9 Day South Island Highlights Value Tour

From $2,395 per person

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Friday 12 March – Saturday 20 March 2021 (9 days)
Other departure dates also available: 7 May 2021, 10 September 2021, and 8 October 2021.

March 2021 is a guaranteed departure!

Part of the longer 19-day full tour, this highlights tour packs in some of the South Islands most popular destinations.
If you are looking for a South Island coach tour at a great price – then this is it!

Enjoy the splendour of the South Island scenery while enjoying a relaxing coach tour with an experienced driver delivering an informative commentary throughout, and all the while enjoying good company with like-minded travellers.  Staying in quality 3.5 star hotel accommodation with daily breakfasts, this tour gives you the freedom to select where you may wish to dine each evening to suit your taste and budget, which also helps to keep your tour cost down.  

Day 1                     
HOME CITIES – WELLINGTON                     
Welcome aboard!  Today we begin our South Island Tour with collections in Auckland, Hamilton, Rotorua, and Taupo (only as required) en-route to our first nights accommodation in Wellington.
Accommodation: Copthorne Hotel, Wellington

Day 2                     
Travelling to the Interislander Ferry Terminal in our Nations Capital City we board the ship for the 3-hour cruise across the Cook Strait into Queen Charlotte Sounds (New Zealand’s only true Sounds) to Picton, our first town that we will visit in the South Island.  Picton is a small seaport at the head of the Queen Charlotte Sound offering a relaxed setting with beautiful beaches, easy bush walks and an outstanding climate. In the 1850's they talked of making it New Zealand's capital. ("So glad they didn't," the locals murmur). Now it has the best of both worlds, with award-winning restaurants and tourism activities together with the simplest of pleasures for all the family.  From Picton we head inland through to Pelorous Bridge. Here we can walk through the Beech and Podocarp Forest as well as view the many sculptured boulders in the Pelorous River. Continuing on for a tour of Nelson – this being the oldest city in the South Island.
Accommodation: Beachcomber Hotel, Nelson – 2 nights

 Day 3                     
NELSON      (B)
Today is at leisure.  Nelson and Golden Bay is famous for its pottery given the quality of its local clay, and glass blowing, furniture, woodcarving, paintings, candle making and other crafts flourish in this artist’s paradise. Visiting the idyllic Nelson District is seeing the magic of the entire country in one tiny region.  Nelson has more sunshine hours than any other part of the country, offers a wealth of walking and other outdoor activities and is a wonderful place to ‘lay back’ for a while.   Today we highly recommend a half day excursion to the Abel Tasman National Park for a cruise along the granite coastline and golden sandy beaches, or maybe a visit to the Nelson Car Museum, or just relax at our beachside location.
Day 4                    
Passing Brightwater, the birth place of Lord Rutherford, the New Zealand science pioneer who split the atom, we travel through the Golden Downs Forest to Murchison viewing the Maruia Falls through the Maruia Forest over the Lewis Pass then into Hanmer Springs where there is time to soak in the mineral pools, (at own expense) before joining the upper reaches of the Canterbury Plains to Christchurch where we enjoy the sights of the ‘Garden City’ also known as “the most English city outside of England”, en-route to our accommodation.
Accommodation: Quality Elms Hotel, Christchurch

Day 5                     
From Christchurch we have the opportunity (at own cost) to traverse the Southern Alps aboard the famous Tranz-Alpine rail journey to Arthur’s Pass.  From your carriage you’ll see the fields of the Canterbury Plains and farmland, followed by the spectacular gorges and river valleys of the Waimakariri River. The train then climbs into the Southern Alps.  Once we have crossed into the Southern Alps we are met at the Village of Arthur’s Pass by our coach for us to continue our journey to the West Coast via the Otira Viaduct opened in 1999.   ‘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 30km of a breathtaking coast. Five of our national parks are here, and South West New Zealand has been declared a World Heritage Area.  We continue 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: Kingsgate Hotel, Greymouth
Day 6                     
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. On arrival, time is available 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.From the Westland National Park we travel through the Haast River valleys and over the Haast Pass to Makaroa 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. 
Accommodation: Wanaka Hotel, Wanaka

Day 7                     
 This morning we travel via Cromwell following the Kawarau Gorge Road into historic Arrowtown – a quaint town away from the hustle and bustle with plenty of shops and historic remains from the Gold Rush days.  Once in Queenstown we enjoy an orientation tour of ‘the town fit for a Queen’ – Queenstown.  Queenstown has so many fine restaurants and dining options so the next 2 nights are free for you to explore the local restaurants, cafes and bars, or perhaps you’d like to take a cruise across Lake Wakatipu on the steamer ‘TSS Earnslaw’ to Walter Peak Station to dine at the Colonel’s Homestead.
Accommodation: Copthorne Hotel, Queenstown – 2 nights

Day 8                     
Today is at leisure. Visit the Remarkable’s or Coronet Peak. Experience the thrill of a jet-boat ride along the Shotover or Kawarau Rivers. Perhaps a scenic 4 wheel drive excursion through Skippers Canyon, or a tour to Glenorchy to visit Lord of the Rings movie sites, or maybe just browse in the many shops and galleries - it’s up to you.

