9 day Southern Scenic Wonders
Independent tour (bus & coach) from Christchurch to Christchurch
Breadcrumb
New Zealand tour itinerary name and information
Thrifty Tours

9 day Southern Scenic Wonders

This classic 9 day tour introduces you to Mt Cook National Park, Queenstown. Fiordland, Milford Sound and the West Coast Glaciers and includes the Tranz Alpine Scenic Train journey.

Tour summary and feature

Independent tour (bus & coach)

This suggested tour costs from NZD$2,600 per person (twin share, low season)

Starts in Christchurch, finishes in Christchurch

9 days/8 nights

Hotel 3 star

 Customisable? YES

 Viewed 54 times in the last 7 days

All coach tour transport as specified in this tour package

All breakfasts

Private train station transfers

Private airport transfers

Tour at a glance

At a glance - 9 day Southern Scenic Wonders

Day 1: Welcome to Christchurch, transfer to accommodation, rest of day at leisure. Accommodation: Heartland Hotel Cotswold

Day 2: Christchurch to Mt Cook National Park. Accommodation: Hermitage Hotel Room Mount Cook View

Day 3: Mt Cook National Park to Queenstown. Accommodation: Heartland Hotel Queenstown

Day 4: Free day to explore Queenstown. Accommodation: Heartland Hotel Queenstown

Day 5: Milford Sound day tour with Real Journeys. Accommodation: Heartland Hotel Queenstown

Day 6: Queenstown to Fox Glacier by Greatsights coach. Accommodation: Heartland Hotel Fox Glacier

Day 7: Explore Fox Glacier and the Glacier region. Accommodation: Heartland Hotel Fox Glacier

Day 8: Fox Glacier to Greymouth train station, Tranz Alpine train to Christchurch . Accommodation: Heartland Hotel Cotswold

Day 9: Depart Christchurch today.

Tour full itinerary

Detailed itinerary: 9 day tour starting in Christchurch

Day 1 - Welcome to Christchurch, transfer to accommodation, rest of day at leisure

9 day Southern Scenic Wonders - Day 1
Private transfer Christchurch Airport to your accommodation

On arrival, you will be met by a private driver and transferred to your Christchurch accommodation.

SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Christchurch Hop On Hop Off City Tour - 24 Hour Pass

Discover the true magic of city sightseeing on-board this city tour bus. With a mix of open and closed top buses, you will ride in comfort and style, enjoying spectacular views. Join friendly local guides as they take you on a journey of discovery through Christchurch. Listen to "live" entertaining and informative commentary and learn about the fascinating history, from pioneering days to modern times.

Your accommodation: Heartland Hotel Cotswold

The Heartland Hotel Cotswold is just a few minutes walk to boutique shopping at Merivale and Hagley Park. The distinctive architecture of the Heartland Hotel Cotswold reflects Christchurch's image as the most English of cities outside of England.

Day 2 - Christchurch to Mt Cook National Park

9 day Southern Scenic Wonders - Day 2
Christchurch to Mount Cook with GreatSights

Depart Christchurch in the morning and travel through the lush farmland of the Canterbury Plains to Lake Tekapo, where you can see the iconic Church of the Good Shepherd as it stands in solitude next to the vibrant blue waters. Leaving Tekapo, continue into the Southern Alps towards Aoraki / Mount Cook National Park, home to New Zealand's tallest mountain. Along the way your driver guide will keep you entertained and informed with commentary on the area's history and sites of interest. The tour concludes on arrival at Mount Cook Village, where you can explore and soak up the views of Aoraki / Mount Cook as it towers above. Please be aware, due to the remote location of the property there are no shops at Mt Cook Village. We recommend you stock up on any supplies you may want before leaving Christchurch.

