$3,499.00 NZD

Christchurch > Nelson

From November - May

Our 14-Day NZ South Island Roadtrip!

New Zealand’s South Island is a place of breathtaking beauty. It’s home to Queenstown, the Milford Sound, Lake Tekapo and our incredible Abel Tasman National Park, and so much more – discover it all on this roadtrip There is no better time to explore it as our borders open and summer kicks off! With the Majestic mountains, copper-blue lakes, golden sand beaches and unbeatable nightlife, you’ll spend 14 days exploring it all with us while creating unforgettable memories.

Trip Details

The Particulars

Price

$3,499.00 NZD

You can secure your spot with a $99 deposit and pay the remaining balance 30 days prior to your tour departure!

See our Terms & Conditions for more details.


Meeting point

On day 1, you’ll need to meet us at 9 am at Jucy Snooze in Christchurch.

On day 14, the tour finishes at 3 pm at Bridge Backpackers in Nelson.


On the road

14 days, 13 nights


Group size

Small groups of up to 12 people


Taking part

You must be 18+ years old to book


Accommodation

Multi-share hostel with shared facilities


Tour staff

You will have a tour leader with you during your road trip with us. They will be your driver, host, cook, and new best mate!


Availability

2023

  • 22nd January – 4th February – SOLD OUT!
  • 12th February – 25th February – SOLD OUT!
  • 5th March – 18th March – SOLD OUT!
  • 26th March – 8th April – filling up fast!
  • 16th April – 29th April – filling up fast!
  • 7th May – 20th May
  • 12th November – 25th November
  • 26th November – 9th December
  • 10th December – 23rd December

2024 dates

  • 7th January – 20th January
  • 21st January – 3rd February
  • 4th February – 17th February
  • 19th February – 2nd March
  • 3rd March – 16th March
  • 17th March – 30th March
  • 31st March – 13th April
  • 14th April – 27th April
  • 28th April – 11th May
  • 12th May – 25th May

Included in this tour package:

Tasty continental breakfasts every day + 1 BBQ Dinner

13 nights in dorm share hostel accommodation

Comfortable mini-bus transport and passionate local kiwi tour leader

An indoor astrology Dark Sky Project experience which brings together science and Māori astronomy

Visit the tiny Church of the Good Shepherd, nestled by the shores of Lake Tekapo

Carve your own pounamu (greenstone/jade) pendant in Franz Josef

Enjoy 3 nights in Queenstown! Free time for you to explore the adventure capital of the world

Visit the charming, historic gold rush village of Arrowtown

Visit NZ’s highest mountain Mt Cook and check out our Tasman Glacier

Experience our '8th Wonder of the world', Milford Sound. Get up-close views of the impressive fiordland, stunning waterfalls and local wildlife

Explore Castle hill rocks - named the ‘Spiritual center of the universe’ by the Dalai Lama

Get your photo at #ThatWanakaTree and visit our famous ‘Remarkable Sweet shop’

Indulge in the milky blue ‘Lake Tekapo’ and visit NZ’s second largest lake – Lake Pukaki

Visit the vivid turquoise waters of 'Hokitika Gorge' surrounded by beautiful lush native bush

Learn to paddle a waka (Māori war canoe) along the Abel Tasman coastline

Visit the iconic split apple rock & experience NZ wildlife and the famous 'Seal Colony'

Sail on a private yacht charter around the National Park

Take a full day to play in the coastal paradise of Abel Tasman National Park

Enjoy a day trip to Golden Bay and visit the famous Wharariki beach

Relax at Hanmer Springs, New Zealand’s only natural geothermal alpine spa village

Tick off the Abel Tasman Coastal walk off your hike bucket list!

Visit the largest freshwater springs in New Zealand ( Te Waikoropupū Springs)

South Island Itinerary 14 Days

Welcome aboard! Today is the first day of our road trip! After a quick meet and greet in Christchurch, we load into our van and head west towards Rakaia Gorge for lunch. We then continue our way over The Rakaia Gorge Bridge which is a historic piece of architecture that dates back to 1945 and make our way towards Lake Tekapo. Surely a quick stop at the ‘Church of the Good Shepherd’ – one of the most photographed items in NZ. We then get to enjoy a treat for the senses at the Dark Sky Project experience for a 45min guided tour which brings together science and Māori astronomy. After this you will give you time to settle into your accommodation which looks out at the intense milky blue waters of the glacial-fed Lake Tekapo. In your downtime, you can walk around town, or you can choose to soak and relax at Tekapo Springs with views of the brilliant blue of Lake, sparse golden mountain ranges, pine forest, and the pure blue skies of the Mackenzie Region. As the sun sets, watch the beautiful changing light and colours on the mountains and in the sky. At night, you can explore the local cuisines for dinner and hang out with your new crew. After you have the chance to have your mind blown and discover the wonders of the night sky with many outdoor stargazing tours to choose from!

