South Island Autumn Tour

From $5,470 per person

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Friday 01 – Thursday 14 April 2022 (14 Days)

The South Island or the ‘Mainland’ boasts rugged beaches, spectacular mountain ranges, stunning scenery, and of course the ‘salt of the earth’ and friendly locals that you’ll meet along the way. The South Island is a spectacular land, which has been uplifted by extraordinary earth forces. Travel the beautiful landscapes as the scenery turns golden – a photographer’s paradise.

Day 1          Friday 01 April 2022
ARRIVE CHRISTCHURCH          (D)
This morning we fly from Auckland to Christchurch.   On arrival in Christchurch, we are met by our South Island driver/guide and transferred to our accommodation.  The remainder of day at leisure to relax or stroll around Christchurch.  Tonight we will enjoy a welcome dinner at the hotel to meet our fellow travellers.
Accommodation: Quality Elms Hotel, Christchurch

Day 2          Saturday 02 April 2022
CHRISTCHURCH – GREYMOUTH          (BD)
Leaving Christchurch we travel over the alluvial Canterbury Plains towards the magnificent Southern Alps then cross Arthurs Pass through the Southern Alps and drive through the beautiful beech forest of Arthurs Pass National Park.  From the valleys of the snow-capped mountains, we descend into the lush rainforests of Westland and travel south along the West Coast. ‘The Coast’ as locals call it, is one of the world’s special places, with mind-blowing topography. Ancient uplifts of the earth’s crust created the impressive vertical ramparts of the main divide of the Southern Alps. These cloud-piercing mountains rise within 30-km of a breathtaking coast. Five of our national parks are here, and South West New Zealand has been declared a World Heritage Area.  We travel northward along the Coast to visit the Pancake Rocks at Punakaiki – these sedimentary rocks have been hammered by the sea, and wind erosion forming layered rocks giving a look of a large stack of pancakes, then return to our overnight accommodation in Greymouth.
Accommodation: The Ashley Hotel, Greymouth

Day 3          Sunday 03 April 2022
GREYMOUTH – HAAST          (BD)
Our first stop this morning is at Hokitika where a visit is made to the Greenstone and Glass Blowing factories before continuing further south into the Westland National Park, the home of Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers.  Time here to tick a scenic helicopter flight onto a glacier off your bucket list! (extra cost for optional scenic flights).   Driving towards the southern end of the South Island’s West Coast Road, there is a strong sense of entering a primeval land, and a feeling of total isolation. Arriving at Haast, you are surrounded by a landscape of rainforest, wetlands, sand dunes and surf-pounded shingle beaches. This wilderness forms part of the South West New Zealand World Heritage Area, so designated because South Westland and Fiordland have some of the most dramatic forest and mountain scenery and natural resources in the world.
Accommodation: Heartland Hotel Haast

Day 4          Monday 04 April 2022
HAAST – QUEENSTOWN          (BD)
From the Westland National Park, we travel through the Haast River valleys and over the Haast Pass to Makarora and onto the upper reaches of Lake Wanaka.  Travelling past Lake Hawea we reach the popular Lake Wanaka, the starting point of the mighty Clutha River.  This afternoon we travel via Cromwell following the rugged Kawarau Gorge Road to Queenstown.  Once in Queenstown we enjoy an orientation tour of ‘the town fit for a Queen’ – Queenstown.
Accommodation: Heartland Hotel Queenstown – 2 nights

Day 5          Tuesday 05 April 2022
QUEENSTOWN          (B)
Today is at leisure.  Queenstown, nestled among glacier-rounded hills and dramatic rugged mountain peaks, is New Zealand’s premier year-round alpine resort.  The town is steeped in the history of the goldmining days, evident from the many relics scattered in and among the surrounding hills. Queenstown has a plethora of optional sightseeing activities available from jetboating on the thrilling Shotover Jet; a jet-boat excursion along the scenic and remote Dart River; winery tours to the premier Central Otago wineries; 4WD tours into unforgettable Skippers Canyon; scenic flights; or if you dare – bungy jumping or tandem skydiving!  Extra cost for optional sightseeing excursions.  Tonight, is free for you to explore the local restaurants, cafes and bars.

