11 Day Pristine South

11 Day Pristine South

You’ll see New Zealand’s South Island in all of its splendour on this unique itinerary. Cruise the magnificent Milford and Doubtful Sounds, see Australasia's highest mountain and marvel at the mysterious Moeraki Boulders.

Book and pay your deposit by 30 November 2018 to receive a 5% discount off your tour price for this month

Tour Info

Tour Type: Self Drive Tours
From: Christchurch to Christchurch
Departures: May 2018 to March 2019
Price:
From (NZD) $2267 per person
Tour Operator: Relaxing Journeys
Duration: 11 Days
Tour Code: GNPS

Inclusions

10 nights accommodation
Rental vehicle of your choice
2 night stopovers in Queenstown, Te Anau & Dunedin
World Heritage listed Mt Cook National Park
Tasman Glacier Explorer Boat Excursion
Shotover Jet boat ride
Milford Sound Nature Cruise
Doubtful Sound Day Excursion
Otago Peninsula Tour & Cruise
Admissions outlined in the Itinerary
Airport transfers to/from your accommodation
Travel wallet, comprehensive customised itinerary, bound map book, accommodation & activity vouchers and local travel guides

Conditions

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 May 2018 – March 2019. 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.

Book and pay your deposit by 30 November 2018 to receive a 5% discount off your tour price for this month

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Day by Day Tour Itinerary

Day 1
Arrive Christchurch

“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.

What should you do first? Take it slow, sit back and relax, punting down the River Avon through the stunning Christchurch Botanic Gardens.

 

Your choice of accommodation

Day 2
Christchurch - Lake Tekapo - Mt Cook

Take delivery of your rental car this morning. Drive through the MacKenzie Country to Lake Tekapo, where you can stop to view the tiny Church of the Good Shepherd, built of local stone and oak in 1935.

Then it’s on to the Mt Cook National Park, a World Heritage listed site. Mt Cook is Australasia’s highest mountain at 3764 metres. The park covers over 70,000 hectares of breathtaking alpine scenery and is also home to the Tasman Glacier, the longest in the Southern hemisphere.

Speak to your consultant if you would like to include an optional Ski-plane or helicopter flight.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 3
Mt Cook - Wanaka

Experience the Tasman Glacier, New Zealand’s largest, in the most unique way possible. This morning, an experienced guide will whisk you away in a stable MAC Boat to explore the melting ice-face of the Tasman Glacier.

You will also get to touch and taste 400-year old icebergs that have been carved into the murky waters of the lake on this experience. Skirting the western shores of Lake Pukaki, continue your journey to the popular resort town of Lake Wanaka.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 4
Wanaka - Arrowtown - Queenstown

Set beneath the rugged and spectacular Crown Range is the historic gold mining village of Arrowtown, with its fascinating collection of mining cottages in an atmosphere straight out of last century. Take time to wander through its tree-lined streets before making your way to the Shotover River.

Nothing you have experienced will have prepared you for the excitement of this Shotover Jet boat ride as you speed through the towering rocky canyons of the South Island’s river of gold. Fifteen minutes away is the spectacular alpine resort village of Queenstown. (2 nights)

Your choice of accommodation

Day 5
Queenstown

Enjoy a full day to experience this magnificent resort. Surrounded by majestic mountains, Queenstown boasts adventure activities in all forms, from extreme to relaxed exploration. Here you can experience the Ultimate bungy jump, pan for gold, raft the white water rapids, follow a wine trail, fish for trout, play golf – your options are endless.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 6
Queenstown - Milford Sound - Te Anau

Depart Queenstown today and follow the southern arm of Lake Wakatipu to Lumsden and Te Anau. Join the Milford Road, driving through the beautiful Eglinton Valley and the famous hand-hewn Homer Tunnel to the Sound itself.

Here you board a purpose-built vessel, designed along the lines of a traditional trading scow, for an extended 2 ½ hour nature cruise the full length Milford Sound to the Tasman Sea. This magnificent glacier-carved fjord is home to the famous, mile-high Mitre Peak and you will view spectacular waterfalls, rainforests, mountains and wildlife whilst enjoying an extensive commentary from the on-board nature guide.