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included activities:

  • Experience the historic ‘Rakaia Gorge’
  • Indoor astrology experience – Dark Sky Project
  • Visit the ‘The Church of the Good Shepherd’
  • Indulge in the milky blue ‘Lake Tekapo’

In the morning, your guides will prepare a continental breakfast for you before we wind our way further south. We will pass Lake Pukaki which is the largest lake in the area, and it proudly shows off NZ’s tallest peak and our next spot to visit, Aoraki/Mount Cook. Take your time here to explore and a quick walk to view the largest glacier in the country. Afterwards we head towards a town situated on a lakefront and dwarfed by mountains they call Wānaka. After checking into our accommodation, you can wander the town and see why this place draws visitors from all around the world with unrivalled views of Mt. Aspiring National Park. The night is yours to try the delicious cuisines of this town and exciting nightlife.

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included meals: Breakfast
Included activities:

  • Experience NZ’s second largest lake – Lake Pukaki
  • Visit NZ’s highest mountain Mt Cook
  • Enjoy a short walk to the Tasman Glacier Walk

Wake up and enjoy your breakfast with panoramic views of the stunning Lake Wānaka. You’ll be happy to know we still have time for you to relax around Wānaka before heading to Arrowtown, New Zealand’s historic gold-mining destination. The Kiwi style ‘Wild West’ is full of funky cafes, charming wooden-fronted shops, and remnants of the gold rush era. Whilst you’re there, you should visit the replica miner’s huts, buy some flakes of gold, wade in the river where people still pan for gold or buy some old-fashioned sweets from the Remarkable Sweet Shop. Enjoy your lunch time here and after our visit, we head straight to the stunning lakeside town of Te Anau where we stay the night to prepare for tomorrow’s adventure. This picturesque township is the main visitor base for the glacier-covered wilderness Fiordland National Park.

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included meals: Breakfast
Included activities:

  • Get your photo at #ThatWanakaTree
  • Explore Arrowtown – the Kiwi style ‘Wild West’
  • Visit our famous ‘Remarkable Sweet shop’

After breakfast, we head to one of NZ’s most stunning attractions: the ‘eighth wonder of the world’, the Milford Sound. Deemed the world’s 8th wonder by Rudyard Kipling, this area has a magical combination of mountain peaks, forest-clad cliffs, and deep mysterious-blue waters. We really take advantage of this beautiful spot and include a 2-hour boat cruise on the sound itself. You’ll get up-close views of the impressive fiord and you will be in touching distance of the stunning waterfalls and local wildlife.  Keep your eyes out for seals, dolphins, and more!

After our cruise, we drive back towards Queenstown whilst making stops at Eglinton Valley and Mirror Lake. On arrival, we’ll check into our accommodation, and you’ll have some free time to go and explore this famous town! You can check out the world’s best burger joint (at least we think so)— Fergburger. And then, the night is yours. Have some drinks at the Ice Bar, take a trip through the haunted house, or head back to our accommodation to rest up for two more big days ahead in Queenstown.

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included meals: Breakfast
Included activities:

  • Milford Sound Boat Cruise
  • Experience Eglinton Valley and Mirror Lake

Today is your first FREE DAY and what better place than to enjoy it in Queenstown! The bro John Travolta once said, “whenever I get stressed, I just want to hop on a plane to Queenstown.” People come here from all over the world for Queenstown adventure holidays and the town has subsequently been nicknamed our adventure capital, and for good reason! It has to be seen to be believed and, with two more nights in this incredible southern paradise, you’ll get your chance to do as much exploring as you can fit in. Spend it how you want; bungy jumping, skydiving, exploring the town, soak up in the ONSEN hot pools (pre booking required)… the bucket list activities are endless!

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included meals: Breakfast

Optional activities:

  • Skippers Canyon Jet – $159
  • Shotover Jet boat – $129
  • Go orange Jet boat – $99
  • Shotover Canyon Swing – $199
  • ONSEN Hot pools – $99-199
  • AJ Hacket Bungy – $199-299
  • Kawaru Zipline – $49
  • Ozone Skydive – $199-399
    and many more..

There’s only one thing better than waking up to a Friday – and that’s waking up to a Friday in the beautiful Queenstown! Now, if you didn’t manage to do or see everything you wanted yesterday, no stress! You have another full day to explore this adventurous town. At midday, however, we have an optional add-on for a spectacular guided tour of Skippers Canyon via the infamous Skippers Road followed by the thrilling jet boat ride through the Shotover River’s dramatic canyons! In this area, you will discover a land rich in gold mining history and breathtaking scenery, just a short distance from central Queenstown.

