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14 Day New Zealand Vista

The 14 Day New Zealand Vista Tour takes you on a journey of discovery.  From Auckland you’ll travel south all the way to Milford Sound.  Along the way you’ll marvel at the glow worm caves of Waitomo, experience rural life at Agrodome and explore our unique Maori culture at Te Puia and Tamaki Village.  After crossing the Interislander ferry to Picton you’ll head south to Christchurch, then on to Mt Cook National Park where you’ll spend a night at the Hermitage Hotel.  Dunedin is next before you continue south to Te Anau and Milford Sound for your spectacular nature cruise.  Heading north you spend 2 nights in Queenstown with a special dinner at Walter Peak before crossing to the West Coast glaciers.  The final leg of your journey takes you back to Christchurch on board the Tranz Alpine scenic train.

 Independent (daily departures)
 Starts in Auckland, finishes in Christchurch
 14 days/ 13 nights
 Hotel 3 star
  Customisable? YES Enquire Enquire
 Viewed 45 times in the last 7 days

Included in this tour package

Waitomo glow worm caves, New Zealand
Maori culture, New Zealand

At a glance - 14 Day New Zealand Vista

Day 1: Welcome to Auckland City. Accommodation: Grand Mercure Auckland

Day 2: Auckland to Waitomo, then onto Rotorua where you'll visit Agrodome, Te Puia and Tamaki Maori Village for dinner. Accommodation: Sudima Lake Rotorua

Day 3: Explore Rotorua. Accommodation: Sudima Lake Rotorua

Day 4: Rotorua to Wellington. Accommodation: Hotel Ibis Wellington

Day 5: This morning is free to explore Wellington, then catch the ferry to Picton. Accommodation: Hotel Beachcomber Inn Picton

Day 6: Picton to Christchurch. Accommodation: Hotel Ibis, Christchurch

Day 7: Christchurch to Mt Cook National Park. Accommodation: Hermitage Hotel standard room Mount Cook view

Day 8: Mt Cook to Dunedin. Accommodation: Scenic Hotel Dunedin City

Day 9: Dunedin to Te Anau, gateway to Fiordland National Park. Accommodation: Distinction Luxmore Hotel

Day 10: Te Anau to Milford Sound for a nature cruise, then on to Queenstown. Accommodation: Mercure Resort Queenstown

Day 11: Explore Queenstown at leisure, this evening visit Walter Peak Station for dinner. Accommodation: Mercure Resort Queenstown

Day 12: Queenstown to Franz Josef Glacier where you're taken on a short tour to view the glacier. Accommodation: Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier

Day 13: Franz Josef to Greymouth train station, then catch the iconic Tranz Alpine train to Christchurch. Accommodation: Hotel Ibis, Christchurch

Day 14: Depart Christchurch today.

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14 Day New Zealand Vista - Detailed Itinerary  

Day 1: Welcome to Auckland City

Personal meet and greet, and private transfer to your accommodation

On arrival you will be met by one of our team and driven to your Auckland accommodation.

Welcome to Auckland City

Auckland, New Zealand’s self-proclaimed ‘City of Sails’ is the country’s largest metro area. Resting between the Pacific Ocean and the Tasman Sea, this urban paradise has something for everyone. Surrounded by native bush, rainforests and an abundance of beaches, Auckland is a playground for both the city savvy and those with an eye for adventure. Explore the central museums and galleries on foot, or take a drive through one of over 800 regional National Parks to see deserted beaches, waterfalls and native forest.

SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Harbour Dinner Cruise Sailing Experience

This unique on-water dining experience is not to be missed while you're in Auckland.  Enjoy smooth sailing on the Waitemata Harbour - then watch this photogenic city come alive with twinkling lights. Your experienced crew will talk about Auckland’s highlights and there will opportunity try your hand at steering.

At our sheltered mooring you'll be served delicious New Zealand fare - choose from a delectable three course menu catered for by Snapdragon, a renowned Viaduct Restaurant.

