Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach
Small group tour escorted from Auckland to Christchurch
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New Zealand tour itinerary name and information
Grand Pacific Ultimate

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach

Experience the romance of rail travel, the majesty of cruising and the luxury of coach on this all-inclusive small group holiday. Includes an overnight cruise in Doubtful Sound & 2 nights in the Bay of Islands, Rotorua, Wellington, Queenstown, Dunedin & Christchurch.

Tour summary and feature

Small group tour escorted

This suggested tour costs from NZD$10,554 per person (twin share, low season)

Starts in Auckland, finishes in Christchurch

19 days/18 nights

Hotel 4 star

 Pre and post tour options? YES

 Viewed 33 times in the last 7 days

Tour at a glance

At a glance - Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach

Day 1: Arrive into Auckland. Accommodation: Crowne Plaza Auckland (or similar)

Day 2: Travel north to the the Bay of Islands and the land where Waitangi Treaty was signed. Accommodation: Scenic Hotel Bay of Islands (or similar)

Day 3: Today is yours to enjoy the Bay of Islands. Accommodation: Scenic Hotel Bay of Islands (or similar)

Day 4: Cruise out to the Hole in the Rock this morning before heading back to Auckland, stopping to visit the Parry Kauri Park on the way. Accommodation: Crowne Plaza Auckland (or similar)

Day 5: Auckland to Rotorua stopping to enjoy the Glenbrook Vintage railway. Accommodation: Regent of Rotorua (or similar)

Day 6: A day in Rotorua including culture, geothermal features and even luging. Accommodation: Regent of Rotorua (or similar)

Day 7: Travel the Thermal Explorer Highway from Rotorua to Wellington. Accommodation: InterContinental Wellington (or similar)

Day 8: Wellington City is the capital cool with lots to enjoy. Accommodation: InterContinental Wellington (or similar)

Day 9: From Wellington cruise the Cook Strait and down to Christchurch. Accommodation: The George Hotel (or similar)

Day 10: Christchurch City. Accommodation: The George Hotel (or similar)

Day 11: Travel to the West coast on the TranzAlpine train and down to Fox Glacier. Accommodation: Distinction Fox Glacier (or similar)

Day 12: Fox Glacier inland to Queenstown. Accommodation: Heritage Hotel Queenstown (or similar)

Day 13: Enjoy Queenstown and tonight head across the water to Walter Peak Station for a fantastic buffet dinner. Accommodation: Heritage Hotel Queenstown (or similar)

Day 14: Queenstown to Doubtful Sound and an Overnight Cruise. Accommodation: Fiordland Navigator, Doubtful Sound

Day 15: Waking up in the stunning Doubtful Sound enjoy a morning cruise before heading to Te Anau. Accommodation: Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas (or similar)

Day 16: Te Anau to Dunedin. Accommodation: Distinction Dunedin Hotel (or similar)

Day 17: A day in Dunedin including Larnach Castle. Accommodation: Distinction Dunedin Hotel (or similar)

Day 18: Dunedin to Christchurch. Accommodation: The George Hotel (or similar)

Day 19: Depart Christchurch today.

Tour full itinerary

Detailed itinerary: 19 day tour starting in Auckland

Day 1 - Arrive into Auckland

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 1
Arrive into Auckland

On arrival into Auckland, you will be met by a Grand Pacific Tours representative who will transfer you to your hotel. This evening, meet your travelling companions over a complimentary pre-dinner drink.

Your accommodation: Crowne Plaza Auckland (or similar)

Crowne Plaza Auckland is an upscale hotel ideally located in the heart of Auckland’s CBD and entertainment hub. Offering superior comfort, personal service and contemporary style and an abundance of attractions, entertainment and dining in close proximity.

