Auckland to Christchurch - 16 days

Auckland to Christchurch - 16 days

16 Days



Auckland to Christchurch - 16 days

16 Days Starting in Welcome to New Zealand! and ending in Christchurch

Visiting: New Zealand

Tour operator:

On The Go Tours

Group size:

2 - 16

Age range:

18+The average age of passengers on these tours is between 55-75yrs. Pure Discoveries do not permit children.

Trip Styles:

Small Group

$5142 (USD) Operator discount: $588 The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $145 -12%

This tour is no longer available, please see similar tours below or send an enquiry

Tour Overview

This 16-day group tour from Auckland to Christchurch explores the highlights of New Zealand's picturesque North and South Islands. Discover the cities of Auckland, Wellington, Queenstown, and Christchurch through guided city tours. Embrace Maori traditions at Rotarua, cruise the Milford Sound and discover the vibrant scenery of Abel Tasman National Park. Opt for a helicopter flight over Fox Glacier and the surrounding gorges and mountains and spend a night besides the largest lake on the South Island, Te Anau.


  • Auckland - Enjoy the view from Bastion Point, visit Auckland Museum and the waterfront on a guided city tour

  • Rotorua - Visit the Te Puia geothermal site and a Kiwi conservation project, plus experience a Te Pa Tu Maori cultural evening

  • Wellington - See highlights including the Parliament Building and the 'Beehive' on a guided city tour

  • Abel Tasman National Park - Cruise the waters of this national park and enjoy optional hiking across wild beaches and through lush scenery

  • Punakaiki -Discover the world-famous Pancake Rocks and blowholes, an impressive natural wonder

  • Wanaka - Choose from an ecological tour to a serene island on Lake Wanaka or a 4X4 excursion into the surrounding countryside

  • Te Anau - Stay beside the largest lake on the South Island and the gateway to Fiordland National Park

  • Milford Sound - Pass through incredible Fiordland National Park and enjoy a cruise on Milford Sound - look out for dolphins!

  • Queenstown - Spend a free day here exploring as you please, with optional zip-lining, rafting, or a 4X4 safari

  • Christchurch – End your adventure in the city, with an included punting experience and ride on a heritage tram


Expand All
Day 1: Welcome To New Zealand!

Upon arrival into Auckland you will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. The rest of the day offers free time to explore the local area; why not ask the guide for tips on where to eat in the evening.

Day 2: Auckland
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Auckland – Rotorua. This morning we enjoy an Auckland City tour with panoramic views from Bastion Point, Maori and Pacific Island displays at the Auckland Museum, the quaint Parnell Village, and the picturesque waterfront. Following this we leave Auckland and head to Rotorua, the heart of New Zealand's thermal and cultural region. When we arrive we will take part in a city tour before heading to our nights accommodation.

In the afternoon we have some time to relax before we visit Tamaki Maori Village for Te Pa Tu, an evening experience and feast that changes with the Maori lunar calendar. We experience Maori culture and feast on seasonal cuisine in the forest Pa surrounded by Tawa trees and bonfires. The 4-course fusion feast includes Hangi dishes served al fresco or in the dining room, depending on the weather. Return hotel transfers included; other travellers will be on board.

Day 3: Rotorua
Meals Included: Breakfast

Rotorua – Wellington. In Rotorua, we'll experience both New Zealand's geothermal wonders and rich Maori heritage. Te Puia is a must-visit, featuring active geothermal sites, indigenous arts, crafts, and a Kiwi conservation project. Their welcoming culture means they treat you like family and we are treated with a private guide whilst we are here. Following this we explore the Blue and Green Lakes, along with Lake Tarawera, site of the Buried Village, a Māori village destroyed by the 1886 Mt. Tarawera eruption. It provides a first hand look at the aftermath, including the loss of the Pink and White Terraces.

This afternoon we fly to Wellington, New Zealand's capital, which is nestled on steep hills around a stunning harbour. It's the country's political and administrative centre, boasting a cosmopolitan feel with offices, stores, cafes, and restaurants. We enjoy a city tour, taking in iconic landmarks like the Parliament Buildings and the 'Beehive.'

