Culture, history, scenic gems & more

AUCKLAND TO CHRISTCHURCH

Land of the Long White Cloud

SELF DRIVE TOUR

AUCKLAND | BAY OF ISLANDS | ROTORUA | NAPIER | WELLINGTON | KAIKOURA | CHRISTCHURCH  LAKE TEKAPO | QUEENSTOWN | TE ANAU | MILFORD SOUND | DOUBTFUL SOUND | DUNEDIN  WANAKA | FRANZ JOSEF GLACIER

This fantastic 3 week tour of New Zealand includes all the highlights of both the North & South Islands. With the flexibility of taking a self drive option or using coach transfers, this tour allows you to see the North and South Islands however you choose. Explore the delights of the Bay of Islands, Rotorua and the Hawke’s Bay vineyards. Cruise the Cook Strait, ride the spectacular TranzAlpine train and cruise both Milford and Doubtful Sounds - truly amazing experiences.

This tour offers you a choice of transportation. Choose either to self drive the route in a rental vehicle or alternatively sit back and let someone else do the driving on a coach travel option.

24 Days
From £2865 Per Person

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  1. Day 1

    Arrive Auckland

    Arrive into Auckland and transfer independently to your hotel.  The remainder of the day is free to explore.

    Hotel: Value - Scenic Hotel Auckland; Standard - Stamford Hotel; Superior - Crowne Plaza.

  2. Day 2

    Auckland - Bay of Islands (240 kms)

    Collect your rental vehicle this morning from the downtown office. Head north over Auckland’s Harbour Bridge though the northern suburbs and beaches of the Hibiscus Coast to the beautiful Bay of Islands. The remainder of the afternoon is at leisure.

    Hotel for 2 nights: Value - Scenic Hotel;  Standard - Scenic Bay of Islands;  Superior - Copthorne Bay of Islands (Seaview)

     

  3. Day 3

    Bay of Islands

    Today the choice is yours to view the Bay of Islands from the water or visit Cape Reinga, New Zealand’s most northern point where the Pacific Ocean and Tasman Sea’s crash together. Choose from either a Cape Reinga Day Tour, Cape Brett Hole in the Rock Cruise, Dolphin Adventure or the historic and more leisurely Cream Trip cruise.

  4. Day 4

    Bay of Islands - Auckland (240 kms)

    Today enjoy a leisurely drive south back to Auckland. The remainder of the day is at your leisure.

    Hotel: Value - Scenic Hotel Auckland; Standard - Stamford; Superior - Crowne Plaza.

  5. Day 5

    Auckland - Rotorua - via Waitomo (360 kms)

    This morning leave Auckland and travel south through the farming city of Hamilton to Waitomo Caves. A guided glow-worm cave tour is included. From Waitomo continue over the Mamaku Ranges to Rotorua. 

    Hotel for 2 nights: Value - Ibis Hotel; Standard - Sudima Hotel; Superior - Millennium Hotel

  6. Day 6

    Rotorua

    Today’s sightseeing incorporates Rotorua’s best attractions. A guided tour of Te Puia and the Maori Arts & Crafts Institute to see roaring geysers and boiling mud pools, Rainbow Springs Kiwi Wildlife Park, the Agrodome Leisure Park famous for its entertaining sheep show, a gondola cable car to the Skyline complex and Polynesian Spa, New Zealand’s leading international day spa and hot mineral baths (mineral bath admission only included). This evening attend a traditional Maori Hangi meal and Cultural Show.

  7. Day 7

    Rotorua - Napier (220 kms)

    Today travel south through the world’s largest man-made forest to Taupo and onto Hawkes Bay with its Art Deco buildings and dramatic history.

    Hotel for 2 nights: Value & Standard - Scenic Te Pania; Superior - Scenic Te Pania (suite)

  8. Day 8

    Napier

    Today is free to explore.

  9. Day 9

    Napier - Wellington (340 kms)

    Travel south over the Rimutaka Ranges to the Wairarapa and continue to Wellington.

    Hotel for 2 nights: Value - Thorndon Hotel; Standard - Rydges; Superior - Sofitel

  10. Day 10

    Wellington

    Today is free to explore Wellington.

  11. Day 11

    Wellington - Kaikoura

    Self Drive passengers: return your rental vehicle at Wellington Ferry Terminal prior to boarding the ferry.

    Board the Interislander ferry, crossing the Cook Strait and cruise through the picturesque Marlborough Sounds to Picton where you board the Coastal Pacific^ train and travel south along the coast to Kaikoura.

    Hotel: Value - Lobster Inn; Standard - White Morph Inn Studio Room; Superior - White Morph Inn Spa Room.

  12. Day 12

    Kaikoura - Christchurch

    This morning meet the giant sperm whales off the coast of Kaikoura on your Whalewatch cruise. This afternoon reboard the Coastal Pacific^ and travel to Christchurch.

    Hotel: Value - Heartland Cotswold; Standard - Rydges Latimer; Superior - The George.

