11 Day South Island Explorer Itinerary

Embark on an epic adventure through the South Island of New Zealand. From Franz Joseph Glacier to Queenstown and the mighty Mt Cook.

    • 11
    • PTOS
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    • Explorer
    • Basix
Hiking the Franz Josef Glacier

Franz Josef Glacier

Kayaking at Milford Sound

Mount Cook

Day 1 Christchurch

Arrive in Christchurch and start exploring the cafes, restaurants and pop-up bars gaining ground in this rapidly re-emerging city. Perhaps stroll down to Re:START, the exciting new development initiative, and relax with a coffee in a converted shipping container or toast the city's resilience with a glass of Marlborough wine.
ACCOM: Hostel - 1

Day 2 Punakaiki

Travel west across the Canterbury Plains watching as the dry landscape of the east slowly gives way to green fields, deep blue rivers and sheer mountainsides. Arrive in Punakaiki and take in the spectacular views along the west's windswept coastline.
ACCOM: Hostel - 1

Days 3-4 Franz Josef Glacier

Get ready for another beautiful drive today as we wind through rich forests, shimmering lakes and secluded beaches en route to Franz Josef. Trek across the region's massive glacier on a guided hike, or board a ski-plane or helicopter and peer down at it from above.
ACCOM: Hostel - 2

Days 5-9 Queenstown

Ascend the Haast Pass into the Southern Alps and travel to the vibrant resort town of Queenstown. Perched by the shores of Lake Wakatipu and with an unpretentious atmosphere and backed by spectacular mountain scenery, this is a place sure to leave an impression. Spend the next few days getting your adrenaline kicks whizzing around by jet boat, taking to the skies paragliding, hitting the hill trails by mountain bike, bungee jumping, kayaking, rafting or choosing from any other number of activities on offer.
ACCOM: Hostel - 4, Overnight boat - 1

Day 10 Mt Cook

Drive into Mt Cook National Park for a night's lodge accommodation at the base of New Zealand's highest mountain, Aoraki (Mt Cook).
ACCOM: Hostel - 1

Day 11 Christchurch

Weather permitting, perhaps head off along one of the trails at the base of Mt Cook before making tracks back to Christchurch where this South Island odyssey winds up. Why not rally the troops and commemorate the end of the journey with a final group dinner.