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 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

Day 3 - Mt Cook National Park to Queenstown

9 day Southern Scenic Wonders - Day 3
SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Glacier Explorers Mt. Cook

Experience 500 year old icebergs up-close on the Mt Cook terminal lake. The Glacier Explorers tour is the only one of its kind in New Zealand - and one of only three in the world! Very few glaciers terminate into lakes and even fewer of them are accessible. See towering ice cliffs and floating icebergs from the safety of a specially designed boat.  These boats provide a safe way to view unseen and inaccessible areas of New Zealand's largest glacier - The Tasman.

Mount Cook to Queenstown with GreatSights

Depart Aoraki / Mount Cook National Park in the afternoon and head south through the tawny tussock of the Mackenzie Country. En route enjoy a stop in the quaint village of Omarama. Crossing the Lindis Pass this is one of New Zealand's highest roads with the summit reaching 971 metres, you pass from the Mackenzie Basin and into Central Otago. Approaching Queenstown the impressive Remarkables mountain range come into view and then beautiful Lake Wakatipu as you head towards the adventure and activity capital of New Zealand. Tour concludes this evening on arrival into Queenstown.

Your accommodation: Heartland Hotel Queenstown

The Heartland Hotel Queenstown is the ideal place to stay if you want to be close to all the action of Queenstown's main centre, yet be elevated enough to take advantage of the spectacular views over Lake Wakatipu to the mountains.

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 4 - Free day to explore Queenstown

9 day Southern Scenic Wonders - Day 4
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 - Shotover Jet Canyon Jet Boat Ride

Shotover Jet is the only company permitted to operate in the Shotover River Canyons. It's a thrilling ride! Skim past rocky outcrops at close range in your Shotover Jet 'Big Red', as you twist and turn through the narrow canyons at breathtaking speeds. And a major highlight - hold tight for the world-famous Shotover Jet full 360-degree spins!

SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Skyline Gondola Queenstown and Buffet Dinner

With breathtaking views across Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu, the Skyline Complex is a must-do. Catch the fully enclosed gondola to the summit for a remarkable panorama of the city surrounds. Wander the outdoor viewing decks then enjoy a gourmet buffet meal in the Stratosphere Restaurant.

Your accommodation: Heartland Hotel Queenstown

The Heartland Hotel Queenstown is the ideal place to stay if you want to be close to all the action of Queenstown's main centre, yet be elevated enough to take advantage of the spectacular views over Lake Wakatipu to the mountains.

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 5 - Milford Sound day tour with Real Journeys

9 day Southern Scenic Wonders - Day 5
Milford Sound Cruise and coach tour from Queenstown

Return luxury coach transport from Queenstown to Milford Sound, with a 1 hour 40 minute Cruise along the full length of the fiord. On boarding a Real Journeys luxury glass-roofed coach in Queenstown or Te Anau, you will enjoy a relaxing trip along the shores of Lake Wakatipu and through the rolling countryside to Te Anau. The coach driver provides an informative commentary. After a morning tea break in Te Anau, where you have the option of purchasing refreshments, the coach continues along the spectacular Milford Road. There is time for photo stops and short walks along the way. On reaching Milford Sound, you board the modern, spacious vessel for a leisurely cruise in the fiord. The cruise provides excellent viewing opportunities and plenty of time is available to enjoy waterfalls, rainforest, mountains and the wildlife. During the cruise your friendly crew provide commentaries in several languages and point out the sights such as Mitre Peak and the Pembroke Glacier.

Your accommodation: Heartland Hotel Queenstown

The Heartland Hotel Queenstown is the ideal place to stay if you want to be close to all the action of Queenstown's main centre, yet be elevated enough to take advantage of the spectacular views over Lake Wakatipu to the mountains.

