Experience the best of New Zealand on this top family guided tour. Offering the best flexible New Zealand escorted tours with no date or itinerary restrictions. Book the best for your family on this privately guided tour of New Zealand inclusive of a private tour guide and chauffeur plus private touring vehicle.
Your once-in-a-lifetime 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 Riverside Farmers Market, the Cardboard Cathedral and the Canterbury Museum.
Stay 1 night in Christchurch.
Travel time Christchurch to Lake Tekapo – 3 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.
While you rest and explore the quaint lakeside town of Lake Tekapo, paying a visit to the iconic Church of the Good Shepherd, you have the option to add on a flight-seeing tour of the Southern Alps or a nighttime observatory tour at Mt John.
Stay 1 night at Lake Tekapo or Mount Cook (depending on availability).
Travel time Lake Tekapo to Queenstown – 3 hours
As you continue the spectacular drive south, you have the option to make a side trip to Mt Cook Village or visit a real salmon farm where you can feed the fish and buy delicious sashimi and smoked salmon.
Along the way to Queenstown, the adventure capital of New Zealand, your guide will take you to sample the fresh fruit from the orchards of Cromwell. Buy the freshest fruit available, sample manuka honey and treat yourself to a real fruit ice-cream.
In the evening your tour guide will take you downtown to show you the sights of New Zealand’s adventure capital!
Stay 3 nights in Queenstown.
Enjoy a quintessential Kiwi experience – a delicious gourmet BBQ lunch and a farm tour in a stunning lakeside setting. Your experience starts with a cruise aboard the historic TSS Earnslaw across to Walter Peak High Country Farm. Once there, you can sit back on the lakeside terrace of the Colonel’s Homestead Restaurant and savour the delicious aromas as our chef has the best of local produce, sizzling away on the grill. After lunch, you can join an entertaining farm demonstration or explore the beautiful lakeside gardens.
In the afternoon visit Arrowtown with your tour guide. This charming gold rush village sits in a natural paradise. A Queenstown “must-do.” Arrowtown is a lively, quirky, historic village. So many pleasures to choose from – Arrowtown satisfies many sides of your personality. The nature lover, photographer, the museum visitor, the shop browser. The charm of historic Buckingham Street, while savouring a coffee.
Prepare yourself for the ultimate Jet Boating experience with Shotover Jet – the unique, breathtaking white water ride and adrenaline rush you’ll never forget. From the moment the accelerator hits the floor, your adrenaline hits the roof. You’ll speed over 10cm deep water, along the famous Shotover River and deep into the spectacular Shotover River Canyons.
Continue your quest for adventure and choose from any adventure activity on offer in Queenstown; bungy jumping, skydiving, paragliding, quad biking, zip lining, heli flights, 4WD off-roading, you name it we can book it.
Travel time Queenstown to Wanaka – 1 hour
Your scenic tour will continue as you enjoy the drive over the Crown Range to Wanaka. Your guide will stop along the way for photos at fantastic viewing points.
Explore the alpine town of Wanaka in the afternoon – your guide could take you to that Wanaka Tree, Puzzling World, the Lavender Farm, or Crossfire where you can practice your golf swing, play mini golf, try giant pool or take aim with target shooting.
In the late afternoon simply relax on the lakefront and choose a restaurant to dine at.
Stay 2 nights in Wanaka.
Explore Wanaka with your guide today. You could take a scenic drive into Mt Aspiring National Park, visit the Warbirds and Wheels museum, try the maze and experience the illusions at Puzzling World, or simply relax in town and stroll along the lakefront.
In the evening you have the chance to catch a film at Cinema Paradiso, Wanaka’s quirky local theatre (hint: the homemade cookies and ice cream at half time are delicious).
Travel time Wanaka to Franz Josef – 4 hours
The Haast Pass Highway is one of the most scenic alpine routes in New Zealand. Explore the pass with your guide, stopping to view cascading waterfalls, broad alpine meadows, craggy snowcapped mountains, and the turquoise depths of the Blue Pools.
Continuing along the West Coast, your guide will take you to Lake Matheson, where you can take a 20 minute walk (one-way) to the jetty, to admire the reflected views of the Southern Alps on the surface of the lake.
In the afternoon, take an unforgettable helicopter flight over Franz Josef Glacier, where you will land in the snow to enjoy incredible views of the majestic Southern Alps.
Stay 1 night in Franz Josef.
Travel time Franz Josef to Greymouth – 2.5 hours
Continue north on your tour of the rugged West Coast. Greymouth is the largest town on the South Island’s West Coast. The area has a history of gold mining, which can be appreciated at the local museum and nearby Shantytown. Local brewery Monteiths is something of a New Zealand legend; it runs tours that include a tasting session.
Around the town you’ll find galleries specialising in pounamu (New Zealand jade). The 2-hour Point Elizabeth Walk passes through a scenic reserve and old goldmining sites. It begins 12km north of Greymouth at Rapahoe Beach, which also happens to be a favourite swimming spot during summer.
Stay 1 night in Greymouth.
Travel time Greymouth to Nelson – 5 hours
Visit the Pancake Rocks at Punakaiki on your drive north, where you will get the chance to marvel at the strange limestone formations that have been weathered by the relentless sea.
Explore Nelson independently in the evening, visiting local shops and enjoying a delicious dinner with fresh local seafood and produce.
Stay 2 nights in Nelson.
Travel time Nelson to Abel Tasman – 1 hour
Only a short drive away is Abel Tasman, renowned for its golden beaches, sculptured granite cliffs, rich unmodified estuaries, long sunshine hours, and the world-famous Abel Tasman Coast Track.
Take a boat cruise into Abel Tasman National Park today, where you can relax on the hot golden sand, enjoy a day walk, or simply remain aboard for the return cruise. Soak in the natural beauty and enjoy! This trip allows you to explore sections of the Abel Tasman Coast Track; the boat will stop at scenic points along the way where you can get off and walk a section of the track. The boat will then collect you later in the day. You could also just pack a picnic lunch and beach towels and laze on the beach for the day.
Travel time Nelson to Kaikoura – 3 hours
Today your guide will take you on a scenic drive through the Marlborough wine region, with the option to stop at a winery (or two!) along the way for samples of the award-winning wines.
Spend the evening in Kaikoura, a stunning coastal town with a backdrop of majestic mountains. Be sure to sample the superb local seafood at dinner! Local specialties include blue cod, paua (abalone) and of course crayfish (lobster). You have the option to add on a cruise or flight to view the majestic sperm whales off the Kaikoura coast.
Stay 1 night in Kaikoura – option to stay on a working farm!
Travel time Kaikoura to Hanmer Springs – 1.5 hours
When you reach the quiet mountain town of Hanmer Springs, relax and unwind in the hot springs or go for a short guided forest walk with your tour guide.
Stay 2 nights in Hanmer Springs.
As your holiday comes to a close, rest and rejuvenate in the thermal springs and make the most of your time in Hanmer Springs.
In the afternoon, plow through streams, mud, forest and rocks – drive over just about every terrain Canterbury has to offer – all on a two hour quad bike trip. Follow your expert guide on an exciting adventure ride through the scenic backyard of Hanmer Springs.
Travel time Hanmer Springs to Christchurch – 2 hours
Your guide will deliver you to Christchurch Airport for your departing flight.
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