If you like trains you are in for a treat as you begin the Glacier tour with a trip aboard the famousTranzalpine Express. From Christchurch travel alongside the Waimakariri River,pass through the home of the cheeky Kea (native New Zealand parrot), Arthurs Pass National Park and on through theOtira Tunnel to the West Coast, a place of so much natural beauty and wonder you are spoilt for choice.
You can choose to view the Fox or Franz Joseph Glaciers by foot or helicopter and also spend time taking in the coasts wonderful vistas with bushwalks and sightseeing.
From there you will travel through Haast and Mt Aspiring National Park following the Maori greenstone trail, emerging from the bush, you will come to the gorgeous Lake Wanaka, cross over the gushingClutha River, pass through the deeply devine Kawarau Gorge, to the shores of Lake Wakatipu and then arrive in the playground of the South Island, Queenstown.
Delights of your stay in Queenstown include a night of Maori celebration at the Skyline Gondolaperched 450 metres high above Queenstown. Imagine the views!
Once you have indulged youself in all Queenstown has to offer you will travel to the stunning Milford Sound where you will enjoy a leisurely cruise, where you may see dolphins and seals frolicking about. Back on dry land you will carry on to Te Anau situated on the shores of the South Islands largest lake.
Your next coach trip will take you to the “Edingburgh of the South” Dunedin, where you can spend a day touring the city attractions and admiring the Victorian and Edwardian architecture.
On conclusion of your visit to Dunedin you will travel via coach up the East Coast, enjoying the coastal views and crossing many rivers to arrive in Christchurch.
7 day(s) 6 nights
Reporting time 7.30 am at the Intercity terminal, 118 Bealey Ave (between Colombo St and Durham St intersections). Departs at 8.00 am EVERY DAY
Additional Nights – Available to any destination of your choosing. You can add an extra night for a competitive rate. If you would like to extend your tour, please advise your consultant when making your booking. We definitely recommend that you spend extra nights prior to and after your tour to explore the gateway destinations, as these provide many unique attractions worth going the extra mile for.
All our New Zealand coach tours can be adapted to your individual specifications. If a tour does not entirely suit you, we can provide a personalised coach touring holiday that fits you like a glove. All you need to do is let us know what you want to do, and we will organise it for you.
Transfers are included between your accommodation and transport on the Tour. If you need to we can book your pre-tour arrangements or you can make your own way to the Tour departure location.
The tours operate every day and use routine train, ferry and motor coach services. All hotel, motel accommodation, transportation and essential sightseeing are pre-arranged for you.
Are meals included on your Tours?
Hotel and Motel accommodation on the tour are not inclusive of meals. There are many local restaurants and cafe’s from which you can sample, for your dining pleasure. Breakfast options are available to you and these can be provided on enquiry with your consultant.
Is there a Tour Guide travelling with us on the trip?
As you will be travelling independently, on scheduled coach and rail services, this is an unescorted tour. Unless otherwise stated your tour drivers will provide commentary for you to enjoy while you relax in comfort.
Can you tell me the difference between Silver and Bronze accommodation.
With Silver accommodation your stay will be in selected hotels or motor inns that are centrally located. They have a selection of bars and restaurants for your perusal, and deluxe rooms with the facilities expected of superior accommodation. With Bronze accommodation your stay will be in motels or hotels centrally located at your destination. Some of the motel accommodation will provide kitchen facilities, TV, radio etc.
Do I have to carry my own bags or will somebody do it for me?
With Gold and Silver hotels accommodation a porter will be able to assist you with your bags. Bronze accommodation does not have porters, but should you need assistance your driver will be happy to help.
I am travelling alone but I do not want to pay the single room supplement. Can you find me a roommate?
Regrettably we are unable to match you up with another traveller as the occurrence of another person travelling on the same tour with the same dates and class as you is extremely unlikely.
Where do your tours depart from?
The Auckland coaches depart from the Intercity terminal, at Sky City , Hobson Street . Auckland trains depart from the Britomart railway station. The Christchurch coaches depart from the Intercity Terminal at 118 Bealey Ave (between Colombo St and Durham St intersections). Christchurch trains depart from the Addington railway station at Clarence Street in Riccarton .
The Tranz Alpine Express takes us out of the city and across the Canterbury Plains through sheep and grain growing areas to Springfield where we head off to follow the Waimakariri Valley and the Craigieburn State Forest Park to the open country around Cass. Arthur’s Pass and the National Park of the same name are in the heart of the mountains, which are pierced by the Otira tunnel. We emerge alongside the Taramakau River, and follow it down to our Greymouth destination.
Greymouth to Fox or Franz Joseph Glacier
We join our Intercity Coach for the journey to the Glaciers. The towns of Kumara and Hokitika were once the centres of feverish gold mining activity. The narrow coastal strip of land between the mountains and the sea becomes more forested as we journey further south through Ross, Hari Hari and Whataroa to reach the glacier region.
Today you can take the option of viewing the Glacier by foot or helicopter. You can also go on a bushwalk or spend time sightseeing.