Meals included: Dinner

Day 2 - Travel north to the the Bay of Islands and the land where Waitangi Treaty was signed

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 2
Auckland to the Bay of Islands

Board your coach and enjoy a city tour of Auckland, dubbed the "City of Sails", before travelling to Matakohe to enjoy a visit and informative talk at the Kauri Museum. Travel via Whangarei to Paihia, situated in the heart of the beautiful Bay of Islands. Enjoy a guided tour of the Waitangi Treaty Grounds, the location of the signing of the treaty between the Maori tribes and the British.

Your accommodation: Scenic Hotel Bay of Islands (or similar)

Scenic Hotel Bay of Islands expansive sub-tropical gardens and extensive guest facilities, enhances the welcoming atmosphere of this resort-style hotel. It's the perfect base from which to explore the beautiful and historic Bay of Islands.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 3 - Today is yours to enjoy the Bay of Islands

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 3
Bay of Islands

Today is a free day. Choose from the many optional activities available, including the Cape Reinga coach trip via Ninety Mile Beach or a spectacular scenic flight. This evening is also free and you may like to enjoy a relaxing dinner cruise (optional).

Your accommodation: Scenic Hotel Bay of Islands (or similar)

Scenic Hotel Bay of Islands expansive sub-tropical gardens and extensive guest facilities, enhances the welcoming atmosphere of this resort-style hotel. It's the perfect base from which to explore the beautiful and historic Bay of Islands.

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 4 - Cruise out to the Hole in the Rock this morning before heading back to Auckland, stopping to visit the Parry Kauri Park on the way

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 4
Bay of Islands to Auckland

This morning you will explore the scenic beauty of the Bay of Islands aboard a luxury catamaran. Spend some time at Otehei Bay on Urapukapuka Island before you cruise to Cape Brett and the famous Hole in the Rock. On return to Paihia, travel south, call into the Parry Kauri Park to see a magnificent example of a Kauri Tree before arriving in Auckland.

Your accommodation: Crowne Plaza Auckland (or similar)

Crowne Plaza Auckland is an upscale hotel ideally located in the heart of Auckland’s CBD and entertainment hub. Offering superior comfort, personal service and contemporary style and an abundance of attractions, entertainment and dining in close proximity.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 5 - Auckland to Rotorua stopping to enjoy the Glenbrook Vintage railway

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 5
Auckland to Rotorua via Glenbrook Railway and Rainbow Springs

This morning travel to Glenbrook Vintage Railway for a nostalgic 15 kilometre trip back in time on a beautifully restored vintage steam train. Visit the restoration workshop and on return to Glenbrook Station, morning tea will be served. Travel through magnificent countryside of green pastures famous for dairying. Continue to Rainbow Springs, spanning 22 acres of native trees. A highlight will be the Kiwi Encounter experience which offers a unique behind-the-scenes tour of a working Kiwi nursery and hatchery.

Your accommodation: Regent of Rotorua (or similar)

Regent of Rotorua Boutique Hotel & Spa occupies a great location within walking distance of the lakefront, the government gardens and the city centres shops and restaurants. Luxury rooms are well equipped and on site facilities include a swimming pool, restaurant and bar and spa treatments.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6 - A day in Rotorua including culture, geothermal features and even luging

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 6
Rotorua

Today begins with a gondola ride and breakfast at Skyline Rotorua. There is also time for a luge ride! Next stop is the Agrodome for an action packed hour of farming entertainment and education that's unlike anything you've seen before. Enjoy some free time this afternoon before travelling to Te Puia to see the boiling mud pools and awesome geysers that Rotorua is famous for. This evening experience an entertaining Maori Hangi and Concert.

Your accommodation: Regent of Rotorua (or similar)

Regent of Rotorua Boutique Hotel & Spa occupies a great location within walking distance of the lakefront, the government gardens and the city centres shops and restaurants. Luxury rooms are well equipped and on site facilities include a swimming pool, restaurant and bar and spa treatments.

