaxing Journeys to anyone contemplating a trip to New Zealand. We're grateful that we chose them for our vacation.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience

Upgrades

Optionals

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).

Enquire about our 14 Day South to North Explorer

14 Day South to North Explorer
Coach & Fly Tour
Tour Code: RJ315
From (NZD) $3856 per person
Enquire Now
Departures: Feb 2018 to May 2019
Rating:
7 reviews (4.7/5)

The best adventures begin slowly… unless you’re going to New Zealand. On this 14 day tour you will visit New Zealand’s tallest mountain, explore... Read More

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14 Day South to North Explorer
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