9 Day Southern Spotlight Guided TourDiscover the highlights of New Zealand’s magnificent South Island on this comprehensive journey. Cross the Southern Alps aboard the iconic TranzAlpine train, and cruise the serene waters of mystical Milford Sound and peaceful Lake Wakatipu. A series of unforgettable experiences awaits you in this proud Pacific nation.
9 Day Southern Spotlight Guided TourTick all the boxes of must-dos in the South Island. Journey through the Southern Alps on the TranzAlpine train, have a night out at a High Country Station in Central Otago, cruise down the still waters of Milford Sound, and roam through the stone-hewn campus of New Zealand’s oldest university in Dunedin.
|Tour Type:||Group Tours|
|From:||Christchurch to Christchurch|
Regions VisitedClick on the region name to view more information about the region
- Comfortable accommodation
- Travel by luxury coach
- Airport transfers (flights to arrive prior to 4pm on day 1, flights can depart anytime on day 9)
- Full buffet breakfasts (8)
- Highlight dinner (1)
- Dinners (3)
- Farewell dinner (1)
- Journey on the Tranz Alpine Train
- See awe-inspiring Franz Josef Glacier
- Historic Arrowtown
- Cruise across Lake Wakatipu to Walter Peak dinner, Queenstown
- Cruise Milford Sound
- See spectacular Lake Te Anau
- Dunedin City Sights
Frequently Asked Questions – GroupTours
What is a Group tour?
What could be better than travelling with a group of like-minded people, on a coach tour operated by one of our preferred operators, AAT Kings or Grand Pacific Tours. You will be taken care of from your arrival into New Zealand through to your departure.
Do these tours departure every day?
The departure dates are stipulated on our website. Should a date not fit into your schedule, please contact us as we would gladly make alternative arrangements for you.
I am a single traveller, can I be matched up with another single traveller in a twin room?
Yes, you can pay on a share twin basis. You will be matched with a fellow traveller of the same gender, however we are unable to guarantee compatibility.
What is included in my tour?
5 star coach transportation, experienced coach captain with full commentary, some tours include a tour manager. Accommodation, activities and meals as stipulated in the itinerary.
Can I join or leave a tour part way through?
Yes, should you wish to we can arrange this for you. However, there will be no deduction in the cost for unused services.
Does the tour include transfers on arrival and departure?
You will be met on arrival at the airport and transferred to the tour hotel to meet your fellow travellers. At the completion of the tour you will be transferred to the airport in ample time for your departure flight.
Can I add accommodation onto my tour, at the beginning or the end of the tour?
Yes, this is pre or post accommodation. Just let us know and we can include that in your tour.
I am prone to motion sickness, can I guarantee a forward seat?
All tours operate a seat rotation system for the enjoyment of all travellers. All travellers must participate in seat rotation as a condition of booking. Due to this we are unable to guarantee forward seating.
How much luggage can I bring on tour?
Each traveller is entitled to travel with one suitcase. Maximum suitcase weight allowed is 23kg (50lbs). All luggage is entirely at the ‘owners risk’ whilst on tour and we strongly recommend that travel insurance be taken out by each traveller to cover accidental damage or loss. All travellers are supplied with luggage tags. This will assist the Coach Captain to identify your luggage when loading the coach throughout your tour and the delivery of luggage to your room.
What clothing should I bring on tour?
Whilst on tour, dress is informal and relaxed on most occasions. Smart casual clothes are acceptable at most restaurants. The seasons are more pronounced and the weather is more changeable. In summer, a jacket and sweater should be included in your luggage should the weather turn cooler or you visit higher altitudes. You can expect some rain, so also include a light rainproof jacket or coat. If visiting during the months of May and September, pack warm winter garments and layer your clothing. You may have the option to relax and unwind in thermal hot pools so don’t forget to pack your swimwear.
What can I expect weather wise?
As much as we would like to say 100% sunshine, that is beyond us so the New Zealand Met service have the following averages.
Spring: September, October, November - average daytime temperature 16 – 19 Celsius (61 – 66 Fahrenheit)
Summer: December, January, February - average daytime temperature 20 – 25 Celsius (68- 77 Fahrenheit)
Autumn/Fall: March, April, May - average daytime temperature 17-21 Celsius (62 – 70 Fahrenheit)
Winter: June, July, August - average daytime temperature 12 - 16 Celsius (53 – 61 Fahrenheit)
Do I need to tip in New Zealand?
