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11 Day Tour | Ultimate 'Top of the South Island' with Flights

Christchurch - Akaroa - Moana - Hokitika - Punakaiki - Nelson - Blenheim - Marlborough Sounds - Kaikoura

Experience Business Class on Wheels

3 Cruises & 1 Rail Journey included 

Enjoy 10 Nights in 4.5 star Accommodation

Akaroa Harbour Nature Cruise, TranzAlpine Rail Journey & much more!

From $7,609 Typically $7,999 Include flight pp twin share

Book Now Check Departure Dates


Experience wilderness, wildlife and unique attractions in ultimate style.

Embarking on the 11 Day Ultimate Top of the South Island tour with Grand Pacific Tours is a journey of unparalleled beauty and discovery. Over the course of eleven unforgettable days, travelers are treated to the breathtaking landscapes and cultural wonders of New Zealand's Top of the South Island. Visit Christchurch, a city teeming with history and charm.  Your adventure continues on the world-renowned TranzApline Rail Journey, as you travel over massive viaducts, river valleys and spectacular gorges. Experience the mighty West Coast including Hokitika then Punakaiki, where travelers are immersed in the wild beauty of rugged coastlines, pancake rock formations, and dense rainforests. Visit the picturesque Abel Tasman National Park, where golden sandy beaches beckon visitors to unwind in nature's embrace.


Read our latest Blogs about New Zealand at 'Wake Up Here'

Wind your way through Nelson and venture through the stunning wine region of Blenheim, where lush vineyards meet majestic mountains. Enjoy a visit to the fishing village of Kaikoura which provides the opportunity for you to take an optional scenic flight to view the graceful giant sperm whales from the air. Your 11 day tour concludes in Christchurch. With Grand Pacific Tours, every aspect of this expedition is expertly crafted, allowing guests to savor the best of the Top of the South Island's wonders in style and comfort.

Throughout the 11 Day Ultimate Top of the South Island tour with Grand Pacific Tours, travelers experience the utmost in luxury and convenience. With top-notch accommodations, knowledgeable tour guides, and carefully planned itineraries, guests can relax and focus on creating lasting memories. The tour not only showcases the region's natural splendors but also delves into its rich Maori heritage, connecting visitors with the land's deep-rooted cultural tapestry. Each moment on this journey promises a captivating experience. Grand Pacific Tours' commitment to excellence ensures that every traveler returns home with a heart full of cherished moments and a profound appreciation for the enchanting beauty of New Zealand's Top of the South Island.



Itinerary Downloadable Itinerary

Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 Day 4 Day 5 Day 6 Day 7 Day 8 Day 9 Day 10 Day 11


Day 1

Australia  Christchurch

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 as you meet your travelling companions.

Meals: Dinner

Accommodation: Sudima Christchurch City 

Day 2

Christchurch Akaroa Christchurch

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.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Sudima Christchurch City 

Day 3

Christchurch Moana Hokitika

This morning board the TranzAlpine, renowned 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.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Beachfront Hotel Hokitika (Ocean View Room)

Day 4

Hokitika Punakaiki

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.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Scenic Hotel Punakaiki (Beach View Room)

Day 5

Punakaiki Nelson

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 a visit to the Nelson Classic Car Museum where you will marvel at an incredible collection of iconic cars. This is followed by an orientation tour of the city.

Meals: Breakfast and Dinner

Accommodation: Rutherford Hotel (Premium Room)

Day 6

Nelson Abel Tasman National Park Nelson

Travel to Kaiteriteri, gateway to the Abel Tasman National Park and join a cruise along the parks’ picturesque coastline. At Anchorage Bay, lunch will be served. 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.

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch

Accommodation: Rutherford Hotel (Premium Room)

Day 7

Nelson Blenheim

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. This afternoon enjoy time at leisure.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Chateau Marlborough

Day 8

Blenheim Marlborough Sounds Blenheim 

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.

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch

Accommodation: Chateau Marlborough

Day 9

Blenheim Kaikõura

Farewell the Marlborough region and journey to Kaikõura. Visit the Kaikõura Museum, which features an exhibition depicting 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.

Meals: Breakfast and Dinner

Accommodation: Sudima Kaikõura

Day 10

Kaikõura Christchurch

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.

Meals: Breakfast and Dinner

Accommodation: Sudima Christchurch City

Day 11

Christchurch Australia

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

Meals: Breakfast

Inclusions & Exclusions


  • Return Economy Class airfares from Melbourne, Sydney or Brisbane
  • Travelling from another city or from regional Australia? Contact as for a quote!
  • Personalised Meet and Greet on arrival
  • Return airport transfers in New Zealand
  • Professional Coach Captain
  • 10 nights 4.5 star accommodation
  • 22 meals including breakfast daily (Please note dinner not available for guests arriving after 8PM on day 1)
  • Hotel porterage
  • 1 Rail Journey
  • 3 Cruises
  • All sightseeing and prepaid attractions
  • Optional Activities
  • Ultimate Documentation Pack

Prepaid Included Attractions 

  • 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
  • Cloudy Bay Estate Wine Tasting
  • Queen Charlotte Sound Cruise to Furneaux Lodge
  • Kaikõura Museum
  • International Antarctic Centre
  • Christchurch City Sights Tour
  • Nelson City Sights Tour
Coach Features
  • 20 Business Class seats on a full-size coach
  • 2 door access; dedicated seat side storage with tray table; cup holder
  • Restroom; daily onboard Wi-Fi allowance
Scenic Highlights and Walks
  • 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 Kaikōura


  • Meals not mentioned
  • Any additional requests
  • Travel Insurance 
  • Tipping/Gratuities

Passport and Visa Requirements: All visitors require a passport to enter New Zealand. Your passport must be valid for at least three months beyond the date that you intend to leave New Zealand. For Australian citizens travelling on an Australian passport, you do not need a visa or permit to visit New Zealand. Visitors from visa-waiver countries must request an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) prior to travelling to New Zealand. For visitors from non-visa waiver countries it is recommended you contact your Travel Agent or NZ Immigration for full entry requirements. If you are not an Australian Citizen or permanent resident, you may also have to pay for an International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL). Please check with your Travel Agent for up to date immigration requirements.

Solo Supplement: Please contact us for a quote and availability.

Child Policy: Children under 16 years are not permitted.

Fitness Level Required: 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.

Travel Insurance: We recommend Covermore travel insurance. To quote and book, please click HERE.

Wanting to arrive earlier or stay later: Please contact us to arrange pre or post-arrangements. 

Travelling on your own? Why not join the Traveldream Solo Travellers Facebook group where you can interact with other travellers.

WAKE UP HERE! Read the latest from the Official Traveldream Blog

Departure Dates

JAN 2025
28 th
Tuesday 28 Jan 2025  ‐  Friday 07 Feb 2025
MAR 2025
19 th
Wednesday 19 Mar 2025  ‐  Saturday 29 Mar 2025