Day 9                     
Following breakfast today you are at leisure before being transferred to the Queenstown Airport to connect with your flight home (flight not included but we can help with that).

Copthorne Hotel Oriental Bay

The Copthorne Hotel is located on Oriental Parade, overlooking the harbour. Close to many of the attractions the area has to offer, making in an ideal base for guest exploring the city. All 118 rooms, in four different room types, feature a separate balcony with views of the harbour or city. Each room comes equipped with all the modern hotel comforts a guest could need.

Beachcomber Nelson

Located just a short seven-minute walk from the gorgeous sands of Tahunanui Beach, The Beachcomber is a traditional motel with a heated outdoor pool. The simply furnished and decorated rooms feature basic cooking facilities, including a fridge, microwave, and tea/coffee stations. Other amenities include LCD TVs with cable channels and free Wi-Fi.

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.

Kingsgate Hotel Greymouth

Kingsgate Hotel Greymouth is located in the town centre and with easy access to the wild landscapes and stunning scenery of the West Coast for guests who want to explore all the area has to offer. This historic hotel offers 100 guest rooms all equipped with the best of amenities and home comforts.

Wanaka Hotel

Located less than a 1-minute walk from the centre of Wanaka, Wanaka Hotel is a 1-minute walk from the lake and town centre. Most accommodation offers views over the lake and mountains. Guests enjoy 2 restaurants, a cafe and free on-site parking. All rooms and suites feature a TV, a work desk, a small refrigerator and tea/coffee making facilities. Each has an en suite bathroom with a shower, or a shower and bathtub.

Copthorne Lakefront Queenstown

The Hotel blends superior facilities and comfort with friendly personal service. The property offers a relaxing atmosphere combined with stunning panoramic lake and mountain views, situated within a tranquil garden setting. With 240 guest rooms, including six suites and over 80 rooms that have views of Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkable mountain range. The hotel is within walking distance of Queenstown central shopping and entertainment area.

Tour Inclusions

  • 8 nights accommodation, twin/double rooms (single rooms available with surcharge), all with private facilities
  • Touring in modern air conditioned tour coach
  • 8 breakfasts included
  • Interislander sailing from Wellington to Picton
  • Roadside morning teas from coach where possible

Tour Payments Per Person ($NZD)

Twin/Double Share Cost:$2,395.00
Single Supplement:$700.00
Non-refundable deposit due at time of booking$200.00

Full balance of tour payment due by Friday 29 January 2021

Are door to door collections included on this tour? NO

No, our door to door collection service is not available on this tour. There will be en route pick ups and drop offs available from a central location in Auckland, Hamilton, Rotorua and Taupo. You will need to make your own arrangements to meet us in these locations.

Is the Guaranteed twin Share Price available on this tour? NO

Unfortunately, our guaranteed twin share pricing is not available on this tour. If we do not have a suitable match for you, you will be required to pay the single supplement.

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
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.

Is this tour a guaranteed departure? NO

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

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.

Booking Terms & Conditions

Terms & Conditions….
(Applicable for New Zealand Tours from 01 May 2020 - 30 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.

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 Tours 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 Tours 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.

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 Tours 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 Tours reserves the right to amend or reschedule the tour due the result of circumstances outside the company’s control. Leisure Time Tours 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 Tours strongly advises all passengers to purchase a travel insurance policy. An important part of planning the holiday is to purchase a comprehensive travel insurance policy as it may prevent passengers from spending extra money in case of an emergency and will help passengers feel protected during the holiday. We are agents for Cover More Travel Insurance. Ask us for a no obligation insurance quote today.

Land Component Cancellation Policy
By making a booking with us and paying your deposit you agree to pay us the full price for your booking.  If you cancel your booking:

  • 31+ days prior to tour commencement, loss of non-refundable deposit
  • 15-30 days prior to tour commencement your cancellation charge will be 60% of the holiday price (40% refund) plus any applicable supplier cancellation fees
  • 8-14 days prior to tour commencement your cancellation charge will be 80% of the holiday price (20% refund) plus any applicable supplier cancellation fees
  • 0-7 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.

If a passenger has been tested positive for COVID-19 directly prior to travel or while on holiday with us, then with supporting documentation provided to us (a positive COVID-19 test), 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.

Interislander ferry sailing between North and South Island New Zealand
Leisure Time Tours visits Pelorus Bridge on their Christmas Tour
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
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