8 Day Southern Traverse Tour

Tour Type
Independent Tour
8 Days
Daily Except 25 December

An eight day South Island tour covering the East and West Coasts. Features include the world renowned TranzAlpine Train, West Coast rainforests, a glacier heli hike, Queenstown - NZ's premier alpine resort town, Fiordland World Heritage Park, Milford Sound cruise and a Royal Albatross & Penguin tour in Dunedin, NZ's Scottish city.A truly special part of the South Island.

Prices per person in NZD* Single Double or Twin Triple
Tourist (Motel) NZ$3,515 per person NZ$2,625 per person NZ$2,445 per person
Quality (Hotel) NZ$4,790 per person NZ$3,310 per person NZ$2,960 per person

*Prices valid for travel before 30 September 2018

nz map 8 Day Southern Traverse Tour

Extra days and activities can be added at time of booking.
Departs daily except Christmas Day.


HIGHLIGHTS - included in the fare
  • TranzAlpine Train
  • Guided glacier walk
  • Glacier Hot Pools
  • Queenstown
  • Skyline Gondola
  • Fiordland World Heritage Park
  • Milford Sound cruise including picnic lunch
  • Wildlife Cruise & penguin tour, Dunedin

Day 1 Christchurch - Franz Josef
Depart Christchurch on the world-renowned TranzAlpine Train bound for Greymouth via the Arthur's Pass National Park. Cross the Canterbury Plains, travel over viaducts and through tunnels and into the lush rainforests of the West Coast. On arrival in Greymouth board your coach for your journey south to Franz Josef.
Accommodation: Bella Vista Motel, Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier or similar 

Day 2 Franz Josef Glacier Heli Hike
Today we have included a fantastic glacier Heli Hike. After a thrilling flight, high above the rugged terrain, you will land on the glacier, ready to undertake a three hour guided glacier hike. Your friendly guide will lead you through some of the most pristine and awe-inspiring glacier scenery in the world. Your guide will choose your route carefully as you go and, with an eye for the most spectacular ice formations, you'll soon be making your way through an extraordinary land of towering peaks and glistening blue ice. Entry to the Glacier Hot Pools is included, and can be used at anytime during your stay in Franz Josef. This afternoon is free for you to relax and enjoy Franz Josef township.
Accommodation: Bella Vista Motel, Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier or similar

Day 3 Franz Josef - Queenstown
We travel deeper into South Westland taking in the spectacle of Haast Pass, carved by the Haast River and framed by the Southern Alps. Take in the views of many beautiful lakes including Wanaka, Hawea, Dunstan and Wakatipu before arriving into Queenstown.
Accommodation: Bella Vista Motel, Scenic Suites or similar.

Day 4 Free Day in Queenstown
A free day for you to enjoy this fabulous resort. We have included the Skyline Gondola in your tour. There are dozens of activities including white water rafting, jetboating, bungy jumping, sky diving, lake cruises, high country sheep station tours and excellent walking trails. Something for everyone.
Accommodation: Bella Vista Motel, Scenic Suites or similar.
Day 5 Queenstown - Milford - Te Anau
Travel to the Fiordland National Park – a world heritage park. A vast remote wilderness of snow-capped mountains, glacial lakes and valleys, fiords, waterfalls and dense rainforests. From Te Anau, travel to the forested Eglinton Valley, Mirror Lakes, Homer Tunnel and the Chasm before arriving at Milford Sound. Enjoy a one and a half hour cruise of Milford Sound viewing the spectacular waterfalls and famous Mitre Peak.
Option: This evening you may like to take a tour across the lake to view the Glow Worm Caves (additional cost). Please ask at time of booking for details.
Accommodation: Distinction Hotel or similar.

Day 6 Te Anau - Dunedin
High country tussock soon gives way to the lush pastures of Southland and Otago as you travel through Gore and Balclutha arriving in Dunedin early afternoon. The afternoon is at leisure for your own exploring or a little shopping.
Accommodation: Alexis Motor Lodge, Scenic Hotel Southern Cross or similar.

