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TranzAlpine train, Waimakariri Bridge, New Zealand
Christchurch
Observatory Hotel, Christchurch. New Zealand
Lake Tekapo, South Island
Cityscape, Dunedin, South Island, New Zealand
Fiordland, New Zealand
Waterfall on Milford Sound, South Island, New Zealand
Queenstown
Lake Wanaka
TranzAlpine
Wellington
Napier, North Island
Huka Falls
Wai-O-Tapu, Rotorua, New Zealand
Waiheke Island, North Island

Southern Spotlight & North Island

20 day Escorted Tour & Self Drive – from £3599 £3339

With flights from £4639

Enjoy an escorted tour of the South Island, including travel, hotels and excursions, before exploring the North Island on a self drive from Wellington to Auckland.

Highlights:
  • Sail on Lake Wakatipu aboard the TSS Earnslaw
  • Journey over Southern Alps on the TranzAlpine train
  • Explore the art deco scene of Napier
  • Marvel at the geothermal wonders of Taupo
  • Visit the city sights of Wellington and Auckland

Your Itinerary

Expand All

You can customise your holiday by adding extra nights or destinations. Just let us know what you would like to do

Christchurch

Day 1 – Christchurch

Fly to the gateway of the South Island prior to the start of your guided tour….

Fly to the gateway of the South Island prior to the start of your guided tour. Christchurch is constantly evolving following the devastating earthquake that hit the city in 2011 and has become a modern and thriving garden city.

Christchurch
Observatory Hotel, Christchurch. New Zealand

Day 2 – Christchurch

Since its 2010/11 earthquakes, Christchurch has reinvented itself in more ways than one. Discover how if…

Since its 2010/11 earthquakes, Christchurch has reinvented itself in more ways than one. Discover how if you choose to step back in time aboard the Christchurch Tram, linking some of the city’s most legendary attractions. It’s time tonight to meet your travelling companions for a Welcome reception.

    Wyndham Garden

Observatory Hotel, Christchurch. New Zealand
Lake Tekapo, South Island

Day 3 – Christchurch – Omarama

On your city tour view the mind-bending Transitional Cathedral, made largely of cardboard, and Turanga, the…

On your city tour view the mind-bending Transitional Cathedral, made largely of cardboard, and Turanga, the gold-clad central library. From here, your outlook is the Canterbury Plains: the turquoise waters of Lake Tekapo, the quaint Church of the Good Shepherd, snow-capped mountains and atmospheric towns. Your Indoor Dark Sky Astronomy Experience at Tekapo, hosted by passionate guides, will forever change the way you see the night sky. You’ll see for yourself it may be one of the quietest spots on the planet, yet it has one of the busiest skies in the universe.

    Heritage Gateway Hotel

    Breakfast, Dinner
Lake Tekapo, South Island
Cityscape, Dunedin, South Island, New Zealand

Day 4 – Omarama – Dunedin

If you’ve ever wanted to see New Zealand’s oldest public gardens, today you’re in luck. Oamaru,…

If you’ve ever wanted to see New Zealand’s oldest public gardens, today you’re in luck. Oamaru, with its stately tree-lined streets and limestone buildings, stands proud before you journey further south toward the Edinburgh of the South: Dunedin. It’s easy to while away the afternoon in the city’s atmospheric art-lined alleys. Or venture further afield to discover the wildlife that thrives in this pretty pocket of the country – fur seals and penguins among them. Thirsty? Visit Speight’s Brewery, a New Zealand institution.

    Scenic Hotel Dunedin City

    Breakfast
Cityscape, Dunedin, South Island, New Zealand
Fiordland, New Zealand

Day 5 – Dunedin – Te Anau

Dunedin’s Scottish ancestry is everywhere you look, from the manicured grounds of Otago University to the…

Dunedin’s Scottish ancestry is everywhere you look, from the manicured grounds of Otago University to the city’s main George Street. Rolling green hills dotted with doe-eyed sheep are replaced by soaring mountains as you weave your way into Fiordland National Park and the South Island’s biggest lake and the town of Te Anau. Soak up the serenity – it doesn’t get any better than this.