Your Accommodation: Grand Mercure Auckland

Located in the heart of the Auckland Waterfront district the Mercure Auckland overlooks the spectacular harbour and bustling city. Within walking distance of downtown shopping and attractions it is the ideal hotel for your Auckland stay.

Grand Mercure Auckland

Day 2: Auckland to Waitomo, then onto Rotorua where you'll visit Agrodome, Te Puia and Tamaki Maori Village for dinner

Auckland to Waitomo and Rotorua full day Experience with Great Sights including lunch

This full day tour has it all! From the magical glowworms and world-famous limestone formations of Waitomo to the rich cultural heritage and geothermal bounty of Rotorua. Includes a visit to the glow worm caves, a maori cultural performance, a visit to the Agrodome and bubbling mud pools and geysers.

Tamaki Maori Village cultural tour and dinner

Journey back in time to a Pre-European lifestyle experience of customs and traditions. Enjoy the night's festivities with the people of Tamaki Maori Village as you are treated to a banquet of succulent foods cooked the traditional Maori way. Rediscover the Maori village as it comes alive to the sound and activities of tribal songs, dances, myths and legends and browse throughout the largest after hour's tribal market place in Rotorua. Includes dinner.

Your Accommodation: Sudima Lake Rotorua

The Sudima Hotel Lake Rotorua enjoys a location that is second-to-none on the very shores of beautiful Lake Rotorua, adjacent to the world famous Polynesian Spa complex and just a short stroll to all the attractions in Rotorua.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Speciality Dinner

Sudima Lake Rotorua

Day 3: Explore Rotorua

Explore Rotorua

Peppered with natural hot springs, boiling mud pools and steaming geysers, Rotorua sits within one of the worlds most active volcanic regions. But geothermal landmarks aside, this city of sulphur has a rich indigenous history. Home to several prominent Maori tribes, a visit to the Mitai Maori Village should be high on your agenda, as should an excursion to the Polynesian Spa for an invigorating soak in its natural mineral hot springs.
Live on the edge when you hop aboard a helicopter bound for White Island, New Zealand’s most active volcano. Spike your adrenaline at Agroventures on stomach-dropping attractions such as static skydiving, or a giant swing reaching 130 km per hour. Go up the Gondola for soaring lake views, and ride the luge at night for an extra thrill.
Fans of Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit should drive to nearby Matamata and experience the actual movie set ‘Hobbiton’. Make the most of your time in Rotorua with an excursion through the Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, one of the area’s most colourful volcanic attractions.

SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Rotorua Forest Canopy Tours

Embark on a three hour adventure through native New Zealand forest. Journey through the beautiful forest canopy via an incredible network of trails, tree platforms, Ziplines and swing bridges. See breathtaking views of the woodland valleys and hills as you fly through tight openings in the trees.

In between the thrill of the ziplines and suspended tree bridges, your guides will share their passion and knowledge for the forest and the conservation challenges to preserve it. 

SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Polynesian Lake Spa

Rotorua's Polynesian Spa offers a unique thermal spa experience on the shore of Lake Rotorua.  You’ll enjoy tranquil bathing and lake views in four shallow alkaline rock pools, each with different temperatures (36˚C to 42˚C). Here you are surrounded by revitalising native New Zealand flora, natural rocks, the sound of two waterfalls and a grotto. The pools are filled with soothing alkaline mineral water leaving your skin soft and supple. Relax in the outdoor relaxation area overlooking the four hot mineral pools and Lake Rotorua, here you can further unwind on the five geothermally heated recliners set in the stunning backdrop of New Zealand's lush and natural greenery. A large indoor relaxation lounge also overlooks Lake Rotorua, where as a Lake Spa guest, you are welcome to move from the pools to the lounge once dried off and return to bathe in the Lake Spa pools as you wish. The Lake Spa is a unique thermal pool environment, where the atmosphere changes from day to night, and from winter steam to summer sparkle.

Your Accommodation: Sudima Lake Rotorua

The Sudima Hotel Lake Rotorua enjoys a location that is second-to-none on the very shores of beautiful Lake Rotorua, adjacent to the world famous Polynesian Spa complex and just a short stroll to all the attractions in Rotorua.

