7 Days/6 Nights
Explore New Zealand by Self-Drive Car. Flexible Daily Departures
The wildest side of New Zealand, the West Coast has the power to touch your soul with its landscape of awesome mountains, icy glaciers, primal forest and fantastic coastal formations. Experience living remnants of the last Ice Age, see a stunning landscape carved by ice and if you’re feeling really adventurous, take a guided hike on the glacier!
Welcome to Christchurch, the ‘Garden City’. Pick up your rental car. Overnight Christchurch
From Christchurch, travel South across the Canterbury Plains, through farming communities before climbing up to high plains of the McKenzie Country, pausing at the Church of the Good Shepherd to view Lake Tekapo. Continue to Mount Cook village nestled under New Zealand’s highest mountain, Mt Cook. The mountain overlooks a network of glaciers that feed Lakes Tekapo and Pukaki.
There are a number of activities including guided walks, hikes, Glacier Boat Cruise, Glacier Sea Kayaking, visit the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre, or take a scenic flight by ski plane or helicopter that will enable views of Mt Cook and the glaciers. From Mount Cook return along the length of Lake Pukaki then head south through Twizel and Omarama to the scenic Lindis Pass. Once over the pass follow the Clutha Valley to its junction with the Kawarau Gorge at Cromwell.
Queenstown is reached by following the “gold trail” alongside the winding Kawarau River. Queenstown nestles up to the northern shore of Lake Wakatipu from where it commands an expansive view of the peaks that surround the lake.
Today’s coach tour will take you through the magnificent beech forests of the Eglington and Hollyford Valleys, through the Homer Tunnel to Milford Sound for a launch excursion on the fiord. Enjoy the breathtaking scenery including the awe-inspiring Mitre Peak with a full commentary on the natural history of the fiord. Picnic lunch is included. Upon conclusion return to Queenstown.
Today is free to enjoy the many leisure pursuits. There is a huge selection of things to see and do.
This morning depart the hotel for a full day journey Franz Josef on the West Coast. During the trip you will traverse Kawarau Gorge, Hawera River, and Lake Wanaka. Travel through Haast and continue on to Franz Josef
Today is at leisure. Available optional activities include walks, scenic helicopter flights or heli-hikes and guided ice climbing. There are good walkways up to the glaciers. Near Fox Glacier, a visit of the “mirror lake” Matheson is recommended.
Today travel north to Greymouth, drop rental car and board the scenic Tranz Alpine Train for a rail journey famous for its spectacular mountain scenery as it traverses the Southern Alpsthat divide the East and West coasts of the South Island. Travel across the Canterbury Plains to Christchurch arriving at approximately 6:35pm.