Day 4: Wellington
Meals Included: Breakfast

Wellington – Nelson. Today we cross the Cook Strait on one of the most picturesque ferry journeys in the world. Often accompanied by dolphins riding the bow wave, we arrive in Picton on the South Island. We travel to Blenheim, nestled in the heart of the renowned Marlborough wine country. What could be a more perfect way to savour this region, celebrated for its Sauvignon Blanc, than indulging in wine tasting at one of Marlborough's top wineries? From here we head to the delightful town of Nelson, where we spend the next two nights.

Day 5: Nelson
Meals Included: Breakfast

Your choice of activity today must be made at the time of booking. Please let our Reservations team know which included activity you would like to partake in.

We spend today soaking up the beauty of Abel Tasman National Park, with its golden coves, turquoise lagoons and forest ranges. Since there are few roads in this national park we see the sights of it by boat instead. Boarding a small cruiser at Kaiteriteri we head out to enjoy the scenery with plenty of stops along the way for swimming and exploring on foot. Arriving back in Kaiteriteri after the cruise, you have three options.

Option 1 is to relax in the town of Kaiteriteri at leisure.

Option 2 is to join a shorter 7km (2.5 hour) self-guided walk to fabulous Anchorage Beach.

Option 3 is to join a longer 10.5km (4 hour) self-guided walk to Anchorage Beach including the scenic highlights of the South Head lookout, the famous Falls River swing-bridge and Cleopatra’s Pool.

After these activities are completed, we transfer back to Nelson for the evening.

Day 6: Nelson
Meals Included: Breakfast

Nelson – Punakaiki. This morning we journey through the captivating Nelson Lakes National Park, which features rugged peaks, lush forests, glacial lakes, and the majestic Southern Alps. We take some time to explore the charming village of St. Arnaud, before turning inland along the Buller River Gorge, a stunning scenic drive. We then follow the coastline south to the small settlement of Punakaiki. This area is renowned for its wild and untamed shoreline, as well as the famous 'Pancake Rocks' – striking limestone formations that stand as a remarkable testament to the forces of nature.

Day 7: Punakaiki
Meals Included: Breakfast

Punakaiki – Fox Glacier. Leaving Punakaiki behind we travel on to Hokitika on the West Coast where we visit its galleries of greenstone jewellery and artwork. Continuing to Hokitika Gorge we stretch our legs and discover the blue/green waters that pass through the rugged rocks. Following the road south we reach Franz Josef and then on to the village of Fox which is where the huge rivers of snow and ice of the Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers flow from vast snowfields high in the Southern Alps, down almost to sea level. If the weather allows there is the option of a helicopter ride over the glaciers at an extra cost.

Day 8: Mt Aspiring National Park
Meals Included: Breakfast

Fox Glacier – Wanaka. First thing today we visit nearby Lake Matheson which, when weather conditions are just right, perfectly mirrors Mount Cook in its waters creating a stunning visual effect. From here we head up over the Haast Past along the river road, which took more than 40 years to complete, travelling deep into Mt Aspiring National Park to Lake Wanaka and the picturesque resort town of Wanaka.

Day 9: Wanaka
Meals Included: Breakfast

Your choice of activity today must be made at the time of booking. Please let our Reservations team know which included activity you would like to partake in.

Today we have a choice of two included excursions. Option 1 sees you join an eco tour. Depart Wanaka by boat and escape civilisation as we cruise to an island where we hike through vibrant native vegetation to find a hidden mountaintop lake surrounded by small islands. We trek on to reach the island's summit for a 360-degree view of Lake Wanaka, its mountains and valleys, and the Arethusa Pool. Look out for the rare Buff Weka, a flightless bird extinct on Mainland NZ since 1920, which often joins visitors.

Option 2 is a 4WD adventure. We will explore a perfect mix of stunning scenery, history, and farm life in New Zealand's High Country. We will traverse remote back roads on an authentic farm with Lake Wanaka as our backdrop, surrounded by nature's beauty. We get up close to farm animals and visit historical sites, all while enjoying optional hikes through alpine meadows and lakeside forests, offering a unique insight into Wanaka's history, heritage, modern farming, and breathtaking landscapes.

