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Ultimate Top of the South Island

5.0/5 Based on 1 Reviews No Booking FeesDedicated Travel Advisor
New Release Fully Guided Coach Small Group Scenic
Our Price From 6,880 Per Person
Exclusive Savings 369 Per Person
 Trip Length
11 Days
 Trip Starts
 Trip Finishes
11 Day Ultimate Top of the South Island Itinerary (Grand Pacific)
Countries Explored: New Zealand
Trip Style
4 - 4.5 Star
Max. Group Size
Guide Level
Fully Guided
Trip Code


Read reviews and enjoy exclusive savings on Grand Pacific's 11 Day Ultimate Top of the South Island. Explore the amazing wilderness New Zealand has to offer travelling 'Business Class on Wheels' on the Ultimate Coach. Take the time to wander through a variety of landscapes and sample the delicious food and wine New Zealand is renowned for. The itinerary is designed for travellers who enjoy the outdoors and are keen to get off the main roads, indulging in several short walks. A moderate level of fitness is required.


On arrival into Christchurch you will be met by a Grand Pacific Tours representative and transferred to your hotel.

This evening enjoy a complimentary pre-dinner drink when you meet your Tour Leader and travelling companions for dinner. Stay Two Nights: Sudima Christchurch City (D)

After an introductory city sights tour, enjoy a scenic drive to the historic French village of Akaroa, with time to wander through the charming galleries and craft stores.

This afternoon set off on a Nature Cruise in the hope of spotting the rare Hector's Dolphin and keep an eye out for penguins and other sea birds.

Following your cruise, return to Christchurch where the evening is free to dine at one of the city's many restaurants. (B)

This morning board the TranzAlpine, as one of the great train journeys of the world. Travel over massive viaducts, river valleys and spectacular gorges before descending through the Otira Tunnel to Moana, on the banks of picturesque Lake Brunner. Enjoy lunch at Kingfisher Restaurant, before travelling to the Brunner Mine Site, the location of the 1896 mine explosion.

This afternoon in the coastal town of Hokitika, visit a local gallery, for the opportunity to pick up a gift or souvenir. Stay: Beachfront Hotel Hokitika (Ocean View) (B/SL/D)

Today, take in the natural beauty of the Hokitika Gorge on a short walk descending through the hardwood forest that will lead you to a swing bridge which crosses the Hokitika River. Continue north to Greymouth, home of Monteith's Brewing Co. where you will sample locally brewed beers over lunch.

This afternoon travel along the Great Coast Road to the world-famous Punakaiki Pancake Rocks and Blowholes. Stay: Scenic Hotel Punakaiki (Beach View Room) (B/SL/D)

Journey north along the coast to Tauranga Bay and Cape Foulwind, named by Captain Cook in 1770 when he encountered nasty weather. A short walk along the rocky headland will showcase the rugged coastline and sea life often on show amongst the rocks. Travel inland via the Buller Gorge and Murchison to Nelson, one of the sunniest cities in New Zealand. This afternoon enjoy an orientation tour of the city followed by a visit to the Nelson Classic Car Museum where you will marvel at an incredible collection of iconic cars. Stay Two Nights: Rutherford Hotel (Premium Room) (B/D)

Travel to Kaiteriteri, gateway to the Abel Tasman National Park and join a cruise along the parks’ picturesque coastline. At Anchorage Bay, a picnic lunch will be provided. Re-join your coach and depart for Nelson via the vineyards. This evening is free for you to dine at one of the local restaurants in town. (B/SL)

Today travel via Havelock and the wine-growing region of Marlborough. Visit the Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre, home to one of the largest private collections of WW1 Aircraft, brought to life in sets created by the internationally acclaimed WingNut Films and Weta Workshop. Head back into town where you will enjoy lunch at a local Blenheim beer garden before a short drive to an iconic Marlborough Winery where you will experience a personalised wine tasting. You will taste award-winning wines and enjoy exploring the beautiful Marlborough vineyards. Stay Two Nights: Chateau Marlborough (B/SL/D)

Enjoy a leisurely start to the day before travelling to Picton where time is available to explore this picturesque port. Cruise from Picton Marina to the stunning Queen Charlotte Sound, while enjoying informative commentary on this remarkable region, enroute to Furneaux Lodge. At Furneaux Lodge a delicious lunch will be served followed by time to enjoy the peaceful surroundings. There is access to kayaks and short walks around the property. On the return cruise to Picton a cheese platter featuring local produce is served accompanied by a glass of Marlborough wine, the perfect end to your Marlborough Sounds adventure. Board the coach for the short journey back to Blenheim where the evening is free to dine at one of the local restaurants. (B/SL)

Farewell the Marlborough region and journey to Kaikoura to visit the Kaikoura Museum, featuring a dedicated exhibition on the impact of the 2016 earthquake. This afternoon you may like to experience a scenic flight (optional, weather permitting) over the coastline to see the many species of whales that migrate through this area. Stay: Sudima Kaikoura (Ocean View Room) (B/D)

