Experience the top destinations of New Zealand’s South Island on this luxury guided tour. Luxury small group tours of New Zealand offer the chance to indulge in exclusive activities and premium accommodation.
Your private guide will meet you at the airport and take you on one of the best New Zealand escorted tours on the market, with luxury accommodation and special personalised experiences that will elevate your holiday experience to something truly incredible.
Read on for more details on our luxury small group tours of New Zealand.
Your fantastic guided holiday begins in Christchurch, New Zealand’s “Garden City.” With a thriving restaurant scene, a string of beautiful parks, and a historic town centre, Christchurch is an excellent holiday destination.
Explore Christchurch with your guide, visiting the botanic gardens, the Cardboard Christchurch Cathedral, and the Canterbury Museum.
Stay 1 night in Christchurch.
Travel time Christchurch to Mt Cook Village – 4 hours
Your scenic journey through the Mackenzie Basin begins today as you cross over Burkes Pass. As the Southern Alps loom before you, there will be photo opportunities around every corner.
Continue past Lake Pukaki on your way to Mt Cook Village, nestled at the foot of New Zealand’s highest mountain.
In the afternoon, explore the length of the majestic Tasman Glacier on a helicopter tour past Mt Cook, and land atop the glacier itself to experience the immense scale of this alpine paradise.
Stay 1 night in Mt Cook Village.
Travel time Mt Cook Village to Wanaka – 2.5 hours
Continue south to Wanaka, an alpine town boasting panoramic views and a relaxing atmosphere. Along the way, your guide will give you a chance to sample the fresh fruit from the orchards of Cromwell.
Wanaka has a reputation for great food and wine, with a wide variety of lakefront bars, cafés and restaurants serving exceptional local cuisine, plus a wealth of artisans producing award-winning wine, beer, spirits, bread, and ice cream. Be sure to visit the local farmers market to try some of the region’s best produce.
For adventure seekers, you can go skydiving, canyoning, climbing or mountaineering and there are hundreds of kilometres of tracks for hiking or biking. The crystal-clear water of the lakes and rivers are ideal for kayaking, fishing, lake cruises, and jet-boating, or to get an aerial perspective of the region take a scenic flight.
Stay 1 night in Wanaka.
Travel time Wanaka to Te Anau – 3.5 hours
Enjoy the scenic drive over the Crown Range – your guide will stop along the way for photos at fantastic viewing points. Your scenic tour will continue as you make your way past Lake Wakatipu on your way to Te Anau, the gateway to Fiordland National Park.
In the afternoon, explore a mysterious underground world of rushing water and glittering glowworms on a tour of the Te Anau Glowworm Caves.
Stay 2 nights in Te Anau.
Embark on a scenic coach journey to Milford Sound, known as the “eighth wonder of the world.” As you venture deep into the heart of Fiordland National Park, you will get the chance to stop and view a number of must-see destinations along the way.
Upon reaching Milford Sound you will enjoy a 2.5 hour Milford Sound Nature Cruise. With specialist nature guides on board, offering a close-up experience of Milford Sound’s rainforest, soaring rock walls, towering snow capped mountains, cascading waterfalls, hanging valleys and wildlife… words just don’t do it justice, you have to see it for yourself! Throughout the cruise, the guides share stories of the fiord’s history and are happy to answer your questions.
Option to upgrade to a Milford Sound Overnight Cruise, a once in a lifetime experience!
Travel time Te Anau to Dunedin via the Catlins – 5 hours
Along the way to Dunedin, your guide will take you on a tour of the remote Catlins coast, where you will find pounding waterfalls, an iconic lighthouse, lush native bush, a petrified forest, and maybe even penguins and dolphins! Stop for a number of nature walks and photo opportunities along the way, and soak in the wild natural beauty.
In the evening, relax in Dunedin, where you will find a number of striking historic buildings in the compact town centre.
Stay 2 nights in Dunedin.
Today, join the Taieri Gorge Railway for a spectacular journey through the rugged gorges of Central Otago.
In the afternoon, explore the city of Dunedin. You have the chance to visit attractions of interest such as Olveston Historic Home and the Toitu Otago Settlers Museum or go for a walk around the shops. You could also venture to one of the hiking and cycling trails which crisscross the dramatic landscape of the adjoining Otago Peninsula, home to colonies of albatross, sea lions, and rare yellow-eyed penguins..
Travel time Dunedin to Queenstown – 3.5 hours
Your adventure continues through the ever-changing hills of Central Otago, past bluffs and gorges, farmland and vineyards, to Queenstown.
Visit Arrowtown with your guide in the afternoon, and explore the quaint historic mining settlement. If there are any Lord of the Rings fans in the group, your guide will show you the filming locations for Minas Tirith, Argonath, the Misty Mountains, and the Ford of Bruinen.
In the evening, relive the elegance of turn-of-the-century travel with a cruise aboard the vintage steamship TSS Earnslaw. Disembark at Walter Peak High Country Farm for a stunning gourmet meal and farm tour.
Stay 3 nights in Queenstown.
Taste the Central Otago wine region today on a private boutique wine tour. With four winery tastings and a delightful platter lunch at Carrick Winery Restaurant, this tour will give you an exclusive look at the most prestigious vineyards of the Queenstown area.
Explore Queenstown with your guide today, with the option to make an excursion to the stunning Glenorchy region. Stop along the way for majestic views up Lake Wakatipu, and visit the stunning Paradise Valley and Dart Valley at the head of the lake. Along the way, you will get the chance to see the filming locations for Isengard, Lothlorien, and Ithilien Camp.
Stop in Glenorchy for a coffee or relaxing lunch, and soak in the incredible views of snow-capped peaks and turquoise rivers.
In the evening, raise a glass to a fantastic holiday!
Your guide will deliver you to Christchurch Airport for your departing flight.
We work with all levels of luxury operators around New Zealand. These include 5-star hotels, luxury lodges, luxury holiday homes and villas, and wilderness retreats. No matter what you want from your experience, we can make it happen. We work with each client to customise your tour to match exactly what you want.
In addition, we offer a range of activities, from popular experiences through to exclusive tours. For more inspiration on luxury small group tours of New Zealand, view our New Zealand Luxury Escapes brand.
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