When we return to Wanaka we have the afternoon at leisure to relax or enjoy the town.

Day 10: Wanaka
Meals Included: Breakfast

Wanaka – Te Anau. We begin our day from Wanaka, stopping at the iconic Cardrona Pub. Then we venture through the Crown Range road to explore historic Arrowtown, a charming gold rush village nestled beneath majestic peaks near the Arrow River. We carry on along the scenic road between the Remarkables mountain range and stunning Lake Wakatipu before traversing a glacial valley turned farmland to reach Lake Te Anau, the South Island's largest freshwater lake and the entry point to Fiordland National Park.

Day 11: Te Anau
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Te Anau – Queenstown. The journey from Te Anau to Milford Sound is one of the most scenic drives you can experience. Fiordland National Park, part of the Southwest New Zealand World Heritage Area is awe-inspiring, and features towering mountains and deep valleys sculpted by ancient glaciers. Milford Sound, famously dubbed the 'eighth wonder of the world' by Rudyard Kipling, is a breathtaking destination in any weather.

Following this we embark on a comfortable cruise, passing the iconic Mitre Peak to reach the Tasman Sea. Keep a lookout for seals and dolphins, which often grace the fiord's waters. After the cruise we retrace our route back to Te Anau and then journey through the Southland farmlands and circle the stunning Lake Wakatipu to reach Queenstown.

Day 12: Queenstown
Meals Included: Breakfast

Nestled amid majestic mountains and on the pristine shores of Lake Wakatipu, Queenstown's natural beauty and unique ambiance provide an ideal setting for a visit filled with adventure, exploration, or relaxation. Today, we have the freedom to choose our own activities: thrill-seekers might opt for activities like zip-lining at Bob's Peak, a heart-pounding Shotover jet-boat ride, or white-water rafting. For those of us seeking a more leisurely experience, we can enjoy a gondola ride to Bob's Peak or embark on a 4WD safari to Skippers Canyon. Queenstown also offers boutique wineries, local gardens, and a chance to cruise Lake Wakatipu on the elegant steamship TSS Earnslaw for a visit to Walter Peak High Country Farm.

Day 13: Queenstown
Meals Included: Breakfast

Queenstown – Twizel. This morning we head north through Kawarau Gorge and past the scenic Lake Dunstan. We cross the Central Otago Countryside to the Lindis Pass where we descend into the Mackenzie Basin where the Southern Alps dominate the horizon. We enjoy a picturesque drive along Lake Pukaki to arrive at Mt. Cook Village, nestled at the base of New Zealand's highest peak, Aoraki/Mt. Cook. Our overnight stay awaits in the charming town of Twizel.

Day 14: Twizel
Meals Included: Breakfast

Twizel – Christchurch. Today we get to experience Kiwi culture by visiting a local home on Lake Tekapo's shores to learn the art of making Pavlova, a beloved New Zealand dessert. We enjoy our Pavlova during morning tea, taking in the stunning lake views. We admire the iconic Church of the Good Shepherd, beautifully situated against the backdrop of the Southern Alps. Continuing our journey through the high country's tussock plains, passing through charming towns like Fairlie and Geraldine, en route to Ashburton we then travel across the fertile Canterbury Plains to reach Christchurch, a city that combines post-earthquake regeneration with a rich blend of heritage, culture, and innovation.

Day 15: Christchurch
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

This morning we embark on a leisurely punt cruise along the River Avon in the company of boatmen sporting straw boaters and Edwardian attire as we glide through the picturesque Christchurch Botanic Gardens. Following this we experience the evolving cityscape of Christchurch from the comfort of a beautifully restored heritage tram. As our journey together is coming to a close, we'll conclude the day with a laid-back farewell dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 16: Christchurch
Meals Included: Breakfast

Today our adventure in New Zealand comes to an end. A transfer takes you to Christchurch Airport for your flight home.

