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Days 1 & 2 Napier and Hawke's Bay

Where to Stay

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Days 3 & 4 Wairarapa

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Days 5, 6 & 7 Wellington

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Days 8, 9 & 10 The Marlborough

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16 day Lower South Island Highlights New Zealand Itinerary

Prepared for Frederic and Vicki Guilhem and party

Visiting Christchurch, Mt Cook village, Wanaka, Queenstown, Te Anau (Fiordland) and Tekapo

Day - The Marlborough Region

The Marlborough district is located at the top of the South Island, and is New Zealand’s largest grape and wine producing region. Year-round sunshine, a spectacular coastline (including the Marlborough Sounds), make the region a must for visitors to New Zealand.

Getting to the Marlborough region

If you are coming from the North Island, you will catch the Inter Island ferry from Wellington (on the lower North Island), then make the three and a half hour journey across Cook Strait, to Picton, at the top of the South Island.

Domestic flights into Blenheim (Marlborough Airport) are available from Christchurch, Wellington and Auckland.

If you are traveling by road from Christchurch in the south, you would follow State Highway 1.

Map Marlborough
Viator Marlborough Full Day Queen Charlotte Track Kayak And Walking Tour From Picton 500px Wide
Viator Interislander Ferry At Picton

As long time visitors to the Marlborough district, we always look forward to returning to this stunning part of New Zealand.

Located north of the Christchurch / Canterbury region, and east of the Tasman region , the Marlborough district is one of New Zealand's most beautiful.

Best known for the Marlborough Sounds, and the many wineries in the region, The Marlborough region is a wonderful place to spend a few days on your New Zealand holiday.

With relatives at Picton, we have spent a lot of time over the years exploring the region, sampling its food and wine, and visiting the many attractions that it has to offer.

The Marlborough Sounds are a series of spectacular waterways that weave and wander along the coastline on the north eastern edge of the South Island.

Marlborough Sound’s calm, clear waters, forests, white beaches and coves are a paradise for those interested in hiking, mountain biking, sea kayaking or boating.

Blenheim, with a population of 30,000 is the region’s largest town. It boasts the highest sunshine hours of any New Zealand town, and is a popular holiday destination and a good base from which to explore the region.

Picton, located around 25 kilometres from Blenheim, is a small picturesque port at the head of Queen Charlotte Sound, and is the South Island access point to the Inter Island Ferry which links the North and South islands, and is a perfect launching point for walking and water-based holidays in the Sounds.

Both Blenheim and Picton have a wide range of accommodation.

And if you are looking for a little luxury, why not indulge yourself at one of the regions luxury lodges such as the beautiful Bay of Many Coves , or the equally stunning Lochmara Lodge . Both lodges are nestled deep in the Marlborough Sounds and are accessible only by boat.

There is so much to do in the Marlborough, but if you are a bit confused about where to start, why not just check out our Top 5 things to do in the Marlborough.

Day Kaikoura

Map Christchurch Canterbury
Kaikoura view from the Anchor Inn
Anchor Inn 2 Bedroom Ocean View
Kaikoura Sperm Whale - image courtesy Davide Dalfovo and Unsplash

Nearer to town, the Point Kean seal colony is also well worth a visit. From the center of town, follow the waterfront Esplanade, into Avoca Street, then into Fyffe Quay,  all the way to the car park at the end. It's probably a four or five kilometer drive. When you reach the car park, the seals are there!

You can get reasonably close for pictures, but be aware that these are wild animals so stay a safe distance.

Fur seals in Kaikoura - image courtesy Sylvain Cleymans and Unsplash
A feast at the Kaikoura Seafood BBQ
Kim at the Pier Hotel Kaikoura

Day - Dunedin & Coastal Otago

The stunning Dunedin & Coastal Otago region sits on the lower south east coast of the South Island.

The region is home to over 100,000 people and is a hub for education, with New Zealand's oldest university.

With a strong Scottish heritage, Dunedin is often referred to as the Edinburgh of the South, and has some beautiful Edwardian and Victorian architecture, including the well known Larnach Castle, and the Dunedin Railway Station.

The rugged coastline, dotted with pristine bays and beaches draws visitors from around the world, and the Dunedin Otago Peninsula is also home to colonies of rare birds and many unique species of wildlife, including the rare Yellow Eyed Penguin, the Royal Albatross, and sea lions.

