18 days in South Island Itinerary

18 days in South Island Itinerary

Created using Inspirock South Island itinerary planner

This plan was created by another user. Make it your plan

Route & dates

Start: Brisbane
Fly:  6 h 45 min
1
Christchurch
— 2 nights
Drive:  5 h
2
Fox Glacier
— 3 nights
Bus:  4 h
3
Wanaka
— 1 night
Drive:  2 h 45 min
4
Mt. Cook Village
— 3 nights
Drive:  3 h 45 min
5
Dunedin
— 2 nights
Bus:  5 h 15 min
6
Te Anau
— 3 nights
Bus:  3 h 15 min
7
Queenstown
— 3 nights
Fly:  6 h 30 min
End: Brisbane

2
nights
Christchurch

Christchurch ©
Recovering from the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 was no easy task, but Christchurch has faced the challenges with aplomb.
On the 13th (Mon), let the kids burn off some steam at Margaret Mahy Family Playground and then take in the architecture and atmosphere at Cardboard Cathedral. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: get around town with TranzAlpine Train and then take in panoramic vistas at Christchurch Gondola.

To find where to stay, photos, reviews, and other tourist information, read our Christchurch road trip planner.

Brisbane, Australia to Christchurch is an approximately 7- hour flight. You can also do a combination of bus and flight. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 2 hours traveling from Brisbane to Christchurch. Traveling from Brisbane in April, expect Christchurch to be slightly colder, temps between 20°C and 8°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Wed) to allow enough time to drive to Fox Glacier.

Things to do in Christchurch

Transportation Tours Museums
Find places to stay Apr 13 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Christchurch Botanic Gardens ©
Christchurch Botanic Gardens
TranzAlpine Train ©
TranzAlpine Train
International Antarctic Centre ©
International Antarctic Centre

3
nights
Fox Glacier

Fox Glacier ©
A trip to Fox Glacier brings you close to one of New Zealand's most easily accessible natural wonders.
When in Fox Glacier, make a side trip to see Franz Josef Glacier in Franz Josef, approximately Franz Josef away. The adventure continues: see the world from above with a helicopter tour, hike along Mount Fox Route, go for a walk through Lake Matheson Walk, and stroll through Minnehaha Walk.

To find where to stay, ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, refer to the Fox Glacier route tool.

You can drive from Christchurch to Fox Glacier in 5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of flight and bus; or take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 18th (Sat) early enough to catch the bus to Wanaka.

Things to do in Fox Glacier

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trip

Franz Josef Glacier
Find places to stay Apr 15 — 18:
Highlights from your plan
Franz Josef Glacier ©
Franz Josef Glacier
Helicopter Tours
Fox Glacier South Side Walk ©
Fox Glacier South Side Walk

1
night
Wanaka

Wanaka ©
Situated on the shores of Lake Wanaka in the Otago region, Wanaka has become a popular ski and summer resort area, owing to its extensive views of the lake and its proximity to some of the best slopes in the country.
On the 19th (Sun), explore the striking landscape of Mount Aspiring National Park and then explore the activities along Lake Wanaka.

Plan my trip to Wanaka with suggested itineraries provided by Inspirock.

Traveling by bus from Fox Glacier to Wanaka takes 5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 19th (Sun) to allow time to travel to Mt. Cook Village.

Things to do in Wanaka

Parks Nature
Find places to stay Apr 18 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Lake Wanaka ©
Lake Wanaka
Mount Aspiring National Park ©
Mount Aspiring National Park

3
nights
Mt. Cook Village

Mt. Cook Village ©
Siting under towering peaks of New Zealand's highest mountain, Mt.
Get out of town with these interesting Mt. Cook Village side-trips: Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu) (Kea Point Track, Hooker Valley Track, &more) and Lake Tekapo (in Lake Tekapo). There's lots more to do: get outside with Aoraki/Mt. Cook, explore the activities along Blue Lakes and Tasman Glacier walks, tour the pleasant surroundings at Ski The Tasman, and trek along Mueller Hut Route.

For where to stay, maps, photos, and tourist information, use the Mt. Cook Village trip planner.

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Wanaka to Mt. Cook Village. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Wed) to allow time to travel to Dunedin.

Things to do in Mt. Cook Village

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu), Lake Tekapo
Find places to stay Apr 19 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Hooker Valley Track ©
Hooker Valley Track
Aoraki/Mt. Cook ©
Aoraki/Mt. Cook
Sealy Tarns Track ©
Sealy Tarns Track

2
nights
Dunedin

Dunedin ©
With its history proudly stemming from the Scottish settlers who came here during the colonial era, Dunedin's streets are lined with well-preserved examples of Victorian and Edwardian architecture, while a new culture of nightlife and fine dining takes hold around them.
On the 23rd (Thu), examine the collection at Toitu Otago Settlers Museum, view the masterpieces at Dunedin Public Art Gallery, then learn more about the world around you at Otago Museum, and finally don't miss a visit to The World's Steepest Street. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 24th (Fri): tour the pleasant surroundings at Tunnel Beach Track, look for all kinds of wild species at The Royal Albatross Centre, then get great views at Flagstaff lookout and Hotere Garden, and finally contemplate the long history of Larnach Castle & Gardens.

For reviews, traveler tips, where to stay, and tourist information, read Dunedin online travel planner.

You can drive from Mt. Cook Village to Dunedin in 4 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 24th (Fri) early enough to take a bus to Te Anau.

Things to do in Dunedin

Museums Parks Childrens Museums
Find places to stay Apr 22 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Toitu Otago Settlers Museum ©
Toitu Otago Settlers Museum
Larnach Castle & Gardens ©
Larnach Castle & Gardens
The Royal Albatross Centre ©
The Royal Albatross Centre

3
nights
Te Anau

Te Anau ©
Set among the picturesque peaks and glacially carved fiords of Fiordland National Park, Te Anau offers those wishing to explore the park a great place to stay and enjoy the relaxing atmosphere of a small town in an enviable location.
Te Anau is known for nature, trails, and nightlife. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: explore the activities along Milford Sound, hike along The Chasm Walk, look for all kinds of wild species at Te Anau Bird Sanctuary, and explore the fascinating underground world of Te Anau Glowworm Caves.

For ratings, traveler tips, more things to do, and other tourist information, go to the Te Anau online attractions planner.

Getting from Dunedin to Te Anau by bus takes about 5.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 27th (Mon) to allow enough time to take a bus to Queenstown.

Things to do in Te Anau

Parks Nature Trails

Side Trip

Lake Gunn
Find places to stay Apr 24 — 27:
Highlights from your plan
Milford Sound ©
Milford Sound
Doubtful Sound ©
Doubtful Sound
Kepler Track ©
Kepler Track

3
nights
Queenstown

Queenstown ©
Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
Queenstown is known for fun & games, adventure, and wildlife. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: have some family-friendly fun at Skyline Queenstown, view the masterpieces at Queenstown Arts Centre, push the limits with an extreme tour, and get some thrills on the water with a speed boat tour.

To see more things to do, traveler tips, where to stay, and more tourist information, go to the Queenstown visit planning site.

Take a bus from Te Anau to Queenstown in 3.5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Thu) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Queenstown

Parks Tours Outdoors
Find places to stay Apr 27 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Skyline Queenstown ©
Skyline Queenstown
Speed Boats Tours
Adrenaline & Extreme Tours

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