info@funkytravels.com
+91-7741807799
Duration: 12 Days
Location: Christchurch, Akaroa, Kaikoura, Blenheim, Nelson, Abel Tasman Punakaiki, Franz Josef Glacier, Wanaka, Queenstown
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  • Day 01 – Christchurch

    Day 02 – Christchurch to Akaroa

    Day 03 – Akaroa to Kaikoura

    Day 04 – Kaikoura to Blenheim

    Day 05 – Blenheim

    Day 06 – Blenheim to Nelson

    Day 07 – Nelson / Abel Tasman

    Day 08 – Nelson to Punakaiki

    Day 09 – Punakaiki to Franz Josef Glacier

    Day 10 – Franz Josef Glacier to Wanaka

    Day 11 – Wanaka

    Day 12 – Queenstown

  • Day 01 – Christchurch

    You will be met on arrival from your flight and a private driver will deliver you to your Christchurch accommodation. Day at Leisure. Christchurch is New Zealand’s evolving city, reinventing itself into an exciting and funky destination surrounded by green spaces.  Get acquainted with the city by taking the double decker hop on, hop off scenic bus, or for a nod to historic Christchurch take the Tram across town to the Botanic Gardens. The range of fantastic dining options is growing steadily, so be sure to talk to the locals for their recommendations.

    Dinner – Pescatore Restaurant at the George Hotel (included)

    With its long-standing reputation, and panoramic views over Hagley Park, Pescatore continues to earn its position as one of New Zealand’s best contemporary dining experiences. Pescatore offers an exciting new dining concept, enhanced by its stunning interior, which is sure to turn heads and rejuvenate guests’ longstanding love affair with this iconic Christchurch restaurant. The space is luxurious and modern, offering a minimalist approach to formal dining that is thoughtfully comfortable and uncluttered. For the very best in intimate dining, Pescatore’s stunning private room is an ideal choice for an exceptional, exclusive dining experience.

    Meals included: Dinner.

    Day 02 – Christchurch to Akaroa

    Collect your rental car and start your day with a drive to the Banks Peninsula which offers a great contrast to the South Island’s largest city. Just around a 1 1/2 hours drive from the city centre are rolling green hills, streams, golden sand beaches and small settlements that offer a unique insight into New Zealand’s history and development.

    Just on the other side of the Port Hills is Lyttelton, a busy port town that was crucial to the development of Christchurch and the Canterbury Plains. Following the road around the beautiful natural harbour the names, such as Magazine Bay, Battery Point, Corsair Point and Governers Bay, remind of the importance the navy placed on this harbour. The Banks Peninsula itself is actually the remains of a long extinct volcano, the rim of which collapsed some time ago allowing the sea to flood into and create what is now the Akaroa Harbour. The Harbour itself is teeming with wildlife and a nature cruise is a must do activity. One of the world’s smallest and rarest dolphins, hectors dolphin, are often seen and cruises also offer excursions with the chance to swim amongst them.

    The Akaroa Cooking School (included)

    The Akaroa Cooking School is where you learn how to cook using the finest quality, freshest, local and seasonal produce. They match each of the dishes with award winning local wines to showcase each dish, and to emphasize the abundance of amazing produce available right in Akaroa. Classes are small so that every guest feels that they have plenty of one on one time with the chef and you can ask as many questions as possible to get the most out of your day. The chefs and owners grow much of the produce for the school themselves and the rest is gathered from local suppliers and artisan producers.

    Meals included: Breakfast.

    Day 03 – Akaroa to Kaikoura

    Today, the drive takes you over the Port Hills and through the city of Christchurch and then north through some fine rolling farmland and North Canterbury’s major wine region, the Waipara Valley. A great detour to take is to head inland and visit Hanmer Springs for a dip in the natural hot pools. Crossing the Hawkswood Range you descend towards the spectacular Kaikoura coastline and the road hugs the ocean as it winds its way the remaining 15 kilometres to the township.Kaikoura Township is a bustling little place with many cafes, restaurants and shops but the main reason for visiting here is the wildlife. .Kaikoura is New Zealand’s world famous whale watching destination. Sperm Whales can be seen here year-round while depending on the season you may also see migrating Humpback Whales, Pilot Whales, Blue Whales and Southern Right Whales.