Meals included: Breakfast, Speciality Dinner

Day 7 - Travel the Thermal Explorer Highway from Rotorua to Wellington

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 7
Rotorua to Wellington

Travel along the Thermal Explorer Highway to the spectacular Huka Falls. Continue to Lake Taupo for some free time to enjoy this scenic lakeside town. Travel via the Tongariro National Park and then continue south to the capital city of New Zealand, Wellington.

Your accommodation: InterContinental Wellington (or similar)

Stay in modern luxury in the heart of New Zealand’s capital city and adjacent to the scenic harbour. This famous Wellington hotel offers contemporary New Zealand cuisine at three restaurants, including the award-winning Chameleon. The hotel is the ideal base to explore the business, shopping and cultural centres of Wellington.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 8 - Wellington City is the capital cool with lots to enjoy

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 8
Full day in Wellington

A highlight this morning will be time to explore Te Papa, New Zealand’s National Museum with exhibits that embrace both Maori and European views. Reboard your coach for an extensive city tour which showcases the history and culture on show. Enjoy free time this afternoon and this evening is also free to choose your own dining arrangements.

Your accommodation: InterContinental Wellington (or similar)

Stay in modern luxury in the heart of New Zealand’s capital city and adjacent to the scenic harbour. This famous Wellington hotel offers contemporary New Zealand cuisine at three restaurants, including the award-winning Chameleon. The hotel is the ideal base to explore the business, shopping and cultural centres of Wellington.

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 9 - From Wellington cruise the Cook Strait and down to Christchurch

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 9
Wellington to Christchurch

This morning board the Interislander Ferry, cross Cook Strait and travel through the Marlborough Sounds to Picton. Join the Coastal Pacific, a truly spectacular rail journey that links the port of Picton to Christchurch and travels through vineyards, salt mountains and river valleys before following the thin wedge of land between the Pacific Ocean and the Kaikoura Ranges. Meet your Ultimate Coach in the fishing village of Kaikoura for the journey across the farmlands of the Northern Canterbury Plains to the garden city of Christchurch. *Please note the Coastal Pacifc Train does not run in winter, therefore departures in May and on September will not include this rail sector and will be replaced by a coach.

Your accommodation: The George Hotel (or similar)

The George is the essence of supreme comfort. The award winning 5 star hotel is opposite Hagley Park and just a few minutes stroll from the Botanic Gardens. 2 superb award winning on site restaurants also feature.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 10 - Christchurch City

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 10
Christchurch

Today visit the International Antarctic Centre designed to provide an informative account of life in Antarctica. This is followed by an introductory city tour of Christchurch. This afternoon includes a journey on board the Christchurch Tram at your leisure, one of Christchurch's leading attractions. This evening is free to explore the local cuisine.

Your accommodation: The George Hotel (or similar)

The George is the essence of supreme comfort. The award winning 5 star hotel is opposite Hagley Park and just a few minutes stroll from the Botanic Gardens. 2 superb award winning on site restaurants also feature.

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 11 - Travel to the West coast on the TranzAlpine train and down to Fox Glacier

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 11
Christchurch to Arthur's Pass on the TranzAlpine, then by coach to Fox Glacier

This morning board the TranzAlpine, renowned as one of the great train journeys of the world. Travel over massive viaducts, river valleys and spectacular gorges as you ascend to Arthur’s Pass located in the centre of the Southern Alps. Board your coach and travel to Hokitika, famous for its Greenstone before continuing via Franz Josef to Fox Glacier where time is available to experience a scenic flight (optional, weather permitting) over the spectacular glaciers.

Your accommodation: Distinction Fox Glacier (or similar)

A modern, purpose built boutique Fox Glacier hotel. Distinction Te Weheka Boutique Hotel provides a balance of luxury, privacy and location, while being only a short stroll to Fox Glacier village.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 12 - Fox Glacier inland to Queenstown

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 12
Fox Glacier to Queenstown

See the snow capped peaks of the Southern Alps as you travel south along the West Coast. Continue via the Haast Pass, an area of stunning beauty before arriving into Arrowtown to visit the Lakes District Museum. Continue to picturesque Queenstown, a year round resort situated on the shores of magical Lake Wakatipu. This evening is free and you may choose to dine out at one of the many fine restaurants.