Day 7 Otago Peninsula
Morning at leisure in Dunedin for you to view some of the many sights.  In the afternoon enjoy a cruise around the Taiaroa Heads to view the Northern Royal Albatross soaring high above the headlands. Other species to be seen include the Blue Penguin, Sooty Shearwater, Variable Oyster Catcher, three species of Shag and other sea birds. Disembark at Wellers Rock and transfer by coach to Penguin Place for a guided land tour of the Yellow-Eyed Penguins. Return to the city by coach.
Accommodation: Alexis Motor Lodge, Scenic Hotel Southern Cross or similar.

Day 8 Dunedin - Christchurch
Today you travel north through the cities of Oamaru and Timaru arriving in Christchurch mid afternoon where you tour ends.

*Prices are per person and include: pick up from centrally located pre tour accommodation, transfers to / from accommodation throughout the tour and activities as specified in the itinerary. Expenses of a personal nature such as meals (except where stated in the itinerary), beverages, travel insurance, laundry and optional sightseeing are not included in the tour cost.
Overall, our trip was AMAZING!! We had SO much fun. Unfortunately the Heli Hike was cancelled due to weather :( but we still hiked to the bottom of the glacier on our own and had a fun day in Franz Josef. Bungy jumping was TERRIFYING!!!! I’m glad I did it, but I think it will be my first and last jump :) I still don’t know how they convinced me to jump off on the count of 3!! I also couldn’t get my feet unhooked so I still got pulled up feet first. The Milford Sound tour was definitely as a highlight - and we were nervous because the day before we were supposed to go we heard the road was closed, but luckily it all worked out for us. The penguin tour was also really fun! All of our accommodations were very conveniently located and everything ran smoothly from start to finish - thank you so much for your help! I don’t think we would have been able to pack as much into our trip without your help!


I wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed my New Zealand tour. I was blessed with fine weather for all the week on the West Coast including glorious sunshine and blue skies on the Franz Josef Glacier. All the arrangements worked perfectly and the hotels were very comfortable and I enjoyed seeing so much of New Zealand from the coaches. I was a little worried because the coaches didn’t generally have lavatories on them, but we made regular rest stop and so this didn’t turn out to be a problem. It was only when I read the itinerary in details that I realised that I was actually going to fly up to the Franz Josef Glacier by helicopter and walk on the ice – this was quite a challenge for someone who is basically unfit and in his sixties, but thanks to the guide I was able to manage the rather strenuous glacier walk. This was probably the highlight of the tour, though I enjoyed the cruise around Milford Sound, the day in Queenstown (as well as the Gondola, I visited the Kiwi Birdlife Park and saw some Kiwi as well as other interesting birds and I also went on a lake cruise on the steamship TSS Earnslaw). The weekend in Dunedin (I saw a Yellowed Eyed penguin in the wild as well as a Little Blue penguin in Dunedin Harbour on the Otago Peninsula Tour and also had time to visit the Otago Museum, the Settler’s Museum, Olveston House, the University of Otago and various other places), and finally the TranzAlpine Train which certainly exceeded its reputation.

Kind regards, C Napier

Thank you for a well organised trip to the South Island, NZ. It was a memorable journey of amazing wonders and till today I can picture the breathtaking scenery of Milford Sound, Lake Tekapo and many more. Cheers for making the effort to assure us when we faced the transport challenge at Haast. It is very comforting to know that our modified travel plans were checked thoroughly in therms of timing, availability, safety and our needs. Your professionalism at handling the unexpected change of plans is most appreciated.

Beat wishes, M Yap & party

Just wanted to thank you for organizing my tour. Everything so far has gone like clockwork, with everyone being there when the itinerary said they would be. Made it so easy and stress free. The choice of activities was phenomenal. Varied, and all interesting, giving me a great overview of the South Island. I'm so glad that I decided to take your tour.

