NEW ZEALAND TRAVEL PLANS
Since my last post suggesting we may be going to New Zealand, things have progressed! We are no longer going to try and see both the north and south islands within 3 weeks. We will only be visiting the South Island on this occasion.
Flights have been booked!
We fly to Christchurch mid May – not arriving there until midnight! We leave Christchurch early June.
We’ve seen a travel agent
. . . and accommodation and a couple of tours have been booked. A car rental has also been organised. More tours to be investigated and booked yet.
I don’t like to reveal my accommodation until after I leave it, for safety reasons (this online world can be a dangerous place) but I’ll share how the itinerary is looking so far.
THE ITINERARY SO FAR
Days 1 to 4 – Christchurch (3 nights – remembering we don’t land until midnight on Day 1)
Days 4 to 5 – On the morning of Day 4 we catch the TransAlpine Train across to Greymouth and this is where we will collect our hire car that we will be driving for the remainder of the trip. We spend 1 night at Hokitika.
Day 5 to 6 – Fox Glacier (1 night)
Day 6 to 8 – Wanaka (2 nights)
Days 8-12 – Queenstown (4 nights). Queenstown will serve as a base for a variety of day trips.
Days 12-14 – Te Anau (2 nights)
On Day 13 we’re doing a 7 hour Doubtful Sound Wilderness Cruise. There’s no Milford Sound cruise available in May.
Days 14-16 – Dunedin (2 nights)
Days 16-18 – Lake Tekapo (2 nights)
Days 18-22 – Hanmer Springs (4 nights – a beautiful place to spend my birthday and to use as a base for a few day trips)
On Day 22 we head back to Christchurch where we’ll spend the morning before dropping off our hire car and flying home that afternoon.
THOUGHTS ON WHAT TO DO, SEE, VISIT
So now we’re at the point of working out what we do during each of our days and decide if there are things we need to book in to. Along with a bit of rest sometimes, enjoying cafes and restaurants, taking zillions of photos, exploring shops and galleries, these are some thoughts so far (more research to be done yet & probably a cull later on):
- Visit the Antarctic Centre
- Punting on the Avon River
- Hop on Hop off City Tour Tram (see punting link above)
- Gondola (see punting link above)
- ALREADY BOOKED: Catching the TransAlpine Train across to Greymouth as outlined above
(after collecting the car in Greymouth we ‘might’ head north for a visit to the Punakaiki Pancake Rocks & Blowholes before heading south to Hokitika)
- Hokitika Gorge
- Beach Walk
- Lakes & Walks
- Hokitika is famous for Greenstone & Glassblowing so we’ll probably see out places where we can see some.
Not sure what we want to do here. Can’t do any slippery or difficult hiking. Some options:
- Fox and Franz Josef Twin Glacier Helicopter Flight from Fox Glacier
- Walk track to see glaciers
- Stevenson Island Cruise & Nature Walk
- Walking and Cycling Tracks (maybe hire bikes)
- Must see the Wanaka Tree
Extreme sports are not our thing however The Tennis Player is keen to do one (I am still on the fence) – see first dot point.
- ALREADY BOOKED: Doubtful Sounds Wilderness Cruise ex Manapouri
We had hoped to do a tour/cruise to Milford Sound but apparently there’s nothing operating in May! Nevermind, apparently Doubful Sound is just as beautiful if not more so!
Since the above cruise goes for 7 hours (all day) – not sure what else we’ll have time for but maybe some walking and exploring.
I haven’t researched Dunedin much yet so there may be much more to list here!
- Visit Lanarch Castle
- Explore Dunedin’s beaches
- Explore the town/city tour?
I haven’t done much research on this yet so watch this space! Feel free to tell me what I should do here in the comments!
However, there IS the beautiful lake so there’s nothing wrong with a bit of sitting and drinking up the beautiful scenery!
A visit to Mt Cook National Park is probably something we might do from here!
As we’re here for 4 nights this will be used as a bit of a base, with plans to:
- do day trips to some of the northern coastal towns and visit nearby wine regions
- enjoy the thermal springs
- Relax and enjoy the scenery
- Dinner somewhere nice on my birthday. Any suggestions?
So there you go, it’s a work in progress but we are slowly getting there and it’s fabulous to have something exciting to look forward to! More research to be done and then we need to have a good close look and see what we can realistically fit in.
Hit me with any must see’s or suggestions for places to eat or things we must do, excluding any extreme sports!
Ciao for now,
Linking up with Denyse Whelan’s ‘Wednesday’s Words and Pics‘