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included meals: Breakfast

Optional activities:

  • Skippers Canyon Jet – $159
  • Shotover Jet boat – $129
  • Go orange Jet boat – $99
  • Shotover Canyon Swing – $199
  • ONSEN Hot pools – $99-199
  • AJ Hacket Bungy – $199-299
  • Kawaru Zipline – $49
  • Ozone Skydive – $199-399
    and many more..

 

To start our day we will have an early breakfast and head off to Cardrona, a historic village situated on the famous crown range road. You’ll be able to grab a coffee at the iconic Cardrona Hotel at the heart of the village while surely grabbing a photo while you’re there! We will then hit the road and pass by Lake Hāwea, a place of vivid beauty. We will then carry on to experience one of the best scenic drives in this area. Today, we pass by non-stop Aotearoa eye-candy through the Haast Pass which is highlighted by ancient rainforests, small glaciers, and awesome waterfalls. We might even get the chance to meet some penguins if we are lucky!

Before lunch, we’ll visit the famous Blue Pools which is only a short walk from the car park. The blue of the water is not to be believed, it’s clear, it’s pure and makes for one amazing photo! Afterwards, we will pass by more epic waterfalls and a beautiful beach to chill. After we’re satisfied, we’ll then make our way to Franz Josef Glacier for the night. Once settled into our new home for the night, you can opt-in for a pizza night, check out the local restaurants in the area and even use the giant hot tub (at the accommodation) to finish off your epic day with the squad!

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included meals: Breakfast
Included activities:

  • Visit the iconic ‘Cardrona Hotel’
  • View the magnificent Lake Hāwea,
  • Experience one of NZ’s best scene drives – Haast Pass,
  • Enjoy a short walk to the stunning ‘Blue Pools’
  • Discover Shipscreek Beach & many stunning waterfalls

After breakfast, you’ll get to learn the process of carving a special maori piece of jewellery from Pounamu known as ‘greenstone’, much of which has been sourced from local West Coast riverbeds. You even get to keep what you have made after as a souvenir. After this morning activity explore Franz Josef and all the wild activities on offer! You choose what you do for the rest of today! A popular thing to do is experience the original Franz Josef kayak adventure, epic helicopter tours and treks are also available for that unbeatable Instagram shot (your guides can give you some suggestions and help with bookings). We will then meet back and head out for a group dinner at a local resturant!

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included meals: Breakfast
Included activities: Carve your own Pounamu workshop

Optional add ons:

  • Heli + Glacier Hike – $485
  • Heli Trip – $289
  • Skydive – $229-399
  • Kayaking Tour- $125

 

Breakfast will be prepared early and you’ll have time to enjoy your last couple hours here as we depart at 9 am. We will load the van back up and travel to Christchurch – from one coast and head towards the other.  Explore some lunch options in Hokitika town and after this before we hit the road again to drive through the Arthur’s Pass, climbing to more than 900 metres through Arthur’s Pass National Park, is the highest and most spectacular pass across the Southern Alps. Halfway through we will stop to witness the Limestone rocks at Castle Hill, also known as Kura Tawhiti by the indigenous Maori Tribe Ngai Tahu and named the ‘Spiritual center of the universe’ by the Dalai Lama.  Once we arrive in Christchurch you have an opportunity for your last group dinner and night out with your crew before wrapping up the tour tomorrow morning.

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included meals: Breakfast
Included activities:

  • Enjoy exploring Hokitika townshop and the beach
  • Explore Castle hill -, named the ‘Spiritual centre of the universe’ by the Dalai Lama
  • Final night out with your crew in Christchurch!

After breakfast this morning you have the opportunity to explore all the beauty Christchurch has to offer before we make our way to Nelson. We will make a stop at Hanmer Springs for you to enjoy a few hours in New Zealand’s only natural geothermal alpine spa village! After we will check out a stunning waterfall and walk NZ’s longest swing bridge. We will find a place for you to grab lunch then head straight to Nelson, where you will have the rest of the day and night free to explore and enjoy tasting some locally-brewed beers and the delicious local cuisine before we head off tomorrow!

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included meals: Breakfast
Included activities: 

  • Hanmer Springs pools entrance
  • Visit the beautiful Maruia Falls
  • Walk NZ’s longest swing bridge
  • Night out in Nelson city with your crew!

We kick off our adventure in Nelson at 9:00am from Bridge Backpackers, before setting off through the picturesque Nelson region. We then make our way Motueka Town for a snacks and supermarket shop then off to the beautiful golden sand Kaiteriteri Beach for lunch. After we embark on an exclusive sailing trip around the surrounding bays of the Abel Tasman National Park. We have chartered the boat just for our group, so this is the perfect opportunity to share a drink and get to know your fellow road-trippers. After the sailing trip, we head back to the accommodation where your can chill out and find a local cuisine for dinner! You will also have the opportunity to experience the Marahau Nightlife with your new crew!

