Southern Spirit

Southern Spirit

14 Days
From
$4480
$4267

Southern Spirit

14 Days Starting in Christchurch (Nz) and ending in Wellington (Nz)

Visiting:

Christchurch

,

Omarama

,

Dunedin

,

Invercargill

,

Stewart Island

,

Queenstown

,

Franz Josef

,

Punakaiki

,

Nelson

,

Wellington

Tour operator:

AAT Kings

Tour code:

LCQW22

From:
$4480

$4267 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $213

Tour Overview

What they don’t tell you when you book this South Island tour, is how addictive this part of New Zealand truly is. You’ll find it hard to tear yourself away from its immense gorges, thundering waterfalls, gem-like glaciers, and snow-topped mountains. Many of these coalesce in one place: Milford Sound. Your gateway cities range from the adventure capital of Queenstown to the actual capital, Wellington.

Highlights

  • Te Anau Glow Worm Caves

  • Cruise the Cook Strait

  • Te Papa - New Zealand National Museum

  • Milford Sound Overnight Cruise

  • Wellington City Sights Tour

  • Group Photo in Queenstown

  • Dunedin City Sights

  • Church of the Good Shepherd in Tekapo

  • Christchurch City Sights tour

Itinerary

Expand All
icon Day 1: Welcome to Christchurch
Location:

  Christchurch


Accommodation:

  Ibis Hotel Christchurch


Welcome to Christchurch, New Zealand’s Garden City. Flights can arrive any time prior to 4.00pm. Take some time to relax or explore independently. You may like to step back in time to a grand era of transport and relax on the Christchurch Tram as it takes you around the 'must-see' central attractions. The tram drivers provide a live commentary throughout the loop, identifying points of interest, historic architecture and the changes the city is under-going since the 2011 earthquake. This evening, meet your fellow travelling companions and your AAT Kings Travel Director for a welcome reception at your hotel.

icon Day 2: Christchurch – Omarama
Location:

  Omarama


Accommodation:

  Heritage Gateway Hotel


After a Christchurch city sights tour, you will head out over the patchwork countryside of the Canterbury Plains to soak up some spectacular sightseeing. Sweeping views across the turquoise waters of Lake Tekapo framed by a backdrop of rugged hills and snow-capped mountains provide stunning alpine photography opportunities. You will visit the little stone-hewn Church of the Good Shepherd and stop for a quick photo with the bronze statue of a collie dog, the touching tribute to the sheepdogs which helped develop the Mackenzie Country. You may want to take in Mount Cook National Park from the air this afternoon, on a scenic flight out over New Zealand’s highest peak, the Southern Alps and on to Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers (Optional Experience - at own expense). Your day finishes in the heart of the Mackenzie Country at Omarama. Tonight, enjoy dinner at your hotel.

icon Day 3: Omarama – Dunedin Free Time
Location:

  Dunedin


Accommodation:

  Kingsgate Hotel Dunedin


Your day starts with a journey along the Waitaki River, which marks the boundary between the regions of Canterbury and Otago, and with its large catchment it is an ideal source of hydro-electric power. From the Waitaki Valley you will then travel through to the township of Oamaru, with its stately tree-lined streets and its famous white limestone buildings. As well as shipping limestone to the bigger cities of Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin for construction of their Town Halls and various churches, Oamaru locals made sure that their own town represented the best in limestone building the mid-late 1800’s had to offer. This afternoon you will make your way down to the Southernmost New Zealand city, Dunedin. With the rest of your free afternoon you may wish to take part in an Optional Experience to see more of the region. Take a Wildlife Cruise out to Otago Peninsula, visit the Speights Brewery – a New Zealand institution or journey out to Larnach Castle – New Zealand’s only Castle. Tonight, speak with your Travel Director about dining recommendations in Dunedin’s inner city.

icon Day 4: Dunedin – Invercargill
Location:

  Invercargill


Accommodation:

  Kelvin Hotel


This morning we leave Dunedin and travel through lush green pastures, crossing sheep-filled farming land through to Gore, the country music capital of New Zealand for a lunch stop. As your journey continues, you arrive into Invercargill, New Zealands southernmost city. This commercial hub is full of grand architecture and gardens. A city obsessed with motoring history, there are tributes to speed legends across town, from the famous Burt Munro to Bill Richardson and his shed full of classic vehicles – the largest private collection of its type in the world. This afternoon you will have some free time to explore this city and its offerings.

icon Day 5: Stewart Island
Location:

  Stewart Island


Board a ferry at Bluff and cruise to Stewart Island. Stewart Island is known by locals as Rakiura which is the Maori reference to Glowing Skies. It has been described as rugged, pristine and tranquil – and rightly so as 97% of the island is designated National Park and Conservation Estate.  This means the birdlife, native flora & fauna and other natural environmental features have been able to thrive. Once you arrive, you will gain an entertaining insight into New Zealand’s southernmost community and learn about the history and environment of Stewart Island on a Village and Bays tour. Later, enjoy some free time. Join a guided sail around Paterson Inlet that will take you past unique places including Acker’s Cottage before docking at Ulva Island to admire the bird life and native flora. For a more active option you could hire an E-bike and explore the Island for yourself. Travel back to Bluff by ferry before arriving back to your accommodation in Invercargill.

icon Day 6: Invercargill – Queenstown
Location:

  Queenstown


Accommodation:

  Copthorne Hotel and Resort Queenstown


Enjoy a relaxed start in Invercargill before departing for Queenstown. Known for its adventure you will have a free afternoon to explore. Take the opportunity to encounter a Queenstown legend and ride the Shotover Jet Boat or venture out on a Skippers Canyon Scenic Tour. If laid-back and relaxed is more your idea of fun, then join a Wine Tour and sample some of Central Otago’s award-winning wines. Your AAT Kings Travel Director will assist you in booking all of your chosen optional experiences. This evening, why not sit back and enjoy a peaceful evening cruise across Lake Wakatipu aboard New Zealand’s oldest steamship, the TSS Earnslaw, to Walter Peak Station (Optional Experience, own expense). Launched in 1912, the TSS Earnslaw is the largest and grandest vessel ever to ply Lake Wakatipu. Today, the TSS Earnslaw is believed to be the only coal-fired passenger carrying vessel still operating in the southern hemisphere. Partake in a gourmet BBQ Highlight Dinner at Walter Peaks’ Colonel’s Homestead and then enjoy an entertaining after-dinner farm show providing a glimpse into high-country farm life. On the cruise back to Queenstown, join in a vintage sing-along or grab your partner for a dance across the polished wooden floors of the Earnslaw.

icon Day 7: Queenstown Free Time
Location:

  Queenstown


While Queenstown wears its Global Adventure badge proudly, it’s also the perfect place to relax and explore. The town boasts great shopping with luxury brands, iconic New Zealand design stores and boutique fashion. If bungy jumping or tree-to-tree ziplining aren't your cup of tea, consider an Optional Experience to spectacular Milford Sound, travel to the UNESCO World Heritage Fiordland National Park. Experience magnificent scenery and many photo opportunities afforded by the Mirror Lakes, Knobs Flat, Hollyford Valley lookout (Pop’s view), Cleddau Valley and the Chasm, drive through the hand-hewn Homer Tunnel towards the iconic Mitre Peak and the Bowen Falls before reaching Milford Sound for your cruise.

icon Day 8: Queenstown – Franz Josef
Location:

  Franz Josef


Accommodation:

  Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier (Graham Wing)