Day 6          Wednesday 06 April 2022                                                                                       
QUEENSTOWN – MILFORD SOUND – TE ANAU          (BLD)
Leaving Queenstown we skirt the shores of Lake Wakatipu, New Zealand’s third largest lake, alongside the towering Remarkables Ranges.  We pass through the town of Te Anau then travel via the beautiful Eglinton Valley climbing to the Homer Tunnel before descending through to the spectacular Cleddau Canyon to reach Milford Sound where we enjoy a scenic cruise of the Sound.  Often referred to as the ‘jewel in Fiordland’s crown’, Milford Sound is dominated by the grandeur of Mitre Peak and the Bowen Falls.   Seals and dolphins are often seen in the clear waters of the fiord.  At the conclusion of our cruise, we retrace our journey back to Te Anau and our overnight accommodation.
Dinner tonight will be at our hotel.
Accommodation: Distinction Luxmore, Te Anau

Day 7           Thursday 07 April 2022
TE ANAU – INVERCARGILL           (BD)
Travelling the Southern Scenic Route to Invercargill, we travel through Riverton on the shores of the Aparima River. Now a seaside resort and farming town, the former whaling station maintains its links with the sea.  Scores of fishing boats and pleasure craft string along the jetties lining the South Bank. Continuing on to Invercargill, we visit Bill Richardson’s Transport World.  This is the largest private collection of its type in the world. Designed to have something for everyone and, not just for vehicle enthusiasts, Transport World is proving popular with guests from all walks of life. Housed in over 15,000sqm of exquisite ‘sheds’ are over 300 vehicles including retro Kombi’s, Henry Ford Letter Cars, Model T’s, stunning 1930’s V8’s and over 200 vintage petrol pumps. We then travel to our accommodation in Invercargill where we stay for the next two nights.
Accommodation: Kelvin Hotel, Invercargill – 2 nights

Day 8          Friday 08 April 2022
INVERCARGILL          (B)
This morning we travel to Bluff and stop at Stirling Point to see the famous signpost which marks the start (or end) of State Highway 1 and depicts directions and distances to major cities around the world.   The remainder of the day is at leisure in Invercargill.   For those interested as an optional extra, we offer a day excursion to Stewart Island.   After crossing Foveaux Strait by ferry, join an escorted tour of the main island highlights with a local driver.   Time also to visit the local Department of Conservation Centre in Oban before returning to Invercargill by ferry.   Additional cost for the Stewart Island day excursion.

Day 9          Saturday 09 April 2022
INVERCARGILL – THE CATLINS - DUNEDIN          (BD)
Depart and travel across flat farmland towards the east coast and the Southern Scenic Route through the Catlins to Dunedin.  The Catlins is a place of awesome natural beauty with dense forest, farmland, towering cliffs, rocky coastal bays.  There are wonderful views of this rugged coastline as the road winds north.  En route stops can be made to see many of the interesting places the Catlins offers the visitor.  This wild coast claimed many ships and as a result two lighthouses are features.  The first of these at Waipapa Point was the scene of New Zealand’s worst civilian shipping disaster.  At Curio Bay see one of the world’s most extensive and least disturbed examples of a Jurassic fossilised forest (subject to tides).  Further north we will stop in to view the Purakanui Falls. Framed by native forest and cascading 20-metres over three tiers, the Purakaunui Falls are amongst the most photographed waterfalls in New Zealand. Enjoy too the soundtrack of native birds and rushing water.  We continue our travels passing through the small towns of the Catlins including Owaka, where we will make a stop for lunch (own cost). Continuing north the road turns inland through the small town of Balclutha on the banks of the Clutha River then travels through rolling sheep country to Dunedin. Dinner tonight will be at our hotel.
Accommodation: The Victoria Hotel, Dunedin – 2 nights

Day 10          Sunday 10 April 2022
DUNEDIN          (B)
Today is at leisure. You may wish to visit the Toitu Otago Settlers Museum where much of the history of the original inhabitants of the area is located, take a tour of the Speights Brewery, visit the Art Gallery, enjoy time at the Otago Museum with its Butterfly House or wander around the Octagon (the very heart of the city).
Excursions further afield can include a guided tour of Olveston, which is a fine example of an Edwardian home and the lifestyle of that era or join a tour out to the Otago Peninsula renowned for its wildlife.   All excursions are at additional cost.