Your accommodation: Heritage Hotel Queenstown (or similar)

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

Day 13 - Enjoy Queenstown and tonight head across the water to Walter Peak Station for a fantastic buffet dinner

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 13
Queenstown free day with TSS Earnslaw Cruise and Dinner

Today is a free day for you to explore Queenstown with many optional activities available. This evening board the vintage steamship TSS Earnslaw and cruise across Lake Wakatipu to Walter Peak Station. Sit back, relax and enjoy a delicious gourmet barbecue dinner featuring a menu of seasonal, fresh and locally sourced food at the Colonel’s Homestead. After dinner enjoy a short farm tour then reboard the TSS Earnslaw for a sing along by the piano as you cruise back to Queenstown.

Your accommodation: Heritage Hotel Queenstown (or similar)

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, Speciality Dinner

Day 14 - Queenstown to Doubtful Sound and an Overnight Cruise

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 14
Queenstown to Doubtful Sound for your Overnight Cruise

Today travel via Te Anau to Manapouri. Enjoy a picnic lunch as you cruise across this glacial lake. A short ride over the Wilmot Pass brings you to the boarding point to join the Fiordland Navigator for an amazing overnight experience. As you cruise through the pristine beauty of Doubtful Sound, naturalist guides will provide commentary and point out the resident wildlife. When evening falls enjoy a delicious carvery buffet prepared freshly by the onboard chef.

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

Day 15 - Waking up in the stunning Doubtful Sound enjoy a morning cruise before heading to Te Anau

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 15
Doubtful Sound to Te Anau

Start the day with a hearty breakfast before heading back to Deep Cove for the trip back to Manapouri. Return back to the wharf and meet your Ultimate Coach for the journey back to Te Anau where you will enjoy an afternoon at leisure. You may like to visit the Te Anau Glow worm caves (optional).

Your accommodation: Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas (or similar)

The Te Anau Hotel and Villas offers a range of accommodation from hotel rooms and suites to villas. Ideally located on the lake front the hotel is just a few minutes stroll for the shops. cafes and activities on offer.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 16 - Te Anau to Dunedin

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 16
Te Anau to Dunedin

Travel via Gore and Balclutha to Dunedin.

Your accommodation: Distinction Dunedin Hotel (or similar)

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

Day 17 - A day in Dunedin including Larnach Castle

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 17
Dunedin

Travel along the Otago Peninsula to Larnach Castle, hear the tragic and scandalous stories on a guided tour with time to wander around this Garden of International Significance followed by an Ultimate High Tea served in the Grand Ballroom. Return to the city for some free time you might be interested in a tour of the Speights Brewery (optional) or the chance to see wildlife in their natural habitat (optional).

Your accommodation: Distinction Dunedin Hotel (or similar)

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

Day 18 - Dunedin to Christchurch

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 18
Dunedin to Christchurch via Oamaru

This morning travel to the city of Oamaru, famous for its limestone. Continue north to Pleasant Point Museum and Railway for a short rail experience followed by lunch and time to explore the preserved heritage of the South Canterbury railway. This evening enjoy a farewell dinner with selected beverages and your new friends.

Your accommodation: The George Hotel (or similar)

The George is the essence of supreme comfort. The award winning 5 star hotel is opposite Hagley Park and just a few minutes stroll from the Botanic Gardens. 2 superb award winning on site restaurants also feature.

Meals included: Breakfast, Speciality Dinner

Day 19 - Depart Christchurch today

Grand Pacific Tours 19 Day Ultimate Rail, Cruise & Coach - Day 19
Depart Christchurch

After breakfast (included) your tour concludes this morning. You will be transferred to the airport for your flight home.

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

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