10 Day Southern Circuit
10 Day Southern Circuit
Enjoy the finest mountain scenery in New Zealand on this 10 day circuit of the South Island. Join the TranzAlpine train to cross the Southern Alps, marvel at the Franz Josef Glacier, visit Queenstown, and cruise on Milford Sound.
|Tour Type:||Independent Coach Tour|
|From:||Christchurch to Christchurch|
|Departures:||Jan 2020 - March 2021|
|Price:||From (NZD) $2298 per person|
|Tour Operator:||Relaxing Journeys|
|9 nights accommodation|
|All coach, ferry and rail transport and transfers|
|Milford Sound day tour and cruise (including lunch)|
|TranzAlpine train journey|
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
Haere mai! Welcome to Christchurch, the ‘Garden City’. Disembark, pass through customs and collect your luggage – it’s time to start your holiday. 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 Botanic Gardens.
This morning you will board the TranzAlpine train for one of the world’s great scenic train journeys, which will take you across the patchwork farmland of the Canterbury Plains before a slow climb into the Southern Alps. Marvel at views of the stunning Waimakiriri River gorge and alpine scenery then make a brief stop at Arthur’s Pass. As the journey continues you will enter one of New Zealand’s longest tunnels, the Ōtira Tunnel, cross viaducts, and subsequently descend through a deep valley of subtropical rainforest over a broad shallow river into the small town of Greymouth.
Join your coach in Greymouth and travel through Hokitika to Franz Josef. (2 nights)
Today you have a whole day at leisure at Franz Josef. Perhaps enjoy a guided walk, a heli-hike, or a scenic flight from the Franz Josef township. If you’d prefer a relaxing day, head to the Glacier Hot Pools that are nestled amongst the lush rainforest, or meander through the village where you will find a wonderful selection of gifts, artwork, merchandise and cafes.
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!
Farewell Franz Josef and travel down the West Coast alongside braided riverbeds, native forests and roadside waterfalls, before climbing up over the Haast Pass and through Mount Aspiring National Park. Stop and stretch your legs, drinking in the scenery as impressive mountains touch the sky, remnants of the Ice Age glacial valley.
Your coach will drive along the shores of Lake Hawea, arriving at action-packed Queenstown. (3 nights)
The day is completely at leisure to enjoy the many sights of this alpine resort situated on the shores of Lake Wakatipu. The capital of adrenaline, beauty and local foodie culture, you can pick and choose from a long list of adventures. From thrilling funyak tours along the Dart River to horse riding in Glenorchy, panning for gold in Arrowtown to taking a tour of Lake Wakatipu on 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.
Today is at leisure to further explore Queenstown and the surrounding areas. It has a well-earned reputation for offering adrenaline-fuelled activities and will not disappoint even the most fearless visitor, including bungy jumping, white water rafting, jet boating, canyoning and luging.
Add to these the more traditional pursuits wind-surfing, mountain biking, and skiing in winter, and the only problem is finding the time to fit it all in.
An early departure this morning for an unforgettable journey from Queenstown to Milford Sound, the most accessible of Fiordland’s magnificent glacier-carved fiords. Upon arrival, board either the Milford Mariner or Milford Wanderer – specifically designed fiord explorers – and settle in for a 2.5-hour cruise. 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!
Board the coach to Te Anau for an evening arrival. (L)
Leaving the stunning region of Te Anau, your journey today will showcase more of the South Island’s scenery. Pass through the town of Gore, the country music capital of New Zealand, and continue on to Balclutha over the Clutha River before arriving into the city of Dunedin in the early afternoon.
Leaving Dunedin behind you, keep your eyes peeled for the perfectly rounded boulders which are embedded in the sand at Koekohe Beach as you make your way north to Ōamaru (the boulders are a natural phenomenon that started forming 60 million years ago on the ocean floor). Ōamaru has the country’s largest collection of protected heritage buildings; neoclassical buildings made from the local limestone.
Pass through the vibrant seaside town of Timaru and cross over the Rakaia River on New Zealand’s longest bridge, arriving into 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.
There are 25 reviews of this tour from past clients of Relaxing Journeys, averaging 4.6 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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Enjoy the finest mountain scenery in New Zealand on this 10 day circuit of the South Island. Join the TranzAlpine train to cross the Southern Alps, ma... Read More
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