At the completion of your cruise, return to Te Anau for your overnight stay. (2 nights)

Your choice of accommodation

Day 7
Te Anau - Doubtful Sound - Te Anau

You will be collected from your hotel this morning and travel by coach to Manapouri. Your Doubtful Sound Wilderness Excursion begins as you cruise the crystal clear waters of Lake Manapouri, a stunning lake renowned for its numerous islands and deserted beaches.

Then it’s over Wilmot Pass, on one of New Zealand’s remotest and prettiest sub-alpine roads, stopping along the way to experience some of Fiordland’s densest rainforest and to view Doubtful Sound glistening far below. On reaching Deep Cove, you will board the Patea Explorer, for a three hour cruise that takes in the most dramatic scenery of Doubtful Sound.

Nature guides provide an engaging commentary and point out the highlights. Keep a look out for wildlife as bottlenose dolphins frequently swim alongside the vessel, fur seals bask on the rocks around the fiord and rare penguins can at times be observed.

After your cruise, reboard your coach and travel back to Te Anau.

Your choice of accommodation

Day UP
Doubtful Sound Overnight Upgrade Package

To experience the best of Doubtful Sound, upgrade your itinerary to include an overnight cruise and instead of returning to Te Anau, you will stay onboard the Fiordland Navigator for the night.

Return to Te Anau by coach the next day. This upgrade package adds an extra day to your itinerary.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 8
Te Anau - Dunedin

Drive across the Waimea plains towards the farming community of Gore, then travel through the rolling hill country of South Otago to Dunedin, the ‘Edinburgh of the South’.

This afternoon is at your leisure. If you’re still feeling energetic, there are two self-guided heritage walks available that will show you the highlights of Dunedin’s architecture. (2 nights)

Your choice of accommodation

Day 9
Dunedin

Cruise the length of the beautiful Otago Harbour. Experience unrivalled viewing of the exciting diversity of wildlife which abounds on spectacular Taiaroa Head – the only mainland nesting place for Northern Royal Albatross in the world, and home to New Zealand’s fur seals, and eight other nesting bird species.

You may also see, dolphins, sea lions and a fascinating array of rarely seen ocean birds including other species of albatross, penguins and marine mammals in their natural environment. Enjoy a scenic Peninsula tour by coach before returning to the city. The rest of today is at leisure.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 10
Dunedin - Moeraki Boulders - Oamaru - Christchurch

Head north along the coastal highway to Moeraki Beach, stopping to view its mysterious, spherical, 60 million year old boulders. On to the town of Oamaru, famous for its white limestone buildings.

Continue your journey north through the towns of Timaru, Geraldine and Ashburton as you make you way back to Christchurch.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 11
Depart Christchurch

Sadly your holiday is at an end. At leisure today until you return your rental car to the airport in time to connect with your onward flight.

Your choice of accommodation

5/5.0

There are 7 reviews of this tour from past clients of Relaxing Journeys, averaging 5 out of 5.

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

Tour Reviews

5
19/12/2015
We had a lovely time driving around the south of the South Island. All accommodation was good, clean and comfortable. Some of course better quality than others but all acceptable. Everything was well organised and we stepped into our hire car at Christchurch airport with GPS and map and the rest seamlessly happened. There was a lot of driving and in any other country this may not have been so desirable but the scenery was so spectacular. We particularly enjoyed Wanaka, Queenstown, Mount Cook and Arrowtown, the boys even got a bungy jump in after we had all cycled to the platform! Thank you Mani.
Overall Tour Rating