    Recommended Optional Activity

    Whale Watch Kaikoura

    Kaikoura is New Zealand’s world famous whale watching destination. Sperm Whales can be seen here year-round while 7 other whale species visit regularly. A typical Whale Watch tour may encounter New Zealand Fur Seals, pods of Dusky Dolphins and the endangered Wandering Albatross. Depending on the season you may also see migrating Humpback Whales, Pilot Whales, Blue Whales and Southern Right Whales. Whale Watch is New Zealand’s only marine-based whale watching company offering visitors an exciting up-close encounter with the Giant Sperm Whale at all times of the year. Whale Watch scheduled tours operate daily and have a 95% success rate in viewing whales.

    Meals included: Breakfast.

    Day 04 – Kaikoura to Blenheim

    Heading north from Kaikoura, the road hugs the shore for approximately 50 kilometres and offers many opportunities to view the native wildlife such as seabirds and New Zealand fur seals.  One of the best seal watching locations is Ohau Point (25km north of Kaikoura), where you can observe the adults on the shoreline and the pups frolicking in the waterfall, just a short walk from the road (signposted).   As you drive you will have turquoise waters of the South Pacific Ocean to your east and to the west the towering Kaikoura Ranges. Crossing the ‘dry hills’ of the Marlborough ranges you head towards Marlborough, New Zealand’s largest wine producing region. Blenheim sits right at the heart ofMarlborough and is ideally located to enjoy an afternoon sampling the local produce.

    Herzog Kitchen Confidential (included)

    This is the ultimate “behind the scenes” experience for a total insight into the live kitchen world! Join the Herzog Gourmet Restaurant, Michelin star practiced chefs, anytime from 5pm to observe how they run their mise en place and prepare for the coming service.  Our chefs are keen to explain everything to you while they work. Watch them creating the gourmet menu’s many components, from breads and appetizers to friandises, and witness the first orders going out. Then it’s your turn to head out to the restaurant for some serious pampering, where you’ll enjoy the full ‘Herzog experience’: including aperitif with appetizers, 5 course degustation dinner with matching wines, coffee/tea and petit fours as well as a private tour of the boutique on-site winery.

    Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner.

    Day 05 – Blenheim

    Sounds Connection half day wine tasting tour (included)

    Sounds Connection tour guides take a personal pride in making sure you have a fun, relaxed and informative day. All guides are wine lovers themselves and really enjoy sharing their knowledge. Departing at 1.30pm you will immerse yourself in the heart of the vineyards. You will be collected and taken on a tour through Marlborough wine country visiting 4 – 5 wineries for tastings. Tasting fees may apply at selected wineries.

    Meals included: Breakfast.

    Day 06 – Blenheim to Nelson

    A short drive from Blenheim to the busy port town of Picton, and it’s here from where the Interislander ferries arrive and depart. The town centre is quite small with plenty of shops and cafes and the waterfront area is a very pleasant place to spend a few hours watching the activity of the ships. The Edwin Fox Maritime Centre on the wharf is worth a visit with the star attraction being the vessel the Edwin Fox, reputably the 9th oldest ship in the world. It is also the starting point the for the famous Queen Charlotte Walk.
    Queen Charlotte Drive travels the Marlborough Sounds coastline between Picton and Havelock. Magnificent views of the sounds can be had from many vantage points so allow plenty of time to enjoy the scenery. If you can spare the time, take the narrow windy road to Portage along Mahau Sound and Kenepuru Sound with their bush clad hillsides and secluded sandy coves.

    The small port town of Havelock has a great variety of cafes and restaurants to choose from so plan your journey to arrive in time for lunch. The highway between Nelson and Picton also crosses the Pelorus River and just at this junction is the famous and historic Pelorus Bridge. From here there are a number of forest walks with the most popular the 30 minute loop through beech, rimu and totara forest to the swing-bridge. Crossing the Bryant Range you arrive onto Tasman Bay and the city of Nelson.

    Recommended Optional Activity

    Nelson Winery and Craft Brewery Tour

    Nelson is the Craft Brewing Capital of New Zealand. Learn the history of hop growing in Nelson and experience the wide range of unique, naturally brewed beers and ciders. You will also visit 2 award winning family owned vineyards, where you will meet the owners or winemakers, sample their wines with Nelson’s pristine scenery as your backdrop.

    Meals included: Breakfast.

