10 Day Alpine Explorer
10 Day Alpine Explorer
Discover the north of the South! Whale watching, thermal springs and experience for yourself the legendary Abel Tasman Maritime Park, an outdoor enthusiasts paradise.
|Tour Type:||Self Drive Tours|
|From:||Christchurch to Christchurch|
|Departures:||Jan 2020 - March 2021|
|Price:||From (NZD) $3650 per person|
|Tour Operator:||Relaxing Journeys|
|9 nights accommodation|
|Rental vehicle of your choice|
|2 night stopovers in the Marlborough Sounds, Nelson, Kaikoura and Christchurch|
|Coast to coast TranzAlpine Train journey through the Southern Alps|
|Admission to Hanmer Springs Thermal Reserve|
|Kaikoura Whalewatch Excursion|
|Greenshell Mussel Cruise. Enjoy an informative and relaxing afternoon cruising the inner Pelorus and Kenepuru Sounds.|
|Stunning Kenepuru Sound|
|'The Best Abel Tasman Day Trip'|
|Punakaiki Pancake Rocks|
|Admissions outlined in the Itinerary|
|Airport transfers to/from your accommodation|
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.
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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. You will be personally met by our representative at the airport and transferred in an executive sedan to your 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?
Take delivery of your rental car this morning. Leaving Christchurch, travel inland to the naturally picturesque and tranquil alpine village of Hanmer Springs, nestled in a valley surrounded by a superb expanse of mountains and forest clad hills.
Relax in the hot thermal pools of the Hanmer Springs Thermal Reserve before continuing on to Kaikoura, located in a narrow strip of stunning coastline that lies between mountain peaks and the Pacific Ocean. (2 nights)
This morning, board your boat and enjoy the awesome experience of a 3-hour whale-watch excursion. This is a unique experience and sightings may vary from day to day. Giant sperm whales are the star of the show and are year-round residents.
A typical Whale Watch tour may encounter fur seals, pods of Dusky dolphins and the endangered Wandering Albatross. Depending on the season, you may also see migrating Hump Back whales, Pilot whales, Blue whales and Southern Right whales. Kaikoura also attracts the largest concentration and variety of seabirds on mainland New Zealand including 13 species of Albatross, 14 varieties of Petrel as well as 7 types of Shearwater.
Drive north to the picturesque village of Havelock where you leave your vehicle and join your scenic Greenshell Mussel cruise. Take in the natural beauty of this tranquil environment, learn about the history of the Marlborough Sounds and the pioneering families who have settled here. Visit a Greenshell Mussel farm and enjoy freshly steamed mussels with a glass of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, a wonderful wine and food match, in a beautiful part of Marlborough. At the end of your cruise disembark at your resort.
For those choosing the Boutique level of accommodation, drive to Picton and join your Seafood Odyssea Cruise to the Bay of Many Coves. Enjoy the natural beauty of the Queen Charlotte Sound, visit a Marlborough salmon farm, learn about aquaculture in the Marlborough Sounds and take in the picturesque scenery. Enjoy tasting of Regal salmon and Tio Point oysters with Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc for the definitive wine/food match before disembarking at your resort. (2 nights)
A day to relax and marvel at the magic that is the Marlborough Sounds. Resort staff will share their love of the Sounds with you through the range of water and nature based experiences they put at your fingertips. The wide beach access is great for fishing, boating, sailing, swimming and sea-kayaking. There is a wealth of walks and meanderings in the immediate vicinity or you could relax with a massage or spa treatment.
Return to Picton or Havelock by water taxi and drive on to Nelson, a city of charm based on a harbour that is home to the busiest fishing port in New Zealand. The region also enjoys the greatest number of sunshine hours in New Zealand and boasts many award-winning wineries, arts and crafts centres. (2 nights)
Join the the boat Taranuiat Stephens Bay for “The Best Abel Tasman Day Trip”. Explore the Abel Tasman National Park’s coastline; past Split Apple Rock, Kaiteriteri, Marahau, round golden sandy bays, Adele and Fishermans Islands, then on to the Tonga Island seal colony.
Taranui’s cruise itinerary is flexible so if there is something to see on the day trip, like dolphins riding the bow wave or New Zealand fur seals fishing, then we’ll go take a look. Similarly if there’s a particular bay you want to visit or park feature you want to see, then please let the skipper know and he’ll try to accommodate your wishes.
After you’ve said goodbye to the seals the skipper will find a sheltered bay for a light lunch. You can swim, sea kayak, go ashore for a bush walk, or just relax onboard Taranui. There is plenty of snorkeling equipment if you are keen to work up an appetite and kayaks on board for your enjoyment. (L)
Travel south through the Nelson Lakes region before arriving on the West Coast. Marvel at the bizarre limestone landscapes that is the Punakaiki Pancake Rocks and Blowhole. The track has many lookouts and areas for fantastic photos to be taken of the Pancake Rocks, Blowholes and the beautiful mountain views.
The best time to visit the blowholes is at high tide when they are at their most powerful. The Truman Track is a short walk worth doing while you’re here – nearing the coast it passes through typical West Coast flax flats before emerging onto a sprawling headland with stunning views up and down the local shoreline.
The West Coast is home to towering rainforests, mountains and glaciers, tranquil lakes and rushing rivers. It is steeped in history dating back to the gold rush era of the 1860’s. On arrival in Greymouth return your rental car to the Greymouth depot before checking in for your train journey to Christchurch.
The TranzAlpine Train is described as “The Great New Zealand Rail Adventure” and is rated as one of the top six scenic train journeys in the world. Ascend through lush beech forests past the beautiful Lake Brunner via 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 and across the Canterbury Plains before arriving in 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.
There are 9 reviews of this tour from past clients of Relaxing Journeys, averaging 4.7 out of 5.
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Discover the north of the South! Whale watching, thermal springs and experience for yourself the legendary Abel Tasman Maritime Park, an outdoor enthu... Read More
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