7Days
of Southern Wonders

Route

Queenstown  to  Christchurch

Highlights

New Zealand’s South Island is blessed with some of the most spectacular scenery on earth. Experience the stunning alpine landscape of Queenstown before heading to the fiords of Milford Sound and Doubtful Sound, past snow-capped Mount Cook and on to Christchurch.

New Zealand’s South Island is widely regarded as having some of the most spectacular scenery on earth.

Start your trip in magnificent Queenstown, framed by mountain peaks and beautiful Lake Wakatipu, before heading to the breathtaking fiords of Milford Sound and Doubtful Sound, rich in native flora and fauna. Continue from Fiordland to snow-capped Mount Cook before finishing in Christchurch, New Zealand’s ‘Garden City'.

 

Day 1

Queenstown

Queenstown’s natural beauty and diverse range of activities will blow you away from the moment you arrive.

Enjoy stunning alpine views on a cruise across Lake Wakatipu on the historic steamship, the TSS Earnslaw, known as the ‘Lady of the Lake’ by locals. Alternatively, a gondola ride up Bob’s Peak offers some of the most spectacular views of the Queenstown area, particularly at sunset.

Day 2

Queenstown

Queenstown offers something for everyone. Adrenaline junkies can indulge in bungy jumping, jet boating and hang gliding. In winter, Queenstown is a snow lover’s paradise. There are six ski fields nearby offering opportunities for snow sports including skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing and tubing.

Those after a more relaxing experience can head to nearby wineries in the Gibbston Valley for tastings or a delicious alfresco lunch.

Day 3

Milford and Doubtful Sound

From Queenstown, join a one-day tour to the stunning fiords of Milford Sound or Doubtful Sound. Travel to your destination by coach and take in the scenery on a boat cruise or guided kayaking tour. Flight transfers are also available between Queenstown and Milford Sound for those who want to take in one of New Zealand’s most beautiful regions by air.

Milford Sound, set amidst a landscape of majestic mountains, native forest and beautiful waterfalls, was described by author Rudyard Kipling as the eighth wonder of the world. Doubtful Sound is sometimes called the 'sound of silence' and is home to bottlenose dolphins and fur seals. In season, you may also catch a glimpse of the rare Fiordland Crested Penguin.

Day 4

Queenstown and Mount Cook

Start your day with a rush, panning for gold on a 4WD tour of beautiful, remote Skippers Canyon, once a busy gold mining area. Skippers Bridge, suspended 90m over the dramatic Shotover River, is one of the most spectacular of its kind in New Zealand.

Travel three and a half hours north from Queenstown to New Zealand’s highest mountain, Aoraki/Mount Cook. The trip offers breathtaking scenery as the road meanders alongside the Southern Alps and picturesque lakes.

Day 5

Mount Cook, Lake Tekapo and Christchurch

Join a Glacier Explorers tour from Aoraki/Mount Cook to the nearby Tasman Glacier, New Zealand’s longest and largest glacier. There are many short walking trails in the Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park, ranging from 10-minute walks to four-hour hikes that will take you through the surrounding native alpine bush area.

Keen photographers may wish to stop at Lake Tekapo, a turquoise glacial lake on the way to Christchurch, to photograph the Church of the Good Shepherd - possibly New Zealand’s most photographed church. The hot pools overlooking the lake are a great way to relax and unwind before continuing to Christchurch.

Day 6

Christchurch

Start your day in the Garden City relaxing on a small wooden punting boat as an Edwardian punter glides you down Christchurch’s Avon River, past the city’s spectacular botanic gardens.

For a unique shopping experience, don’t miss the re:START shopping space in the city centre. The shopping centre, made up of vibrantly-coloured converted shipping containers, houses a variety of shops, ranging from premium fashion, food and iconic New Zealand products.

Nature lovers or those seeking a Māori cultural experience might prefer to spend the day at Willowbank Wildlife Reserve. The reserve houses a variety of New Zealand wildlife, including the iconic kiwi bird. There’s also an on-site simulated pre-European Māori village providing guests with a taste of Māori culture.

Day 7

Christchurch

On your way to the airport to catch your flight home or connecting flight to Auckland, consider visiting the International Antarctic Centre, located next to Christchurch International Airport. You will have the chance to view penguins, ride the amphibious all-terrain Hagglund vehicle and learn all about the icy continent in the centre’s indoor snow and ice experience.