Day 11          Monday 11 April 2022
DUNEDIN – OMARAMA          (BD)                 
Departing Dunedin, we travel north to view the extraordinary spherical Moeraki Boulders, shaped rather like giant marbles and nestled on the beach near Moeraki.  Then onto Oamaru - here we have time to look at the ‘White Stone City’. The old buildings have been constructed with local limestone. It was from Oamaru that New Zealand’s first frozen meat was shipped in 1882 taking over three months to reach England, and thus began New Zealand’s most important export industry.  Travelling inland through Benmore and Otematata through sailors cutting we arrive at Omarama.
Accommodation: Heritage Gateway Hotel, Omarama

Day 12          Tuesday 12 April 2022
OMARAMA – CHRISTCHURCH          (BD)
What a day of spectacular sights ahead of us!  We head north to skirt the shore of Lake Pukaki to Mount Cook, New Zealand’s tallest mountain. Time is available to enjoy an optional scenic flight over the ancient rivers of ice and the West Coast Glaciers (weather permitting / extra cost).  Travelling to Tekapo we witness the magnificent blue waters of Lake Tekapo. Here we visit the Church of the Good Shepherd and the statue of the Collie dog, before travelling the vast Mackenzie Basin, over Burke’s Pass through Fairlie, Geraldine, and Ashburton and across the Canterbury Plains into Christchurch.
Accommodation: Quality Elms Hotel, Christchurch – 2 nights

Day 13          Wednesday 13 April 2022
CHRISTCHURCH          (BD)
Today we explore Christchurch with a sightseeing tour and see how the city continues to rebuild following the 2011 earthquakes.  Our first visit will be the Canterbury Museum, where we learn about the history and geography of the area.  Other sights include Christ’s College, Hagley Park, the Arts Centre and the Canterbury Earthquake National Memorial.   We travel further afield and make a stop at Sumner for a walk along the beach before returning to the central city.
This afternoon is at leisure.

Day 14           Thursday 14 April 2022
DEPART CHRISTCHURCH          (B)
Farewell from the South Island!  This morning we are transferred to Christchurch Airport to connect with our flight back to Auckland.

Quality Hotel Elms

The Quality Hotel Elms is situated in a quiet suburban area yet accessible to many of the attractions and activities the area has to offer, surrounded by award-winning gardens and is ideally situated midway between the airport and central city. All 97 guest rooms are well appointed and equipped with all the amenities a guest could need, offering luxurious accommodation in an ideal location for those wanting to explore the area.

Ashley Hotel Greymouth

The Ashley Hotel offers quality hotel accommodation on the beautiful West Coast, surrounded by rainforest and the Southern Alps, only five minutes from the town centre. All 60 guest rooms offer a warm, personable stay with all the in-room amenities a guest could need as well as access to the hotel's facilities.

​Heartland Hotel Haast

The Heartland Hotel Haast is situated four kilometres from Haast township on the doorstep of the South Westland World Heritage Area. Haast offers a place of tranquillity, with untouched beaches and rugged glacial valleys en route to the West Coast and Southern Lakes. The hotel offers a range of room types and is a perfect rest stop for all travellers and adventurers. Hotel facilities include a ‘country pub’ style café and bar, warm and comfortable accommodation with modern amenities including wifi.

Heartland Hotel Queenstown

Heartland Hotel has a distinctive design and is close to all the action in the bustling resort town. With amazing views to the mountain and Lake Wakatipu you can still feel cozy and tucked away in the A-Line style chalets in the hills. There are a total of 81 rooms at Heartland Hotel , comprising of Chalet Rooms, Family Rooms, Standard Rooms and Superior rooms. The Hillside Brasserie is open for buffet breakfast and is open for an a la carte dinner from 5pm until 10pm every day.

Distinction Luxmore

Distinction Luxmore hotel, conveniently located in the town centre and close to many attractions and activities the area has to offer. With 180 guest rooms all offering comfortable and luxurious stays, complete with all the in-room amenities a guest could need and access to the hotel's wider facilities.