Map Dunedin Coastal Otago
Dunedin Larnach Castle image courtesy DunedinNZ
Dunedin Railway Station Courtesy DunedinNZ
Taieri Gorge Railway Train On Bridge and Tunnel 800 x 450 Pic Courtesy Dunedin Railways
Dunedin Yellow Eyed Penguin Courtesy Penguin Place 500px Wide

Queenstown TSS Earnslaw at dock Nov 2022


Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Day 8

Day 9

Day 10

Day 11

Day 12

Day 13

Day 14

Day 15

Day 16

Day by day in more detail

Your car

We use DriveNow for our vehicle rentals. They have been trading for many years, offer market leading rates, and have access to all the major rental brands.

We've included a search box below so you can look at various options (select the "Cars" tab at the top of the search box).

Tip - check to make sure that the car supplier that you choose has an "in terminal" depot. Some suppliers (like Apex) have their depot off airport meaning you might need to get a shuttle to collect and drop off your car.

Day 1 Christchurch

Today you arrive in Christchurch, the South Island's largest city.

Depending on your flight arrival time, collect your car then head to your accommodation for the next 2 nights.

Where to stay in Christchurch

As befits a city of this size, Christchurch has a wide range of accommodation.

The closest B & B to the airport is Travellers Retreat (around 4 kilometres). We haven't stayed there but it's highly rated.

A couple of our favorite motels are the Airport Gateway Motor Lodge and Pavillions.

The Airport Gateway is around 4 kilometres from the airport. Pavillions is a little further (on Papanui Rd around 15 minutes drive), and is near a variety of restaurants. Pavillions is also a short walk from the Christchurch CBD.

Another good option is the Novotel at the airport. It's around 100 steps from the terminal and is a great option if you are arriving late at night, or departing early in the morning. There's also a good selection of restaurants within a five minute walk of the Novotel (we had a really nice dinner at Lonestar on our last visit).

Map Christchurch Canterbury
The Christchurch Gondola offers amazing views of the area - click for more information

Day 2 - explore Christchurch

Christchurch is a thriving, bustling city of some 370,000 people.

Known as the garden city, Christchurch is home to hundreds of parks.

The Southern Alps stand proudly to the West of the city, and in the cooler months their snow capped beauty is a thing to behold.

The city has a very "English" feel, reflected in the architecture (and the Avon river which runs through the centre of the city).

If you stroll along the river banks, it's very likely that you will spot some huge trout which inhabit the Avon. The water is rarely more than a metre or so deep, and is very clear so the trout are pretty easy to spot.

There's lots to see and do in Christchurch

There is a huge range of things to do in Christchurch (see our dedicated Christchurch page).

The International Antarctic Center, located at Christchurch airport, provides a wonderful overview of antarctic exploration.

It's also a convenient way to pass a few hours if you have a late flight out of Christchurch.

If the cold doesn't bother you too much, try the wind chill room. Brrrrr!

Other recommended activities in Christchurch are a tram ride through the city, a punt ride on the Avon, a trip on the gondola (excellent views of the area), and a drive to the quaint, seaside "French" village of Akaroa, where you can swim with the dolphins.

Punting on the Avon River in central Christchurch - click for more information on available tours
Akaroa near Christchurch. Image courtesy Christopher Izquierdo and Unsplash

Christchurch is also close to the Mt Hutt ski fields, which are very popular in the winter months.

There are also several wineries close to Christchurch and a strong cafe culture, with lots of restaurants featuring local cuisine.

Day 3 - drive to Aoraki/Mt Cook village

Today you head south through the Canterbury Plains to the stunning Aoraki/Mt Cook region (around 4 hours drive).

Around an hour before Mt Cook you will pass through Lake Tekapo village, which is where you will stay later in your trip.

A little further on from Tekapo, Lake Pukaki comes into view, and the road hugs the shores as you head to Mt Cook village. On a sunny day, the water has a brilliant blue colour, and with the Southern Alps in the background, it's a photographer's paradise.

In the distance, Mt Cook rises to around 4,000 metres and is New Zealand's highest peak.

Mt Cook village services the region and has a limited range of facilities.

Handy tip: There is no petrol station in Mt Cook village other than a self-serv pump. So we always make sure that we top up the tank at Tekapo village.

Mt. Cook Map

Where to stay

There's a shortage of B & Bs in the area, so we've included a selection of alternatives.

In Mt Cook village there's a range of accommodation from camp sites to the upmarket Hermitage hotel.

The Aoraki Court Motel is good value, highly rated and is centrally located, whilst the local YHA might be an option for your group.

