Introduction

Discover the spectacular South Island of New Zealand, taking in the southern loop from Christchurch down the central spine of the Southern Alps and onto the East and West Coasts. The TranzAlpine train journey from Greymouth to Christchurch is included, a great way to finish off your holiday experience!

During the course of this South Island coach tour you will also have free time in Dunedin, Queenstown and Franz Josef to experience some of the unique and regional optional sightseeing activities including Taieri Gorge Railway or Cadbury World in Dunedin, Nomad Safaris 4WD safari in Queenstown and a helicopter flight in the Glacier region as well as many more options for those wishing to explore further.

Highlights
  • World Heritage listed Mt Cook National Park
  • Dunedin, the Edinburgh of the South
  • Fiordland National Park
  • Spectacular Southern Lakes region
  • West Coast Glacier region

What's included

  • Tour Group Size

    Maximum 48 travellers

  • Accommodation

    9 nights accommodation in superior hotels

  • Dining

    9 fully cooked breakfasts (B) & 7 dinners (D)

Travel
  • Travel by luxury touring coach
  • Services of a professional Coach Captain
  • Hotel porterage
  • Complimentary private airport transfers
Featured Experiences
  • Milford Sound Scenic Cruise
  • Coast to Coast TranzAlpine train journey
Iconic Sightseeing
  • Lake Tekapo & Church of the Good Shepherd
  • Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre
  • Traditional Scottish Haggis Ceremony
  • View Moeraki Boulders
  • Guided tour of Larnach Castle
  • Walter Peak Cruise & Dinner

Itinerary

View Tour PDF
  • Duration:  10 days & 9 nights
  • Area:  South Island
  • Meals:  9 breakfasts & 7 dinners
  • Starts in:  Christchurch
  • Ends in:  Christchurch

On arrival in Christchurch, a Kirra Holidays representative will greet you at the airport with transport waiting to take you to your hotel.

Cross the Canterbury Plains with the Southern Alps to the west. Stop to view the Church of the Good Shepherd and the Collie Dog Memorial overlooking Lake Tekapo. Visit Mt Cook National Park, with time to enjoy the scenic majesty of New Zealand’s highest snow-capped peaks and a visit to the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre before travelling around Lake Pukaki to Twizel and Omarama.

Travel down the Waitaki Valley to Oamaru. Stop to view the mystical Moeraki Boulders, then on to Dunedin, the Edinburgh of the South. An early arrival allows you time to enjoy some of the many optional activities available. Prior to dinner this evening you will be treated to a traditional Scottish Haggis Ceremony complete with piper, address to the Haggis and gift.

Enjoy spectacular views across the Otago Peninsula as you travel to Larnach Castle. On your guided tour, learn about its tragic and mysterious history. Depart Dunedin and head inland, crossing rich farmlands to the agricultural towns of Gore and Lumsden, before arriving at the shores of Lake Te Anau, gateway to the Fiordland National Park.

Drive through the Homer Tunnel into spectacular Milford Sound, the world renowned natural wonder dominated by Mitre Peak. Cruise the entire length of the fiord and enjoy the on-board commentary that gives you detailed information on the region’s history, flora and fauna as you view spectacular waterfalls, towering mountains and wildlife.

*** Overnight cruises on Milford Sound or Doubtful Sound are also available today subject to availability – ask us for details ***

Continue north to Kingston, then skirt around the shores of Lake Wakatipu to the picturesque alpine resort of Queenstown. This evening, cruise across the lake aboard the vintage steamship TSS Earnslaw before reaching the Colonel’s Homestead at Walter Peak High Country Farm for a gourmet barbecue dinner.

  • stay at Millennium Hotel Queenstown (2 nights)

Today is a free day to experience this magnificent resort. Queenstown boasts an incredible array of adventure and leisure activities and your Coach Captain can assist with any optional activities you would like to do. Take a ride on the world famous Shotover Jet Boat, travel to the top of Bob’s Peak by gondola for spectacular views, take a tour to the gold mining area of Skippers Canyon or for the adventurous, try white water rafting. Alternatively, browse in the many shops and galleries.

Pass picturesque Lake Hayes on the way to Arrowtown, an area steeped in fascinating history relating to early settlement and the gold mining era. Stop at Lake Wanaka, a picture postcard resort on the lakes edge with a spectacular mountain backdrop. View the untouched wilderness and pristine lakes of the Mt Aspiring and Westland National Parks before arriving on to the West Coast, home to the twin glaciers of Fox and Franz Josef.

At Greymouth, board the famous TranzAlpine train. Renowned as one of the most scenic train journeys in the world, this coast to coast rail adventure will take you though the Southern Alps, over massive viaducts, river valleys and gorges.

Sadly, it’s time to say goodbye to all your new friends. You will be transferred to the airport to join your flight home.

Gallery

Tour Dates

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(*) G = Guaranteed Departure