Kelvin Hotel

Kelvin Hotel is situated in the city centre, only a short walk to major attractions and a 10-minute drive to the Invercargill Airport. The hotel offers rooms with a flat-screen TV, mini bar and free Wi-Fi access. There is an on-site bar and restaurant.

The Victoria Hotel

This small hotel is located close to the Octagon, which is the heart of Dunedin City, and just minutes walk away from the city's attractions, shops and historic Dunedin Railway Station.

Heritage Gateway Omarama

Set amongst landscaped gardens with views of the surrounding mountains, the Heritage Gateway Hotel is a peaceful place to stay. Featuring 98 comfortably furnished guest rooms, restaurant & bar.

Quality Hotel Elms

The Quality Hotel Elms is situated in a quiet suburban area yet accessible to many of the attractions and activities the area has to offer, surrounded by award-winning gardens and is ideally situated midway between the airport and central city. All 97 guest rooms are well appointed and equipped with all the amenities a guest could need, offering luxurious accommodation in an ideal location for those wanting to explore the area.

Tour Inclusions

  • Door to door home collection & drop off service available from select areas - further information available here
  • 13 nights accommodation with private en suite
  • Auckland - Christchurch return flights with Air New Zealand - other ports on application, price on application
  • Touring in modern air conditioned tour coach
  • 13 breakfasts, 1 lunch and 11 dinners included
  • Milford Sound Cruise
  • Admission to Bill Richardson Transport World
  • Scenic Drive through the Catlins with multiple stops along the way

Tour Payments Per Person ($NZD)

Club Member Guaranteed Share Twin Cost:$5,400.00
Non Member Guaranteed Share Twin Cost:$5,470.00
Single Supplement:$1,250.00
Non-refundable deposit due at time of booking$200.00

Full balance of tour payment due by Friday 18 February 2022

Book and pay in full by Thursday 02 December 2021 and receive a $150 discount per person!

 

Are door to door collections included on this tour? YES

Yes. Leisure Time Tours offers a free home collection and drop off service from selected Hamilton, Tauranga, Rotorua and most Auckland City areas. Our complimentary collections are based on your individual post code, other home collection locations available at an additional cost. Alternatively you may wish to meet us at our Hamilton depot in which case you can park your car in our secure yard free of charge for the duration of your holiday. For all tours that have a flight component, we can also offer door to door collections from Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin city areas.

Please refer to our Home Collection flyer for further information about this service.

Is the Guaranteed twin Share Price available on this tour? YES

Yes. Our Guaranteed Twin Share price is available for those passengers willing to share with another single traveller of the same gender. If there isn’t another passenger of the same gender to share with we GUARANTEE our twin share price. Leisure Times Tours accepts no responsibility for the compatibility of passengers travelling under this arrangement. If someone is not compatible with the person they have been matched up with, all additional costs incurred to assist with changing their shared room type to two single rooms will be at the expense of both travellers and will be subject to availability. Acceptance of a guaranteed twin share room is subject to the individual’s medical condition being suitable for this type of arrangement.

Please note that the guaranteed twin share pricing is not available to pre & post tour accommodation arrangements.

What fitness level is required for this tour? EASY LEVEL

To ensure that you select the right tour for you, we’ve developed a very clear set of fitness recommendations for our tours. These physical ratings clearly explain how much physical exertion is required to participate on each tour.

Level 1 – Easy

  • Relaxed paced tour
  • Be able to participate in guided or unguided small walking tours at a relaxed pace.
  • Walk on mostly level ground
  • Tackle an occasional flight of stairs
  • Occasionally need to stand for up to 10 minutes
  • Able to get on and off transportation unaided

Level 2 – Moderate

  • Be able to participate in walking tours with time to rest at least every 10 minutes
  • Stand for 15 minutes without needing to sit down
  • Tackle a flight of stairs or incline
  • Able to get on and off transportation unaided
  • Walk confidently on bush tracks

 Level 3 – Active

  • Participate in walking tours without having to rest for up to 20 minutes
  • Walk up an incline equal to a flight of stairs without stopping
  • Stand for 30 minutes without needing to sit down
  • Walk over uneven ground and walk through soft sand
  • Able to get on and off transportation unaided
Is this tour a guaranteed departure? NO

This tour will be guaranteed once there are 10 passengers booked on the tour.

