Swain Destinations uses cookies to enhance your Browsing experience. By using this site, you agree to our updated Privacy Policy and our Cookie Policy. Close
Start Planning Today
Swain Destinations
  • South Island Sampler

Email   |   Print   |   PDF

South Island Sampler

If you desire a delightful medley of adventures, cozy city communities and natural beauty then South Island Sampler is for you. Day one brings you to Christchurch, the largest city on the South Island. Delight in the Botanic Gardens along the bank of the River Avon or enjoy a romantic interlude in the area. Get gutsy and opt for a helicopter flight over Mt. Cook or just enjoy the magnificent scenery from the ground below. Milford Sound is on deck, Cruise along the Tasman Sea and take in stunning vistas of waterfalls, rainforests, mountains and seals. Finish up in Queensland, the adventure capital of New Zealand. Bungee jumping, jet boating, rafting and more are an adrenaline junkie’s dream. Wrap it all up with a helicopter flight if you’d like, a great chance for one more great view of the stunning South Island.

Trip Type: Adventure, Golfing, Wildlife

MapSouth Island SamplerSouth Island Sampler

Day By Day

Day 1 – USA to Christchurch (via Auckland)
Today you will begin your Swain Destinations customized itinerary. Please note, international air has not been included in this package price. 

Day 2 – Cross the International Date Line
Cross the International Date Line, an imaginary line on the surface of the Earth that runs from the North to the South Pole - and defines one calendar day from the next. Crossing the International Date Line adds one day (24 hours) traveling west, and subtracts one day (24 hours) traveling east.

Day 3 – Welcome to Christchurch, New Zealand
You will be met and transferred to your accommodation, or if you choose the rental car option, you will pick up your vehicle and self-drive to your hotel.

Christchurch, the city of parks and gardens, trees and beauty, is also buzzing with street life. Wine bars, street cafes and exciting entertainments give the central city vitality unique to New Zealand.

Starting Accommodation: Ibis Christchurch

Day 4 – At leisure, Christchurch
Christchurch is the largest city on New Zealand’s South Island and is known as New Zealand's “Garden City”. Don’t miss the Botanic Gardens located along the banks of the placid River Avon in the middle of Hagley Park. This is just a short walk from downtown. While in that area, you should also visit the McDougal Art Gallery and Museum. For a romantic interlude, try punting on the Avon.

The centerpiece of the city is Cathedral Square and the beautiful Christchurch Cathedral. Time permitting you should also visit the International Antarctic Centre, located near the airport. This is probably the most comprehensive collection of information and exhibits in the world on Antarctica. Christchurch could be summed up as a little piece of England planted between the blue South Pacific and the snowcapped Southern Alps.

Starting Accommodation: Ibis Christchurch

Day 5 – Coach from Christchurch to Queenstown (Via Mt Cook)
Depart Christchurch and cross the Canterbury Plains, before arriving at Lake Tekapo. Visit the church of the good shepherd then continue to Mount Cook. There is time for lunch, available at The Hermitage Mount Cook, plus time for an optional helicopter flight (own expense). Continue South, cross the Lindis Pass to arrive Queenstown at around 6.00pm.

If you choose the self-drive option, you will drive from Christchurch to Queenstown at your own pace.

Nestled beside the deep blue waters of Lake Wakatipu, at the foot of the Remarkables Mountain Range, Queenstown is a year round resort, where you can be as active as you want, or just leisurely enjoy the magnificent scenery.

Starting Accommodation: Heartland Hotel Queenstown (L)

Day 6 – Milford Sound Tour
An early start as you leave your hotel and coach through some of the most beautiful countryside in New Zealand. On arrival at Milford Sound, board the vessel for a leisurely cruise along the sound to the Tasman Sea. The vessel stops at various points and plenty of time is available to view waterfalls, rainforests, mountains and seals. You may even see dolphins frolic alongside the boat. A picnic lunch is included during the cruise.

Starting Accommodation: Heartland Hotel Queenstown (L)

Day 7 – At leisure, Queenstown
At your leisure to explore the adventure capital of New Zealand. Set between the towering Remarkable Ranges and the bottomless Lake Wakitipu, Queenstown has it all – bungee jumping, jet boating, rafting, amazing scenic helicopter flights. You may wish to visit Milford or Doubtful Sound or the old gold mining town of Arrowtown. Explore the surrounding area on your own or on one of our additional day excursions.

Starting Accommodation: Heartland Hotel Queenstown

Day 8 – Queenstown to USA (Via Auckland)
Transfer to the airport for your flight to Auckland. On arrival, make your way to the international terminal for your departure flight to the USA.

Read MoreRead More
Read LessRead Less


ChristchurchIbis ChristchurchRendezvous Hotel ChristchurchThe George
QueenstownHeartland Hotel QueenstownNovotel Queenstown LakesideSofitel Queenstown Hotel & Spa


Pricing for this package is on request. Please call a Swain Destinations Specialist to customize this journey.

Terms and Conditions

Prices are per person, twin/double share in USD. All highlighted savings are reflected in the price. Travel may be limited to certain days of the week. Hotels and tours remain subject to availability. Cancellation penalties and other booking or alteration restrictions may exist. Please note blackout dates may apply to Christmas, New Year and local special event periods. Pricing may increase over Holiday and special event periods and may not be reflected in price grid. Prices indicated remain subject to change without notice. Prices are not guaranteed until full payment is received and processed. CST #2012413-20 See our full Terms and Conditions: www.swaindestinations.com/terms