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Kirra ToursKirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21

Get to know the South Island New Zealand on this fabulous 13-day itinerary.  Explore white sandy beaches, bustling towns and cities and relax in the rainforest on the west coast. Your trip highlight is bound to be the overnight cruise on Doubtful Sound one of the beautiful fiords in the National Park. With a mix of history, nature and stunning landscapes there will always be something to enjoy.  Kirra has tried and tested this route and with years of fantastic feedback, they are ready to share it with you.  The departures only take 24 people so don't hang around and book your prefered date as soon as you can.

 New Zealand small group tour
 Starts in Wellington, finishes in Christchurch
 13 days/ 12 nights
 Hotel 4 star
  Pre and post tour options? YES Enquire Enquire
 Viewed 20 times in the last 7 days

Included in this tour package

Tour map
Dunedin Larnach Castle
Scenic Train New Zealand

At a glance - Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21

Day 1: Arrive into Wellington. Accommodation: Bolton Hotel Wellington

Day 2: Journey to the beautiful Abel Tasman. Accommodation: Awaroa Lodge

Day 3: Discover the National Park. Accommodation: Awaroa Lodge

Day 4: Wander in Nelson. Accommodation: Chateau Marlborough

Day 5: Travel the coast to Christchurch via Kaikoura. Accommodation: Rydges Latimer Christchurch

Day 6: Cross the country on the TranzAlpine Railway. Accommodation: Te Waonui Forest Retreat

Day 7: From the rainforests to the lakes. Accommodation: Heritage Hotel Queenstown

Day 8: Experience Queenstown. Accommodation: Heritage Hotel Queenstown

Day 9: Cruise overnight on the majestic Doubtful Sound. Accommodation: Fiordland Navigator, Doubtful Sound

Day 10: Enjoy a coastal drive as you head to Dunedin. Accommodation: Distinction Dunedin Hotel

Day 11: Hear the tales of Larnach Castle. Accommodation: Distinction Dunedin Hotel

Day 12: Dunedin to Christchurch. Accommodation: Rydges Latimer Christchurch

Day 13: Day 13.

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Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Detailed Itinerary  

Day 1: Arrive into Wellington

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Day 1

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations

‘Haere Mai’ Welcome to New Zealand. On arrival, you will be met by a Kirra Tours representative and transferred to your downtown city hotel. The rest of today is free to explore the nation’s capital. Named the ‘coolest little capital in the world’ by Lonely Planet, Wellington is nestled between a sparkling harbour and rolling green hills and is renowned for its arts, heritage, culture and native beauty. A visit to Te Papa National Museum is highly recommended.

Welcome to Wellington, transfer to hotel

On arrival into Wellington a representative of Kirra Tours will meet you from your flight and a transfer will deliver you to your hotel accommodation..

Your Accommodation: Bolton Hotel Wellington

The Bolton Hotel offers contemporary apartment-style accommodation in the heart of Wellington. Just steps from the Parliament buildings and central business district, Bolton Hotel is conveniently close to the best of the city's shops, cafes and restaurants and is within walking distance of Wellington's vibrant waterfront.

Bolton Hotel Wellington

Day 2: Journey to the beautiful Abel Tasman

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Day 2

Wellington to Abel Tasman

This morning we board the Interislander Ferry to cruise across the Cook Strait through the magnificent Marlborough Sounds. From there we drive across the top of the South Island to Marahau, the gateway to Abel Tasman National Park. A water taxi carries us on a scenic coastal cruise to our secluded accommodation located within the heart of the national park in Awaroa Bay, surrounded by pristine waterways and native forest.

Your Accommodation: Awaroa Lodge

Surrounded by pristine waterways and native forest, the Lodge has been constructed to make the most of its secluded location. Enjoy a range of activities like a guided walk or kayak, relax on the famous Awaroa beach or take a walk through the lodge's grounds and surrounds.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Awaroa Lodge

Day 3: Discover the National Park

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Day 3

Discover Abel Tasman National Park

Named after the first European explorer to sight New Zealand, Abel Tasman is the country’s smallest, but most visited national park. Renowned for its golden sand beaches, stunning blue water and native coastal forestland, it is an outdoor lover’s paradise. Spend a free day on a guided kayak or sailing excursion, relax on Awaroa Beach or explore the walking tracks around the lodge.