Can you assist with pre & post tour accommodation? YES

Yes we can. Should you wish to arrive earlier or stay longer we can book in some pre and post tour accommodation for you. Please ask at the time of booking if you require this.

Will there be a daily seat rotation on this tour? YES

Passengers rotate seats in the coach daily so that all passengers have the opportunity to enjoy forward and window seating. All passengers are expected to participate as a booking condition.

Are roadside morning teas included on this tour? YES

Yes. A point of difference is that wherever possible we offer our passengers roadside refreshments served from the coach. This gives all passengers the chance to mix and mingle over a hot cuppa allowing us to share our experiences as we journey together.

Do I need travel insurance?

Leisure Time Tours strongly advises all passengers to purchase a travel insurance policy. A comprehensive travel insurance policy may prevent you from spending extra money in case of an emergency and will help you feel protected during your holiday. We are agents for Cover More Travel Insurance. Ask us for a no obligation insurance quote today.

How much luggage can I bring?

Luggage is restricted to one suitcase and one small item of hand luggage per person. Baggage handling of one suitcase per person, at each hotel, is included in the trip price. Carry-on/hand luggage handling is the responsibility of each guest and all personal items must be taken off the coach by you each day of the trip.

What clothing should I pack?

When on tour, dress is generally relaxed and casual with an informal dress standard on most occasions. Casual wear is recommended for travelling with something a little more formal for evening dining. If taking part in outdoor activities, make sure you have a waterproof coat, comfortable footwear and dress in layers to help you adjust to any sudden changes in climate. Be prepared for New Zealand’s powerful sun, even on cold windy days, bringing a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen.

Terms & Conditions….
Valid from 14 September 2021

Acceptance of Terms and Conditions
If you book a Packaged Tour with us and pay your deposit, you are deemed to have accepted these terms.  If you booked your Packaged Tour with us through an agent, the agent is deemed to have accepted these terms on your behalf.  We may ask you to sign a copy of these terms when you join your Packaged Tour to provide a record of your acceptance of these terms and you agree to sign these terms on our request.

Itineraries
The itinerary for your Packaged Tour was correct at the time of printing, but it is subject to change without notice.  Your itinerary could change due to road or weather conditions, changes imposed by other tour operators or a range of other factors outside our control.  You agree that we have no liability to you for changes to your itinerary.

Price Amendments
Prices were correct at the time and date of printing, however Leisure Time Travel reserves the right to amend the price subject to any changes in price imposed by other tour operators and carriers included in the itinerary or major fluctuation in the exchange rates, or increases in government or other levies. The final tour cost will be guaranteed not to change once the full and final payment has been received. Tour Price excludes drinks, telephone calls, travel insurance and items of a personal nature. Leisure Time Travel also reserves the right to cancel the tour due to low numbers and in this instance a full refund will be provided.

*Guaranteed Twin Share Prices
Our Guaranteed Twin Share price is available for those passengers willing to share with another single traveller of the same gender. If there isn’t another passenger of the same gender to share with we GUARANTEE our twin share price. Leisure Times Tours accepts no responsibility for the compatibility of passengers travelling under this arrangement. If someone is not compatible with the person they have been matched up with, all additional costs incurred to assist with changing their shared room type to two single rooms will be at the expense of both travellers and will be subject to availability. Acceptance of a guaranteed twin share room is subject to the individual’s medical condition being suitable for this type of arrangement.

Health and Fitness
Passengers should be in good health and able to walk moderate distances to fully participate and experience the sightseeing opportunities within the enclosed itinerary.  All passengers are required to acknowledge that they are of reasonable health and are considered to be fit to travel and are not travelling contrary to any medical advice.  By acknowledging their health and fitness to participate passengers are indemnifying us from all actions, claims and demands arising out of any lack of health and fitness.  We reserve the right to remove a passenger from a tour if their health or fitness interferes with any other passenger’s experiences or the day to day running of the tour.  In this instance our normal cancellation terms and conditions will apply.  You agree that we have no liability to you for any loss, damage, costs or other effects of health problems you may encounter on your Packaged Tour.