Meals included: Breakfast

Sudima Lake Rotorua

Day 4: Rotorua to Wellington

Rotorua to Wellington with Intercity

Your coach journey from Rotorua to Wellington takes you via the township of Taupo and New Zealand's largest lake, Lake Taupo. The lake itself is actually a gigantic volcanic caldera formed during one of the worlds largest ever eruptions. Through Tongariro and onto the central plateau and the high country Rangipo Desert. Skirting Tongariro National Park, one of New Zealand’s three world heritage sites and clouds permitting you can see the 2,500 metre peak of the still volcanically active Mt. Ruapehu. You might recognise the symmetrical shape of Mt. Ngauruhoe as this was used as the scenery of Mt. Doom in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. A little further the military town of Waiouru also hosts the Army Museum, an incredible collection of New Zealand’s military history and a memorial to its servicemen. Heading south you pass through the rural towns of Taihape, Mangaweka and Bulls before arriving on the Kapiti Coast, with its coastal seaside towns of Paraparaumu, Paekakariki and Plimmerton.  The Kapiti Coast leads into Wellington, New Zealand's capital.  Wellington sits on a wonderful deep natural harbour and is surrounded by bush clad hills. The city centre itself is quite compact (only around 1 square kilometre), so exploring on foot is relatively easy. From your city centre accommodation you can easily stroll the cafes and restaurants around Courtenay Place and explore New Zealand's national museum, Te Papa, which is also close by.

Your Accommodation: Hotel Ibis Wellington

Hotel Ibis Wellington is ideally located in Featherston Street in the heart of Wellington City and easy walking distance to Wellington's famous cafe lifestyle.

Meals included: Breakfast

Hotel Ibis Wellington

Day 5: This morning is free to explore Wellington, then catch the ferry to Picton

Wellington's museums - suggested activity

Te Papa

Te Papa means 'our place' and is considered to be the 'museum of New Zealand'. The building opened in 1998 and since then has shown millions of visitors it's fascinating and unique collection of New Zealand's art, history, memorabilia, natural wonders, treasures and stories as well as hosting many international displays.
One of the finest collections of Maori artefacts can be found here as well as displays dedicated to the many different cultures that make up New Zealand's current population. Make sure you allow enough time to explore museums many floors. The museum is open 10am to 6pm and is free to visit. A small fee may be applicable to some short term visiting displays.

Museum of Wellington City & Sea

Housed in the iconic Bond Store on Wellington’s waterfront, the Museum of Wellington is dedicated to the preservation and study of Wellington’s rich social and cultural history. It provides a backdrop for the permanent display of the people and events that have made Wellington what it is today. The Museum’s atmosphere is thick with history. The Bond Store dates back to 1892, when it was a cargo warehouse and head office of the Harbour Board. Careful restoration has preserved the building’s striking facade, as well as solid timber beams and the original flooring inside. The latest technology is used to further stimulate your senses. Traditional displays sit alongside interactive exhibits, holographs and a giant cinema screen that stretches the length and breadth of an entire wall, a feature unique in Australasia. The collection includes over 95,000 items. Open 10am to 5pm entry is free. 

Private transfer to Interislander ferry terminal

You will be collected from your hotel and transferred to the Interislander ferry terminal in time for your ferry check in.

Interislander ferry Wellington to Picton

The 92 km journey between Wellington and Picton takes around 3 hours and has been described as 'one of the most beautiful ferry rides in the world'. Leaving Wellington Harbour you pass many interesting points such as Pencarrow Head on top of which is New Zealand's oldest lighthouse (1859). Red Rocks is home to a seal colony and Oterangi Bay is the site which recorded the country's highest ever wind speed of 268 kph (167 mph).

From the Cook Strait spectacular views of the Kaikoura Ranges on the South Island can be enjoyed and dolphins and many sea birds are often seen. Around one hour of the cruise takes you through the Marlborough Sounds and this region of bush covered mountains, small islands, crystal clear waters and secluded bays offer remarkable photographic opportunities. The final leg of your cruise travels through Queen Charlotte Sound before coming to an end in the picturesque town of Picton.