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 6 - Queenstown to Fox Glacier by Greatsights coach

9 day Southern Scenic Wonders - Day 6
Queenstown to Fox Glacier with GreatSights

See the majestic Southern Alps, picturesque lakes and rivers and the wild beauty of the West Coast on this journey from Queenstown to Fox Glacier. Along the way your driver guide will provide commentary on this unique region. Pass man-made Lake Dunstan outside Cromwell, beautiful Lake Wanaka and its neighbouring Lake Hawea. Entering Mount Aspiring National Park, follow the historic route used by Māori as they travelled across the Southern Alps in search of pounamu (greenstone). Journey through the Haast Pass, the southernmost pass between the South Island's two coasts, enjoying views of native beech forest, waterfalls and glacier-fed rivers. Arriving on the West Coast, you enter an awe-inspiring landscape of vast rainforests, crystal clear waterfalls and rugged mountain tops. Here you will discover an isolated and tranquil part of New Zealand. Your journey concludes as you reach the small village of Fox Glacier.

Your accommodation: Heartland Hotel Fox Glacier

The Heartland Hotel Fox Glacier is nestled at the base of the majestic Southern Alps, in the Westland World Heritage Park. Originally built in 1928 it has been refurbished to retain its charming atmosphere.

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 7 - Explore Fox Glacier and the Glacier region

9 day Southern Scenic Wonders - Day 7
Fox Glacier

The mighty Fox is the largest and longest of the magnificent West Coast glaciers. Remarkably, it ends in temperate rainforest, 250 metres above sea level only twelve kilometres from the sea.

There are more peaks at the head of the Fox Glacier than in any other valley in New Zealand.

The Fox Glacier, like all glaciers, advances and retreats. Evidence of the latest surge forward can be seen in the bulging lower ice fall. Alpine Guides has access onto the lower part of the glacier via a secret track that climbs through regenerating native forest. From the track, you will have stunning views into the upper parts of the glacier. Fox Glacier township is the more "laid back" of the twin Glacier Country townships of Fox and Franz Josef, and people often comment on having chosen Fox for its relaxed atmosphere.

An excellent selection of cafés and a wide range of accommodation complement are available.  The township enjoys breathtaking views of New Zealand's highest peaks - Mount Cook and Mount Tasman. Lake Matheson, the famous reflection lake, is a five minute drive west of Fox Township and historic Gillespie's Beach, known for its crashing surf and distant snow capped mountains,  is only 25 minutes west by car.

 

SUGGESTED ACTIVITY - Fox Glacier Helihike - Flying Fox

The fly-in, fly-out Helihike combines the excitement of walking on the Fox Glacier with the thrill of helicopter flights. By flying in you are able to access and explore a part of the glacier that is otherwise very difficult to get to. It is here, shunted between two ice falls, that the awesome glacier forces work hardest and often create spectacular ice caves and arches. Equipped with sturdy leather boots, you board the helicopter for your first flight over the awe-inspiring pillars of the lower icefall. Here, the steep ice is in constant motion. You then circle the marvellous upper icefall and the Victoria Falls before landing. Your remote landing site on the ice is an exceptionally beautiful part of the glacier. At this stage, you are outfitted with instep crampons, specially designed by Alpine Guides for these ice conditions and you follow the ice steps cut by the guides as you explore the beautiful formations and ice caves which are seen only here. This trip offers wonderful photographic opportunities. Each departure is a true voyage of exploration; there are so many changing features that the guides always find something new. Ice time, weather permitting, is about 2.5 hours.

Please note that ice features change all the time and no guarantee of specific features can be made.

Your accommodation: Heartland Hotel Fox Glacier

The Heartland Hotel Fox Glacier is nestled at the base of the majestic Southern Alps, in the Westland World Heritage Park. Originally built in 1928 it has been refurbished to retain its charming atmosphere.

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 8 - Fox Glacier to Greymouth train station, Tranz Alpine train to Christchurch

9 day Southern Scenic Wonders - Day 8
Fox Glacier to Greymouth Train Station with GreatSights

This morning travel north through the small townships of Whataroa and Harihari. Pass 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 a 35-minute break in your journey. This allows time to purchase lunch, explore the town centre and relax. 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. Your coach concludes at the Greymouth Train Station.