Around 20 kilometres before Mt Cook village, the Glentanner Park Centre caters for smaller groups and may be another option.

Mt Cook and Lake Pukaki - Image courtesy James Pere and Unsplash

Day 4 - explore Mt Cook region

Things to do

The World Heritage listed area is stunningly beautiful, and you can experience it in a number of ways including hikes, heli flights, and glacier landings.

Another point of interest is the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre. Sir Edmund is arguably New Zealand's most famous person, and holds legend status in New Zealand.

In 1953, Sir Edmund and Sherpa, Tenzing Norgay, were the first documented people to reach the summit of Mt Everest.

The alpine centre includes a 3D movie theatre, planetarium and museum, which documents the history of alpine exploration.

On our last visit to Mt Cook we spent several hours in the alpine centre, enthralled by the displays and the stories that they told.

A statue of Sir Edmund Hilary at the Hermitage Mt Cook. Image courtesy The Hermitage

Another thrilling option in Mt Cook is a scenic helicopter flight and snow landing. These are expensive, but offer memorable views as you fly over snow capped mountains, glaciers, and river valleys, before landing on a snow field.

There are numerous walks in the area, like the Hooker Valley Track. There’s five or six short walks (under 2 hours) that begin near the village, like the Blue Lakes and Tasman Glacier View Walk. Remember to charge your phone or camera as you will need it.

The Department of Conservation (DOC) operate the Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park visitor centre, which is located within the village. It has a wealth of information on things to do and see in the park, and also provides a booking service for activities within the park. You can learn more here.

In the warmer months, Glacier Explorers run a cruise on the terminal lake of the Tasman Glacier, where they take you up close to huge icebergs. It's a unique experience.

Keep an eye out for the cheeky native parrot, the Kea. These gregarious birds are really entertaining to watch, but beware, as they love to chew on cameras, backpacks, or anything else they can get their beaks onto.

Icebergs near Tasman Glacier - picture courtesy Glacier Explorers

Day 5 Wanaka

Today you head to the beautiful lakeside town of Wanaka (around two and a half hours drive).

The drive takes you through the Lindis Pass, with the towering Southern Alps as your companion.

Wanaka sits on the shores of Lake Wanaka, and is home to a couple of prominent ski fields (Cardrona and Treble Cone).

We love Wanaka as it's a little less hectic than Queenstown, but just as scenic.

Map Lake Wanaka

Where to stay

There's a good range of accommodation in Wanaka.

A good option might be the Moorings. They have a range of room types, including apartments, and they are a two minute walk to the pubs, restaurants and shops. Apartments are a good option because they are usually self contained with full cooking and washing facilities.

We've stayed at the Moorings three or four times over the years and can recommend them.

You can search a range of other Wanaka accommodation options here.

Days explore Wanaka

Things to do

Wanaka is regarded as a prime trout and salmon fishing area. Take a walk onto the small jetty in front of the main street, and have a look in the lake. Everytime we've been there, we've spotted large trout swimming below.

An internet search reveals various fishing tour operators like Aspiring Fly Fishing and Alpine Fishing Guides.

An interesting option is Hook Lake to Plate where you can hire your gear, fish for salmon, then they will cook your catch for you. They charge a weight based fee for preparing your meal.

If you would rather just hire your gear, Southern Wild will look after you, including your fishing licence.

We can't wait to see your pictures. Good luck.

Wanaka Tree in lake image courtesy Laura Smetsers and Unsplash

A visit to Wanaka wouldn't be complete without seeing Puzzling World and the National Transport and Toy Museum.

Both are great fun for all ages.

There are lots of great short walks in the area including the Waterfall Creek Track, Beacon Point Walk, and the track to see the iconic Wanaka Willow growing out of the lake (Roy's Bay 59 Wanaka Mt Aspiring Rd).

The Department of Conservation have a really good brochure detailing the regions short walks. You can see it here.

You can also hire a bike (including ebikes), hire a kayak, have a round of golf, or if you are feeling adventurous, take a scenic flight.

Wanaka has a good range of places to eat, and we always look for somewhere on the lakefront. A nice meal and a beer or wine, looking over the lake, is a great way to end the day. We've always enjoyed Speight's Ale House. Good food, a wide selection of drinks, and great views (and there's another one in Queenstown).

Wanaka Puzzling World Courtesy Puzzling World
National Transport and Toy Museum Wanaka
Biking near Wanaka. Image courtesy Andi Throssell

Day 5 - Queenstown

Today you take the short drive over the mesmerising Crown Range road to Queenstown. Its about an hours drive over what is New Zealand's highest road.