If you wish to reward someone for a job well done it is always much appreciated.
Do I need a visa to visit New Zealand?
Most visitors to New Zealand do not require a visa to enter for the purpose of a holiday or vacation under the visa waiver program. If you do need a visa to visit New Zealand then you should contact the New Zealand consulate in your home country well before your departure date. We recommend you also check with your local travel agent or airline for any visa requirements to New Zealand particularly if you are passing through Australia. Information on the New Zealand Electronic Travel Authority (NZeTA) can be found here: https://www.immigration.govt.nz/new-zealand-visas/apply-for-a-visa/about-visa/nzeta
What currency is used in New Zealand?
The New Zealand dollar is the only legal tender in New Zealand. View a guide between your local currency and the New Zealand dollar. Please note: Your tour and all purchases using a credit card in New Zealand will be charged in New Zealand Dollars (NZD) at the current exchange rate at the time of purchase.
Do I require travel insurance?
We strongly recommend you purchase travel insurance. Factors may arise that require you to cancel or amend your holiday, so it is essential you are covered for any costs that may be incurred. We recommend purchasing your travel insurance locally at the same time as you book your tour and flights. Pacific Travel Ltd does not sell travel insurance.
Day By Day Itinerary
DAY 1: WELCOME TO CHRISTCHURCH
You’ll have time to relax before meeting your Travel Director and fellow travellers this evening for a Welcome Reception.
Accommodation: Hotel Ibis
DAY 2: CHRISTCHURCH / OMARAMA
See how Christchurch is has rebuilt itself after the devastating earthquakes of 2010 and 2011, and pop into the Transitional Cathedral, the temporary home of the Christchurch Cathedral, built almost entirely of cardboard. Later, travel over the fertile Canterbury Plains to soak up spectacular scenery. You’ll view the famous Church of the Good Shepherd, and stop for a quick photo with the bronze statue of a collie dog. You may wish to view Mount Cook National Park from the air this afternoon on an optional experience scenic flight. Your day finishes in the heart of the Mackenzie Country at Omarama.
Accommodation: Heritage Gateway Hotel
DAY 3: OMARAMA / DUNEDIN
Visit to the Waitaki Hydro Power Scheme, an intricate series of interconnected lakes and canals, and the monumental spillway of the nearby Benmore Dam. Then travel to the historic town of Oamaru, with its elegant tree-lined streets and celebrated white limestone buildings. Continue to Dunedin, New Zealand’s southernmost city, where your afternoon is at leisure. You may like to take a wildlife cruise, or ride the historic Taieri Gorge Railway.
Accommodation: Scenic Hotel Dunedin City
DAY 4: DUNEDIN / TE ANAU
This morning you’re free to explore Dunedin at your own pace: you might like to visit stately Larnach Castle. This afternoon, travel through lush green sheep-grazing country on your way to Fiordland National Park and the town of Te Anau. Tonight, why not consider an optional experience and take a boat tour of the mysterious Te Anau Glowworm Caves.
Accommodation: Distinction Luxmore Hotel
DAY 5: TE ANAU / QUEENSTOWN
Your experience in magnificent Milford Sound is sure to be one of the highlights of your trip. Travel through tall native rainforests and rugged mountains of Fiordland National Park, then cruise the serene waters of this natural wonder. On the way to Queenstown see Mirror Lake, Cleddau Valley, the Chasm, Mitre Peak and Bowen Falls, then travel along the Devil’s Staircase and the shores of Lake Wakatipu. Enjoy an informative orientation tour on arrival.
Accommodation: Copthorne Hotel & Resort
DAY 6: QUEENSTOWN
Explore New Zealand’s adventure capital at your own pace today. There are jet boat rides and white water rafting for the thrill-seekers, and wine tours or intimate cafés for those who enjoy a more leisurely rhythm. You might like to visit the picturesque Queenstown Gardens and enjoy its beautiful tulips in spring or glorious roses in summer. Take a peaceful cruise this evening across Lake Wakatipu aboard the century-old TSS Earnslaw, the only remaining commercial passenger-carrying coal-fired steamship in the Southern Hemisphere. Your destination is Walter Peak High Country Farm, where you’ll enjoy a gourmet barbecue Highlight Dinner and entertaining after-dinner show offering glimpses of high country farm life.
