Active South Island

Christchurch, Arthur's Pass, Lake Heron, Wanaka, Fiordland

From £7500 Per person in low season
From £9300 Per person in high season

based on 14 nights

Price Guide:

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  11. Nov
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  12. Dec
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* Pricing is a guideline only and excludes special offers. Travel over peak periods (e.g. Christmas, New Year and other public holidays) can affect prices considerably, as can exchange rates, flight class and room type.

Price includes:

  • Accommodation

  • Private transfers

  • Car rental

  • Selected experiences

Price based on 2 people sharing.

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At a Glance

  • Ultimate active trip for adventure seekers, with hiking, kayaking and outdoors activities aplenty

  • Rest your bodies in beautiful and traditional lodges offering authentic NZ experiences in rugged landscapes

  • An epic road trip highlighting the mesmerising landscape of the South Island full of mind-blowing experiences

  • Get off the beaten track to hidden gems like Lake Heron Station, a high country working sheep farm

  • Travel through the dramatic Doubtful Sound on a beautiful overnight boat cruise - the best way to experience Fiordland in all its glory

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Best time to Visit

Good time to visit

Average time to visit

The climate in New Zealand is incredibly pleasant, with warm and balmy summers and cold crisp winter months with wonderful clear, blue skies. The warmer high-season months of November to April are perfect for outdoor exploration. The colder months of June to August are the best time to ski.

South Island is drier on the east coast, rather than on the west, where mountain ranges act as a trap for the moisture-rich winds from the Tasman Sea. It is also worth remembering that it is usually a few degrees cooler on the South Island than the North Island and as New Zealand has a maritime climate, the weather can change rapidly.

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Insider's View

Look out for the rare Fiordland penguin species with their distinctive yellow "eyebrows" when you're cruising the Doubtful Sound - they are delightful to watch as they hop along the rocks.

Stop off at the famous Sheffield Pies for a typical New Zealand meat pie on the way to Arthur's Pass - recommended by many Kiwis as the best meat pies in the country!

You need a 4x4 for this trip, particularly for Lake Heron, to ensure you can get out and about exploring this wild area.

We design each itinerary around you, so this suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something completely bespoke to you. Call us on 020 3993 8476 to start planning your holiday.

Itinerary

Plunge into an abundance of outdoor adventure as you explore New Zealand’s beautiful and epic South Island in this ultimate road-trip. It really is an active traveller's dream, a playground of rewarding and exhilarating experiences; spend your days hiking, kayaking, mountain biking and exploring remote sheep stations by 4x4, embrace heli-hiking in Franz Josef National Park; jet boat in Wanaka; cruise through Doubtful Sound in the Fiordland National Park and hike the stunning Lake Marian Track.

  1. Days 1-2: Christchurch

    Dive straight into your adventure in the garden city of Christchurch on the east coast. Nestled between the Pacific Ocean and the Canterbury Plains, Christchurch is a beautiful compact city – the largest in the South Island. The perfect stopover hotel, you will be staying at The George, a contemporary luxury hotel overlooking Hagley Park and walking distance to Christchurch’s city centre. For a gentle introduction to New Zealand after your long flight we’ve included a private half day city tour, you will visit the botanical gardens, the traditional cathedral and new cardboard cathedral as well as discover Christchurch’s many parks and traditional buildings.

    Accommodation: The George (1 night)

  2. Days 2-5: Canterbury and the West Coast

    After a restful night collect your hire car and continue to Wilderness Lodge Arthur’s Pass, a working farm located high in the dramatic Southern Alps. The journey from Christchurch to Arthur’s Pass is an adventure in its own right. Pass through heart of the mighty Southern Alps witnessing breath-taking scenery and awe-inspiring landscapes as you cross the mountainous spine of the South Island.  Wilderness Lodge Arthurs Pass is a charming eco-lodge which offers unbelievable mountain views and a huge variety of activities from sheep-shearing to guided nature walks around the 4000-acre estate. Join in the epic adventure of heli hiking in Franz Josef National Park, after an exciting scenic flight, you will land high up on the glacier and undertake a two hour guided hike amongst some of the most pristine and awe-inspiring glacier scenery, making your way through a wonderland of towering pinnacles, taking in spectacular brilliantly blue ice formations as you go.

    Accommodation: Wilderness Lodge Arthur's Pass (3 nights)

  3. Days 5-8: Lake Heron

    Returning South today your next destination is a remote sheep station at Lake Heron. Located in an extremely remote area of New Zealand, Lake Heron Station defines the definition of seclusion. A typical working high-country farm, Lake Heron Station is home to thousands of merino sheep as well as cattle and covers the entire valley and every mountain in sight. This is your adventure playground just begging to be explored, taking your 4x4, a map and a picnic lunch and driving anywhere you choose, setting off on foot and conquering a mountain or canoeing on the lake. We’ve included an epic half day jet boating and walking adventure deep in the Matukituki valley, where you will be whizzed beneath the breath-taking scenery of mountains and glaciers, Lord of the Rings and Hobbit locations, into the World Heritage Mount Aspiring National Park, where you take a 50-minute walk into real wilderness through moss covered forest, waterfalls and glacier fed streams.

    Accommodation: Lake Heron Station (3 nights)

  4. Days 8-11: Canterbury and the West Coast

    The Ahuriri Valley is your next stop and your final experience of the Southern Alps before you head to the Fiordland region of New Zealand. Stay at The Lindis - a brand new luxury lodge set in the most breathtaking of environments. With a plethora of activities on offer from the lodge including gliding, cycling and horse riding - the choice is yours how you wish to spend your time here. Admire the simply outstanding scenery from one of the lodges many panoramic windows and as the sun falls be mesmerised by the thousands of stars shining bright above you.  The surrounding area is home to some outstanding full day hikes in some of New Zealand's most inspiring scenery, as well as challenging mountain biking, heli-hiking on glaciers, mountaineering, horse riding and quad biking.

    Accommodation: The Lindis (3 nights)

  5. Days 11-15: Fiordland National Park

    Last but by no means least, head into the Fiordland region, truly getting off the grid. After spending one night at Cabot Lodge, a traditional kiwi luxury homestead, cruise overnight on the Doubtful Sound, retracing the steps of early explorers who navigated these often-foggy waters in search of a landing point on the island. You'll get the chance to swim in the calm waters, if you’re lucky play with the playful dolphins, as well as kayak in this silent sound looking out for wildlife from Fiordland penguins and fur seals. Your final couple of nights will be back on dry land at Cabot Lodge, where you take part in a wide variety of daily adventure activities, you can participate in a variety of lodge-based activities from kayaking to heli-hiking or can opt to explore the surrounding landscape from its wetlands to forest, mountains to lakes and even glaciers. Enjoy an adventurous guided day excursion hiking from Te Anau to Lake Marian amongst forest and alpine scenery. Begin with a gentle walk alongside a series of waterfalls, becoming steeper and rocky underfoot as you ascend through a lush forest of fuchsia, ribbon wood and beech trees. There are ample opportunities for you to stop for photographs, bird-watching and enjoying the scenery as you go. Making the most of your last drop od adventure before you return home.

    Accommodation: Cabot Lodge (4 nights)

Location

Christchurch, Arthur's Pass, Lake Heron, Wanaka, Fiordland

Speak to our specialists 020 3993 8860

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We design each itinerary around you, so this suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something completely bespoke to you. Call us on 020 3993 8476 to start planning your holiday.

Start planning now Speak to our specialists on 020 3993 8476 or start planning now Plan your trip

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