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New Zealand: South Island Encompassed

Itinerary

New Zealand: South Island Encompassed

Day 1 - Wellington

Arrive at any time. Tonight, get to know your group on a night out in Wellington. Choose to head to your CEO's favourite local spot for dinner together before enjoying a social evening of bar games, music, and singing. There are no planned activities during the day, so check into the hotel and explore the city. Check out New Zealand's National Museum, a must-see with great displays of historical Maori artifacts and relatively modern exhibits such as the motorbike that was built in a shed and won the world championships. Afterwards, opt for a night out on the town. Wellington has an abundance of nightlife, bars, cafes and restaurants all located on and around the entertainment district of Courtenay Place.

Day 2 - Wellington/Abel Tasman National Park

Don't forget those cameras before hopping on the morning ferry to cross the Cook Strait. Pro tip: make sure you stand outside and marvel at the views of the Marlborough Sounds at the tip of the South Island. Then drive past lush native forests, beautiful clear waters, blue skies, and golden sands as the group travels to Abel Tasman National Park. Catch a morning ferry and cross the scenic Cook Strait. Make sure to stand outside and enjoy the views of the Marlborough Sounds at the top of the South Island. Disembark and transfer to Abel Tasman National Park, well-known for its stunning white sand beaches.

Day 3 - Abel Tasman National Park

Picture this: birdsong ringing from the treetops as you wander through the undergrowth stumbling upon occasional waterfalls nestled in the midst of the forest. You take a dip in one of the refreshing pools before finding your way to pristine coastline and turquoise bays where you can soak up the sun and relax in the sand. This is the kind of day that awaits you in Abel Tasman NP, you are free to explore the golden beaches and winding waterways any way you'd like! So have fun, build a sand castle for us, and let the adventures continue!

Day 4 - Abel Tasman National Park/Westport

It's off to Westport today! Breathe in the fresh air and soak in the beautiful views as the group heads south down the coast of black-sand beaches. Make a (very cool) pit stop to a seal colony in Cape Foulwind and watch these majestic animals in their habitat before continuing on to Westport for the evening. Once you arrive grab a beer, talk to some locals, and discover the true charm of this coal mining town.

Day 5 - Westport/Franz Josef

Continue on a scenic drive south along the coast to Punakaiki; think pancake rocks and blowholes (man, those are two random things we never thought would be in the same sentence). As a special spot full of local secrets, Punakaiki is a great place to hop out of the bus, stretch those legs, and appreciate the strange beauty nature can create. Continue following the coastal road towards Franz Josef arriving at a unique wilderness lodge set in the rainforest for the night.

Day 6 - Franz Josef

Enjoy a free day in Franz Josef. Today is all yours to spend as you please! From hiking to kayaking and walking on a glacier, there's bound to be something you'll want to check off that bucket list. If your goal is to make actual contact with the glacier then try a heli-hike or guided ice walk. Or you could let nature be your guide and lose yourself in the rainforests, lakes, and waterfalls that surround Franz Josef. If you'd rather stay in town, then grab a bite to eat before booking a spa treatment at the Glacier Hot Pools... the choice is yours!

Day 7 - Franz Josef/Queenstown

Hit the road to the adventure capital of the world ?? Queenstown. Sit back, relax and gaze out the window as you drive away from Glacier Country and wind through lush forests back to the coast and into the mountains over Haast Pass. The photo opportunities will seem endless (make sure those cameras are charged.) Then gear up and get ready because the adrenaline is going to be pumping the next few days.

Day 8 - Queenstown

Let's put it this way, if you're the sort of person that loves adventure mixed with adrenaline all while exploring one of the most scenic places in the country, then Queenstown is for you! Gear up for a free day that is sure to leave you breathless. Opt to be a dare devil and get ready to have those hearts pumping with some adrenaline-filled options like jet boating, bungee jumping, or skydiving.

