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Southern Getaway

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6 days, 5 nights
Availability : Daily departures
From Queenstown
To Christchurch

Queenstown - Milford Sound - Tekapo - Christchurch

  • 5 nights of accommodation
  • Breakfasts are optional
  • Compact Hatch vehicle rentalFull insurance is included ($0 excess) - other vehicles are available
  • Milford Sound Coach and Cruise with buffet lunchTravel by luxury coach to Milford Sound and avoid the long drive
  • Visit Mt Cook village and see Lake Tekapo's Church of the Good Shepherd
  • Sightseeing suggestions, tips and driving directions provided

The Southern Getaway self drive holiday is the perfect relaxing escape to the most scenic parts of New Zealand’s South Island.

First, pamper yourself with a luxury coach day trip and cruise with lunch on the famous Milford Sound. Then, explore the Queenstown area at your pace, perhaps stopping at a winery or two. Finally, take a relaxing drive through the country of scenic lakes and the greenery of the great Canterbury plains.

The Southern Getaway holiday is available in 4 star hotel or 3 star hotel/motel accommodation options and can be customised on request.

Day 1Arrive Queenstown

On arrival at Queenstown, collect your rental car at the airport. Check in to your hotel and spend the day exploring Queenstown. Wind down for a relaxing evening along the Queenstown lake front.

Driving: 0.5 hours
Staying: Queenstown
4 Star Hotels – Scenic Suites Queenstown or similar
3 Star Hotels/Motels – Heartland Hotel Queenstown or similar

Day 2Milford Sound Day Trip

A relaxed coach trip to Milford Sound as you stop at a number of interesting landmarks on the way. The cruise on the Sound itself will be an unforgettable experience as spectacles of land and water glide past. Greet the seals basking on rocks and witness the waterfalls from forest covered cliff tops. A buffet lunch is included on the cruise.

Driving: –
Staying: Queenstown
4 Star Hotels – Scenic Suites Queenstown or similar
3 Star Hotels/Motels – Heartland Hotel Queenstown or similar

Day 3Exploring the Queenstown area

This is a day for sport and adventure, or if you wish, enjoying the many sights around the Lake Wakatipu. Reserve a part of the day to take the Gondola ride (optional) to Bob’s peak to enjoy a panoramic view the great Wakatipu basin and the many mountain peaks dotted with ski fields. Other nearby sightseeing options include Arrowtown, Frankton, Gibbston Valley, Skippers Canyon of Lord of the Rings fame.

Driving: As much as you feel like
Staying: Queenstown
4 Star Hotels – Scenic Suites Queenstown or similar
3 Star Hotels/Motels – Heartland Hotel Queenstown or similar

Day 4Queenstown to Lake Tekapo

Today you head north, driving along Lake Dunstan, over the Lindis Pass, into MacKenzie country. There is plenty of time to explore historic Cromwell and to take a coffee break at Omarama or Twizel. A scenic detour along Lake Pukaki to Mt Cook village is also possible for those keen to explore or walk in the area. When you arrive at Lake Tekapo, taking a stroll to the Church of the Good Shepherd is highly recommended.

Driving: 3 hours
Staying: Lake Tekapo area
4 Star Hotels – Mantra, Lake Tekapo or similar
3 Star Hotels/Motels – MacKenzie Country Hotel (Twizel) or similar

Day 5Lake Tekapo to Christchurch

Leaving Tekapo you’ll drive through the incredibly scenic Canterbury Plains. After passing Geraldine there is the option to take the inland scenic route. This adds just half of an hour extra to the journey but it takes you through the beautiful forest road alongside Mount Hutt, and still reach Christchurch in good time. After check in at your Christchurch hotel, you’ll have a free evening to explore the city delights or do some shopping.

Driving: 3 hours
Staying: Christchurch
4 Star Hotels – Distinction Hotel Christchurch or similar
3 Star Hotels/Motels – Heartland Hotel Cotswold or similar

Day 6Depart from Christchurch

Depending on your departure time explore Christchurch before you return your rental car at the airport.

Driving: 0.2 hours