Picton Ferry Terminal to your Picton accommodation

You will be met at the Picton Ferry Terminal and transferred to your Picton accommodation.

Your Accommodation: Hotel Beachcomber Inn Picton

The Beachcomber Inn enjoys a sunny central location near the waters edge along the waterfront. Close to the busy town centre this hotel is in an enviable position.

Meals included: Breakfast

Hotel Beachcomber Inn Picton

Day 6: Picton to Christchurch

Picton Accommodation to Picton Coach Stop

You will be collected from your Picton accommodation and transferred to the Picton Coach Stop.

Picton to Christchurch via Murchison with Intercity

Heading south from Picton you soon arrive into the grape growing areas around Blenheim. Famous for their sauvignon grape variety the region is the largest in New Zealand. Many of the wineries welcome visitors to their cellar doors. Continuing south following the path of the Wairau River and the Richmond Mountain Range you arrive into the Nelson Lakes region. The Buller River begins its journey to the coast from Lake Rotoroa and the route from here follows its path closely. The town of Murchison is a quiet place and a great lunch stop.

From Murchison you will travel south to Maruia Springs, known for its natural hot springs. Your coach will journey inland over the Lewis Pass where the landscape becomes increasingly alpine - with large forests of red and silver beech. Enjoy the view as you descend to the Canterbury Plains and take in the rolling farmland dotted with vineyards, as you journey through the North Canterbury wine region, the Wiararapa Valley.

Private transfer Intercity coach stop to accommodation

A private transfer will collect you from the coach stop and transfer you to your accommodation.

Your Accommodation: Hotel Ibis, Christchurch

Superbly situated in the very heart of the garden city, Hotel Ibis Christchurch is located just off Cathedral Square, and is close to cafes, restaurants, museums and many of Christchurch's most popular attractions.

Meals included: Breakfast

Hotel Ibis, Christchurch

Day 7: Christchurch to Mt Cook National Park

Christchurch to Mt. Cook National Park with Great Sights

Today you head into the heart of the South Island. Crossing the vast Canterbury Plains you head into Mackenzie country. Ascending Burkes Pass, you'll enter New Zealand's high country. The picturesque town of Lake Tekapo, is the first of the large Southern Lakes on your journey and enjoy a short stop here to enjoy the picturesque lake and one of the most photographed buildings in the country, the Church of the Good Shepherd. Continue onto Lake Pukaki and on clear days you will be rewarded with a spectacular views of Mt Cook, towering over the lake. The spectacular scenic drive along the lake delivers you into the heart of the national park and Mt. Cook Village.

SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Glacier Explorers Mt. Cook

Enjoy a glacier experience that is unique in New Zealand and one of only three in the world. Get up and close and personal with icebergs, on a glacial terminal lake.

It is extremely rare for a glacier to terminate into a lake and rarer still to find one that is accessible to visitors. Join your group on our boat for an intimate encounter with a glacier -- see massive icebergs and soaring ice cliffs. You'll experience seldom seen and inaccessible parts of New Zealand's largest glacier in a safe way aboard your boat. Few people can say they have seen, touched and tasted 500 year old ice. Now you will be one of them!

Tours depart from Mount Cook Village outside The Hermitage Hotel, where you'll board a small bus for an enjoyable trip to the Tasman Valley. This is followed by a relaxing 30 minute stroll through the National Park to your waiting MAC boat. Now it’s time to witness the changing ice face of the Tasman Glacier and the icebergs it spawns on the Tasman Glacier Lake. Throughout your 2.5 hour trip (45 min to 1 hour on the lake) your experienced guide offers an informative and entertaining commentary that ensures you don't miss a thing.

SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre Explorer Pass

A tribute to New Zealand's Sir Edmund Hillary - humanitarian, ambassador and one of the world's greatest explorers - the centre showcases the Aoraki Mount Cook region and its people within a comprehensive museum as well as a 126-seat custom-designed theatre and Digital Dome Planetarium.