What's Included

  • Accommodation
    4-star hotels

  • 15 breakfasts, 1 lunch & 2 dinners

  • 15 nights 4 star hotels

  • Airport arrival and departure transfers on day 1 and day 16

  • Escorted by an expert local guide/driver with specialist local guides at some sites

  • All relevant transfers and transportation in modern air-conditioned vehicle

  • Economy class flight from Rotorua - Wellington

  • Ferry across the Cook Strait

  • Touring of Auckland, Rotorua, Wellington & Christchurch

  • Te Pa Tu Maori experience

  • Te Puia & Lake Terawera visit

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What's Not Included

  • International flights and visas

  • Items of a personal nature (telephone calls, laundry, travel insurance etc)

  • Optional activities

  • Tip for your tour guide driver. We recommend you allow $4 - 7 USD per day per traveller. Tipping your tour guide is an entirely personal gesture.

Check out our Q&As

  • What Ethical Travel credentials does the tour company have?

    Ensuring our footprint is light and that the benefits of travelling reach the local communities you visit is paramount to us. We’re proud to say that when travelling with us, the large majority of your holiday funds remain within the countries you visit, supporting local economies at a grass roots level.

  • How long has the tour company been trading?

    Since 1998

  • Who will be my travelling companions on the tour?

    With English-speaking tours, it's not a huge surprise that most on our travellers are from English-speaking countries or have English as their second language. Our group tours cater for everyone from 18 years old to 70+

  • Will the accommodation included meet local health and safety regulations?


Reviews of this Operator


Wonderful experience


Jamal is our tour guide. Right from the start, he created a group chat in whatsapp and if any issues to make sure we contact him. He was on the ball with every issue thrown at him. Luggage being left behind, stragglers wondered off in a different path, hotel room etc. He explains the various site along our route to give us a better understanding of the local cultures. We had a great time, thanks to Jamal.

Norma Sullivan  

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Trawls (Google Reviewer)  

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Xtreme Floor Care (Google Reviewer)  

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Traveled through Egypt with On the Go Tours, professional service, very informative and helpful tour guides. The choice of hotels was excellent... Definitely recommend this company

Gavin Harrigan  

King Tutankhamun 10 day tour of Egypt


I have just returned from my tour with On The Go and it was an amazing trip! From arriving at the airport and meeting the OTG representative, everything was well organised and hassle free.  Our tour guide was Amir. He is awesome!! From the beginning he was so friendly and enthusiastic about showing us around Egypt, giving us loads of information at each place and time to explore ourselves. Learnt so much from him about this fascinating place, and he was always happy to answer more questions.   The trip itself was amazing. There's lots of travelling on this trip, but it's really not too bad, and the sights you see when you get to where you are going are worth it. I'm not a big fan of boats, but the Felluca ride across the Nile was pretty fun too.  On the first day I also did the optional tour of Cairo with Ahmed Helal - another excellent guide from OTG. It's worth doing this add on as you don't spend much time in Cairo, and you go to three very different places.  I'm so glad that I decided to do this trip. It was just ace.  If you're thinking about it too, you should probably just book it. And hopefully you get Amir as your guide.

Paul Kelly (Google Reviewer)  

TOTALLY MOROCCO We booked a 9...


TOTALLY MOROCCO We booked a 9 day tour of Morocco visiting many main cities and places of interest. The coach was very comfortable and we felt safe with the driver Suliman. The guide was Hicham Touraouine and he was fantastic. He spoke perfect English as well as French, Arabic and Berber. He was so kind and considerate and made a good tour great. We particularly enjoyed ‘glamming in the Sahara Desert. So much to see and do and great food and company. We would definitely use On The Go Tours again, especially if Hicham was the guide. Paul & Penny

Rolly Hay hay (Google Reviewer)  

Gallipoli tour. The guide was...


Gallipoli tour. The guide was awesome. Everything went like clockwork.. My complaint is that you expect 4 people to cramp together on the back seat of the van for 4 hours. That is poverty travel. Not really acceptable for the price paid. So uncomfortable. If was to do this trip again I'd just rent a car. Although the guide was amazing, but that's 3 hours of the trip.

Sarah Paterson (Google Reviewer)  

Terrible tour of India. For...


