image of route map

If you have the time to experience more of the very best of New Zealand, this deluxe journey across the country will be perfect for you.

The route loops through the South Island, covering highlights including Lake Tekapo & Mt Cook on the way to Queenstown. If you have extra time, you could also add the Scottish-influenced city of Dunedin and the Otago Peninsula.

Visit New Zealand’s most remarkable scenery at Milford Sound, then journey up the West Coast to Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers. Explore the glaciers on foot or by helicopter. Continue north, following the road leading through the alpine heights of Arthur’s Pass. Head across the Canterbury Plains to Kaikoura, where you can go whale watching, albatross viewing, or swimming with dolphins. You’ll pass through the wine growing region of Marlborough, en route to Wellington, New Zealand’s hip and attractive capital city.

The volcanoes of Tongariro are bound to impress you. If you’re feeling energetic, take on the Tongariro Crossing – among the best day hikes on Earth. You’ll explore Rotorua, where you’ll find extensive Maori cultural experiences, as well as renowned thermal areas, complete with boiling mud, geysers and luxury spas.

Finally, make your way to Auckland, New Zealand’s ‘City of Sails.’ If you have extra time, wind down at the end of your trip with a couple of nights on Waiheke Island, known for its excellent wineries, rolling green hills and superb beaches.

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The Port HillsChristchurch CathedralAntarctic CenterChristchurch Museum

Christchurch to Lake Tekapo

227 km, 3h
Canterbury PlainsChurch of the Good ShepherdStargazingLake Tekapo

Lake Tekapo to Omarama

199 km, 2h 50min
Lake PukakiMt CookGlacier FlightsAlpine Salmon Farm

Omarama to Te Anau

346 km, 4h
Lindis PassCromwell Fruit PickingTe Anau Glow Worm CavesKepler Track

Milford Sound Return, ex Te Anau

235 km, 2h 50min
Milford SoundScenic CruiseThe Chasm

Te Anau to Queenstown

171 km, 2h 10min
Lake WakatipuQueenstown Activities & Attractions


Jetboat RidesFun YaksKawarau BungyMilford Sound FlightsHiking TrailsSkiing

Queenstown to Wanaka

89 km, 1h 20min
ArrowtownLake WanakaPuzzling World

Wanaka to Franz Josef

285 km, 3h 5min
Haast PassBlue PoolsHaast PassLake MathesonFox Glacier

Franz Josef to Hokitika

134 km, 1h 40min
The GlaciersLake MapourikaHokitika FallsHokitika Jade & Craft Shops

Hokitika to Christchurch

245 km, 3h 15min
Arthur’s PassCastle RockThe Port HillsChristchurch CathedralAntarctic CenterChristchurch Museum

Christchurch to Kaikoura

181 km, 2h 30min
Whale WatchingRoadside Seafood StallsAlbatross EncounterSwimming with Dolphins

Kaikoura to Wellington

157 km, 2h
Swimming with DolphinsOhau Seal PupsMarlborough WineriesMarlborough Sounds

Wellington to Tongariro

294 km, 3h 50min
Kapiti CoastWanganui National ParkMt Ngauruhoe & Mt Ruapehu

Tongariro to Taupo

130 km, 1h 40min
Mt Ngauruhoe & Mt RuapehuTongariro CrossingWhakapapaWinter Skiing

Taupo to Rotorua

82 km, 1h
Thermal ParksMaori Cultural PerformanceMountain BikingRedwoods

Rotorua to Auckland via Waitomo Caves

339 km, 4h 10min
Waitomo CavesRaglanHamilton Gardens

Optional Tour Extensions

By default, this tour is 18 days in length. It can be done in reverse, or customised however you wish. Here are some ideas:

  • +1 night if you wish to explore the Akaroa and the Banks Peninsula, near Christchurch.
  • +2 nights if you wish to visit Dunedin and the Otago Peninsula.
  • Remove 2 nights if you wish skip the drive to Milford Sound (the scenic flight from Queenstown takes 20 mins)
  • Optionally change your night in Hokitika to a night in Punakaiki, where you’ll find the Pancake Rocks.
  • You can optionally travel from Greymouth to Christchurch on the Tranz Alpine Train.
  • +1 night is recommended in Wellington, giving you time to explore attractive NZ’s capital city.
  • An alternative to going via Tongariro, is to go via Napier, New Zealand’s capital of art deco architecture.
  • You may like to +1 night in Waitomo or Hamilton, for more time at the Waitomo Caves and/or Hamilton Gardens.

What's Included?

General Inclusions

  • Private transfers to/from airport on arrival and departure day.
  • Driver-guide & vehicle on all days but arrival and departure day (this can be added for an additional cost on request).
  • All Breakfasts.
  • Route guide for your trip.
  • Optional free local sim card.
  • Full phone support and assistance.
  • Interislander Ferry

Overnight Stops

  • 1 night in Christchurch
  • 1 night in Lake Tekapo
  • 1 night in Omarama
  • 2 nights in Te Anau
  • 2 nights in Queenstown
  • 1 night in Wanaka
  • 1 night in Franz Josef
  • 1 night in Hokitika
  • 1 night in Christchurch
  • 1 night in Kaikoura
  • 1 night in Wellington
  • 1 night in Tongariro
  • 1 night in Taupo
  • 1 night in Rotorua
  • 1 night in Auckland