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Private Tour: 8-Day South Island Tour from Christchurch Including Franz Josef, Wanaka and Queenstown

The Roadtrip

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See the best of New Zealand’s stunning South Island on this unforgettable 8-day tour! Traveling by private luxury vehicle you’ll visit all the highlights of this amazing destination on an counter-clockwise route from Christchurch. Explore Arthur’s Pass, see West Coast rainforests from Franz Josef Glacier, and visit Mount Cook and Queenstown. Customize your tour to your preference with a range of optional activities (own expense) including helicopter rides, mountain walks, bungee jumps and more!

The service that we provide is a private luxury tour service, not a large group tour. Other than our friendly tour staff you will not be sharing your tour with anyone outside of your own party so you can rest assured that this is your tour and we’ll do exactly what you want to make it your perfect trip.

With a round-trip transfer from Christchurch Airport or your local hotel plus seven nights of accommodation included, this adventure-laden tour enables you to see the South Island with ease.

What You'll Get


Day 1: Christchurch Sightseeing

Stop At: Christchurch Botanic Gardens, Rolleston Ave, Christchurch New Zealand
This morning you will be met by your private guide for your exclusive adventure and your journey through our majestic South Island begins. From there you will take a private Christchurch city tour which will include a stroll in the botanic gardens and drive around the bays of Christchurch taking in Lyttelton which was the gateway for many of Christchurch and the Canterbury region’s first settlers. This afternoon you will enjoy an iconic punt on the Avon River, one of Christchurch's top attractions. Tonight enjoy dinner in one of the city's iconic restaurants.
Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes

Meals included:
• Dinner
Accommodation included: 4 star option- Rydges Latimer Hotel (or similar)
5 Star Option- The George Hotel (or similar)

Day 2: Christchurch to Arthurs Pass to Hokitika

Stop At: Hokitika Gorge Walk, Whitcombe Valley Road Hokitika Gorge Scenic Reserve, West Coast, Hokitika 7810 New Zealand
39 km, 35 minutes driving + 5 hour train journey
Today you will depart Christchurch for your journey through the Southern Alps to Arthurs Pass and Greymouth on the South Island’s west Coast on the Tranz Alpine Train. This was voted one of the most scenic train journeys in the world. Keep a look out for the Bealey River and lakes Pearson and Lyndon with the towering Alps above. Arrive in Greymouth (named so for the Grey River flowing through the town), and head south to Hokitika where you can have a look at the greenstone factory. Here we will view up close how the local people carve necklaces and sculptures from the precious stone (also a great souvenir or gift for loved ones back home!). Following this, visit the stunning bright blue waters and native forests of Hokitika Gorge. Watch the sunset from the beach before calling it a night.
Duration: 1 hour

Meals included:
• Breakfast
Accommodation included: 4 star option (Beachfront hotel or similar)
5 star option (Rimu Lodge or similar)

Day 3: Hokitika – Franz Josef Glacier

Stop At: Franz Josef Glacier, Glacier Access Road Westland Tai Poutini National Park, Franz Josef, Westland National Park (Te Wahipounamu) New Zealand
134 km, 1 hour and 45 minutes driving
Driving South down the coast from Hokitika, you arrive in Franz Josef Glacier early afternoon, where you will spend the next night in the beautiful town surrounded by rainforest.This afternoon or early tomorrow morning you will have the option of a flight over or heli-hike on the majestic Franz Josef Glacier, one of the only glaciers in the world to be flanked by rainforest on both sides (optional – extra cost). Tonight you will have the chance to relax and unwind with a soak in the Glacier Hot Pools, each filled with pure water from the Glaciers (optional – extra cost).
Duration: 2 hours

Meals included:
• Breakfast
Accommodation included: Scenic Hotel or similar (4 star option)
Te Waonui Forest Retreat or similar (5 star option)

