8 Day Nature Trail

8 Day Nature Trail

Discover the top of the South Island on the unique self drive itinerary, providing you with the opportunity to view Sperm Whales on the Kaikoura coast, and to walk the tracks of the Abel Tasman Nation Park at a leisurely pace. Wind down at the end of your tour at Hanmer Springs. Nestled in the magnificent South Island high country, the Springs have attracted visitors seeking the benefits of its natural mineral waters and clean, clear alpine air.

Book your self drive tour this month and receive an Earlybird Discount of 10%. Make full payment by 31 July 2018 to qualify or receive a discount of 7.5% if you pay by 30 September 2018.

Tour Info

Tour Type: Self Drive Tours
From: Christchurch to Christchurch
Departures: May 2018 to March 2019
Price:
From (NZD) $2845 per person
Tour Operator: Relaxing Journeys
Pace: Relaxing
Duration: 8 Days
Tour Code: GNSINT

Inclusions

7 nights accommodation
Rental vehicle of your choice including airport and ferry port collection charges
Abel Tasman Cruise & Walk Open Day Pass
Entrance to the Hanmer Thermal Reserve
Travel wallet, comprehensive customised itinerary, bound map book, accommodation & activity vouchers and local travel guides

Book your self drive tour this month and receive an Earlybird Discount of 10%. Make full payment by 31 July 2018 to qualify or receive a discount of 7.5% if you pay by 30 September 2018.

Click on the prices below to enquire.

* Prices shown are per person (based on two people travelling).
* 2 Bedroom Motel pricing also available with Exclusive Specials. Please request a quote for prices.

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Day by Day Tour Itinerary

Day 1
Arrive Christchurch

“Haere Mai” Welcome to Christchurch – the Garden City. On completion of formalities, pick up your rental car and travel onto your centrally located accommodation. Following the 2011 earthquake, Christchurch has re-emerged as a vibrant, ever-changing city. The remainder of the day is at leisure to get a taste of what the city has to offer.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 2
Christchurch - Kaikoura

Today head up the coast to Kaikoura, the area is a base for wildlife experiences of all kinds – it’s also a great place to eat crayfish (in the Maori language kai means food, koura means crayfish). The environment is truly spectacular – the village is caught between the rugged Seaward Kaikoura Range and the Pacific Ocean. In winter the mountains are covered with snow, adding to the drama of the landscape. Kaikoura’s special talent is marine mammal encounters – whales, fur seals and dolphins live permanently in the coastal waters. Whale watching trips leave the town several times a day and the local seal colony is always entertaining. There are plenty of cafés, restaurants and shops.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 3
Kaikoura - Picton

Further north lies today’s destination, Picton. The picturesque seaside town is the South Island base for the ferry service that links the main islands of New Zealand. It’s also the gateway to the marine, forest and island attractions of the Marlborough Sounds. (2 nights)

Your choice of accommodation

Day 4
PIcton at Leisure

Today is at your leisure to explore Picton and the surrounding areas. Built around a very sheltered harbour, the town has an attractive seafront dotted with cafés, restaurants and various types of galleries. There’s also a floating maritime museum and an aquarium. Local operators can take you cruising, fishing, dolphin watching or sea kayaking. The Queen Charlotte Track is a major local attraction; you can conquer it on foot or on a mountain bike.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 5
Picton - Nelson

Today takes you to Nelson, from a cultural point of view, it provides the chance to appreciate New Zealand art, both in galleries and in artists’ studios. The district has attracted creative people who work with glass, metal, stone, wood, clay, sand, paper, ink, paint and fabric. Nelson is also appealing from a lifestyle point of view. There are wineries scattered around the Moutere Hills and the Waimea Plains. In the city, you’ll find a good selection of restaurants – some with huge views of Tasman Bay. Activities include skydiving, rock climbing, 4WD biking, horse treks, sailing charters and water fun at the excellent beaches. (2 nights)

Your choice of accommodation

Day 6
Nelson - Abel Tasman Cruise & Walk - Nelson

Today enjoy your Abel Tasman Cruise & Walk Open Day Pass. With its above average sunshine record & beautiful sandy beaches the area is a must see for visitors. Lush forest coastal paths lead to delightful bays with gold sand beaches and clear blue water. The park can be explored on a cruise, by kayak or on foot.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 7
Nelson - Hanmer Springs

Today head southwards to Hanmer Springs. As the name might suggest, the peaceful village of Hanmer Springs is best known for its natural hot springs and forms the main thermal resort of the South Island. Set amidst a stunning alpine landscape that offers snow-covered peaks in the middle of winter and lush evergreen forest, it is well worth a visit at any time of year. Entrance to the Thermal Reserve is included today and is one of the leading attractions on the South Island and is a retreat that is enjoyed, as much by locals as visitors. The reserve has been attractively landscaped around the natural features to produce a relaxing and peaceful environment, with an oriental feel.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 8
Hanmer Springs - Depart Christchurch

On your final day of this itinerary make your way back to Christchurch and return your rental car to the depot at Christchurch airport prior to your onward flight.

Your choice of accommodation

4/5.0

There are 3 reviews of this tour from past clients of Relaxing Journeys, averaging 4 out of 5.

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

Tour Reviews

4
17/03/2014
Great trip. Great service. Perfect for our family.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

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Relaxing Journeys Experience
4
25/02/2014
Overall a fantastic trip. Would have like more time in each place and the pace was a bit fast for 3 elderly people. I hadn't realised ahead of time that my sister in law really can not walk very far at all. I may have decided on a different itinerary had I known. We loved it all but were a little perplexed by the variety of accommodation. Some was really good and some was just adequate. However, the people were all very nice and helpful. We found dealing with stairs in some accommodation a challenge but everyone was helpful with our luggage. We had a hiccup with transportation in Dunedin when the Super Shuttle that was booked did not turn up to take us to the Taieri Train but were safely delivered by the owner's wife from the 858 George Street Motel with very little time to spare. Otherwise everything went smoothly. My sister in law did not like the Aldan Lodge Motel in Picton but my husband and I found it nice enough and the people were nice and friendly.
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Value For Money

Accommodation

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Relaxing Journeys Experience
4
11/06/2009
Just wanted to drop you a line to thank you for a lovely holiday. Everything went really well, with only one small disappointment and that was the Wilkin River Jet Boats was cancelled because water levels were too low. Everything else was really amazing and spectacular. The vistas of the South Island were unbelievably beautiful with each new one being better than the last (if that was possible). We had a marvellous time, the weather was really kind to us. We had it all except rain, and when ever it turned bad it was either the day before we got somewhere or the day after we left. Views of Mt Cook were great. You guys organised everything for us beautifully. N0 hassles, no mix ups, everything went like a well oiled machine. Thank you so much for the wonderful effort you put into preparing everything for us. Next time we will have to do the North Island. I certainly know which mob to refer my friends to when they're planning a trip to NZ.
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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 8 Day Nature Trail

8 Day Nature Trail
Self Drive Tours
Tour Code: GNSINT
From (NZD) $2845 per person
Save (NZD) $284 per person
Enquire Now
Departures: May 2018 to March 2019
Rating:
3 reviews (4/5)

Discover the top of the South Island on the unique self drive itinerary, providing you with the opportunity to view Sperm Whales on the Kaikoura coast... Read More

Itinerary Map

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8 Day Nature Trail
Regions Visited

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