image of route map

If you have more time for an in-depth exploration of the stunning variety of New Zealand’s South Island, then this deluxe 19 day tour will be perfect for you.

From Christchurch, cross the Canterbury Plains to the incredible oceanside setting of Kaikoura, where the snow capped mountains meet the sea. Kaikoura is a whale watching mecca, and also offers the opportunity in summer to swim with dolphins.

Continue through the wine-growing region of Marlborough to the arts center of Nelson, and go kayaking in the charming Abel Tasman National Park.

Continue to the remote and beautiful West Coast, and the Punakaiki pancake rocks. Further south, you’ll have the opportunity for heli-hiking and skydiving in Franz Josef Glacier. Next, ascend through imposing, rainforest-cloaked mountain scenery to Haast Pass, and the relaxed lakeside town of Wanaka.

Queenstown offers thrills, excellent food, luxury and excellent golf opportunities, before you continue through to Milford Sound – arguably the most beautiful place in all New Zealand.

Discover Scottish influence in Dunedin, and visit the Albatross Colony on the Otago Peninsula. Journey to Lake Tekapo and the delightful Church of the Good Shepherd. Finally, make a daytrip to Mt Cook, before finally returning to the city of Christchurch.

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The Port HillsChristchurch CathedralAntarctic CenterChristchurch Museum

Christchurch to Kaikoura

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

Kaikoura to Nelson

246 km, 3h 5min
Swimming with DolphinsWhale WatchingSeal Pup ViewingChrist Church Cathedral (Nelson)

Abel Tasman Daytrip

130 km, 2h 50min
Abel Tasman National ParkKayakingSwimmingWalking

Nelson to Westport

222 km, 2h 50min
Buller River RaftingCape FoulwindDenniston Mine

Westport to Hokitika

140 km, 1h 45min
PunakaikiCoastal SceneryHokitika PounamuHeli-Rafting

Hokitika to Franz Josef

134 km, 1h 40min
Franz Josef GlacierLake MapourikaHot PoolsHelihikeScenic Heli FlightsSkydiving

Franz Josef to Wanaka

285 km, 3h 20min
Fox GlacierHaast PassBlue PoolsMakarora

Wanaka to Queenstown

89 km, 1h 20min
ArrowtownKawarau BungyMilford Sound Flights


Jetboat RidesFun YaksKawarau BungyMilford Sound FlightsHiking TrailsSkiing

Queenstown to Te Anau

171 km, 2h 10min
Te Anau Glow Worm CavesKepler TrackMilford Sound

Milford Sound Return, ex Te Anau

235 km, 2h 50min
Milford SoundScenic CruiseThe Chasm

Te Anau to Dunedin

290 km, 3h 50min
Albatross ColonyLarnach CastleDunedin Railway StationOtago Peninsula

Dunedin and Otago Peninsula

65 km, 2h
Penguin & Seal ViewingAlbatross ColonyTaieri Gorge Railway

Dunedin to Omarama

234 km, 3h
Moeraki BouldersOamaru Historic CentreClay Cliffs

Dunedin to Lake Tekapo

285 km, 3h 30min
Moeraki BouldersChurch of the Good ShepherdStargazingLake Tekapo

Mt Cook daytrip from Lake Tekapo

210 km, 2h 30min
Mt CookGlacier ExplorersGlacier Flights

Lake Tekapo to Christchurch

241 km, 3h 40min
Canterbury PlainsThe Port HillsChristchurch CathedralAntarctic CenterChristchurch Museum

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.
  • +1 night if you wish to spend time in the wine growing district of Marlborough, north of Kaikoura.

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.

Overnight Stops

  • 1 night in Christchurch
  • 1 night in Kaikoura
  • 2 nights in Nelson
  • 1 night in Westport
  • 1 night in Hokitika
  • 1 night in Franz Josef
  • 1 night in Wanaka
  • 2 nights in Queenstown
  • 2 nights in Te Anau
  • 2 nights in Dunedin
  • 1 night in Omarama
  • 1 night in Lake Tekapo
  • 1 night in Christchurch