Accommodation: Copthorne Hotel & Resort
DAY 7: QUEENSTOWN / FRANZ JOSEF
Your destination today is the wild west coast of the South Island. Stop to visit the gold-mining settlement of Arrowtown, where more than 70 original buildings from the gold-rush era are faithfully preserved. Sample luscious stone fruit in Cromwell and enjoy the serenity of the region’s vivid blue lakes, the most famous of which is tranquil Lake Wanaka. Drive over the spectacular Haast Pass, passing the 96-metre Thunder Creek Falls and stopping for a leisurely rainforest walk on your way to the extraordinary Franz Josef Glacier.
Accommodation: Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier
DAY 8: FRANZ JOSEF / CHRISTCHURCH
Travel on this morning to Hokitika, home of New Zealand’s famous greenstone. Pounamu (its Māori name) is of great cultural significance in Māori culture and was prized for its strength, durability and beauty. It was used for weapons, tools and personal ornaments, and also denoted great status. Continue to Arthur’s Pass to board the iconic TranzAlpine train and embark on one of the world’s most renowned rail journeys. Pass through magnificent landscapes ranging from the rugged gorges and pristine ice-fed streams and lakes of the Southern Alps, to the lush pasture-land of the Canterbury Plains. This evening in Christchurch, join your Travel Director and new-found friends for a Farewell Dinner.
Accommodation: Hotel Ibis
DAY 9: FAREWELL FROM CHRISTCHURCH
Say farewell to your fellow travellers when your holiday comes to an end this morning after breakfast.
01 October 2020 - 31 March 2022
|Start Date||End Date||Single traveller||Share / Twin||Guaranteed departure||Availability|
|28 February 2021||8 March 2021||$4,180 NZD||$3,175 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|7 March 2021||15 March 2021||$4,180 NZD||$3,175 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|14 March 2021||22 March 2021||$4,180 NZD||$3,175 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|21 March 2021||29 March 2021||$4,180 NZD||$3,175 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|28 March 2021||5 April 2021||$4,180 NZD||$3,175 NZD||Yes||Enquire / Book|
|25 April 2021||3 May 2021||$3,945 NZD||$3,025 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|2 May 2021||10 May 2021||$3,945 NZD||$3,025 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|6 June 2021||14 June 2021||$3,945 NZD||$3,025 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|4 July 2021||12 July 2021||$3,945 NZD||$3,025 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|1 August 2021||9 August 2021||$3,945 NZD||$3,025 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|15 August 2021||23 August 2021||$3,945 NZD||$3,025 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|12 September 2021||20 September 2021||$3,945 NZD||$3,025 NZD||Yes||Enquire / Book|
|19 September 2021||27 September 2021||$3,945 NZD||$3,025 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|3 October 2021||11 October 2021||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||Yes||Enquire / Book|
|10 October 2021||18 October 2021||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|17 October 2021||25 October 2021||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|24 October 2021||1 November 2021||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||Yes||Enquire / Book|
|31 October 2021||8 November 2021||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|7 November 2021||15 November 2021||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|14 November 2021||22 November 2021||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|21 November 2021||29 November 2021||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|5 December 2021||13 December 2021||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||Yes||Enquire / Book|
|12 December 2021||20 December 2021||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|19 December 2021||27 December 2021||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|26 December 2021||3 January 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|2 January 2022||10 January 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||Yes||Enquire / Book|
|16 January 2022||24 January 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|23 January 2022||31 January 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|30 January 2022||7 February 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|6 February 2022||14 February 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||Yes||Enquire / Book|
|13 February 2022||21 February 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|20 February 2022||28 February 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||Yes||Enquire / Book|
|27 February 2022||7 March 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|6 March 2022||14 March 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||Yes||Enquire / Book|
|13 March 2022||21 March 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|
|20 March 2022||28 March 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||Yes||Enquire / Book|
|27 March 2022||4 April 2022||$4,210 NZD||$3,205 NZD||No||Enquire / Book|