This morning you will leave the alpine wonderland of Queenstown behind, and begin the passage through Central Otago and out to Westland. On the way out of the Queenstown region, you will stop and visit the faithfully restored gold mining settlement of Arrowtown. As you amble down the beautiful tree-lined avenues, past the 19th century wooden buildings, you will feel like you have stepped into a movie set. From here you will travel over to Cromwell, situated next to the sparkling pristine waters of Lake Dunstan, where you will stop in at a local orchard for a taste of some of the town’s delicious stone fruit. It is a day of gorgeous lakes, as after Dunstan, you will travel further into Central Otago and view the vivid blue waters of Lake Hawea, followed by Lake Wanaka, where the shoreline is charmingly lined by poplars and willows. Following an ancient greenstone trail, you will travel over Haast Pass, marking a change from the alpine scenery of the Southern Lakes, to the rainforest marvel of the wild West Coast. View the sheer drop of Thunder Creek Falls and the grand sight of Mt Hooker, flanked on three sides by extensive glaciers. Our final destination for today is the extraordinary rivers of ice that make up Franz Josef Glacier. You may want to get up close and personal with the glaciers on a helicopter flight. Your flight will hover over the snow face and may land high up in the valley so that you can walk across the ice fall – subject to weather conditions (Optional Experience – at own expense). Tonight, enjoy dinner at your hotel.

icon Day 9: Franz Josef – Punakaiki
Location:

  Punakaiki


Accommodation:

  Ocean View Retreat Punakaiki


If weather conditions are unfavourable on Day 8, you will get another chance to fly up to the glaciers this morning or you might want to take a stroll through the small but lively Franz Josef village. Then you head off to the drift-wood strewn beaches of Hokitika. As well as being one of the few West Coast communities to embrace its coastal landscape, Hokitika struck it rich in the resource's stakes. Here you will visit a pounamu factory (native greenstone or jade), for the chance to see master carvers at work creating intricate pieces of jewellery and art. Maori tradition says it is bad luck to buy pounamu for yourself, so if you fancy a trinket of your own, make sure you have someone there to purchase it for you. Then, continue to Punakaiki to view the Pancake Rocks and Blowholes. Tonight, we stay in an eco-friendly resort right on the waterfront. Enjoy dinner while watching the thundering surf at your doorstep

icon Day 10: Punakaiki – Nelson
Location:

  Nelson


Accommodation:

  The Rutherford Hotel


Soak up the scenic wilderness of the Heritage Highway through the impressive Buller Gorge and the Kahurangi National Park before arriving in Nelson.

icon Day 11: Nelson Free Time
Location:

  Nelson


On this day at leisure, you’ll have the opportunity to journey to the top of the South Island and enjoy a relaxing cruise in the Abel Tasman National Park, or perhaps take a short bush walk, relax in sunny Nelson or explore the many arts and craft shops. The choice is yours!

icon Day 12: Nelson – Wellington
Location:

  Wellington


Accommodation:

  Travelodge Wellington


This morning, we travel to the pretty seaside fishing village of Picton where you will board the Interislander for a cruise across the Cook Strait, from the South Island to the North. Surprisingly it takes longer to cruise through the Queen Charlotte Sound and up the Tory Channel than it does to cross the open ocean of Cook Strait. You will meander through a maze of arms and inlets out of Picton. Once in Wellington enjoy a City tour including viewing New Zealand’s Parliament Buildings. Tonight, is an evening at leisure, speak with your Travel Director about dining recommendations in Wellington’s inner city.

icon Day 13: Wellington Free Time
Location:

  Wellington


You have a day at leisure to see the sights of your choice. Perhaps take a tour of Parliament or one of the Lord of the Rings movie tours, or venture to Weta Workshop, the home of the special effects' wizards whose work features in many blockbuster movies. Enjoy the café lifestyle in our capital city or simply shop till you drop, there is something in Wellington for everyone! This evening enjoy dinner at your hotel.

icon Day 14: Farewell from Wellington
Location:

  Wellington


Your holiday concludes this morning after breakfast.