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included activities:

  • Visit the Iconic Split Apple Rock
  • Hop on board a Private Sailing trip around the bays
  • Experience NZ wildlife and the famous ‘Seal Colony’

After breakfast prepared by your tour leader, count yourself lucky as you completely immerse yourself in the natural wonders of the Abel Tasman National Park with a free day to explore how you like! For those who want to tick off one of the great walks in NZ you can do this today! Get your legs ready and walk the famous ‘Abel Tasman Coastal Walk’, for those more adventurous we can help organise a freedom kayak rental or a guided kayaking tour (highly recommend) to encounter resident seals and explore the outstanding coastlines, golden sand beaches and beautiful lagoons. For the adrenaline junkies you have the opportunity to Sky dive up to 20,000 ft! Or try the Torrent River canyoning adventure in the Abel Tasman, simply because it has it all. Jumps, slides, floats, abseils, you name it……Torrent’s got it. All this exciting stuff takes place in a gorgeous granite canyon filled with some of the purest water you can find and wrapped in mind-blowing, unspoiled rain forest. After your epic free day your tour leader will prepare a delicious kiwi style BBQ dinner for the whole group!

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included meals: Breakfast

Optional activities:

  • Hike in the national park – free
  • Freedom Kayak Rental – $75
  • Guided Full day Kayak Tours $150-250
  • Torrent River Canyoning – $289,
  • Abel Tasman Skydive – $289-$599

We start day 3 slightly later than the day before, to allow time for a sleep in and a latebreakfast. Afterwards, we head straight for Te Waikoropupu Springs, where your guides explain the cultural significance of the largest freshwater springs in NZ. We allow some time to take in the beauty and magic of this special place. We then stop for lunch in the heart of Golden Bay, at the local ‘Courthouse Cafe’ for delicious food and coffee. After this we spend the rest of our Saturday at Wharariki Beach. Undoubtedly one of the most photographed beaches in the Nelson Tasman region. The scenery here easily rivals the recognised wonders of the world, enjoy exploring this wondrous coastal playground. If we have time we will stop at the iconic ‘Muscle Inn’ serving fresh, wholesome snacks with beers and cider brewed on site. before we head back to Marahau we will stop at a supermarket where you can grab food for your last group dinner tonight!

Accommodation: Multi-share hostel with shared facilities
Included meals: Breakfast

Included activities:

  • Visit Te Waikoropupu Springs
  • Experience the famous ‘Wharariki Beach’
  • Road trip to Golden Bay

It may be the last day but we aren’t finished yet! We start our day very early with breakfast and pack to leave our new home in Marahau. We head straight to Kaiteriteri beach and share the magic of a NZ sunrise and Waka (Māori canoe) activity! Waka are the living expression of our tūpuna (ancestors) who sailed the Pacific Ocean for thousands of years. As the only form of transport across oceans and waterways, waka were vital to our travel and trade. We honour Te Rā (the sun) and the timatanga (begining) from the moana (ocean). This is a special experience when no one else is around private sunrise. After we make our way to Mapua Wharf, one of Nelson Tasman’s most popular dining, shopping and recreation attractions, overlooking the picturesque Waimea Estuary. You’ll find adventurous souls jumping from the wharf into the tidal current below. We have our last lunch here as a group before making the final leg of the journey back to Nelson city centre. We will be able to drop guests off at Nelson Airport at 3pm at the latest so if you are booking flights this day please make sure they are departing after 4pm

Included meals: Breakfast

Included activities:

  • Waka (Māori canoe)  sunrise trip
  • Free time at Mapua Wharf

 

Some Important Details


COVID restrictions/changes or cancellations to your booking?

 

  • All cancellations of bookings by you must be made in writing. We will not regard a booking as cancelled unless an email written notice has been received by us from you.
  • Cancellation can only be made up to 14 days before the departure of your tour. Once the cancellation is accepted a refund of the total ticket price (less the $99 deposit) will be paid to you. The refundable portion does not include the non-refundable $99 deposit.
  • No refunds will be available for cancellations within 14 days of the departure date.
  • For me details about COVID-19 within New Zealand please check out our COVID-19 Policies page

 

What the deal with flights?

 

  • Flights to Christchurch (starting point) are not included

 

What to bring?

 

  • We ask that you only bring 2 bags: 1 large-sized one for your clothes and general belongings, and 1 small day bag to keep with you on the bus
  • New Zealand weather can be unpredictable, so make sure you bring swimwear and a towel, as well as warm clothes and a rain jacket
  • All bedding is provided, but you can bring your favourite pillow if you like
  • For more in depth details about what to bring please check out our ‘Packing List’ page

Some Lovely Words From Past Roadies