Leaving the glaciers the drive to Haast town ship offers beautiful views of the bush slopes and wild coastline. After Haast the route turns inland to Pleasant Flat and the northern margins of Mt Aspiring National Park to the Gates of Haast, the most recent pass across the Alps The route you follow is that of the ancient Maori greenstone trail, which climbs steeply through rocky terrain, with breathtaking views of Mt Brewster and the many rivers and waterfalls that cross this area.
At Makarora the bush begins to thin as you speed towards lovely Lake Wanaka, and soon after Lake Hawea. At the southern end of these great reservoirs is the surging Clutha River, which is crossed as you traverse Hawea flat to Luggate and Cromwell. From here the road twists and coils its way through the formidable Kawarau Gorge, following the swift Kawarau River to its source at Frankton, on the shores of Lake Wakatipu.
A short trip from Frankton brings us into Queenstown, a place internationally renowned as one of the great alpine resorts.
Please note: You may like to travel part of the way by jetboat. Please enquire if you would like to do this.
In the evening you will enjoy a night of entertainment, after riding on the Skyline Gondala, at the Skyline with the Kiwi Haka Show.
Reputed to be the steepest lift in the Southern Hemisphere, the gondola carries visitors high above Queenstown to the Skyline complex located on Bob’s Peak. Sit back and relax as the views from the gondola unfold while you journey to the Skyline complex. The best vistas in the region are found here, spread out in a spectacular 220 degree panorama.
Experience Maori culture Kiwi Haka style! Feel the spirit of the Maori’s proud history with the fearsome Haka and the stunning poi display. Mythical legends and stories come alive through traditional song and dance in an authentic and powerful live show.
Today is completely at your leisure to enjoy the many sights of this alpine resort situated on the shores of Lake Wakatipu.
Queenstown offers something for everyone – you can enjoy the quiet beauty and tranquility of this mountain retreat and enjoy several walking trails in the town area.
For sheer excitement there is white-water rafting, helicopter rides, the famous jet boats and bungy jumping to pump your adrenalin.
There are cruises on the lake, visits to high country sheep stations. You can visit nearby Arrowtown where the main street has been preserved since the 1860’s gold rush days and you can try your luck and pan for gold in the adjacent Shotover River.
In the morning you will board your Great Sights coach to Milford Sound.
Journey along the edge of Lake Wakatipu, through Kingston and Mossburn, to Te Anau. “The Key”, an aptly named village, opens the door to the Fiordland National Park. Continue on through the Eglington Valley to the Mirror Lakes. Follow the “Avenue of the Disappearing Mountain”, past Cascade Creek and Lake Gunn and onto The Divide, before proceeding through the Hollyford Valley to Homer Tunnel, a man-made tunnel, cut out of the rock wall, to emerge in the Cleddau Valley, and into Milford Sound.
Join your Milford Sound Cruise to explore the wonder of this majestic fiord and see Mitre Peak, one of the highest mountains in the world to rise directly from the ocean floor. View the Stirling and the Bowen Falls as your cruise takes you out to the mouth of the Pacific Ocean Spot the seals and watch out for dolphins – they may be seen surfing the bow wave of the boat.
Following the cruise, your coach will return via the same route and into Te Anau in the early evening.
As we take a coach trip to Dunedin you will see the countryside becomes greener and more productive as we near Gore, a centre of the Southland sheep farming industry, and this environment continues right through to Milton and Lake Waihola before we reach the “Edinburgh of the South”, Dunedin.
The afternoon and the morning of tomorrow is completely at your leisure to enjoy the many sights of this city , which features Victorian and Edwardian spires and towers, neo-Gothic buildings and stately homes. Perhaps visit Speights Brewery for a tour through a working brewery.
Cadbury Chocolate World offers a fascinating and fun filled guided Chocolate Factory tour. You may choose to visit Olveston House, a modern masterpiece of the Edwardian Era, this 35 room mansion was offered as a gift to the city of Dunedin in 1966.
The city is also renowned for its proximity to incredible wildlife. The Otago Peninsula, a brief drive from the city centre, is home to a colony of the world’s rarest penguins, the only mainland breeding colony of the royal albatross, rare New Zealand sea lions and the magnificent Larnach Castle. Dunedin is also known for such tourist attractions as the Taieri Gorge Railway, recognised as one of the world’s great train journeys.
Leaving Dunedin city on your Intercity Coach, the road takes you up across Mt Cargill before returning to sea level at the peaceful Waitati inlet. Then it is across the Kilmog to Palmerston and you follow the shoreline northwards through Hampden, (the site of the Moeraki boulders) before you reach the town of Oamaru with its distinctive whitestone buildings.
After crossing the Waitaki River you reach the seaside city of Timaru, noted for its artificial harbour, and Caroline Bay, before crossing the Canterbury Plains. The mountains of the Southern Alps and main divide are to your left as you traverse the many rivers that built up this alluvial land structure. Soon you will reach Christchurch, which is noted for its similarity to many English towns and cities.
|Bronze Accommodation||Silver Accommodation||Gold Accommodation|
|Single||NZ $2,709.00||NZ $3,109.00||NZ $3,619.00|
|Twin Share||NZ $1,899.00||NZ $2,159.00||NZ $2,369.00|