TranzAlpine Scenic Train: Greymouth to Christchurch

Considered one of the world's great train journeys, the TranzAlpine Scenic Train takes you from Greymouth to Christchurch. You'll travel across the South Island from the west to the east coast through Arthur's Pass National Park. From the comfort of your carriage see lush beech forest, deep river valleys and the spectacular peaks of the Southern Alps. Descend to the windswept Canterbury Plains before arriving in the city of Christchurch.

Private Transfer Christchurch Train Station to your accommodation

On arrival at the Christchurch train station, you will be met by a private driver and transferred to your accommodation.

Your accommodation: Heartland Hotel Cotswold

The Heartland Hotel Cotswold is just a few minutes walk to boutique shopping at Merivale and Hagley Park. The distinctive architecture of the Heartland Hotel Cotswold reflects Christchurch's image as the most English of cities outside of England.

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 9 - Depart Christchurch today

9 day Southern Scenic Wonders - Day 9
Private transfer accommodation to Christchurch Airport

A private transfer will collect you from your accommodation and transfer you to Christchurch Airport in time for your departing flight.

Tour quick quote

Instant quote - 9 day Southern Scenic Wonders

Step 1: Select start date here
Step 2: Select number of guests and room configuration
Select number of adult per room type
Single occupancy (based on 1 adult in one room)
Triple share (3 adults) (based on 3 adults sharing 1 room)
Double room (based on 2 adults sharing one room, one bed)
Twin room (based on 2 adults sharing one room with two beds)
Select number of child per room type
Child (5-14yrs inclusive) Child cost when sharing with at least one adult
Child (0-4yrs inclusive) Child cost when sharing with at least one adult
No pricing loaded - please choose another date or contact us
Your quote for this tour:
Start date:
End date:
Guests:
Rooms:
Total cost for ALL guests is:
0
This quote is based on vehicles to accommodate your party in the vehicle type. We suggest changing the car type or contacting us for the best options.
Save and send a copy of this quote to
or

NOTE: Instant quotes are subject to availability of specific accommodation and other inclusions. Our NZ touring experts will be in touch with you regarding this. Costs quoted in currencies other than New Zealand dollars (NZ$) are based on todays exchange rate and are  subject to change. Refer to our terms and conditions.

Remember - we can create this itinerary with any style of accommodation or customise to suit your interests and timeframe. Just contact us here.

Tour departure list
See all departure dates & prices
This tour has 459 departure dates.
All prices are in
Go to dates in
Starts Status Twin/Double (2 people sharing) Single occupancy You save  
Sep 29, 2020
(Tuesday)
Check with us
NZD$2,600
NZD$3,817
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Sep 30, 2020
(Wednesday)
Check with us
NZD$2,600
NZD$3,817
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 1, 2020
(Thursday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 2, 2020
(Friday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 3, 2020
(Saturday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 4, 2020
(Sunday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 5, 2020
(Monday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 6, 2020
(Tuesday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 7, 2020
(Wednesday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 8, 2020
(Thursday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 9, 2020
(Friday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 10, 2020
(Saturday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 11, 2020
(Sunday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 12, 2020
(Monday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 13, 2020
(Tuesday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 14, 2020
(Wednesday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 15, 2020
(Thursday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 16, 2020
(Friday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 17, 2020
(Saturday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 18, 2020
(Sunday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 19, 2020
(Monday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 20, 2020
(Tuesday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 21, 2020
(Wednesday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 22, 2020
(Thursday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 23, 2020
(Friday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 24, 2020
(Saturday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 25, 2020
(Sunday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 26, 2020
(Monday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 27, 2020
(Tuesday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 28, 2020
(Wednesday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
Oct 29, 2020
(Thursday)
Check with us
NZD$2,983
NZD$4,504
save
NZD$0pp
Enquire Book
All prices are in
Go to dates in
Contact form
Enquire about this tour
Your contact information

See our privacy policy here