    Day 07 – Nelson / Abel Tasman

    Nelson is a great city to explore on foot. Visit the historic areas, the famous Cathedral or relax and enjoy the atmosphere at one of the many cafes on Trafalgar Street. Nelson is also noted for its many artists, and galleries displaying their work can be enjoyed by following one of the Art trails listed locally. Around 45 minutes drive away is Abel Tasman National Park. The region offers countless opportunities to explore for visitors of every age and capability, from enjoying the golden sand beaches and clear warm waters to guided kayaking trips viewing seals and dolphins, to exploring some of New Zealand’s finest walking tracks.

    Recommended Optional Activity

    Seals and Beach cruise and walk including picnic lunch

    For the best of everything, this trip is for you. Take a scenic cruise into Tonga Island Marine Reserve, pausing to watch the antics of the resident Fur Seal Colony. Land at historic Tonga Quarry beach then take a walk for about 2 hrs 15 mins (4.1 kms, 2.5 miles) over a forested saddle and around spectacular Bark Bay estuary with its cascading waterfalls. Rejoin the Vista Cruise at the sheltered golden cove, Medlands Beach. Packed picnic lunch is included.

    Meals included: Breakfast.

    Day 08 – Nelson to Punakaiki

    Leaving Nelson City you will pass through the suburb of Richmond. Moving on you will pass through the Nelson Lakes and Kahurangi National Park region. Trees, rivers and valleys accompany you now as you head towards the town of Murchison. Murchison is a quiet place and a great lunch stop. Underneath its sleepy farming facade is an adventurer’s paradise with white water rafting, jetboating, goldpanning, kayaking, 4WD trips and excellent trout fishing.

    Heading South towards Westport you will drive along the Buller Gorge, enjoy some wonderful scenery as you follow this magnificent river. Further along the river from the west coast turn off one of the must stop places is Whites Creek and New Zealand’s longest swing bridge. Crossing the river you get magnificent views of the gorge and once on the other side there are short bush walks, jet boat rides and some of the historic gold mining remnants. Continuing on your journey the first major town (by this regions standard) is Inangahua and a small museum tells of the earthquake that hit the region in 1968 leaving 70% of the buildings damaged or inhabitable.

    Heading south a worthwhile divert is to Cape Foulwind just south of Westport. Home to a seal colony and the short walk provides some spectacular scenery. Continuing south on the road to Punakaiki you will pass through Paparoa National Park. On arrival to Punakaiki you may want to visit Pancake rocks. Pancake rocks are open to the public free of charge all year round. These are awesome natural blow holes and rock formations, the name says it all.

    Meals included: Breakfast.

    Day 09 – Punakaiki to Franz Josef Glacier

    The drive South on State Highway 6 takes you through many West Coast towns. The first is Greymouth, the commercial centre for the West Coast. Just south of the town is Shantytown a replica gold rush town with lots of great displays from yesteryear.

    The next town is Hokitika and this is a great place to explore the craft and gift stores. The Jade or Greenstone on offer in Hokitika is probably some of the best you will see in the country. The Hokitika Gorge, off the beaten track and inland a little is a spectacular detour. Turquoise waters flowing through a narrow gorge. A great short walk will deliver you to this piece of paradise.

    Ross is the site of an old gold mining town and some of the old buildings and workings remain. In fact Ross is still home to one of the few working gold mines left in New Zealand and the local information centre offers you the chance to pan for gold.Continuing south Hari Hari is the township that Guy Menzies decided to land in (or rather crash land) as he became the first person to fly solo across the Tasman.

    Whataroa, a small township on the main road is where you would head off to see one of the world’s rarest birds. The entire population (somewhere between 150 and 200 birds) of the New Zealand white heron or kotuku nest at the Waitangi Roto Nature Reserve and guided tours from October to March will take you there.
    Arriving in to the Glacier region you catch your first glimpse of Franz Josef Glacier from a few kilometres out as it flows from the Southern Alps. Franz Josef township is a lively place with a great atmosphere, plenty of choice to dine out and some wonderful activities to enjoy.

    Recommended Optional Activity:

    Twin Glaciers Scenic Helicopter Flight

    Fly over two of New Zealand’s most famous glaciers and land at the head of either the Franz Josef Glacier or Fox Glacier. View the incredible natural phenomenon of the glacier as it winds slowly down the carved valleys from its origin in the mountains high above you. Duration – 30 Minutes.

    Meals included: Breakfast.