Depart Kaikõura and head to Christchurch to visit the International Antarctic Centre, designed to provide an informative account of life in Antarctica. This evening reminisce on the memories shared with your new friends at the farewell dinner which includes selected beverages. Stay: Sudima Christchurch City (B/SD)

Time to say goodbye. You will be transferred to the airport for your flight home after a memorable New Zealand holiday. (B)

Trip Inclusions

  • Akaroa Harbour Nature Cruise
  • TranzAlpine Rail Journey
  • Wilderness Gallery Hokitika
  • Monteith's Brewing Co. Tasting
  • Nelson Classic Car Museum
  • Abel Tasman Guided Walk and Barbecue Cruise
  • Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre
  • Marlborough Winery and Tasting
  • Queen Charlotte Sound Cruise & Furneaux Lodge Lunch
  • Kaikoura Museum
  • International Antarctic Centre
  • City sights tour of Nelson and Christchurch

  • Historic French Village of Akaroa
  • Lake Brunner
  • Brunner Mine Site
  • Hokitika Gorge
  • Punakaiki Pancake Rocks
  • Cape Foulwind walkway
  • Buller Gorge
  • Seaside town of Kaiteriteri
  • Abel Tasman National Park
  • Marlborough Wine Region
  • Marlborough Sounds
  • Coastal town of Kaikõura

  • Premium Economy Comfort on a full-size coach with 2 door access, seat back tray table, cup holder, restroom and d aily onboard Wi-Fi allowance
  • Professional Coach Captain and Tour Leader
  • Personalised Meet and Greet on arrival
  • Return airport transfers in New Zealand
  • 10 nights 4 star accommodation
  • 3 two night stays
  • Hotel porterage
  • 1 rail journey
  • 3 cruises
  • All sightseeing and prepaid attractions
  • Ultimate Documentation Pack

  • 10 cooked breakfasts
  • 7 sumptuous dinners including complimentary pre-dinner drink at the Welcome Dinner and 1 specialty dinner: Intimate Farewell Dinner, selected beverages, Christchurch
  • 5 specialty lunches: Kingfisher Restaurant, Lake Brunner; Monteith's Brewing Co, Greymouth; Abel Tasman lunch, Abel Tasman National Park; Dodson Street Beer Garden, Blenheim; Furneaux Lodge, Queen Charlotte Sound
  • Enjoy GPT Hotel Wine Time (discounted drinks)

  • Please Note: Tour includes a number of short walks of up to 1 hour that require a moderate level of fitness. The walks are scenic and not excessive but can include slight inclines and uneven surfaces. Ensure you feel comfortable with this level of fitness before booking.
  • Accommodation, itinerary and inclusions subject to change.
  • Price is for land, cruise and internal flights as specified. Flights not specified are not included
  • Dinner on Day 1 not included for anyone arriving later than 8pm

Trip Reviews (1) Most Recent 'Ultimate Top of the South Island' Reviews

AVG. RATING 5.0 / 5
1 Review
5 Star
4 Star
3 Star
2 Star
1 Star
Picturesque tour of the north part of the South Island   0 , VIC, Australia, Mar 2023
This was an excellent tour - well paced, encompassing great scenery and with three relaxing cruises to enjoy. Accommodation was very good, with helpful staff and comfortable rooms. There was an occasional glitch with new or untrained staff, but that is the way of it in Covid recovery times. The Ultimate coach was very good, although the seating needs ...read more to be re- thought to give room for leg rests to be used. Highly recommended with obvious attention to detail by Grand Pacific.
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Grand Pacific New Zealand (2024-25)

Since 1996, Grand Pacific Tours, the New Zealand Coach Holiday Specialist has been indulging travellers from all over the world with the holiday of a lifetime. Tour in style, choose between an Ultimate Small Group Tour, boasting a Business Class level of comfort with only 20 luxury leather seats, or a Signature Mid-Size Group Tour, enjoying Premium...more Economy comfort onboard a coach with 32 seats.


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A definite departure means minimum numbers have been reached for this departure to operate. Your Global Journeys Travel Advisor will check the availability of your departure date when you enquire. Additional savings may apply. We guarantee the lowest price in Australia. T&C’s apply.

Flights Included:
All departures can be booked with return flights from Australia to New Zealand included. Please select the flight option when you enquire with us.
Tour & cruises prices are per person. Prices shown have savings applied, are subject to availability and may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Prices and trip information are correct at the time at this point in time, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking and are subject to change by Grand Pacific. For cruise itineraries, cabin images are sourced from Grand Pacific. These should be treated as indicative only. Cabin inclusions, upholsteries and room layout may differ to the image(s) shown depending on the ship selected and your sailing dates.

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