Be sure to stop at the lookouts for some photos.

Along the way, stop off at the historic Cardrona Hotel for breakfast or lunch. Established in 1863, it's one of only two buildings left over from the gold rush days. If the weather is good, they have a lovely outdoor area with tables and chairs, and on our last visit, the meals were very good. Breakfast is served from 8am till 10.30am, and lunch from 11.00am.

Map Queenstown
Cardrona Hotel Image courtesy Kate Branch and Unsplash

Places to stay

There are literally hundreds of places to stay in Queenstown with everything from hostels to five star homes and apartments.But because of it's popularity, prices can be expensive.

I've had difficulty finding B & Bs that can cater for your group at that time of year, so perhaps an apartment may be better.

I'm always cautious recommending accommodation in Queenstown, because location is so important.

Queenstown is very hilly, and parking close to the town centre is scarce, and what is available is pay as you go.

So we recommend staying close to the center of town. 

There are lots of apartments in the Frankton Rd and Fernhill areas, but you will need to get the car out as it's a bit of a walk to town from both.

Our favorite is Pepper's Beacon, which is lakefront, and two minutes level walk to the town center. They have a range of apartments in varying sizes, and the lake view apartments are beautiful.

You can read reviews for the Beacon and check availability here.

Another one to look at are St James apartments. Highly rated and a few hundred metres from the town centre.

For all other Queenstown accommodation click here.

Tip - we highly recommend booking your Queenstown accommodation as soon as possible. Queenstown is so popular that many options are booked out months in advance.

Days 6 to 9 - explore Queenstown

Things to do

Queenstown is one of the highlights of your New Zealand itinerary.

Located on the shores of Lake Wakatipu, and surrounded by 2,000 metre high mountains, Queenstown is surely one of the most spectacular resort towns in the world.

Queenstown Creative Arts And Crafts Market Image Courtesy Of Them
Queenstown Hydro Attack
Stunning views from the Skyline Gondola - click to see their range of activities

In winter, the town buzzes with tourists attracted to the region's ski fields.

But it is much more than just a winter destination. Jetboat rides, rafting, hang gliding, and bungy jumping are all available in Queenstown, and although Queenstown is known as the "Adventure Capital" of New Zealand, it is also a place where you can choose to do nothing other than take in the amazing scenery.

Here's a few recommendations for things to do (from mild to wild):


* cruise on Lake Wakatipu on the historic steamship, the TSS Earnslaw. You can also option a lunch or buffet dinner at Walter Peak Station, a great experience. There's an onboard cafe - good coffee and muffins! You can actually watch the crew stoking the engines on board, and there's also a small museum detailing the history of the TSS Earnslaw

* ride the Skyline Gondola to Bob's Peak (unbelievable views). There's a cafe, restaurant, gift shop, star gazing, and a luge ride (I'm guessing that your teenagers will love the luge). We booked a window seat dinner at Stratosfare restaurant and had a wonderful buffet dinner as we watched night fall on Queenstown, hundreds of metres below us

* visit the historic village of Arrowtown (around 20 minutes drive). They have a great museum, a small but eclectic group of shops, and some beautiful walks. You can even try your hand at gold panning

* explore the Queenstown markets and pick up some trinkets. Some of the local artwork is beautiful and there were three or four artists with stalls on our last visit in November.

* visit the Queenstown underwater observatory and feed the fish and eels. Some of them are huge and it's fun to watch as they compete with the diving ducks for food. A great low-cost activity

* have a game of disc golf in the Queenstown Gardens

* visit Alpine Aqualand. There's a variety of pools and slides

* have a drink at the Minus 5 Ice-Bar. Suitable for all ages, it's a unique experience. Lots of ice sculptures and drinks in sub-zero conditions (don't worry, they supply jackets, boots and gloves)

* hire a segway or a bike and explore the town

* visit one of the many local wineries

* fish for salmon, rainbow and brown trout in the lake and local streams. There are several charter companies in town like Queenstown Fishing . You can also hire your equipment and your boat from Water Sport World

* have a game of golf at one of the five courses within 30 minutes drive (Millbrook, Jack's Point, Arrowtown, Kelvin Heights, The Hills)

* follow the lake to the village of Glenorchy (about 45 minutes drive). Stunning scenery.