Your Accommodation: Hermitage Hotel standard room Mount Cook view

The Hermitage Hotel ringed by magnificent snow-capped peaks of the Southern Alps, is a world-renowned tourist destination and has been an icon of superior accommodation and dining since 1884.

Meals included: Breakfast

Hermitage Hotel standard room Mount Cook view

Day 8: Mt Cook to Dunedin

Mt Cook to Dunedin with Iconic

In the afternoon you will be picked up from your accommodation in Mt Cook Village for the journey through to Dunedin.  Along the way you stop for a short break in Omarama, then onto Oamaru for a scenic tour of the historic Whitestone Prectinct.  You will then enjoy a guided walk along Koekohe Beach at Moeraki Boulders before reaching Dunedin, where you will be dropped off at your accommodation.

SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Speights Brewery Tour and Dinner

Speights Brewery was founded in 1876 and still occupies its original Dunedin site, with several of its buildings dating back to the late -1800's. Speights has proudly kept its rich heritage and it is one of the last remaining 'gravity breweries' still operating in the world. Speight's Gold Medal Ale is the flagship beer made at the historic brewery. This is the beer that immortalised the Southern Man legend, celebrated in story and song for over 128 years. You’ll begin with a 90 minute tour of this historic site which also includes a tasting session of six Speights beers. After your tour sit down to a 2 course dinner at the Alehouse and enjoy the hearty fare of the south.

Your Accommodation: Scenic Hotel Dunedin City

Just two blocks from the Octagon in the heart of the city, Scenic Hotel Dunedin City is close to shops, parks and the best city attractions and services. The hotel provides excellent 4-star accommodation to Dunedin's visitors.

Meals included: Breakfast

Scenic Hotel Dunedin City

Day 9: Dunedin to Te Anau, gateway to Fiordland National Park

Dunedin accommodation to coach stop transfer

You will be collected from your accommodation and transferred to the coach stop in time for your departure.

Dunedin to Te Anau by Intercity coach

Enjoy this scenic coach trip across the magnificent Southland Countryside from the Edinburgh of the South, Dunedin, to Te Anau, gateway to Fiordland National Park

Private Transfer - Te Anau Coach Depot to Accommodation

On arrival min Te Anau, you will be met by a representative from Trips and Tramps and transferred to your Te Anau accommodation. Please advise your driver your transfer is pre-paid.

SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Te Anau Glow Worm Caves

Begin your Te Anau Glowworm experience with a scenic cruise across lake Te Anau on board the luxury catamaran, Luminosa, to the western side of the lake. On arrival you’ll enter the caves through Cavern House, where informative displays detail the history of this 12,000 year old underground network.

You’ll then explore by limestone pathway while your guide points out hidden whirlpools, sculpted rock formations and a rushing underground waterfall. See a magical display of thousands of glowworms as you glide through the darkness in a small boat.

Your Accommodation: Distinction Luxmore Hotel

The perfect base for all your Fiordland travel, Distinction Luxmore Hotel provides comfortable accommodation right in the heart of Te Anau.

Meals included: Breakfast

Distinction Luxmore Hotel

Day 10: Te Anau to Milford Sound for a nature cruise, then on to Queenstown

Milford Sound Nature Cruise with return luxury coach transfers from Te Anau, and onto Queenstown

From Te Anau, you travel by coach along the spectacular Milford Road. Photo stops are made on the way into Milford, with additional photo stops and a short walk on the return journey. Real Journeys experienced drivers enjoy sharing their knowledge of the area. On reaching Milford Sound, you join a Nature Cruise for a leisurely cruise the full-length of Milford Sound to the Tasman Sea. The cruise provides excellent viewing opportunities and plenty of time is available to enjoy waterfalls, rainforest, mountains and wildlife. A nature guide provides fascinating interpretation throughout the cruise. Lunch options and complimentary tea and coffee are available on board the vessel.

Milford Sound

Milford Sound is the best known of the sounds that lie throughout Fiordland National Park and is also the only fiord accessible by road. Sheer cliffs starting hundreds of metres below the waters surface rise spectacularly to the sky. It is 16 kilometres from the head of the fiord to the open sea and Real Journeys cruise ships will take you there and back comfortably in around 2 hours. Dolphins and seals can often be seen, and following a large downpour the waterfalls that line the fiords are magnificent, particularly the 146 metre high Stirling Falls.