    Distinction Luxmore Hotel

    Breakfast, Dinner
Fiordland, New Zealand
Waterfall on Milford Sound, South Island, New Zealand

Day 6 – Te Anau – Queenstown

From the moment you step outside today, nature rules. Your route through Fiordland National Park is…

From the moment you step outside today, nature rules. Your route through Fiordland National Park is an intoxicating union of beech forests, alluvial flats, meadows and mirror-like lakes. Gin-clear rivers carve the countryside, with all roads leading to your Milford Sound/Piopiotahi. Cruising this World Heritage listed expanse will give you goosebumps, a string of waterfalls creating a misty curtain across sheer escarpments. Look out for dolphins – they’re a common sight here.

    Copthorne Hotel and Resort

    Breakfast
Waterfall on Milford Sound, South Island, New Zealand
Queenstown

Day 7 – Queenstown Free Time

Take today at your own pace. Like things fast and furious? Feel the wind in your…

Take today at your own pace. Like things fast and furious? Feel the wind in your hair on the high-octane Skippers Jet, perhaps. There’s a reason why Queenstown is known as the adventure capital of the country. Nature lover? Discover some of New Zealand’s feathered friends at a wildlife centre. Wherever you wander, make sure you’re back in time to glide across Lake Wakatipu aboard the historic TSS Earnslaw to Walter Peak High Country Farm for a gourmet barbecue Highlight Dinner.

    Copthorne Hotel and Resort

    Breakfast, Dinner
Queenstown
Lake Wanaka

Day 8 – Queenstown – Franz Josef/Waiau

Try and keep count of today’s lakes. Leaving Lake Wakatipu behind, Arrowtown appears on the horizon….

Try and keep count of today’s lakes. Leaving Lake Wakatipu behind, Arrowtown appears on the horizon. We know you’ll want to linger in the movie-set-like streets, lined with trees and character-filled boutiques. But Lake Dunstan awaits, as do its orchards. Pause to refuel on flavour-packed stone fruit. Then there’s Lake Hawea followed by Lake Wanaka, with its Instagrammable shoreline of poplars and willows. Over the Haast Pass to the town of Franz Josef, where, this afternoon you may choose to fly over Franz Josef Glacier/Ka Roimata o Hine Hukatere.

    Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier

    Breakfast, Dinner
Lake Wanaka
TranzAlpine

Day 9 – Franz Josef/Waiau – Christchurch

Swap snow for pounamu (native greenstone or jade) in Hokitika. In Māori tradition, it’s bad luck…

Swap snow for pounamu (native greenstone or jade) in Hokitika. In Māori tradition, it’s bad luck to buy this sacred stone for yourself; flutter your eyelids at your loved one. Just when you thought your adventure couldn’t get any better, you’ll aboard the TranzAlpine train bound for Christchurch, through tunnels and over viaducts with panoramic views of snow-capped peaks, icy rivers, beech forests, gorges and river valleys.

    Wyndham Garden

    Breakfast, Dinner
TranzAlpine
Wellington

Day 10 to 11 – Wellington

It is time to bid farewell to the South Island as you depart Christchurch and fly…

It is time to bid farewell to the South Island as you depart Christchurch and fly to the capital city of Wellington. Pick up your choice of hire car from the airport and travel to the city for a relaxed two-night stay allowing time to explore the Botanical Gardens, Zealandia and Te Papa National Museum.

Wellington
Napier, North Island

Day 12 to 13 – Napier

Take your time to travel through along the southern tip of the North Island towards Napier….

Take your time to travel through along the southern tip of the North Island towards Napier. This coastal resort town is famous for its art deco appearance and wine production. A two night stay here will allow ample time to relax and immerse yourself in this cultured town. Tour the region in a traditional art deco vintage car or join a self-guided bike tour of the surrounding vineyards.

    Wellington > Napier | 324 kms
Napier, North Island
Huka Falls

Day 14 – Taupo

Drive through the rugged hills, plunging valleys and expansive vistas towards Taupo. This resort town sits…

Drive through the rugged hills, plunging valleys and expansive vistas towards Taupo. This resort town sits on the edge of New Zealand’s largest lake and is surrounded by impressive natural wonders, such as the powerful Huka Falls and the steaming Craters of the Moon.

    Napier > Taupo | 142 kms
Huka Falls
Wai-O-Tapu, Rotorua, New Zealand

Day 15 to 16 – Rotorua

The road to Rotorua is one of New Zealand’s most fascinating. The lakeside town of Rotorua…

The road to Rotorua is one of New Zealand’s most fascinating. The lakeside town of Rotorua sits on the Pacific Ring of Fire which contributes to the abundance of geothermal activity which occurs within this region. On your way towards the town stop at one of the geothermal parks to see bubbling mud pools and erupting geysers. Rotorua is also the perfect destination to discover more about the country’s unique Maori culture at Te Puia Arts and Craft Institute or during a traditional evening Maori Hangi feast.