Day 4: Franz Josef Glacier to Lake Wanaka

Stop At: Lake Matheson Walk, Lake Matheson Road, Fox Glacier, Westland National Park (Te Wahipounamu) New Zealand
250 km, 4 hours driving
This morning you will have the opportunity to enjoy a short scenic helicopter flight with snow landing on Franz Josef Glacier, or a 3 hour guided heli-hike on the ice of glacier itself! (Optional - Not Included in Quote). One of the prettiest and most dramatic journeys in the country is what you can experience on this tour over the Haast Pass through to Wanaka. En route you will visit Lake Matheson, otherwise known as ‘Mirror Lakes’ where on a clear day it is possible to see the reflection of New Zealand’s highest mountain Mt Cook (3754m/12,316ft). The walking possibilities are endless today around Haast and Haast Pass and you can do one of or several walks, some of which feature spectacular waterfalls and deep blue coloured pools where it is possible to see trout swimming. One of our favourite spots at The Road Trip is Ship Creek, an isolated beach featuring native totara trees hugging rugged coastline. Tonight you stay in Wanaka, one of New Zealand’s most popular holiday spots.
Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes

Meals included:
• Breakfast
Accommodation included: 4 star option-Edgewater Resort (or similar)
5 star option- Lakeside Apartments (or similar)

Day 5: Wanaka to Queenstown

Stop At: Amisfield Winery, 10 Arrowtown-Lake Hayes Road Arrowtown, Lake Hayes, Queenstown 9371 New Zealand
This morning after further exploring Wanaka, your South Island tour takes you over The Crown Range, New Zealand’s highest highway to Arrowtown, an important location in the gold rush of Central Otago in the 1860s. Perhaps browse the preserved Chinese gold mining village or wander the boutique shops the town has on offer. Your next stop is Amisfield Winery where you will enjoy a 3 course ‘trust the chef’ lunch (wine pairing optional).Arrive in Queenstown where the afternoon is free to spend as you wish (all activities mentioned are optional – extra cost). This evening you will head up the Skyline Gondola to dine at the delicious Stratosfare Restaurant with sweeping views over the lake to The Remarkables.
Duration: 2 hours

Meals included:
• Breakfast
• Lunch: Enjoy a spectacular lunch at Amisfield winery surrounded by divine Central Otago Scenery.
Accommodation included: 4 star option Kamana Lakehouse (or similar)
5 star option The Rees (or similar)

Day 6: Queenstown Free Day

Stop At: Queenstown, Queenstown, Otago Region, South Island
Today is free to explore Queenstown at leisure and take part in some of the fantastic activities that this ‘Adventure Capital of the World’ has to offer. Options for the adventurous include: Skydiving, Bungy Jumping, Jet Boating, Canyon Swings, White Water Rafting, Flyboarding and Paragliding. If you feel like taking a more relaxed approach to the day, a cruise on the TSS Earnslaw 100 year old steam ship or a walk through Queenstown’s Botanic Gardens are not to be missed. Perhaps drive out to the head of Lake Wakatipu and experience the breath-taking scenery of the Glenorchy area. A popular option with our clients is a helicopter flight to the top of Coronet Peak, where passengers are able to get out on the snow 365 days a year! (Weather permitting). Enjoy a further night in the adventure capital
Duration: 12 hours

Meals included:
• Breakfast
Accommodation included: 4 star option- Kamana Lakehouse (or similar)
5 star option- The Rees (or similar)

Day 7: Queenstown to Lake Tekapo Via Mt Cook

Stop At: The Church of the Good Shepherd, Pioneer Drive, Lake Tekapo 7999 New Zealand
369 km, 4 hours and 30 minutes driving
You leave Central Otago today through the Kawarau Gorge and Cromwell where you can make a stop en route and visit a local fruit shop for a chance to try real fruit ice cream and perhaps sample New Zealand famous manuka honey products. From there, cross the Lindis Pass (965m) to the Mackenzie Country, known for its Merino Sheep and wool industry. Weather permitting you can take a short walk at the foot of Mt Cook - New Zealand’s highest mountain. En route to Lake Tekapo, perhaps take a trip to the top of Mt John to experience the feeling of being on top of the world. This boasts stunning 360 degree views of the Mountains and turquoise coloured lakes (Road open until 5pm - $8 entry fee). Tonight you will stay in the town of Lake Tekapo and enjoy its turquoise coloured waters. On a clear night there will be the opportunity to enjoy a guided tour to Mt John Observatory and its spectacular night sky (optional – extra cost).
Duration: 1 hour