The cruise

An extended and leisurely cruise of Milford Sound on board a modern vessel, purpose built for operating in a fiord environment. Designed along the lines of a traditional trading scow, they have real character. These relaxing cruises have special appeal for the independent traveller and an on board nature guide provides detailed interpretation and commentary. There is plenty of time available to explore points of interest and to view the stunning scenery, including waterfalls, rainforest and the towering peaks. Keep a lookout for dolphins, seals and penguins.

Your Accommodation: Mercure Resort Queenstown

Mercure Resort Queenstown is located near the shores of Lake Wakatipu, only 3 minutes drive from the centre of town. The hotel boasts spectacular views over the lake and the Remarkables Mountain Range.

Meals included: Breakfast

Mercure Resort Queenstown

Day 11: Explore Queenstown at leisure, this evening visit Walter Peak Station for dinner

Free day in Queenstown

Although celebrated as New Zealand's ‘adventure capital’ Queenstown offers far more than a fast paced action-packed holiday. Settled on the shores of Lake Wakatipu beneath a soaring panorama of the Remarkables Mountain Range, this alpine town is surrounded by a plethora of historic, gastronomic and scenic wonders. Head down the Gibbston valley wine trail to sample some of the region’s best Pinot or catch a ride on the 100 year old Steamship - the TSS Earnslaw -  to Walter Peak Station for dinner and a farm tour. Browse the waterfront cafes and have lunch at Michelin star chef Josh Emett's ‘Rata.’ Check out nearby historic Arrowtown and enhance your experience with a four wheel drive trip to Macetown. Take a leisurely lakeside stroll or ride the gondola for breathtaking views. Venture further afield into the Fiordland National Park or head over the Crown Range to Wanaka. Drive through Lord Of The Rings country - or for the really fanatic, jump aboard one of many dedicated LOTR tours. And after all of that - if you do really want the adrenaline rush Queenstown is known for, take your pick from the Shotover Jet, Nevis Bungy, Canyon Swing, Zipline, Luge or White Water rafting.
 

SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Jet Boat the Shotover Canyon

Jet boating on the Shotover River is one of the must do Queenstown activities, even the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge climbed aboard ‘Big Red’.  During this unforgettable ride you’ll skim across shallow water, past rocky outcrops as you hurtle through the narrow chasm of the Shotover Canyon before your skilled driver takes you into a scream worth 360 degree spin.

SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Skyline Gondola

Hop aboard the Skyline Gondola - the steepest cable car lift in the Southern hemisphere - and take in the awe-inspiring views of this spectacular landscape. Sit back and relax as you enjoy panoramic views of The Remarkables, Walter Peak, Cecil Peak and Coronet Peak - one of Queenstown’s Ski field.

TSS Earnslaw cruise to Walter Peak including gourmet BBQ dinner and a farm tour

Enjoy a dinner cruise from downtown Queenstown to Walter Peak High Country Farm aboard the vintage steamship TSS Earnslaw – an iconic Queenstown experience.

Take in the stunning views of Lake Wakatipu and surrounds as you cruise across the lake to historic Walter Peak high country farm. You’ll be greeted of the boat and guided through beautiful lakeside gardens to the charming homestead.

Enjoy the ambience of the heart of the stately homestead while your Colonel’s Homestead Restaurant chef prepares a gourmet BBQ dinner. Your seasonal menu includes an extensive selection of local New Zealand produce, including succulent meats and a selection of delicious vegetables and salads.  Complete your meal with your choice of delicious desserts, New Zealand cheeses and tea & coffee. After dinner, you’ll enjoy a short demonstration of life in the high country.

Now it’s time to cruise home under the southern stars. Join a sing-a-long with the on board pianist or simply enjoy the fresh night air as the lights of Queenstown draw ever closer.

Your Accommodation: Mercure Resort Queenstown

Mercure Resort Queenstown is located near the shores of Lake Wakatipu, only 3 minutes drive from the centre of town. The hotel boasts spectacular views over the lake and the Remarkables Mountain Range.