* see the some famous film locations on a Lord of the Rings tour


* no Queenstown holiday would be complete without a jetboat ride. There are several operators, with the two most popular being the Shotover Jet and the Kawarau Jet

* bungy! Queenstown is the bungy capital, and has several options. We've jumped from the original site at the old Kawarau Bridge. Not for everyone, but what a thrill. If you don't want to jump, you can go out to the observation deck and watch other "brave" souls. It's a good laugh. There's also a zipline ride

* head out to Cromwell (about 45 minutes drive) to the Highlands Motorsport Park. You can drive go carts, V8 race cars, take a lap in a supercar with a pro driver, and lots more

* go whitewater rafting

* explore the region's world class trails on a mountain biking adventure

* your teenagers might like the virtual reality experience

* head underwater on Hydro Attack

Here's some more information on things to see and do in Queenstown.

Jetboating Glenorchy Queenstown TNZ Miles Holden No Expiry

Places to eat in Queenstown

There's over 100 pubs, bars and restaurants in Queenstown, and there is something to satisfy all tastes.

A few of our favourites are Pog Mahone's Irish Pub (the Irish Stew is amazing), the Pub on Wharf (nothing over NZD$20), Winnie's Pizza, Stratosfare, & Walter Peak Station buffet (via the TSS Earnslaw).

For something upmarket, the Botswana Butchery is apparently very good, although we haven't been there.

The kids will probably want to try the legendary Fergburger. But be prepared to wait in line for a while.

Queenstown Shotover Jet Courtesy Shotover Jet 500px Wide
Queenstown Gondola Courtesy Skyline Queenstown
Queenstown Luge Courtesy Skyline Queenstown
Arrowtown Buckingham Green and Bendix Stables Arrowtown Promotion And Business Association

Day 11 Te Anau

Today you head to the lovely lakeside town of Te Anau.

The first part of your drive hugs the shores of Lake Wakatipu for around 30 kilometres, before heading inland through rolling pastures.

Te Anau is the gateway to Fiordland National Park, a World Heritage area, and home to two of New Zealand's best known attractions, Milford Sound and Doubtful Sound.

Te Anau has a permanent population of around 3,000 and has a good range of services and accommodation.

The Fiordland National Park Visitor Centre and the Fiordland isite Visitor Information Centre both have a huge range of information about the region and we recommended a visit.

Map Fiordland

Where to stay

There's several B & Bs in Te Anau. We don't have any personal experience with any of them, but they all appear to be highly rated. At the time of writing, only Shakespear House and Te Anau Lodge had availability for six guests.

We've stayed at the Lakeside Motel and Apartments and they were very good. Their 2 bedroom apartments might be a good solution for you.

There's a good selection of lodges, hostels and motels available at the moment but as we head into spring, these will quickly book out as the region becomes busier.

You can view a full range of accommodation in the area here.

Day 12 explore Fiordland with a tour to Milford or Doubtful Sounds

Things to do

The choice here is to visit either Milford, or Doubtful Sound.

Both have their own unique character.

Milford is perhaps more spectacular, particularly after rain, with dozens of thundering waterfalls and snow capped peaks that disappear into the clouds. Milford Sound is around 1.5 hours drive each way from Te Anau, and the drive there is part of the adventure. We went in November 2022 and the scenery was stunning, particularly as we approached the Homer Tunnel. On exiting the tunnel it's like a scene from Jurassic Park and is really pretty special. You can drive to Milford Sound from Te Anau yourself, or use one of the tour companies that offer a pick up/drop off service from Te Anau. We used Great Sights for our tour and it was fantastic. The only downside was that they don't have access to the Underwater Observatory. You need to book a tour with Southern Discoveries for a cruise and access to the observatory. In our opinion, if this is the only time you will visit Milford Sound, choose the Southern Discoveries tour. Depending on the tour you choose, you may also stop at some scenic spots on the way to Milford Sound, like the Mirror Lakes.

Tip - if you drive yourself, free parking is available at Deep Basin, but it's about 20-30 minutes walk from the tour boats. Paid parking close to the departure point is around $25 for five hours.

To get an idea of available tours, click here.

Milford Sound Tour Boat Tourism Holdings
Milford Sound Stirling Falls
Milford Discovery Centre And Underwater Observatory Internal

Access to Doubtful Sound is from the village of Manapouri, around 20 kilometres away.

At Manapori you board a boat which takes you across the lake. There you board a tour bus which transports you across Willmot Pass to your tour boat at Deep Cove on Doubtful Sound.

It's a bit of an adventure to get there, but it's well worth it.

