11 Day Southern Highlights

11 Day Southern Highlights

The best adventures begin slowly… unless you’re going to New Zealand. The Southern Highlights tour includes the spectacular East Coast destinations of Mt Cook, Dunedin, Te Anau, Milford Sound and Queenstown. You will then travel on to the West Coast to see the glaciers with an optional TranzAlpine train ride back over the mountains.

Book your self drive tour this month and 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) $1848 per person
Tour Operator: Relaxing Journeys
Duration: 12 Days
Tour Code: GNSH

Inclusions

10 nights accommodation
Rental vehicle of your choice including airport collection charges
TranzAlpine Train Option (Additional Cost)
Milford Sound Nature Cruise
Travel wallet, comprehensive customised itinerary, bound map book, accommodation & activity vouchers and local travel guides

Book your self drive tour this month and 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. The remainder of the day is at leisure to explore what Christchurch has to offer. Why not sit back and relax as you pass the trailing willows and leafy banks of the stunning Christchurch Botanic Gardens while punting down the river Avon.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 2
Christchurch - Mt Cook

Travel south across the Canterbury Plains to Mt Cook, known in Maori as Aoraki. Mt Cook is the highest peak in New Zealand and standing at an imposing 3754m dominates the Southern Alps that separate Christchurch from Queenstown.

Certainly an icon of New Zealand, Mt Cook has long attracted climbers and mountaineers, wishing to scale its heights. However, many of the people visiting Mt Cook have less lofty ambitions, choosing simply to enjoy the impressive views on clear days or on scenic flights, which are a great way to appreciate its grandeur.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 3
Mt Cook - Dunedin

Time to enjoy some of the nearby bush walks in the park before heading west to the coastal town of Oamaru, famous for its white limestone buildings. Be sure to stop at Moeraki Beach with its mysterious, spherical, 60 million year old boulders.

Continue on to Dunedin, the ‘Edinburgh of the South’.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 4
Dunedin - Te Anau

Drive through the rolling hill country of South Otago and Southland. After the farming community of Gore, cross the Waimea plains towards Fiordland. Overnight in Te Anau.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 5
Te Anau - Milford Sound Cruise - Queenstown

Drive through pristine beech forests and the Homer Tunnel to Milford Sound. We have included a cruise to enable you to appreciate the majesty of Mitre Peak and Bowen Falls. On arrival at Milford Sound, board either the Milford Mariner or Milford Wanderer – our 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!

Return to Te Anau, then turn north, following the dramatic southern shores of Lake Wakatipu to reach Queenstown. (3 nights)

Your choice of accommodation

Day 6
Queenstown at Leisure Day 1

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. Or, if you would like to include a scenic walk, you can explore the diverse range of stunning trails the region delivers in troves.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 7
Queenstown at Leisure Day 2

You have another day in Queenstown to either do more exploring or to fit in any activities you were not able to do the day before. We recommend the world famous Shotover Jet boat ride, take a Gondola to the Skyline high above, or for the adventurous – try bungy jumping or white water rafting. Alternatively browse in the many shops and galleries.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 8
Queenstown - Franz Josef

Put Queenstown in your rearview mirror and travel along the banks of the Hawea and Wanaka lakes, before stopping in Makarora for an essential, short walk along the Blue Pools Track nearby. Refreshed by the brisk mountain weather, continue your climb over the Haast Pass, reaching the West Coast – where ancient rainforests tower above you. Continue north to the village of Franz Josef Glacier. (2 nights)

Your choice of accommodation

Day 9
Franz Josef at Leisure

A full day to explore this remote and beautiful area. You can take your own time walking up to the glacier, going to the Okarito Lagoon; or join a guided walk on the glacier, take a heli-hike adventure, or a scenic flight over both glaciers. We also recommend a visit to the colony of the beautiful white heron (Kotuku).

Your choice of accommodation

Day 10
Franz Josef - Christchurch

Travel north along the narrow, bush clad, coastal plain past Hokitika, to Greymouth. Turn inland towards the Southern Alps, over Arthur’s Pass and across the Canterbury Plains to Christchurch.

Your choice of accommodation

Day UP
TranzAlpine Train Upgrade Package

For a small cost we can amend your itinerary so that you drop your vehicle off in Greymouth and then join the TranzAlpine Train for your journey across the Alps. On arrival in Christchurch we’ll arrange transfers to your accommodation and transfers the next day to the airport for your onward flight.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 11
Depart Christchurch

Sadly, your holiday is at an end and you will be transferred to Christchurch airport today for your onward flight. Here, we bid you a fond farewell and hope you leave with many happy memories of your stay in Aotearoa, New Zealand.

Your choice of accommodation

4.6/5.0

There are 5 reviews of this tour from past clients of Relaxing Journeys, averaging 4.6 out of 5.

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

Tour Reviews

4
30/03/2018
Great organisation and support. Tour was right mix of activity and downtime.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
21/02/2018
We LOVED our self drive tour in New Zealand! Very easy too book in advance and had no issues with any of our hotels or using the vouchers for our excursions. The itinerary provided also provided lots of details on little side trips that we could take during our drives so that we wouldn't miss anything. A little comment on the hotels - Being that this was our honeymoon, we totally enjoyed staying in all of the high quality hotels and it was definitely worth splurging on. However, if we were able to come back, I would probably prefer to take a little less expensive route by staying in some mid-range hotels instead. So honestly, my only "complaint" is that there was very little discussion on what price range of hotels we would want to stay in during the booking process (I will take equal blame for this because I could have asked as well). We booked in August 2017 for our February 2018 so say if that is "too late" to have a larger selection of hotels, then I would suggest to add to your FAQ something like "for mid-range hotels book 8 months out, for high end hotels book 6 months out, etc." Either way, no complaints, just something to note and something for me think about next time as well :) Our favorite hotel, hands down, was The Hermitage at Mount Cook. I'm not sure how we got that corner room on the 10th floor with the balcony but it was INCREDIBLE!
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

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Relaxing Journeys Experience
4
31/10/2017
Everything went very well and we were very happy with how everything was organized except for one thing - the hotel at Franz Josef was out of town 5km. We would have preferred it in town so we would not have need to drive.
Overall Tour Rating

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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
26/04/2017
I chose this trip because I wanted to take a pre-planned trip where I didn't have to do too much organisation. I enjoyed myself immensely, and while I might have liked to spend more time at some locations, I found the overall pacing of the trip just right.
Overall Tour Rating

Value For Money

Accommodation

Tour Pace

Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
25/12/2016
The self drive tour, that included car and accommodation, was the best solution to ensure a successful trip without stress and unpleasant surprises. Excellent car and accommodation at all places and a very useful and detailed itinerary.
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 11 Day Southern Highlights

11 Day Southern Highlights
Self Drive Tours
Tour Code: GNSH
From (NZD) $1848 per person
Save (NZD) $184 per person
Enquire Now
Departures: May 2018 to March 2019
Rating:
5 reviews (4.6/5)

The best adventures begin slowly… unless you’re going to New Zealand. The Southern Highlights tour includes the spectacular East Coast destination... Read More

Itinerary Map

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11 Day Southern Highlights
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