Active South Island Explorer

New Zealand's South Island Tour: Striking Fiordland, expansive Canterbury, and serene Abel Tasman

The South Island is home to a variety of landscapes from skyscraping fiords and mammoth peaks to glacier lakes to golden beaches. And they’re not only meant to be looked at. On New Zealand's South Island tour, you can walk, boat, and heli around through the Milford Sound; hike the Hollyford Track; tramp along the shores of Lake Pukaki; heli-hike on Mt. Cook; swim with dolphins on the Banks Peninsula; taste the wines of Marlborough; and picnic in a deserted cove in Abel Tasman National Park.The South Island is home to a variety of landscapes from skyscraping fiords and mammoth peaks to glacier lakes to golden beaches. And they’re not only meant to be looked at. Walk, boat, and heli around through the Milford Sound; hike the Hollyford Track; tramp along the shores of Lake Pukaki; heli-hike on Mt. Cook; swim with dolphins on the Banks Peninsula; taste the wines of Marlborough; and picnic in a deserted cove in Abel Tasman National Park.

New Zealand's South Island Tour: 13 days / 12 nights

DAYS 1 & 2:

Arrive in Queenstown and transfer to Te Anau, Cinema Suites

DAYS 3 & 4:

2-night Hollyford Track hike through Fiordland, Pyke & Martin’s Bay Lodges

DAY 5:

Return to Te Anau, Cinema Suites

DAYS 6 & 7:

Transfer to Queenstown and self-drive to Lake Pukaki, Lakestone Lodge

DAYS 8 & 9:

Drive to the Banks Peninsula, PurePods Pohue

DAY 10:

 Drive to Blenheim, Marlborough Vintners Hotel

DAYS 11 & 12:

Drive to Abel Tasman National Park, The Resurgence

DAY 13:

Return to Nelson, depart

Highlights

  • New Zealand's South Island tour is 13 days part road trip, part active expedition of the South Island.
  • Te Anau is the gateway to Fiordland National Park, home to the Milford and Doubtful Sounds and 3 of the 10 Great Walks of New Zealand. Spend a full day exploring one of the Sounds by boat or hike.
  • The Hollyford Track is a multi-day, 26-mile trek through Fiordland. Though not considered a “Great Walk”, we love it for its beautiful trails and scenery and cozy, private lodges. 
  • Lake Pukaki is located within the Aoraki Mackenzie International Dark Sky Reserve and on the edge of Aoraki Mount Cook National Park. It’s the perfect base for explorers and nature lovers. We recommend a Mt. Cook glacier heli-hike!
  • The Banks Peninsula and surrounding coastal towns are ideal for spotting marine wildlife from the shore, from a boat, or while swimming alongside the resident seals and dolphins.
  • Blenheim is a bustling town in the Marlborough region and the perfect base for visiting the wineries that New Zealand is so famous for. 
  • Abel Tasman National Park is defined by its golden beaches and turquoise waters with a backdrop of lush rainforests.

Price

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Itinerary Map

The Cinema Suites

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Fiordland

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The Cinema Suites

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Lakestone Lodge

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PurePods Pohue

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Marlborough Vintners Hotel

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The Resurgence

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ej-kim-green Kim Green