9-Day South Island Adventure from Christchurch

Multi-day & Extended Tours, Christchurch International Airport to Christchurch International Airport

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Tour description provided by Viator

This 9-day tour, will take you on an unforgettable adventure around the lower South Island of New Zealand with a knowledgeable local guide. The first destination is the iconic Franz Josef Glacier, where the journey to get there is just as impressive as the destination. We'll visit Fiordland, revered as one of New Zealand's most scenic national parks where we board an overnight boat cruise through Doubtful Sound, rich in marine life and untouched rain forest. You will have a two full days to make the most of Queenstown, the adventure capital of the world. Then you journey north to stay at the base of New Zealand's highest mountain, Aoraki/Mt Cook, the perfect place to enjoy a scenic walk in the heart of a dramatic alpine landscape. The adventure comes to an end in Christchurch.
Day 1: Depart from Chirstchurch Airport and travel via the famous Arthur’s Pass and down to the West Coast. En route you will visit Hokitika, famous for pounamu (jade) before arriving in Franz Josef, home of the mighty glacier. (D) Day 2: The day is spent in Franz Josef, a World Heritage area. As well as the glacier, the area is famous for its excellent walking trails. There are many great options but a guided trip (at passengers own expense) will enable you to get closer to the glacier. (B) Day 3: Head down the coast toward Mount Aspiring National Park, stopping at Lake Matheson, New Zealand’s most photographed lake. On arrival in Mount Aspiring National Park, go jet boating. Experience the best in shallow water boating while skimming just inches from the riverbed, see pristine waterways, snow-capped peaks and native bush. (B, D) Day 4: Your first port of call is Fiordland National Park. Located within the Park is Doubtful Sound, a true treasure of New Zealand. You will board a purpose-built boat and, with the help of a nature guide, you’ll see fur seals, penguins and dolphins. The night is spent on the boat, anchored within a secluded bay. (B, D) Day 5: Departing midday we leave behind the stunning Fiordland to head for the "adventure capital of the world", Queenstown. Queenstown is a bit of a party-town with excellent restaurants, pubs, nightclubs and live music. (B) Day 6 - 7: You have two free days to fully explore everything on offer. Queenstown is a great place to spend a few days, no matter your past-time of choice. Some optional activities may include AJ Hackett Bungy, Canyon Swing, Skyline Gondola and Luging (own expense). (B) Day 8: Jump back on the bus for a short drive to Wanaka to spend the morning on a scenic bike ride around the lake. After lunch, journey through the picturesque Mackenzie region to the base of New Zealand's highest mountain, Aoraki/Mt Cook, where you have time for an afternoon hike through the stunning Hooker Valley or opt to take an alpine scenic flight (own expense). (B, D) Day 9: Today, make your way through a landscape made famous in the 'Lord of the Rings' films. You'll stop on the shores of turquoise Lake Tekapo to stretch our legs and take some photos. You have the option to join a thrilling white water rafting adventure on the Rangitata River (own expense) or carry on to Christchurch where your driver will point out the city's highlights to you. Rafter will rejoin the group in Christchurch in the evening, where your tour officially comes to an end. (B)

What’s included

  • Accommodation for 8 nights
  • Experienced local tour guide
  • Transport by air-conditioned mid coach
  • Some meals: Breakfast (8), Dinner (4)
  • Exclusive Doubtful Sound Overnight Cruise
  • Jet Boat Ride in Makarora
  • Scenic bike ride in Wanaka
  • Pounamu jade factory
  • Walk the Hooker Valley track, Mt Cook National Park
  • Explore Lake Tekapo area

What’s not included

  • Food and drinks - other than meals specified under inclusions
  • Extra optional activities which can be booked directly with your Driver (pay as you go)

Highlights

  • Multi-Day Trip
  • Small-group tour
  • Perfect introduction for first-time visitors
  • Informative, friendly and professional guide

Itinerary

Day 1: Depart from Chirstchurch Airport and travel via the famous Arthur’s Pass and down to the West Coast. En route you will visit Hokitika, famous for pounamu (jade) before arriving in Franz Josef, home of the mighty glacier. (D)
Day 2: The day is spent in Franz Josef, a World Heritage area. As well as the glacier, the area is famous for its excellent walking trails. There are many great options but a guided trip (at passengers own expense) will enable you to get closer to the glacier. (B)
Day 3: Head down the coast toward Mount Aspiring National Park, stopping at Lake Matheson, New Zealand’s most photographed lake. On arrival in Mount Aspiring National Park, go jet boating. Experience the best in shallow water boating while skimming just inches from the riverbed, see pristine waterways, snow-capped peaks and native bush. (B, D)
Day 4: Your first port of call is Fiordland National Park. Located within the Park is Doubtful Sound, a true treasure of New Zealand. You will board a purpose-built boat and, with the help of a nature guide, you’ll see fur seals, penguins and dolphins. The night is spent on the boat, anchored within a secluded bay. (B, D)
Day 5: Departing midday we leave behind the stunning Fiordland to head for the "adventure capital of the world", Queenstown. Queenstown is a bit of a party-town with excellent restaurants, pubs, nightclubs and live music. (B) Day 6 - 7: You have two free days to fully explore everything on offer. Queenstown is a great place to spend a few days, no matter your past-time of choice. Some optional activities may include AJ Hackett Bungy, Canyon Swing, Skyline Gondola and Luging (own expense). (B)
Day 8: Jump back on the bus for a short drive to Wanaka to spend the morning on a scenic bike ride around the lake. After lunch, journey through the picturesque Mackenzie region to the base of New Zealand's highest mountain, Aoraki/Mt Cook, where you have time for an afternoon hike through the stunning Hooker Valley or opt to take an alpine scenic flight (own expense). (B, D)
Day 9: Today, make your way through a landscape made famous in the 'Lord of the Rings' films. You'll stop on the shores of turquoise Lake Tekapo to stretch our legs and take some photos. You have the option to join a thrilling white water rafting adventure on the Rangitata River (own expense) or carry on to Christchurch where your driver will point out the city's highlights to you. Rafter will rejoin the group in Christchurch in the evening, where your tour officially comes to an end. (B)
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