What's Included

  • Comfortable accommodation

  • Travel by luxury coach

  • Airport transfers (see flight information below)

  • Experienced Travel Director and Driver Guide

  • Specialist team of two highly experienced Travel Director and Driver Guide

  • Centrally located premium 3.5-star hotels

  • National Park entrance fees

Dates & Availability

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Oct 05, 2023

Wednesday

Oct 18, 2023
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $213 (USD)

$4480
$4267 (USD)
$4480
$4267 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $213

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Nov 30, 2023

Wednesday

Dec 13, 2023
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $213 (USD)

$4480
$4267 (USD)
$4480
$4267 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $213

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Jan 04, 2024

Wednesday

Jan 17, 2024
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $213 (USD)

$4480
$4267 (USD)
$4480
$4267 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $213

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Feb 01, 2024

Wednesday

Feb 14, 2024
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $219 (USD)

$4620
$4401 (USD)
$4620
$4401 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $219

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Mar 07, 2024

Wednesday

Mar 20, 2024
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $219 (USD)

$4620
$4401 (USD)
$4620
$4401 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $219

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Apr 04, 2024

Wednesday

Apr 17, 2024
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Apr 25, 2024

Wednesday

May 08, 2024
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Sep 05, 2024

Wednesday

Sep 18, 2024
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Oct 03, 2024

Wednesday

Oct 16, 2024
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Oct 17, 2024

Wednesday

Oct 30, 2024
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Oct 31, 2024

Wednesday

Nov 13, 2024
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Nov 21, 2024

Wednesday

Dec 04, 2024
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Nov 28, 2024

Wednesday

Dec 11, 2024
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Dec 12, 2024

Wednesday

Dec 25, 2024
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Dec 19, 2024

Wednesday

Jan 01, 2025
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Dec 26, 2024

Wednesday

Jan 08, 2025
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Jan 02, 2025

Wednesday

Jan 15, 2025
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Jan 23, 2025

Wednesday

Feb 05, 2025
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Jan 30, 2025

Wednesday

Feb 12, 2025
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $224 (USD)

$4710
$4486 (USD)
$4710
$4486 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $224

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Feb 06, 2025

Wednesday

Feb 19, 2025
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $230 (USD)

$4845
$4615 (USD)
$4845
$4615 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $230

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Feb 13, 2025

Wednesday

Feb 26, 2025
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $230 (USD)

$4845
$4615 (USD)
$4845
$4615 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $230

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Feb 20, 2025

Wednesday

Mar 05, 2025
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $230 (USD)

$4845
$4615 (USD)
$4845
$4615 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $230

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Feb 27, 2025

Wednesday

Mar 12, 2025
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $230 (USD)

$4845
$4615 (USD)
$4845
$4615 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $230

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Mar 06, 2025

Wednesday

Mar 19, 2025
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $230 (USD)

$4845
$4615 (USD)
$4845
$4615 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $230

Instant Booking Available

Thursday

Mar 20, 2025

Wednesday

Apr 02, 2025
  • EXTRA tourhub discount: $230 (USD)

$4845
$4615 (USD)
$4845
$4615 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $230

Book with Confidence

  • Low Deposit

    AAT Kings requires a minimum deposit of 100 GBP per person or the full booking value, whichever is less, with the final balance not due until 60 days before departure.

  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of aat kings charges.

    Up to 60 days before tour starts: 100% of deposit.

    At 59 days before tour starts: 30% of booking price.

    At 15 days before tour starts: 50% of booking price.

    At 7 days before tour starts: 90% of booking price.

    At 1 days before tour starts: 100% of booking price.

Southern Spirit

14 Days Starting in Christchurch (Nz) and ending in Wellington (Nz)

Visiting:

Christchurch

,

Omarama

,

Dunedin

,

Invercargill

,

Stewart Island

,

Queenstown

,

Franz Josef

,

Punakaiki

,

Nelson

,

Wellington

Tour operator:

AAT Kings

Tour code:

LCQW22

From:
$4480

$4267 (USD)

EXTRA tourhub discount: $213

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A 'MUST' whilst you're there?