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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
23/03/2014
We had a great time Mani! The tour met all our expectations and then some. The only criticism I have, and it may have been out of your control, is that I would have preferred to collect our hire car the day we arrived rather than at our accommodation the next day. It would have given us a few more hours to explore if we had the vehicle sooner. Other than that, it all went like clockwork. We enjoyed all the tours and activities that were organised on our behalf. The only reason I'm giving 4/5 for Accommodation is that the Te Anau accommodation, relative to the other accommodation, was a little disappointing. The view of the lake was excellent but the room itself looked a bit tired and in need of a revamp. The staff however were excellent. Wanaka was probably our favourite spot. The self contained unit was easily the most comfortable (which is saying something) and the view of the lake was beautiful. Thanks again for your help. We will have no hesitation in recommending your services to anyone we know that is contemplating a visit to your beautiful country.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
05/03/2014
Toni was very helpful in pre holiday planning. The holiday itself was excellent with good accommodation & excellent trips. My only reservation was the hotel at Picton the Park Regis, which had seen better days. Otherwise a first class holiday. Thank you.
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
16/02/2014
We enjoyed a glitch-free customised 'Pristine South' trip having been re-scheduled due to a late-notice family wedding. This was all done for us which was fabulous. GPS was a bit unreliable, the rental car went well but sadly took a couple of hits (not our fault) which they initially were not very helpful about. They also take a $250 bond at car pick up, which we weren't expecting. Accommodation was excellent, the stand-outs being Hermitage, Maple Lodge and The George. All booked activities were well organised and excellent with Siberia experience our personal highlight. Real Journeys trips were also fantastic. After all this the Taieri train was slightly anti-climactic - should have done Dunedin first, we think now! Boat trip to see Albatross was great, but wish we'd known you could also combine it with a close up encounter with penguins. We loved Olveston House and strongly recommend it to all visitors to Dunedin, along with eateries Bacchus and Etrusco. In Queenstown - Chard Farm and Amisfield wineries were highlights. Info that may be helpful to include - the Glacier trip at Mt Cook includes two 20min walks; the Clay Cliffs detour takes over an hour and includes a charge to use a very rough private road, then a walk at the end. Finally, the underwater Discovery Centre at Milford - we could have fitted this in before our cruise but did not know of it until too late :-) All this said, we had a wonderful time, thanks so much!
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
17/02/2013
What a fantastic holiday! It would rate as one of our favourites. The B&B accommodation was just exquisite - our favourite would be the two nights we spent with Joceyln and Sandy at Glendinning House in Dunedin. Such wonderful hosts. Dinner bookings made on our behalf and driven into town each night by Jocelyn. The cruises were breathtaking on Doubtful and Milford Sounds. We were blessed with clear sunny days and had to buy summer clothes for the hot weather we experienced in Queenstown. The self-drive instructions were clear and gave accurate time estimates. We would not hesitate recommending this tour or the excellent organisation by Michelle and others at Relaxing Journeys. Looking to book a North Island self drive in early 2014!
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Relaxing Journeys Experience
5
05/02/2013
The tour was excellent. All hotels perfectly fitted our needs as we had described them to Kirby. The rooms for the early part of our tour were spacious, when we had our son and needed extra rooms. The boutique hotels at the end of the tour were all great - especially the Queenstown Park hotel which was simply outstanding - the service was fabulous and we would recommend that hotel to anyone, anytime. Kirby was very patient with us throughout the process - as our son had several visa issues and we had to reschedule the tour several times. We were very pleased with her service and are very grateful she was able to work with us. We would use Relaxing Journeys anytime.
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5
21/12/2010
Craig was very helpful finding accommodations and reservations for us for all the activities we desired. We especially enjoyed the Minarette Lodge in Wanaka. Our host, Gary, cooked the trout my husband and son caught, helped us get a tire changed on our rental car, and organized horseback riding for three of us. He introduced us to some of the better local wines our first evening and was an enthusiastic breakfast chef. We drove to and from Milford Sound, a lovely and interesting ride. We all loved the night on the boat. The following day, we took a slight detour on the way back to Queenstown to visit Lumsden (because it was mentioned on Craig's itinerary) and ate at the Mayfly Cafe. The food was unusual and delicious, worth recommending on your tours.
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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).

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11 Day Pristine South
Self Drive Tours
Tour Code: GNPS
From (NZD) $2267 per person
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Terms and conditions apply. Please see tour overview for more information.

Rating:
7 reviews (5/5)

You’ll see New Zealand’s South Island in all of its splendour on this unique itinerary. Cruise the magnificent Milford and Doubtful Sounds, see Au... Read More

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