Top of the South Island

7 Days / 6 Nights
From NZ$1,245 per person Double/Twin Share
Double/Twin Share

Indulge in relaxing thermal pools with natural wonders, coastal walks, and the smile-inducing experience of whales in their natural environment.

Highlights

  • The braided rivers and rich patchwork farming landscape of the Canterbury ranges
  • The rugged picturesque coastline between the Pacific Ocean and Kaikoura Ranges
  • Marlborough's wine growing region
  • Nelson Tasman region
  • Coastal towns, bustling cafes, charming boutiques and funky art galleries
  • Soaking in Hanmer's Thermal Pools

Departure Dates

Any date to suit your plans

Day 1:  Arrive at Christchurch and head to Hanmer Springs
Welcome to Christchurch. Or as we like to say - haere mai! Your rental car is ready and waiting to whisk you away to the first stop on your kiwi adventure, but before you leave the Garden City behind, why not discover how it earned its flowery moniker? Spare an hour or two and explore the vibrant corners of Christchurch Botanic Gardens. When you’re ready, get a feel for the local roads and continue your journey north, arriving at Hanmer Springs with plenty of time to take advantage of the Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa entry pass. Operating between 10am and 9pm, close out the day in this watery wonderland of restorative therapy, watching a brilliant sunset streak the sky in oranges, golds and pinks from the hot mineral waters.

Day 2:  Hanmer Springs to Kaikoura
Check out of your comfortable motel accommodation and drive directly to the coastal region of Kaikoura.  Prepare to get an early night as tomorrow's activity isn't one you want to miss!

Day 3:  Kaikoura to Nelson
This morning, board a specialised whale-watching vessel and keep your camera at the ready, because the next three hours will be a happy ocean haze of fins, flukes and lingering bird calls. Dependent on migratory patterns, you’ll witness the antics of five possible whale species, from the lens-hogging sperm whale to the brilliant sheen of the blue whale, and pods of dusky dolphins in between.

Insider Tip: Keep your eyes peeled for crowd-pleasing fur seals – they love to soak up the sun on the rocks!
On the road again, begin your journey with a stop at the Ohau Stream, 15 minutes north of Kaikoura, for a short walk to the picture-perfect waterfall at the end of the trail.
Stomach rumbling? Enjoy the best of New Zealand’s saltwater fare with a dinner at Urban Oyster Bar & Eatery.
Day 4:  Day trip to Abel Tasman National Park
Dust off your walking shoes, as the Abel Tasman National Park puts your tootsies to the test, thrilling your eyes with the kind of views you’ve only seen in brochures and guidebooks. You’ll soon be ooh’ing and ahhh’ing, as the tour leaves nothing to the imagination, weaving through Manuka groves, ancient ferns, and gorgeous gullies of old-growth forests, with scatterings of pools, wandering streams, and jaw-dropping views of the granite coastline. Beautiful is an understatement. Hunt for the right descriptor as your day trip trades forests floors for sandy beaches, and traverse a tumbling waterfall via an awesome swing bridge – remember to take an extra battery pack for your phone or camera, you’ll need it.
  • 7 days Group C car rental
  • 6 nights 3-star hotel/motel accommodation
  • Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools entry
  • Abel Tasman Swing Bridge, Bush & Beach Cruise and Wal;k
  • Kaikoura whale-watching trip

 

Description & Highlights

Indulge in relaxing thermal pools with natural wonders, coastal walks, and the smile-inducing experience of whales in their natural environment.

Itinerary

Day 1:  Arrive at Christchurch and head to Hanmer Springs
Welcome to Christchurch. Or as we like to say - haere mai! Your rental car is ready and waiting to whisk you away to the first stop on your kiwi adventure, but before you leave the Garden City behind, why not discover how it earned its flowery moniker? Spare an hour or two and explore the vibrant corners of Christchurch Botanic Gardens. When you’re ready, get a feel for the local roads and continue your journey north, arriving at Hanmer Springs with plenty of time to take advantage of the Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa entry pass. Operating between 10am and 9pm, close out the day in this watery wonderland of restorative therapy, watching a brilliant sunset streak the sky in oranges, golds and pinks from the hot mineral waters.

Day 2:  Hanmer Springs to Kaikoura
Check out of your comfortable motel accommodation and drive directly to the coastal region of Kaikoura.  Prepare to get an early night as tomorrow's activity isn't one you want to miss!

Day 3:  Kaikoura to Nelson
This morning, board a specialised whale-watching vessel and keep your camera at the ready, because the next three hours will be a happy ocean haze of fins, flukes and lingering bird calls. Dependent on migratory patterns, you’ll witness the antics of five possible whale species, from the lens-hogging sperm whale to the brilliant sheen of the blue whale, and pods of dusky dolphins in between.

Insider Tip: Keep your eyes peeled for crowd-pleasing fur seals – they love to soak up the sun on the rocks!
On the road again, begin your journey with a stop at the Ohau Stream, 15 minutes north of Kaikoura, for a short walk to the picture-perfect waterfall at the end of the trail.
Stomach rumbling? Enjoy the best of New Zealand’s saltwater fare with a dinner at Urban Oyster Bar & Eatery.
Day 4:  Day trip to Abel Tasman National Park
Dust off your walking shoes, as the Abel Tasman National Park puts your tootsies to the test, thrilling your eyes with the kind of views you’ve only seen in brochures and guidebooks. You’ll soon be ooh’ing and ahhh’ing, as the tour leaves nothing to the imagination, weaving through Manuka groves, ancient ferns, and gorgeous gullies of old-growth forests, with scatterings of pools, wandering streams, and jaw-dropping views of the granite coastline. Beautiful is an understatement. Hunt for the right descriptor as your day trip trades forests floors for sandy beaches, and traverse a tumbling waterfall via an awesome swing bridge – remember to take an extra battery pack for your phone or camera, you’ll need it.

Included In Package

  • 7 days Group C car rental
  • 6 nights 3-star hotel/motel accommodation
  • Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools entry
  • Abel Tasman Swing Bridge, Bush & Beach Cruise and Wal;k
  • Kaikoura whale-watching trip

 

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