"Visit a Masai cultural village to learn about their way of life, take a walk along the Mara river and cross the bridge to have one foot in Kenya and one foot in Tanzania! Game drives are my favourite."

Favourite time of year to visit Masai Mara National Reserve

"I often visit in January and February when the parks are quieter and the rains bring out a lot of different experiences. July-September is the best time to visit for the great wildebeest migration!"

Benefits of a tour guide for Masai Mara National Reserve

"Masai Mara is so vast and the guides know the roads like the back of their hand. Their radio systems help each other to find great sightings for guests. A guide will give you the best experience."

What can you see in Masai Mara?

"The Big 5! lions, leopards, buffalos, elephants and rhinos. As well as cheetahs, hippos, giraffes, antelopes, zebras and so much more. "

About Our

  • Travel Blogger
  • Countries Visited:

    20 Countries

  • Favourite Destination:

    Kenya

  • Dream Destination:

    Vietnam

  • About them:
  • I am a travel obsessed scottish girl with a love for Africa, Kenya specifically! I don't think there's a single place I wouldn't go! I love solo and group travelling and volunteering across the world!

Nairobi

Kenya

A 'MUST' whilst you're there?

"Visit the Giraffe centre to hand feed giraffes, watch baby elephants during feeding time at David Sheldrick, feed wild monkeys in the park, eat at Nairobi street kitchen and party at K1 Clubhouse. "

Do I book in advance?

"If you're not on a tour, it's important to book places like David Sheldrick in advance as they are a true sanctuary and only open to the public for 1hr each day to limited numbers. It can book up weeks in advance."

What can I do at night?

"Nairobi has a lot of restaurants and bars. My favourite is K1 Clubhouse with regular DJs, life music, an outdoor beer garden and club vibes! Great drinks, food and atmosphere!"

What do you love most about Nairobi?

"I love Nairobi so much because the people are so welcoming. Locals have always been so kind and helpful and of course, Kenya is so beautiful it keeps me coming back for more!"

@courtgoestravelling 's Top Tips

"Unless you're on a tour, plan the places you want to visit in advance and organise a guide for easiness and safety! Kenya has a lot to offer and there's a lot to pack into a trip!"

About Our

  • Travel Blogger
  • Countries Visited:

    20 Countries

  • Favourite Destination:

    Kenya

  • Dream Destination:

    Vietnam

  • About them:
  • I am a travel obsessed scottish girl with a love for Africa, Kenya specifically! I don't think there's a single place I wouldn't go! I love solo and group travelling and volunteering across the world!

Yosemite West

United States

A 'MUST' whilst you're there?

"There are so many hikes and beautiful scenic nature views, especially along the valley. Head to Mariposa for some scenic trails. "

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"Sunset offers incredible opportunities to view wildlife & watch the colours highlight El Capitan as the sun sinks beyond the horizon."

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"Look for wildlife sightings throughout the park!"

Must pack items for Yosemite West

"-Warm layers (even in summer as temps can drop quite quickly when the sun goes down). -Reusable water bottle, sunscreen, bug repellent, sturdy hiking boots, binoculars, camera & sunglasses."

Benefits of a tour guide for Yosemite West

"Access to information about the best hikes, insights and tips to make your trip magical and unique! "

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"Head towards the Hetch Hetchy reservoir for some amazing views of the stunning lakes along the Sierra Nevada mountain range."

A 'MUST' whilst you're there?

"Drive along the valley for amazing views of El Capitan, Half Dome, Bridal Veil Falls and giant sequoia trees. Head up to Tunnel View for stunning views of the valley below."

About Our

  • Influencer
  • Countries Visited:

    4 Countries

  • Favourite Destination:

    London

  • Dream Destination:

    The world!

  • About them:
  • "Live once Travel Well", is my main motto for life. I love to travel, go on outdoor adventures & family travels/adventures. When I'm not traveling, I'm busy planning my next adventure ☺️