    Taupo > Rotorua | 80 kms
Wai-O-Tapu, Rotorua, New Zealand
Waiheke Island, North Island

Day 17 to 20 – Auckland

The final part of your self drive takes you through green countryside and rolling farmland as…

The final part of your self drive takes you through green countryside and rolling farmland as you head towards the bright lights of Auckland for a 3 night stay. Take a day cruise over to Waiheke Island or for the more adventurous hike up Mount Eden at sunrise or sunset and take in the panoramic views.

    Rotorua > Auckland | 232 kms
Waiheke Island, North Island

Your Itinerary

You can customise your holiday by adding extra nights or destinations. Just let us know what you would like to do

Day 1

|

Christchurch

Fly to the gateway of the South Island prior to the start of your guided tour. Christchurch is constantly evolving following the devastating earthquake that hit the city in 2011 and has become a modern and thriving garden city.

Christchurch

Day 2

|

Christchurch

Since its 2010/11 earthquakes, Christchurch has reinvented itself in more ways than one. Discover how if you choose to step back in time aboard the Christchurch Tram, linking some of the city’s most legendary attractions. It’s time tonight to meet your travelling companions for a Welcome reception.

    Wyndham Garden

Observatory Hotel, Christchurch. New Zealand

Day 3

|

Christchurch – Omarama

On your city tour view the mind-bending Transitional Cathedral, made largely of cardboard, and Turanga, the gold-clad central library. From here, your outlook is the Canterbury Plains: the turquoise waters of Lake Tekapo, the quaint Church of the Good Shepherd, snow-capped mountains and atmospheric towns. Your Indoor Dark Sky Astronomy Experience at Tekapo, hosted by passionate guides, will forever change the way you see the night sky. You’ll see for yourself it may be one of the quietest spots on the planet, yet it has one of the busiest skies in the universe.

    Heritage Gateway Hotel

    Breakfast, Dinner
Lake Tekapo, South Island

Day 4

|

Omarama – Dunedin

If you’ve ever wanted to see New Zealand’s oldest public gardens, today you’re in luck. Oamaru, with its stately tree-lined streets and limestone buildings, stands proud before you journey further south toward the Edinburgh of the South: Dunedin. It’s easy to while away the afternoon in the city’s atmospheric art-lined alleys. Or venture further afield to discover the wildlife that thrives in this pretty pocket of the country – fur seals and penguins among them. Thirsty? Visit Speight’s Brewery, a New Zealand institution.

    Scenic Hotel Dunedin City

    Breakfast
Cityscape, Dunedin, South Island, New Zealand

Day 5

|

Dunedin – Te Anau

Dunedin’s Scottish ancestry is everywhere you look, from the manicured grounds of Otago University to the city’s main George Street. Rolling green hills dotted with doe-eyed sheep are replaced by soaring mountains as you weave your way into Fiordland National Park and the South Island’s biggest lake and the town of Te Anau. Soak up the serenity – it doesn’t get any better than this.

    Distinction Luxmore Hotel

    Breakfast, Dinner
Fiordland, New Zealand

Day 6

|

Te Anau – Queenstown

From the moment you step outside today, nature rules. Your route through Fiordland National Park is an intoxicating union of beech forests, alluvial flats, meadows and mirror-like lakes. Gin-clear rivers carve the countryside, with all roads leading to your Milford Sound/Piopiotahi. Cruising this World Heritage listed expanse will give you goosebumps, a string of waterfalls creating a misty curtain across sheer escarpments. Look out for dolphins – they’re a common sight here.

    Copthorne Hotel and Resort

    Breakfast
Waterfall on Milford Sound, South Island, New Zealand

Day 7

|

Queenstown Free Time

Take today at your own pace. Like things fast and furious? Feel the wind in your hair on the high-octane Skippers Jet, perhaps. There’s a reason why Queenstown is known as the adventure capital of the country. Nature lover? Discover some of New Zealand’s feathered friends at a wildlife centre. Wherever you wander, make sure you’re back in time to glide across Lake Wakatipu aboard the historic TSS Earnslaw to Walter Peak High Country Farm for a gourmet barbecue Highlight Dinner.