     

    Day 10 – Franz Josef Glacier to Wanaka

    Heading south you pass through the second glacier town of Fox Glacier. A short side trip to view the glacier is easy before heading along the coast and more classic West Coast bush scenery. At Knights Point Lookout, elephant seals can often be seen basking on the sandy beaches at the far end of the point. Crossing the massive Haast River you turn inland and head into the valley climbing through mountains littered with waterfalls. The Haast Valley offers a spectacular view of the river and its enormous power. The Blue Pools near Makarora are a great 30 minute walk. Lakes Wanaka and Hawea guide you into the alpine township of Wanaka.

    Wanaka Wine Tours Boutique Central Otago Wine Trail (included)

    This small group wine tour (maximum 8) offers a relaxed and personal introduction to the wines and scenery of the Central Otago region. This tour is a great way to explore award-winning vineyards hidden amongst the rugged landscape of Central Otago. Visit and enjoy tastings at 4 of our favourite Central Otago vineyards including a gourmet canape matched tasting.  We’ll also take in the history of the region with a visit to Old Cromwell Town, a charming heritage precinct that has been revitalized into a boutique arts and crafts village.

    Meals included: Breakfast.

    Day 11 – Wanaka

    Vintage Tiger Moth flight – Freedom of Romance with Classic Flights (included)

    Take a scenic flight around Wanaka in a Vintage Aircraft and experience the excitement of the early flyers and their flying machines; the smell of oil and aviation fuel, combined with the aroma of fresh leather. As you don the old-style leather flying helmet, complete with flying goggles and silk scarf, experience the anticipation of being taken back in time to the nostalgia of this by-gone era. The exhilaration of the open cockpit and the wind in your face – discover the freedom and romance of a vintage scenic flight from Wanaka, one of the most spectacular scenic locations in New Zealand. Not for the faint-hearted!

    The flight will include a landing at a remote location at one of the high country stations overlooking Lake Wanaka or Lake Hawea. Enjoy a lunch or dinner with a bottle of our favorite Central Otago wine, followed by a return flight back to Wanaka Airport. Experience the thrill of a formation flight with another tigermoth, taking in some of the most majestic scenery in the south.

    Recommended Optional Activity:

    Lake Wanaka Cruise and Island Nature Walk

    Lying close to the centre of Lake Wanaka is Mou Waho Island Nature Reserve. A unique glacial remnant of the last ice age, the island is also the historic site of early shipbuilding and used to be a stopping place for the steamers and log rafts that once plied the lake. Accessible from Wanaka by a 35 minute boat cruise, the landing is on the eastern side of the island where the remnants of early settlement remain; a stone wharf and a hut. A well-formed track leads from the landing and climbs steadily through native bush to near the top of Tyrwhitt Peak. Just before the top we see Arethusa Pool, a small lake on the island with small islands in it – very intriguing! From the top we have a sweeping 360-degree view of Lake Wanaka, its surrounding mountains and valleys, and below Arethusa Pool Total cruise time is 1.5 hours. The trip runs subject to weather and lake conditions.

    Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch.

    Day 12 – Queenstown

    Leaving Wanaka you head over New Zealand’s highest sealed road, Crown Range Road before dropping into Queenstown. Your final morning in Queenstown before driving to the airport, leaving your car rental and catching your flight. Depending on when your flight departs you might have time for one last Queenstown adventure before dropping your car off at the airport and catching your flight.

    Meals included: Nil.

  • Trip Cost varies based on travel season (high to low), your choice of accommodation (from budget to luxury), flight (economy to first class), optional tours and other special requests. Kindly email us at info@funkytravels.com to get the correct price for your selected trip.

    INCLUDES:

    • Accommodation on double sharing basis.
    • All meals as stated in itinerary.
    • Private airport transfers.
    • Choice of rental car + GPS navigation + car insurance. Unlimited kms, airport/ferry terminal fees.
    • Tour activities as stated below:
      • Dinner – Pescatore Restaurant.
      • Hans Herzog Kitchen Confidential
      • Sounds Connection half day wine tasting tour
      • Full day at the Akaroa Cooking School
      • Tiger Moth Freedom of Romance flight and picnic
      • Boutique Half Day Wanaka Wine Tour
    • Tour Pack includes detailed driving instructions, maps, guide books and much more.

    EXCLUDES:

    • International Airfare, airport / government taxes.
    • Visa (if required).
    • Travel insurance.
    • Car fuel.
    • Beverages in the restaurants where meals are included.
    • Optional tours mentioned in the itinerary will be charged extra.
    • Gratuities to guide and driver.
    • Personal and other expenses such as bar bills and laundry not stated in the itinerary.