Health and Safety Information Including COVID-19
For the health and safety of all passengers on tour any illness (such as fever, coughing or difficulty breathing) will not be accepted onboard the coach unless they can provide us with a negative Covid19 test result received within the past 72 hours.  Should any passenger start to feel unwell on arrival or while on tour, they must immediately advise their tour manager and contact Healthline then visit a medical practitioner/medical centre/hospital.  To return to the tour the passenger must be deemed fit and well to participate fully on a coach tour, obtaining and providing us with a written medical clearance – not just a negative Covid19 test.  Any costs incurred will be at the passenger’s own expense.

COVID-19 Vaccination
Our passengers’ safety, and that of our staff and suppliers, has always been our top priority. As of 1 December 2021, Leisure Time Travel requires all passengers joining our tours to produce proof of full COVID-19 vaccination. If a passenger is unable to be vaccinated for medical reasons, they may apply for an exemption to us by providing a medical certificate to us. Exemptions will be assessed on a case-by-case basis. Proof of vaccination against COVID-19. This is your official vaccination certificate (electronic or paper) and it must identify your name and date of vaccination with final dose given at least 14-days before the start date of your tour.

Payments, Cancellations and Refunds
A non-refundable deposit per person is required at time of booking to confirm your seat. All balance payments must be received by Leisure Time Travel prior to the date specified as per itinerary or your booking confirmation. Payments are available to be made by Cash, Cheque, Direct Credit or EFTPOS only –  Credit Card payments are not available without an additional surcharge.  Leisure Time Travel reserves the right to amend or reschedule the tour due the result of circumstances outside the company’s control. Leisure Time Travel also reserves the right to cancel the tour due to insufficient numbers and in this  instance a substitute date will be offered or a full refund will be made available. Tour Price excludes drinks, telephone calls, travel insurance and items of a personal nature.

Travel Insurance
Leisure Time Travel strongly advises all passengers to purchase a travel insurance policy when booking a tour. A comprehensive travel insurance policy gives peace of mind for unexpected issues or emergencies that may arise prior to or during a tour. We are agents for Cover More Travel Insurance. Cover More now provide insurance cover for a number of COVID-19 related medical, cancellation and amendments costs, giving you confidence to book your trip.  Ask us for a no obligation insurance quote today or further information about travel insurance for your upcoming tour.

New Zealand Cancellation Policy
If you cancel your booking:

  • 42+ days prior to tour commencement, loss of non-refundable deposit
  • 30-41 days prior to tour commencement your cancellation charge will be 50% of the holiday price (50% refund) plus any applicable supplier cancellation fees
  • 30 days prior to tour commencement your cancellation charge will be 100% of the holiday price (no refund)

No refunds on any unused portions of any itinerary.  The exception is if a sightseeing service is cancelled by operator due to weather conditions/safety concerns etc and the operator authorises a refund.  Any such refunds will be processed through agent.
Please note that any applicable airline content does not apply to the above refunds – see your airline for their specific cancellation/refund policies.

 

COVID-19 Cancellation and Refund Policy
COVID-19 has created uncertainty for us all, therefore for cancellations directly related to COVID-19, we have negotiated special terms with our suppliers which would override ‘normal cancellation’ terms as outlined above;

If the New Zealand Government imposes travel restrictions that would impact our ability to deliver your travel package prior to commencing travel, passengers will receive a full credit, less any applicable airline cancellation fees.  If travel restrictions are imposed while on tour, we will seek credits on any unused portions of the itinerary from all suppliers.  Any applicable credits will first be applied to any additional costs that our company may have incurred on the passenger’s behalf e.g. if alternative accommodation or transportation to repatriate the passenger to their home city or nearest airport etc is required.  Any remaining refunds will be credited to the booking agent to enable them to pass onto their passenger.

 

Shopping in Christchurch city centre
Driving on Arthurs Pass
Shopping in Christchurch city centre
people looking at rock formation on a beach
people looking at rock formation on a beach
Queenstown aerial view new
Queenstown aerial view new
Moeraki Boulders
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