TOP OF THE SOUTH ISLAND
Unsolicited comments from past clients:
The Top of the South Island tour was superb. I found it really well organised and of a very good standard. Your front line people were most congenial. (E.S. New Zealand).
Day 1. Monday. WELLINGTON - PICTON - MARLBOROUGH TOUR - BLENHEIM (B) 9.00am. Depart Wellington by Interislander. Enjoy the scenic cruise across Cook Strait and through the Marlborough Sounds to Picton. Arrival is scheduled for 12.30pm
You will be met on arrival and visit the "Edwin Fox" ship restoration project. The "Edwin Fox" is the oldest merchant ship, and 9th oldest ship overall, still in existence. Continue to Peter Jackson's KNIGHTS OF THE SKY World War 1 and DANGEROUS SKIES World War 2 exhibitions and visit the Marlborough Museum to discover Marlborough's 700 year old Maori and European history. Overnight in Blenheim.
Day 2. Tuesday. BLENHEIM - KAIKOURA - CHRISTCHURCH. (B)
Marlborough is a major centre of the wine industry in New Zealand. Visit a winery and drive down the scenic coast to the charming seaside town of Kaikoura for a short tour and visit to the seal colony. You have time for an optional Whale Watch cruise or flight before joining the "Coastal Pacific" train or coach for the scenic ride down the Kaikoura Coast to Christchurch arriving early evening. You will be met and transferred to your accommodation. Please note: The "Coastal Pacific" train is not currently operating but is expected to restart late 2018 or early 2019.
Day 3. Wednesday CHRISTCHURCH (B) Free day to explore at your leisure. Options to visit Hanmer Springs or Akaroa.
Day 4. Thursday CHRISTCHURCH - HOKITIKA (B) Transfer to the train station and join the award wiining Tranz Alpine train" for one of the top 10 rail journeys in the world across the Canterbury Plains and Southern Alps to Greymouth. . Continue to Hokitika and visit jade carving and glass blowing studios. Overnight Hokitika.
Day 5. Friday. HOKITIKA - NELSON (B) Visit the recreated gold mining village of Shantytown to pan for gold and ride the steam train and after a short tour of Greymouth continue to the Punakaiki Pancake Rocks in the Paparoa National Park. Explore the area and continue through Westport and the Buller Gorge to Nelson.
Please Note: Travel from Punakaiki to Nelson may be by scheduled Intercity coach arriving early evening.
Day 6. Saturday. CAPE FAREWELL EXCURSION. (B)
Drive to Takaka and visit the amazing Pupu Springs and on through Collingwood to visit Cape Farewell, northernmost point in the South Island. Continue to spectacular Wharariki beach for 1 hour walk to enjoy the sea caves, seal pups,wind swept sand dunes and coastal rock formations. A 30 minute walk to Pillar Point will give spectacular views of Farewell Spit and Golden Bay. Overnight in Takaka.
Day 7. Sunday. ABEL TASMAN NATIONAL PARK - NELSON (B)
Drive through part of the Abel Tasman National Park to Totaranui with a visit to the Abel Tasman Memorial en route. Join your scenic cruise along the shores of the Abel Tasman National Park. Drop in to Tonga Quarry, Medlands Beach, Anchorage and Apple Tree Bay before arriving in Kaiteriteri.You have the option to land at Tonga Quarry for a 2 hour walk over a forested saddle to Medlands Beach and cruise to Kaiteriteri. Transfer to Nelson after your cruise.
Day 8. Monday. NELSON PICTON - WELLINGTON OR BLENHEIM. (B)
Visit the Cathedral, Hoglung glass blowing studio, and World of Wearable Arts and classic cars Museum this morning.
Passengers who commenced in Wellington return to Picton for your cruise back to Wellington arriving 5.45pm.
Passengers who commenced in Christchurch sightsee in Marlborough and overnight in Blenheim (see day 1) returning to Christchurch tuesday with stop at Kaikoura,(see day 2) for 1 night accommodation finishing wednesday morning..