    Copthorne Hotel and Resort

    Breakfast, Dinner
Queenstown

Day 8

|

Queenstown – Franz Josef/Waiau

Try and keep count of today’s lakes. Leaving Lake Wakatipu behind, Arrowtown appears on the horizon. We know you’ll want to linger in the movie-set-like streets, lined with trees and character-filled boutiques. But Lake Dunstan awaits, as do its orchards. Pause to refuel on flavour-packed stone fruit. Then there’s Lake Hawea followed by Lake Wanaka, with its Instagrammable shoreline of poplars and willows. Over the Haast Pass to the town of Franz Josef, where, this afternoon you may choose to fly over Franz Josef Glacier/Ka Roimata o Hine Hukatere.

    Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier

    Breakfast, Dinner
Lake Wanaka

Day 9

|

Franz Josef/Waiau – Christchurch

Swap snow for pounamu (native greenstone or jade) in Hokitika. In Māori tradition, it’s bad luck to buy this sacred stone for yourself; flutter your eyelids at your loved one. Just when you thought your adventure couldn’t get any better, you’ll aboard the TranzAlpine train bound for Christchurch, through tunnels and over viaducts with panoramic views of snow-capped peaks, icy rivers, beech forests, gorges and river valleys.

    Wyndham Garden

    Breakfast, Dinner
TranzAlpine

Day 10 to 11

|

Wellington

It is time to bid farewell to the South Island as you depart Christchurch and fly to the capital city of Wellington. Pick up your choice of hire car from the airport and travel to the city for a relaxed two-night stay allowing time to explore the Botanical Gardens, Zealandia and Te Papa National Museum.

Wellington

Day 12 to 13

|

Napier

Take your time to travel through along the southern tip of the North Island towards Napier. This coastal resort town is famous for its art deco appearance and wine production. A two night stay here will allow ample time to relax and immerse yourself in this cultured town. Tour the region in a traditional art deco vintage car or join a self-guided bike tour of the surrounding vineyards.

    Wellington > Napier | 324 kms
Napier, North Island

Day 14

|

Taupo

Drive through the rugged hills, plunging valleys and expansive vistas towards Taupo. This resort town sits on the edge of New Zealand’s largest lake and is surrounded by impressive natural wonders, such as the powerful Huka Falls and the steaming Craters of the Moon.

    Napier > Taupo | 142 kms
Huka Falls

Day 15 to 16

|

Rotorua

The road to Rotorua is one of New Zealand’s most fascinating. The lakeside town of Rotorua sits on the Pacific Ring of Fire which contributes to the abundance of geothermal activity which occurs within this region. On your way towards the town stop at one of the geothermal parks to see bubbling mud pools and erupting geysers. Rotorua is also the perfect destination to discover more about the country’s unique Maori culture at Te Puia Arts and Craft Institute or during a traditional evening Maori Hangi feast.

    Taupo > Rotorua | 80 kms
Wai-O-Tapu, Rotorua, New Zealand

Day 17 to 20

|

Auckland

The final part of your self drive takes you through green countryside and rolling farmland as you head towards the bright lights of Auckland for a 3 night stay. Take a day cruise over to Waiheke Island or for the more adventurous hike up Mount Eden at sunrise or sunset and take in the panoramic views.

    Rotorua > Auckland | 232 kms
Waiheke Island, North Island

This Holiday Includes

19 nights accommodation
7 breakfasts and 5 dinners
Travel by luxury air conditioned coach
Professional and experienced driver
10 nights car hire, with unlimited kilometers

Flights & More

Ask your FREEDOM Consultant to include Economy, Premium or Business Class flights for a complete ABTA and ATOL protected package.

They can also add extra nights and experiences in places you choose, to create the exact holiday you are looking for. Popular options include:

  • Extra nights in Auckland, Wellington or Rotorua
  • North Island day tours and experiences
  • A stopover to New Zealand in Singapore, Dubai or another destination

Next Step

Please get in touch with our New Zealand Experts to start planning your holiday. You’ll have a single point of contact from your first enquiry through booking.

Southern Spotlight & North Island

20 day Escorted Tour & Self Drive – from £3599 £3339

With flights from £4639

All prices are per person, based on two people sharing a double or twin room and include meals shown. Seasonal supplements may apply. Please call Freedom Destinations to confirm departure dates and availability.

Map

Southern Start Map