Your Accommodation: Awaroa Lodge

Surrounded by pristine waterways and native forest, the Lodge has been constructed to make the most of its secluded location. Enjoy a range of activities like a guided walk or kayak, relax on the famous Awaroa beach or take a walk through the lodge's grounds and surrounds.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Awaroa Lodge

Day 4: Wander in Nelson

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Day 4

Visit Nelson

The water taxi returns us to our coach for the next part of the journey. We stop to wander around sunny Nelson, a city with a thriving arts and crafts scene, then drive across the Marlborough Region to the charming town of Blenheim. With several world-class vineyards close to tonight’s accommodation, your Coach Captain will offer the option to visit a winery to sample the region’s famous Sauvignon Blanc.

Your Accommodation: Chateau Marlborough

Chateau Marlborough, Marlborough's premier boutique hotel overlooking Seymour Square Gardens, prides itself on offering guests luxury accommodation with an enviable attention to detail. All just a short walk from Blenheim's town centre.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Chateau Marlborough

Day 5: Travel the coast to Christchurch via Kaikoura

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Day 5

Blenheim to Christchurch

 Travelling south today your first stop is in Kaikoura where you will have a chance to get up close to the New Zealand Fur Seal (Kekeno) colony.  After you have seen these magnificent creatures head further south to tonight's destination of Christchurch.  In the afternoon you'll board the beautifully restored Heritage Tram to take in the city sights and learn about the Garden City's rich history before settling in for the evening and a delicious dinner at the Rydges Latimer. 

 

Your Accommodation: Rydges Latimer Christchurch

Rydges Latimer Christchurch is located just 2 minutes walking distance from the city’s CBD and overlooks scenic Latimer Square, an iconic New Zealand green space with ample room for travellers to enjoy.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Rydges Latimer Christchurch

Day 6: Cross the country on the TranzAlpine Railway

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Day 6

Christchurch to Arthurs Pass on the Tranz Alpine Train, then coach to Franz Josef

A short drive brings you to the tiny train station of Springfield, gateway to the majestic Southern Alps. Board the award-winning TranzAlpine for the spectacular rail journey to Arthurs Pass, the South Island’s highest altitude settlement. Enjoy thrilling vistas over deep gorges as you travel alongside the ice-fed Waimakariri River and traverse the mighty Southern Alps, where spectacular views of the chiselled alpine landscape will take your breath away at every turn. On to Franz Josef where you can relax and soak in the thermal pools after an invigorating day and sumptuous dinner.

Your Accommodation: Te Waonui Forest Retreat

Nestled amongst native West Coast rainforest at Franz Josef is a very special five-star retreat. Designed with utmost care of its precious environment, guests at Te Waonui Forest Retreat will find themselves encircled by rainforest and accommodated in natural and sustainable luxury.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Te Waonui Forest Retreat

Day 7: From the rainforests to the lakes

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Day 7

Franz Josef to Queenstown via Wanaka

Before your departure this morning, there is the opportunity to experience an optional scenic flight over this remarkable region (subject to weather conditions). Later, view incredible scenery as you travel past the untouched wilderness and pristine lakes of the Mt Aspiring and Westland National Parks. There is time to wander around the popular lakeside township of Wanaka before stopping at the historic gold mining village of Arrowtown, once a haven for the gold prospectors of the 1860’s and home to a fascinating collection of mining cottages.

Your Accommodation: Heritage Hotel Queenstown

At Heritage Queenstown you could be forgiven for thinking you were in a postcard. Soak in the amazing view of the towering Remarkables mountain range rising from the rippled waters of Lake Wakatipu.

