GRAND NEW ZEALAND RAIL TOUR
11 days/10 nights
Includes “Northern Explorer”, Interislander, “Coastal Pacific” “Tranz Alpine”.
Locally hosted tours
Southbound 11 days/10 nights. Departs Auckland every saturday until April 24
Northbound 11 days/10 nights. Commences Christchurch every thursday until April 23
Minimum 2 passengers
HOSTED TOUR EX AUCKLAND 17 April, 2021
Day 1. Saturday. AUCKLAND - WELLINGTON
7.45am Depart Auckland Strand Railway Station aboard the "Northern Explorer". Depart Papakura 8.40am, Hamilton 10.15am, and Otorohanga 10.54am.
Sit back and relax and enjoy the scenes of suburban Auckland and rural Waikato dairy farmland on the way to Otorohanga. Continue through the central North Island including the famed Raurimu Spiral, a major engineering feat, and through the Tongariro National Park with magnificent views of the central North Island volcanoes in fine weather. Arrive Wellington 6.25pm. Transfer to your hotel.
Day 2. Sunday. WELLINGTON (B)
Morning sightseeing includes Wellington's most famous sights including Mt Victoria, Parliament Buildings, part of the Marine Drive, and a ride on the cable car
Day 3. Monday. WELLINGTON- PICTON (B)
Transfer to the Interislander terminal for the 3 hour 30 minute cruise across Cook Strait and through the Marlborough Sounds to Picton. This afternoonj enjoy an eco cruise on Queen Charlotte Sound with guided stopover in Cooks Cove where Captain Cook spent some 171 days and visit his monument. Two nights in Picton.
Day 4. Tuesday MARLBOROUGH (B)
Enjoy a tour of Marlborogh incluidng Marlborogh Museum to discover Marlborough's 700 year old history, visit two, wineries., Also visit Omaka and Peter Jackson's KNIGHTS OF THE SKY World War 1 and DANGEROUS SKIES World War 2 exhibitions. Also visit the Classic cars museum
Day 5. Wednesday. PICTON – CHRISTCHURCH (B)
Free morning to relax in Picton before joining the "Coastal Pacific" train for the scenic ride down the Kaikoura Coast to Christchurch arriving early evening. You will be met and transferred to your accommodation.
Day 6. Thursday. CHRISTCHURCH (B)
We have left today free for your own activities. Your hotel is in the centre of the city. Optional tours are available of the city, Port Hills, Hanmer Springs, Akaroa, etc. We recommend a visit to the Orana Wildlife Park and Antarctic Centre.
Day 7. Friday CHRISTCHURCH - HOKITIKA (B)
Transfer to the railway station and join the "Tranz Alpine" train departing 8.15am for one of the most scenic rail journeys in the world across the Canterbury Plains and climbing through the foothills of the Southern Alps criss crossing the Waimakariri River on the way to Arthurs Pass for a brief break. Travel through the Otira tunnel and descend into the rainforest of the West Coast. Pass Lake Brunner and the Grey River and arrive Greymouth 1.05pm. You will be met by your local guide and after a short tour of Greymouth try your hand at Gold Panning and ride the steam train at Shantytown. Head south to enjoy a tour of introduction to Hokitika. Catch up on Hokitika in its prime during the gold rush era and even a bit of "Luminaries" lore. Accommodation for 3 nights at the Beachfront Hotel, overlooking the (often) wild Tasman Sea
Day 8. Saturday. HOKITIKA (B)
This morning we go back to nature at the Hokitika Gorge for a short walk among the breathtaking scenery and enjoy a leisurely Eco boat cruise on the Lake Mahinapua waterways originally used by pioneers, gold diggers, and early explorers. Continue to the West Coast Treetop walkway for an exhilirating treetop adventure high in the ancient Rimu and Kamahi trees with great views (weather permitting) of Lake Mahinapua, Southern Alps, and Tasman Sea. The afternoon is free to explore at your leisure and enjoy the rugged West Coast beach in front of your hotel.
Day 9. Sunday. HOKITIKA (B)
Free day - optional day tour to the gold fields at Ross, Franz Josef Glacier, and Lake Matheson - exra cost $250. During the season (November - March) option to do the amazing White Heron eco sanctuary cruise at Okarito.
Day 10. Monday HOKITIKA - PUNAKAIKI – CHRISTCHURCH (B)
Drive north to Greymouth and continue through the coal mining towns of the area to the amazing Punakaiki Rocks in the Paparoa National Park. Explore the area and return to Greymouth to rejoin the "Tranz Alpine" for your journey across the Southern Alps to Christchurch. You will be transferred to your hotel
Day 11. Tuesday. CHRISTCHURCH DEPART (B)
You will be transferred to the airport for departure.
Tour cost per person 11 days Auckland-Christchurch or Christchurch-Auckland
2 per room $2,950 Single room $3,890
Tour cost includes:
** All travel from Auckland to West Coast and Christchurch (or vice versa) Includes "Northern Explorer" "Interislander" "Coastal Pacific", "Tranz Alpine"
** 2 nights accommodation in Wellington
** Wellington tour
** 2 nights at Picton Yacht club hotel with Marlborough Sounds cruise to Cook Cove and tour of Marlborough vineyards and Aviation heritage centre.
** 3 nights (total) hotel and breakfast in Christchurch
** 3 nights accommodation and breakfast in Hokitika
** West Coast touring including Shantytown, Hokitika Gorge, Eco cruise, Treetops, Greymouth, Punakaiki.
Part tour possible
7 days Auckland – Christchurch. Sat – Fri 2 per room $1,980 Single $2,510.
4 days West Coast Chchc – Chch Fri – Mon 2 per room $1,280 Single $1,460
"Friendly Four" - 4-5 people reserving and travelling together save 5% each.
"Super Six" - 6-8 people reserving and travelling together save 10% each.
'Bubble' Tours. Form your own bubble of 6 to 8 people and enjoy an exclusive tour with our driver/guide. This tour is adaptable.
Optional Top of the South, Best of the South Island, South of the South, or Central North Island and Bay of Islands extensions.
Day 1. Thursday Arrive Christchurch and transfer to hotel
Day 2. Friday Christchurch – Hokitika
Day 3. Saturday Sightseeing as per southbound itinerary
Day 4. Sunday Sightseeing as per southbound itinerary
Day 5. Monday Hokitika – Punakaiki – Greymouth – Christchurch
Day 6. Tuesday Free day in Christchurch
Day 7. Wednesday Christchurch – Picton. Marlborough Sounds cruise
Day 8. Thursday Marlborough Tour
Day 9. Friday Picton - Wellington “Interislander”
Day 10. Thursday Wellington sightseeing
Day 11. Friday Wellington - Auckland “Northern Explorer
Why not enjoy our tours to Bay of Islands, Waitomo, Hobbiton, Rotorua etc.