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.
|Tour Type:||Self Drive Tours|
|From:||Christchurch to Christchurch|
|Departures:||Jan 2019 - March 2020|
|Price:||From (NZD) $1848 per person|
|Tour Operator:||Relaxing Journeys|
|10 nights accommodation|
|Rental vehicle of your choice including airport collection charges|
|TranzAlpine Train Option (Additional Cost)|
|Milford Sound Nature Cruise|
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 2019 – March 2020. 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.
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.
Day by Day Tour Itinerary
“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.
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.
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’.
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.
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)
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.
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.
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)
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).
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.
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.
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.
There are 5 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).
Enquire about our 11 Day Southern Highlights
Terms and conditions apply. Please see tour overview for more information.
The best adventures begin slowly… unless you’re going to New Zealand. The Southern Highlights tour includes the spectacular East Coast destination... Read More
Click on each area to view more information.
Upgrade this tour by adding one of our carefully selected optional tours & activities or go ahead and request a quote to guarantee your spot.
You can also create your dream holiday by using our custom itinerary planner.
Create your Custom Itinerary