Terrible tour of India. For some reason On the Go hadn't realised that my room mate had booked her own room for the first night of tour. So the hotel in Delhi had tried to put me in her room after midnight, by wheeling in an extra bed. She went Crazy!! I then had to sit in hotel reception for hours. While the tour guide said he couldn't find me a room. Throughout the tour the guide consistently ask me and my room mate for money for my room, causing more friction between us. Don't book with this company had the worst experience ever. Go with Intrepid or G Adventure

brandy hoffman (Google Reviewer)  

I had used them once...


I had used them once before and loved them. I decided to try them again for a Baltic tour not knowing that they put me on another Tour group- Baltic vision. Loved that tour but was not impressed they marked up the cost for me over 100%. I understand taking some for yourself because of paperwork, but over double the cost everyone else paid on the tour. Just double check before you book with them that you’re not over paying.

Giovanni Guidi (Google Reviewer)  

I booked three tours with...


I booked three tours with this agency. While the first two experiences were very nice, with well-thought-out itineraries and knowledgeable guides, the third tour was an absolute nightmare for us. Due to the unavailability of an hotel from the trip notes, the agency opted to replace it with another they claimed was "similar." To our dismay, this alternative was nothing short of a decrepit, filthy establishment that threatened to ruin our entire safari experience in South Africa. But the fiasco didn't end there. This so-called hotel began proposing and organizing activities starkly different from what we were promised in the trip notes, together with an awful services of their guides and vehicles. And when this disaster struck and we desperately needed their support? The agency ghosted us. It took them an entire day to respond, and when they did, they simply shrugged off our concerns, asserting it was too late to fix anything, even though three nights of our trip were still ahead. The level of unprofessionalism was staggering. Forced to salvage our experience, we took matters into our own hands, leaving that awful place to book another hotel and activities for the remainder of our trip—all at my own expense. Based on my experience, I suggest travelers to think twice before considering this agency. Seek out reputable companies known for their commitment to customer service and integrity.

Dates & Availability

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Wednesday - Thursday

Apr 24, 2024 - May 09, 2024
$6125 $5361 (USD)

Operator discount: $613 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $152 (USD)

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Wednesday - Thursday

Sep 25, 2024 - Oct 10, 2024
$5875 $5142 (USD)

Operator discount: $588 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $145 (USD)

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Wednesday - Thursday

Oct 30, 2024 - Nov 14, 2024
$6375 $5580 (USD)

Operator discount: $638 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $158 (USD)

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Wednesday - Thursday

Nov 27, 2024 - Dec 12, 2024
$6875 $6017 (USD)

Operator discount: $688 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $170 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Thursday

Jan 22, 2025 - Feb 06, 2025
$6875 $6017 (USD)

Operator discount: $688 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $170 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Thursday

Jan 29, 2025 - Feb 13, 2025
$6875 $6017 (USD)

Operator discount: $688 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $170 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Thursday

Feb 19, 2025 - Mar 06, 2025
$6875 $6017 (USD)

Operator discount: $688 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $170 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Thursday

Feb 26, 2025 - Mar 13, 2025
$6875 $6017 (USD)

Operator discount: $688 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $170 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Thursday

Mar 12, 2025 - Mar 27, 2025
$6875 $6017 (USD)

Operator discount: $688 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $170 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Thursday

Mar 26, 2025 - Apr 10, 2025
$6875 $6017 (USD)

Operator discount: $688 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $170 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Thursday

Apr 23, 2025 - May 08, 2025
$6375 $5580 (USD)

Operator discount: $638 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $158 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Wednesday - Thursday

May 14, 2025 - May 29, 2025
$5875 $5142 (USD)

Operator discount: $588 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $145 (USD)

Book with Confidence

  • Transfer as credit to Future Tours

    On The Go Tours allows you to transfer existing payments to a future tour to avoid cancellation fees if you can't travel and inform on the go tours, 60 days before departure.

  • Low Deposit

    On The Go Tours requires a minimum deposit of 200 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 on the go tours charges.

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

    At 59 days before tour starts: Forfeit 50% of booking price.

    At 30 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of booking price.

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