8 Day Wildlife and Glaciers Tour

A comprehensive eight day South Island tour. With stunning scenery and incredible wildlife around every corner, it will be difficult to put you camera down. Enjoy the sights of a ‘World Heritage’ National Park, an abundance of wildlife on Otago Peninsula and guided walk to the terminal face of Franz Josef Glacier. This tour has it all.

Tour Type: Independent Tour
Starts: Christchurch    Ends: Christchurch
Duration: 8 Days
Departs Daily

New Zealand tour map

Extra days and activities can be added at time of booking

HIGHLIGHTS - included in the fare
  • Full day Otago Peninsula tour
  • Cruise of Milford Sound with lunch
  • Queenstown
  • Skyline Gondola
  • Glacier Valley Walk at Franz Josef
  • TranzAlpine scenic railway
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accommodation on this tour.
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Day 1 Christchurch - Dunedin
Travel south over the Canterbury Plains to the towns of Timaru and Oamaru. Follow the coastline to Palmerston and then its over the Kilmog Hill and Mount Cargill to Dunedin, the Edinburgh of the South. Afternoon at your own leisure to explore Dunedin.
Accommodation: Alexis Motor Lodge, Scenic Hotel Southern Cross or similar
Day 2 Otago Peninsula
Today is a full day tour out to the Otago Peninsula. This includes the Otago Harbour and Taiaroa Head wildlife cruise, scenic Otago Peninsula bus tour and guided tours of the Royal Albatross colony, the Yellow Eyed Penguin Reserve, a visit to wading bird habitats and a guided tour of Larnach Castle, one of Dunedin's great landmarks. 
Accommodation: Alexis Motor Lodge, Scenic Hotel Southern Cross or similar
Day 3 Dunedin - Te Anau
Morning at leisure in Dunedin for you to take in some of the many sites. In the afternoon board your coach for your journey through the lush pastures of Otago and Southland to the lakeside town of Te Anau.
Accommodation: Distinction Luxmore Hotel or similar
Day 4 Te Anau - Milford - Queenstown
Regarded as one of the world's most scenic journeys, Fiordland National Park - a world heritage area. Enjoy a one and a half hour cruise of Milford Sound viewing spectacular waterfalls and famous Mitre Peak before travelling to Queenstown arriving in the evening.
Accommodation: Bella Vista Motel, Scenic Suites or similar
Day 5 Free Day in Queenstown
A free day for you to enjoy this fabulous resort style town. We have included the Skyline Gondola in your tour. We are happy to book additional sightseeing activities, please ask at time of booking.
Accommodation: Bella Vista Motel, Scenic Suites or similar
Day 6 Queenstown - Franz Josef
Leaving Queenstown, travel to the West Coast passing through Cromwell, Wanaka and Hawea before climbing over the Haast Pass into the Westland National Park. 
Accommodation: Bella Vista Motel, Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier or similar
Day 7 Full Day at Franz Josef
This morning we have included a 3 hour guided Glacier Valley Walk to the Franz Josef terminal face. Your Glacier Valley Walk will take you up alongside the mighty Waiho River bed following the glaciers path of retreat in this remarkable landscape. Here you will learn about the glacier's history, see what is left behind by this majestic giant, and learn the legend of Ka Roimata o Hinehukatere. Near the terminal face, after a brief climb you will be rewarded with spectacular views of the rapidly changing terminal face of the glacier. This leisurely and informative tour is customised to suit every walking group, no tour is exactly the same. Please note this trip does not take you onto the ice. Afternoon at your own leisure in Franz Josef.
Option: Upgrade to a 'Glacier Heli Hike' - a thrilling flight and an amazing three hour guided glacier hike. Please ask at time of booking.
Accommodation: Bella Vista Motel, Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier or similar
Day 8 Franz Josef - Christchurch
Continue north through lush rainforest and spectacular scenery to Greymouth to board the famous TranzAlpine Train, recognised as one of the top six rail journeys in the world. Arrive into Christchurch early evening.
Optional extras which can be added to this tour

From Christchurch

1 Day Lord of the Rings Tour


8 Day Wildlife & Glaciers Tour
Review by: B & C Resell
"I just wanted to thank you for setting up our tour tor New Zealand this past February. My wife and I had a great time and were very happy with the trip you planned. Our lodging was always in great locations to enable walking to sites and restaurants and the sights that we couldn't miss were all on our itinerary. Thank you for a most memorable tour!"

8 Day Wildlife & Glaciers Tour
Review by: Barbara H
"Sorry not to reply before but things have been quite busy since we got back. We had a great time on the trip and all transport and liaison arrangements went perfectly. We were made very welcome at the Alexis Motor Lodge but didn't have time to use the spa pool! Taxis and InterCity was all efficient and vouchers for Gondola and Franz Josef worked well. We had a great time in Dunedin with the 4 integrated tours, the day to Milford Sound was quite awesome. We managed the Franz Josef guided walk with some help, it was a bit tough walking up a boulder strewn river bed but glad we did. Another worthwhile visit at FJ was the West Coast wildlife centre where we saw Rowi Kiwi, Tuatara and a good explanation about glaciers etc. Very pleasant staff and good displays. So thanks Sophie for arranging the Glacier and Wildlife trip, all went smoothly and we had lovely weather (giving you credit for that, too!)."

This tour departs daily

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

Tourist (Motel) Quality (Hotel)
Single NZ$3,205 per person NZ$4,475 per person
Double NZ$2,315 per person NZ$3,000 per person
Triple NZ$2,135 per person NZ$2,650 per person

Prices are per person and in New Zealand Dollars.

Prices valid for travel before 30 September 2018

Meals (with the exception of lunch on the Milford day tour) & expenses of a personal nature such as beverages, travel insurance, laundry, optional sightseeing are not included in the tour cost.


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.
Frequently Asked Questions about our Independent Tours


  1. Click on the 'Book This Tour' button and complete the Booking form. If you prefer to book via phone, fax or mail, please use the contact details on our Contact Us page.

  2. Our staff will receive your booking request, arrange your booking, and contact you to confirm the booking and arrange payment. If your requested Tour is not available on that date staff will contact you to discuss alternatives.

  3. A credit card (Visa or Mastercard) is then required to secure the booking. This can be provided using our secure online web form, or by providing the details over the phone.
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