Cheers and thanks again, D Swan

Just to let you know that our trip went incredibly well from beginning to end. Everything clicked smoothly into place allowing us to enjoy the scenery and activities. All the hotels were excellent, especially the Distinction Fox Glacier. We would recommend the trip unreservedly.

Helen & Keith Fowler

We just want you to know we are home safely and to THANK YOU for the wonderful time we had in New Zealand. Our trip there was amazing and your magnificent planning is even more amazing. All of our pick ups / drop offs, tickets for various activities and many other things we are probably forgetting to mention were perfect. The hotels were excellent and the service and friendliness of all New Zealander’s was evident everywhere. We do want to put your dependability and attention to detail on the web somewhere. We have given your agency’s name out everywhere and hope others will contact you on our recommendation. We are also glad we kept in the glacier walk – it was fantastic and that is not nearly a good enough description. Our guide was so kind. We are 70 and 68. We think our guide was concerned because of our age and had us do a brief physical test. We passed with no trouble but he requested we stay at the front with him. Actually, the walk turned out to be no problem but his caring and carefulness was impressive. Please let me know where we can best post our unqualified delight and confidence in your trip planning and your agency.

Paul & Delores

This is to thank you for organizing a wonderful holiday for me and my family. We really enjoyed it. It was well organized, carefully planned and the companies that you have tied up with are very professional and beyond par with service they give. We didn’t stress at all!! Everything was fantastic and excellent! The activities that you have in the itinerary was just amazing! I personally don’t mind doing it again. And honestly, the tour exceeded my expectations. I loved it! Definitely, we’ll contact you again and check your web site everytime of any exciting things that your team have come up with. By the way, my friends and family have seen our photos and the fun we had. I have recommended your service. Thanks heaps! God bless you.

Best Regards, C Torlao

We just arrived back in Christchurch yesterday (Sunday) afternoon from our amazing Scenic Pacific tour of the South Island. I want you to know that every taxi, bus, train and boat arrived on time. Each hotel was expecting us. Every tour was in good weather (including the beautiful Fox Glacier hike and the incredible Milford Sound boat ride). This trip was a gem. Since each voucher had your name on it as the scheduler, we often said "thank you Jodee!". We are grateful to you and your fine organisation for helping us enjoy a great trip.

F & D Fehrenback

Expenses of a personal nature such as meals (except where stated in the itinerary), beverages, travel insurance, laundry and optional sightseeing are not included in the tour cost.

This tour departs daily

As this is an 'independent' styled tour, you can depart whatever day you like! (subject to availability)

What is an independent tour?
 Independent tours are not escorted group tours - they are for independent travellers. What this means is that it is not the same group of people travelling on their own coach with a tour leader/escort looking after you. You are travelling independently. However, you are picked up and dropped off at your accommodation each morning and evening and interesting commentary is provided on many sectors.
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Why choose Scenic Pacific Travel?

You will have peace of mind knowing we are a proven, local tour operator, with decades of experience. Our caring, experienced travel consultants will give you accurate and up to date information with their intimate knowledge of New Zealand. They will work directly with you in planning your New Zealand tour to ensure you have a wonderful experience and lasting memories.

We offer a carefully selected choice of over 100 tours from all over New Zealand. Our Independent Tours depart daily while the Guided Group Tour have set departure dates. There is a tour to suit every budget and travel date.

Regardless of your choice of holiday, you will receive a personal travel wallet containing your itinerary, travel vouchers, maps and information brochures - everything you need to travel with.

You have free telephone access (within New Zealand) to one of our travel consultants during your tour. We are right here in New Zealand (we are not just a New Zealand website for an overseas company). If any unforeseen issues should arise once you arrive in New Zealand we are here to help.

We are Qualmark endorsed and a member of the Tourism Industry Aotearoa

Check out our client testimonials.

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