Meals included: Breakfast, Speciality Dinner

Mercure Resort Queenstown

Day 12: Queenstown to Franz Josef Glacier where you're taken on a short tour to view the glacier

Queenstown to Franz Josef Glacier

Depart Queenstown by coach passing through Cromwell, Wanaka and Hawea before travelling over the magnificent Haast Pass into Westland. On arrival transfer to your accommodation. A local shuttle is available to take you to the glacier base where you can enjoy some short walks and magnificent views. Perhaps take a scenic helicopter flight for the ultimate view. Spectacular photo opportunities abound of these huge ice masses. Watch out for keas (native parrots) and their inquisitive cheeky play.

Glacier Valley shuttle

You will be met at your accommodation by a representative from Glacier Valley Eco Tours and taken on a short tour to view the glacier. Your shuttle vehicle will transfer you up the Franz Josef valley to the road end. Here you will have the opportunity to walk to view the glacier from a viewing platform. Or enjoy one of the short walks available in this area. You will be returned to your accommodation by the Glacier Valley Eco Tours shuttle.

Your Accommodation: Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier

Located in the heart of Franz Josef Village the hotel offers all the amenities you would expect and is close to the shops, restaurants and activities on offer.

Meals included: Breakfast

Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier

Day 13: Franz Josef to Greymouth train station, then catch the iconic Tranz Alpine train to Christchurch

Franz Josef to Greymouth Train Station by Intercity Coach

This morning travel north through the small townships of Whataroa and Harihari. Stop at the Bushman’s Centre for refreshments and a chance to experience a bit of West Coast humour. Continue through the township of Ross, which in the late 1800s was the centre of one of New Zealand's richest alluvial goldfields. In 1903 the largest gold nugget ever found in New Zealand was discovered at Jones Creek, not far from the town centre. It weighed 2807 grams. The New Zealand Government later purchased the nugget and presented it as a coronation gift to King George V.  On arrival into Hokitika there is time to purchase lunch, walk around the town centre, to view the greenstone factories, visit the woodworking studio, or just relax and enjoy the windswept coast. Hokitika is the administrative and commercial centre for this part of Westland. The major primary industry is timber milling. Dairy and sheep farming, commercial fishing, white baiting and eel processing being the other major industries. Continue onto Greymouth Railway Station from where you catch the world famous Tranz Alpine train across the Southern Alps to Christchurch.

Tranz Alpine Scenic train Greymouth to Christchurch

Your transport from Greymouth to Christchurch, the Tranz Alpine scenic train, offers a chance to take in one of the world's great train journeys. The train -- with carriages specially designed to allow you to take in all the amazing views on offer -- will carry you from the Tasman Sea up into the Southern Alps and through Arthur's Pass National Park to the Pacific Ocean.

The train offers a comfortable and relaxing way to cross Arthurs Pass from the South Island's wild West Coast to the more tamed east coast and its biggest city. Leaving Greymouth Station, you will travel through lush West Coast rain forest before climbing into to the spectacular mountains of the Southern Alps. And, after a stop in Arthur's Pass for a breath of mountain air, you'll travel dramatic gorges and the beautiful Waimakariri river valley to emerge on the farmland of the Canterbury Plains. From here the train crosses the plains for an early evening arrival in Christchurch city.

Private transfer Christchurch train station to your accommodation

You will be met by a private transfer driver at Christchurch train station who will take you to your Christchurch accommodation. (Look for a driver holding a board displaying your name after arriving into the station.)

Your Accommodation: Hotel Ibis, Christchurch

Superbly situated in the very heart of the garden city, Hotel Ibis Christchurch is located just off Cathedral Square, and is close to cafes, restaurants, museums and many of Christchurch's most popular attractions.

Meals included: Breakfast

Hotel Ibis, Christchurch

Day 14: Depart Christchurch today

Private transfer to Christchurch airport

You will be collected from your accommodation and a private transfer will deliver you to Christchurch airport in time for your departing flight.

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