Day 9 - Milford Sound Day Trip/Queenstown

Let your breathing return to normal today as the group heads out for a visit to Fiordland National Park. After arriving, soak up the chill vibes on a boat cruise through one of the most iconic places in New Zealand ?? Milford Sound. Marvel at the views of one of the wettest places on Earth before we make our way back to Queenstown for the night.

Day 10 - Queenstown

Gear up for round two of free time in Queenstown that is sure to leave you breathless. Choose to be a dare devil and get ready to have those hearts pumping with some adrenaline-filled options like jet boating, bungee jumping, mountain biking or skydiving or simply take in the breathtaking scenery and vibrant atmosphere as you find restaurants to try and cafes to wind down and relax.

Day 11 - Queenstown to Tekapo

Depart Queenstown and travel to Aoraki/Mt Cook National park. Once in the park enjoy free time for hiking and visiting the Sir Edmund Hillary Visitors Centre. Afterwards, travel to Lake Tekapo where we will be staying for the next two nights.

Day 12 - Tekapo

Start the day with a relaxing 35km bike ride along the canals with stunning mountain views. Spend the rest of the day exploring Tekapo on your own. Opt to visit the hot springs, relax on the shores of Lake Tekapo, or hike to the Mt John Observatory and check out the incredible Dark Sky Reserve.

Day 13 - Tekapo to Christchurch

Scoot on up to Christchurch to explore the South Island's largest city and one of the places in New Zealand with the strongest English influences. Enjoy free time to explore and see what the nightlife is all about with your travel tribe, and grab some shut eye in a converted jailhouse to finish the evening.

Day 14 - Christchurch/Kaikoura

Mountains, marine life, and magic! Kaikoura is pretty darn special, so special in fact, that it may be the South Island's best kept secret. The best way to experience it is to get out there and witness what this rugged coastal town does best. Book a whale watching cruise, swim with seals, or just take a walk along the coast admiring the scenery. In the afternoon try bird watching, swim with dolphins or splurge on flight over the peninsula. Spend the afternoon swimming with dolphins or taking a scenic flight over the peninsula. Bird watchers will be pleased to know that big ocean birds such as albatrosses, petrels and shearwaters frequent the area.

Day 15 - Kaikoura/Wellington

Reminisce and reflect as you and the group travel to Picton to catch a ferry back to Wellington. Watch the majestic scenery of this country unfold before you and simply appreciate the moment (we know you're probably already making plans to return.) Once back in the city grab some grub with your travel crew and let the good times roll for one last night out together.

Day 16 - Wellington

Depart at any time.
Summary

What’s included?

Accommodation

Hostels & basic lodges (15 nts, multi-share with 2-10 people).

Local transport

Private vehicle, boat, ferry, walking.

Meals

Meals Included: 15 breakfasts, 4 dinners
Meals Budget: Allow USD335-435 for meals not included.

Additional info

Wellington
- Weta Workshop Visit
- Te Papa Museum Visit (Free)

Abel Tasman National Park
- Abel Tasman National Park Kayaking (190NZD per person)
- Sailing (140NZD per person)
- Canyoning (255NZD per person)

Westport
- Surfing in Westport

Franz Josef
- Heli Scenic Flight with Snow Landing (330-425NZD per person)
- Hiking (Free)
- Franz Josef Kayaking (130-150NZD per person)

Queenstown
- Scenic Horse Riding Tour (220NZD per person)
- Vineyard Tour (210-230NZD per person)
- Bungee Jumping (265-450NZD per person)
- Gondola Ride (52-79NZD per person)
- Skydiving (420-520NZD per person)
- Shotover Canyon Swing (259-518NZD per person)
- Queenstown Jet Boating

Mount Cook
- Aoraki/Mt Cook Hike
- Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park Visitor Centre

Lake Tekapo
- Tekapo Hot Springs
- Mt John Observatory and Dark Sky Reserve

Kaikoura
- Hiking (Free)
- Scenic Flight (225NZD per person)
- Whale Watching (175NZD per person)

Kaikoura
- Sea Kayaking (140NZD per person)

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