7 Day Top of the South

7 Day Top of the South

Discover the top of the South Island of New Zealand over seven days by rail and coach. Explore the stunning Abel Tasman National Park and a stopover on the west coast at Punakaiki, home to the Pancake Rocks.

Book and pay your deposit by 30 November 2018 to receive a 5% discount off your independent coach tour price for this month

Tour Info

Tour Type: Independent Coach Tour
From: Christchurch to Christchurch
Departures: Feb 2018 to May 2019
Price:
From (NZD) $1584 per person
Tour Operator: Relaxing Journeys
Duration: 7 Days
Tour Code: RJ203

Inclusions

6 nights accommodation
All Coach, Ferry & Rail Transport & Transfers
Optional Breakfasts
Daily Departures
Abel Tasman National Park Walk & Cruise (including lunch)
TranzAlpine Train Journey

Conditions

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 May 2018 – March 2019. Blackout periods may apply. A non-refundable deposit of $500 per person is required at time of booking.

Click here for our full terms and conditions.

Book and pay your deposit by 30 November 2018 to receive a 5% discount off your independent coach tour price for this month

* Note: Prices shown are per person (based on two people travelling). Prices are valid for travel until March 2019

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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. Begin your holiday with a friendly face when you are met at the airport by our representative and transferred to your chosen 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 - Kaikoura

This morning travel north towards Kaikoura. You will journey through North Canterbury sheep country then follow the stunning coastline bordered on one side by the Pacific Ocean and on the other by the rugged Kaikoura Ranges. You will disembark at the renowned whale watching town of Kaikoura with its majestic alpine scenery and amazing ocean wildlife.

Conditions permitting you may like to take a cruise to view the whales or perhaps take it one step closer and enjoy a swim with the dolphins. Overnight in Kaikoura.

Day 3
Kaikoura - Blenheim - Nelson

This morning board your coach and head north to Marlborough, New Zealand’s largest wine growing region and home of the sauvignon blanc. This is the perfect place to enjoy the world-famous wine and dine on ocean fresh seafood.  Continue your journey on to Nelson. The region’s diverse geography captures everything from long golden beaches to untouched forests and jagged mountains. Nelson is a town bursting with creativity where you can visit the studios of local artists and the World of Wearable Art Museum.

In the afternoon take time to sample Nelson’s selection of local craft brews or hop on a bike and follow the Great Taste Cycle Trail through the region’s vineyards. (2 nights)

Day 4
Abel Tasman National Park

Today you will travel through Motueka to Kaiteriteri where you board your launch. Relax in style as you cruise the stunning golden inlets of the Abel Tasman coast. Inviting sandy beaches fill the spaces between trees and tide line. Crystal clear streams tumble down mossy valleys to join the ocean.

Native wildlife is an essential part of the scenery. Tui and bellbird song fills the forest, shags (cormorants), gannets and little blue penguins dive for their dinner, fur seals lounge on the rocks around the edge of Tonga Island.

Rejoin your cruise back to Kaiteriteri and return to your hotel late afternoon. (L)

Day 5
Nelson - Punakaiki

You will be heading south through Murchison, making your way to the West Coast today. The Murchison Skyline Walkway zigzags through mixed beech and podocarp forest, native ferns, and bracken and broom covered slopes on the outskirts of Murchison – it’s worth breaking your journey here for the 90 minute walk before you navigate the awesome Buller Gorge.

At Hawks Crag, the road has been hacked out of solid rock – be ready for the dramatic overhang, lending shade and character to the route. The road to Punakaiki hugs the coast, providing spectacular views of wild beaches and the tempestuous Tasman Sea. Overnight at Punakaiki.

Day 6
Punakaiki - TranzAlpine Train - Christchurch

The morning is at your leisure. Punakaiki is best known for its Pancake Rocks and Blowholes – we highly recommend that you make time to see them. A loop track takes you on a gentle walk from the main road, through rainforest to the coast. At the coastline the track has many lookouts and areas for fantastic photos to be taken of the Pancake Rocks and Blowholes. The best time to visit the blowholes is at high tide when they are at their most powerful. Allow 45 minutes for the loop walk.