Meals included:
• Breakfast
Accommodation included: 4 star option- Peppers Bluewater resort or similar
5 star option- Lake Tekapo Lodge or similar

Day 8: Lake Tekapo to Christchurch

Pass By: Christchurch, Christchurch, Canterbury Region, South Island
243 km, 3 hours driving
This morning you will drive through to Christchurch where you will transfer to your onward travel arrangements. We trust you’ve had a memorable tour with us and wish you safe travels to your next destination.

Meals included:
• Breakfast
No accommodation included on this day.

Additional Information

  • Confirmation will be received within 48 hours of booking, subject to availability
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Please bring good walking shoes, warm clothing, swim wear and towel
  • Please note: All participants must have a current passport that is valid for at least 3 months after date of entry into New Zealand
  • If you choose to start and end your tour with an airport transfer, please provide your flight arrival and departure times when booking. Alternatively, if you choose a hotel-to-hotel transfer, please specify your Christchurch hotel details when booking. Both options require you to reconfirm your details at least 48 hours before departure (contact info will be provided on your booking voucher)
  • Children must be accompanied by an adult
  • Each traveler is allowed a maximum of 1 suitcase and 1 carry-on bag. Oversized or excessive luggage (e.g. surfboards, golf clubs or bikes) may have certain restrictions, please inquire with the operator prior to travel to confirm if your excess luggage is acceptable
  • Please advise any specific dietary requirements at time of booking
  • Service animals allowed
  • Near public transportation
  • Infant seats available
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund
  • This is a private tour/activity. Only your group will participate
  • 7x Breakfast
  • 1x Dinner
  • 1x Lunch
  • Accommodation included: 7 nights
  • Private tour
  • Meals as per itinerary (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner)
  • Live commentary on board
  • Professional tour guide (who is also the driver)
  • Transport by private vehicle and all fuel charges
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off
  • Round-trip airport transfer (Christchurch)
  • 7 nights accommodation in your selected category of hotel
  • Entry/Admission - Amisfield Winery

  • Gratuities
  • Optional activities
  • Personal expenses
  • Food and drinks, not specified in the itinerary (lunch and dinner)
  • Entry/Admission - Franz Josef Glacier

Departure Point
Traveler pickup is offered
If you choose to start and end your tour with an airport transfer, please provide your flight arrival and departure times when booking. Alternatively, if you choose a hotel-to-hotel transfer, please specify your Christchurch hotel details when booking.

Both options require you to reconfirm your details at least 48 hours before departure (contact info will be provided on your booking voucher)


  • Christchurch Intl Airport, Christchurch New Zealand


  • Akaroa i-SITE Visitor Information Centre, 74A Rue Lavaud, Akaroa 7520, New Zealand

Departure Time
8:00 AM

8 days

Voucher Info
You can present either a paper or an electronic voucher for this activity.

The tour identified in this promotion is made available through Viator. Groupon is not affiliated with or sponsored by the The Roadtrip in connection with this deal. Please contact Groupon customer service for all inquiries related to this offer. Inquiries placed to Viator will be directed back to Groupon.

This offer is not eligible for promo codes.

The Fine Print

7-day cancellation rights do not apply; no refunds or exchanges permitted. Voucher valid only for date and time listed; may not be exchanged or redeemed for other dates. Purchaser name and phone number must be provided at checkout; this information will be shared with Viator and the tour operator for purposes of order fulfillment. Groupon promo codes may not be used for this offer. Groupon voucher Terms of Sale do not apply. See the tour operators terms and conditions for this offer here. Merchant is solely responsible to purchasers for the care and quality of the advertised Goods and services.