  13. Day 13

    Christchurch - Tekapo / Mount Cook (230 kms)

    Self Drive passengers: collect your rental vehicle this morning from the Christchurch Airport rental office.

    Today’s journey is across the Canterbury Plains and through Burke’s Pass to Lake Tekapo / Mount Cook.

    Hotel: Value & Standard - Peppers Tekapo; Superior - Hermitage Mount Cook

  14. Day 14

    Lake Tekapo / Mount Cook - Queenstown

    Into the Mackenzie Country and beyond the scrub with its vast expanses of tussock, over the Lindis Pass into Queenstown via the Kawarau Gorge.

    Hotel for 2 nights: Value - Heartland Hotel;  Standard - Novotel Queenstown Lakeside; Superior - Crowne Plaza

  15. Day 15

    Queenstown

    Today is free to explore this alpine resort. Included is a ride on the Skyline Gondola.

  16. Day 16

    Queenstown - Milford Sound - Te Anau (430 kms)

    South to Te Anau, the gateway to the Fiordland National Park. The road climbs steadily to the Homer Tunnel before descending through rugged mountains and forest to Milford Sound. Cruise Milford Sound and enjoy the breathtaking scenery, and unparalleled beauty. Return to Te Anau following your cruise.

    Hotel for 3 nights: Value & Standard - Distinction Luxmore; Superior - Distinction Te Anau

  17. Day 17

    Doubtful Sound

    Cruise across Lake Manapouri and take a coach over Wilmot Pass to board the Fiordland Navigator. Enjoy the stunning views and discover the hidden arms of Doubtful Sound. As the shadows lengthen, you will drop anchor for the night and enjoy an evening buffet meal.  Overnight onboard the Navigator*

    *Overnight cruise does not operate from 01 Jun to 31 August, during this time you will stay overnight in a Te Anau hotel and enjoy a day cruise on Doubtful Sound.

  18. Day 18

    Te Anau

    Breakfast is included on board this morning. After your cruise you will be returned to Te Anau where the rest of your day is at leisure.

  19. Day 19

    Te Anau - Dunedin (290 kms)

    Make your way to Dunedin today and enjoy the afternoon exploring this Scottish influenced city. A great option is to drive the Otago Peninsula.

    Hotel: Value - Mercure Leisure Lodge; Standard - Scenic Hotel Dunedin City; Superior - Distinction Dunedin

  20. Day 20

    Dunedin - Wanaka (280 kms)

    Travel through the rich fruit producing regions of central Otago, along the shores of Lake Dunstan to the alpine lakeside village of Wanaka. 

    Hotel (all grades): Edgewater Resort

  21. Day 21

    Wanaka - Franz Josef Glacier (290 kms)

    Your journey today takes you along the West Coast, through the awesome Haast Pass, to the Glacier towns of Fox Glacier and Franz Josef.

    Hotel for 2 nights (all grades): Scenic Franz Josef

  22. Day 22

    Franz Josef Glacier

    A free day to relax or explore the captivating Franz Josef Glacier. Optional activities include rainforest walks, indoor ice climbing and the Franz Josef Hot Pools complex.

  23. Day 23

    Franz Josef Glacier - Christchurch (via Greymouth) (190 kms + rail)

    From Franz Josef travel through Hokitika to Greymouth. Here self drive clients will return their rental vehicle. Board the TranzAlpine Train, New Zealand’s premier alpine rail journey. Travel through lush beech forest, past lakes and rivers before ascending the Southern Alps to Arthur’s Pass which leads across the main divide. From here descend through the foothills of the Alps onto the fertile Canterbury Plains to Christchurch.

    Hotel: Value - Heartland Hotel; Standard - Rydges Latimer; Superior - The George

  24. Day 24

    End of Tour

    Your tour ends today with the check out from your hotel.

Departs Daily: Year Round

  • 22 nights Value Grade hotel accommodation as shown, based on two sharing 
  • 1 night Doubtful Sound Overnight Cruise (see day 17 for exception)
  • Tranz Alpine Train
  • Coastal Pacific Train^
  • Milford Sound Cruise
  • Queenstown Skyline Gondola
  • Whale Watching at Kaikoura
  • Marlborough Sounds ferry crossing
  • Rotorua sightseeing
  • Maori Hangi and Concert in Rotorua
  • Bay of Islands activity as selected (see day 3)
  • Transportation as selected
  • Self Drive Option includes Group B all inclusive rental days 2-11 & 13-23, one way drop charges & New Zealand Road Atlas

^Train does not operate in low season when coach travel is substituted (or 1 extra day rental for self drive). Prices are adjusted accordingly.

 

  • Flights to/from New Zealand
  • Fuel & parking fees for rental vehicle (selfdrive option)
  • Sightseeing or attractions unless stated above
  • Meals (unless meal option is purchased)
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Land of the Long White Cloud
From £2865 Per Person

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