This afternoon enjoy the views of the wild west coast as you travel to Greymouth and join the TranzAlpine Train for your scenic train journey to Christchurch. Climb through lush beech forests past the beautiful Lake Brunner and through 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 in the early evening.

Day 7
Depart 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. Have a safe trip home.

4.4/5.0

There are 7 reviews of this tour from past clients of Relaxing Journeys, averaging 4.4 out of 5.

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

Tour Reviews

4
04/03/2018
We thoroughly enjoyed this tour & were very impressed with the degree of organisation & efficiency. One point though - In Nelson we had a 15min walk with luggage to our motel, which we had to locate & would have loved a 'shuttle'. Conversely, we had a shuttle at the Quest, Christchurch for a 2min. ride to bus-stop, could have walked & a longer sleep-in ! Thank you.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
11/10/2017
Fabulous trip. Whirlwind pace. Would've loved to spend more time in some of the beautiful places and amazing hotels.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
4
20/12/2016
I was really happy with the accommodations. Very clean and good food. And everything was well organised (except one breakfast was missing). I did not have to worry about anything. But I would have liked to have the possibility to do more longer hikes. And I would have liked to spend more time in the Abel Tasman National Park than for example in Punakaiki, but that's just what I prefer.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
27/09/2016
Very well organised, every connection was there, accommodation was lovely as were all the people. Some quite early morning starts to make trains etc but that just gave us a longer day to enjoy.
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3
09/04/2015
We love New Zealand and will be back to tour the bottom of the south. We loved Abel Tasman and Mt Cook hikes especially the beautiful Hooker trail. We loved the family that runs the Kingsway Motel in Blenheim but the woman at Bella Vista is in the army and all the electricity goes off if the key is not in the lock. She would not give us a second key so unable to charge my phone if my husband went off on a walk. Also do not recommend Watery Mouth cafe with huge beetle found alive in my salad and no refund. Suggest visitors book a wine tour of Blenheim ahead of time, as we had to call all 6 companies before getting last two spots. We love Pinot Noir which I now know comes more from Otago than Marlborough ( only 7 %). No penguins but this big goal for next time. Buses & shuttles always picked us up on time. Last night on return to Christchurch they made us sit in bus at end of trip for full hour while awaiting taxi to pick up Japanese tourists. Not drivers fault.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
01/04/2015
Everything was excellent except for a coach driver on Intercity Coachlines on the trip to Punakaiki resort - nothing to do with you, I am contacting the coachlines in writing I did make a verbal complaint by phone. When we stopped at the tourist info etc at Punakaiki we ( myself and two other ladies) were told we were to get off there as it was just around the corner. ( I was using a walking stick) It was close to 1km to the check in at reception and majority over loose gravel as a result the rubber was worn off the wheels of my new case. We rang the company and told them we wanted as our tickets said to be picked up the Resort ( i.e. at the entrance) This happened. All other drivers were excellent.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
02/02/2015
We had a wonderful time on our holiday, everything ran like clockwork. The scenery on the train trips was amazing and could not have been better. Everybody was so friendly and went out of their way to accommodate us. The only let down (if you could call it that) was the motel we stayed at in Nelson was so far out of the town that we didn't get a chance to venture into see the town at all. We saw whales on a boat trip was was such an amazing experience, one I would recommend to all. We would like to thank you for all your help in making our trip memorable, we have so many photos to look through. Thank you once again.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience

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 7 Day Top of the South

7 Day Top of the South
Independent Coach Tour
Tour Code: RJ203
From (NZD) $1584 per person
Enquire Now

Terms and conditions apply. Please see tour overview for more information.

Rating:
7 reviews (4.4/5)

Discover the top of the South Island of New Zealand over seven days by rail and coach. Explore the stunning Abel Tasman National Park and a stopover o... Read More

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Top of the South
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