Meals included: Breakfast

Heritage Hotel Queenstown

Day 8: Experience Queenstown

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Day 8

At leisure in Queenstown

Queenstown is regarded as New Zealand’s premier holiday destination and today is free to experience this magnificent alpine 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. Experience the thrills of riding on the world famous Shotover Jet Boat , perhaps cruise Lake Wakatipu on the vintage steamship TSS Earnslaw, take a 4WD 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

Your Accommodation: Heritage Hotel Queenstown

At Heritage Queenstown you could be forgiven for thinking you were in a postcard. Soak in the amazing view of the towering Remarkables mountain range rising from the rippled waters of Lake Wakatipu.

Meals included: Breakfast

Heritage Hotel Queenstown

Day 9: Cruise overnight on the majestic Doubtful Sound

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Day 9

Overnight Doubtful Sound Wilderness Cruise

Skirt the shores of Lake Wakatipu and travel through lush farmland to Te Anau. On to Manapouri, where you enjoy a leisurely cruise across this picturesque lake to West Arm. This is followed by a short coach trip on New Zealand's most expensive road, travelling over Wilmot Pass and pausing along the way to experience the dense Fiordland rainforest and view Doubtful Sound glistening far below. At Deep Cove, your crew and the ‘Fiordland Navigator’ await. Designed along the lines of a traditional scow, the ‘Fiordland Navigator’ blends old world charm with modern comfort and as you cruise through some of the fiord’s most stunning scenery, knowledgeable and friendly nature guides will share with you their passion for the region through their commentary. After dropping anchor in a sheltered cove, you can choose to explore the shoreline by kayak or tender boat or you can simply relax on board.  As the majesty of Doubtful Sound unfolds before you, you will be struck by its silence ... a silence broken only by birdsong or the rushing of a distant waterfall. Its beauty and vastness will take your breath away.

Your Accommodation: Fiordland Navigator, Doubtful Sound

The Fiordland Navigator is purpose built for cruising in the fiords. The vessel offers spacious viewing decks, a comfortable dining saloon and observation lounge.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Fiordland Navigator, Doubtful Sound

Day 10: Enjoy a coastal drive as you head to Dunedin

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Day 10

Manapouri to Dunedin

Enjoy a hearty breakfast this morning before exploring other parts of the fiord. Your trip will retrace your steps back to Manapouri where you rejoin your coach for the journey to Dunedin, the Edinburgh of the South.

Your Accommodation: Distinction Dunedin Hotel

Distinction Dunedin Hotel occupies the grand Chief Post Office built in the 1930’s. This art deco inspired building has recently been transformed into a 4 star hotel with elegant décor, set in the heart of the city.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Distinction Dunedin Hotel

Day 11: Hear the tales of Larnach Castle

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Day 11

Explore Dunedin and Larnach Castle

This morning, travel to Larnach Castle for a guided tour, learning about its tragic and mysterious history before enjoying High Tea in the historic ballroom. The afternoon is at leisure to explore Dunedin and the greater Otago Peninsula. Your Coach Captain will assist with any optional activities you would like to do.

Your Accommodation: Distinction Dunedin Hotel

Distinction Dunedin Hotel occupies the grand Chief Post Office built in the 1930’s. This art deco inspired building has recently been transformed into a 4 star hotel with elegant décor, set in the heart of the city.

Meals included: Breakfast

Distinction Dunedin Hotel

Day 12: Dunedin to Christchurch

Kirra Tours Platinum 13 Day Southern Sensations 2020/21 - Day 12

Dunedin to Christchurch via the Moeraki Boulders

Stop to view the mystical Moeraki Boulders, geological marvels that began to form about 60 million years ago and were exposed by the erosion of sedimentary rocks over time. From there, we travel north up the coast through the towns of Oamaru and Timaru and across the fertile Canterbury Plains to Christchurch. This evening join your friends for a farewell dinner and relive the many great experiences of your holiday.

Your Accommodation: Rydges Latimer Christchurch

Rydges Latimer Christchurch is located just 2 minutes walking distance from the city’s CBD and overlooks scenic Latimer Square, an iconic New Zealand green space with ample room for travellers to enjoy.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Rydges Latimer Christchurch

Day 13: Day 13

Transfer to Christchurch airport

You will be collected from your hotel and transferred to Christchurch airport in time for your onward flight.

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