Doubtful Sound is a mystical, serene experience.

Deep dark waters, towering peaks, and the chance to see a variety of wildlife like dolphins, seals, and penguins.

For many, Doubtful Sound is a better experience than Milford. We are undecided and love both.

Perhaps have a read of some reviews before you make your decision.

You can see one of the more popular tours here.

Doubtful Sound Wilderness Cruise From Te Anau Viator
Viator Doubtful Sound Wilderness Cruise From Queenstown

If time permits, visit the glowworm caves at Te Anau. The tours are run by Realnz and take you across Lake Te Anau before disembarking and entering the caves. Once inside you board a small boat to enter the glowworm caves where hundreds of glowworms shine in the dark. A very popular tour. At the time of writing it was around NZD$99 for adults and around NZD$40 for teenagers up to 15.

There's lots of walks in the area including three of New Zealand's Great Walks, the Milford Track, Kepler Track and the Routeburn Track. There's also lots of shorter walks and the DOC Fiordland National Park Visitor Centre in Te Anau has a wealth of information available.

Other things to do include scenic flights, jetboating, winery tours, fishing expeditions, kayaking, horse treks and lots more.


* Fiordland is perhaps the busiest tourist area in New Zealand. For this reason tours often book out months in advance, particularly as the weather warms up.

We highly recommend booking your chosen tours as soon as you have your itinerary settled.

* Unless you are very lucky, it will rain at some point during your visit to Fiordland. But don't be discouraged. The Sounds are at their best when the waterfalls are running. Just be sure to pack some wet weather gear like a spray jacket and beanie, and some insect spray in case the sand flies are around. It all adds to the experience.

Day -  Tekapo village

Today your adventure takes you to Tekapo village.

Sitting proudly on the shores of Lake Tekapo, Tekapo village is the perfect place to break your trip, as it's around half way between Christchurch and Queenstown.

Where to stay

Tekapo village has a good range of accommodation, with everything from hostels to resorts and apartments.

A holiday home may be an option to consider? Garden Cottage is within walking distance to the village centre, has good reviews, and the price is reasonable compared to other similar properties.

For something a little more modern, Pepper's Bluewater Resort might be worth a look.

Here's a link to the Booking .com Tekapo page.

Tekapo location map
Lake Tekapo and Lupins. Image courtesy Nareeta Martin and Unsplash
Picture of Lake Tekapo and the much photographed Church of the Good Shepherd
Tekapo Springs image courtesy Tekapo Springs

Day explore Tekapo

Things to do

Lake Tekapo is a small resort village located on the shores of one of the most amazing lakes you will ever see. Sediment from nearby glaciers is washed into Lake Tekapo, giving it an unbelievable turquoise color.

The snow capped Southern Alps and Mt Cook seem to hover over the lake.

The Church of the Good Shepherd, perhaps one of the most photographed attractions in New Zealand, sits proudly lakeside.

From November to January the lakeside comes alive as the lupins bloom, so hopefully they will be out during your visit.

Whilst in Tekapo, take a relaxing dip at the Tekapo Springs hot pool complex. In the winter months the complex houses an ice rink and a snow tubing area. This could be the perfect way to wind down after your drive from Te Anau.

At night, go stargazing at the Mt John Observatory. Tekapo's clear night skies provide perfect conditions for viewing distant galaxies. The region has official "Dark Sky Reserve" status and is the world's largest Dark Sky Reserve.

Other local activities include scenic flights, fly fishing, lake cruises, 4WD backcountry tours, hiking, kayaking and bike hire.

At nearby Twizel, High Country Salmon offer a "Catch A Fish Experience" where you can fish for one of their glacial salmon. Ranging from 2 to 4kg, they charge you NZD$32 per kilogram of salmon caught. They supply the gear. They also have an on-site cafe and shop where you can purchase fresh salmon.

Mt John Observatory at Tekapo - image courtesy Dark Sky Project

Day 15 - 17th November - drive from Tekapo to Christchurch

Today you head back to Christchurch (around three hours drive), and check in to your chosen accommodation (see Day 1 for suggestions).

Perhaps use the afternoon to catch up on something you may have missed when you arrive?

If you decide to stay near the airport, at somewhere like the Novotel or the Sudima, you could drop your car off this afternoon. That might save you some time before your flight tomorrow.

Day 16.

Unfortunately all good things must end, or so they say.

We hope that we can welcome you back to see more of New Zealand in the future.

Kind regards

Dave & New Zealand Travel Showcase

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