28 days in Sydney, Melbourne & South Island Itinerary

28 days in Sydney, Melbourne & South Island Itinerary

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Route & dates

28 days in Sydney, Melbourne & South Island Itinerary

Start: Los Angeles, United States
Fly:  17​h 45​min
1
Sydney, Australia
— 2 nights
Drive:  3​h
2
Melbourne, Australia
— 4 nights
Fly:  6​h
3
Queenstown, New Zealand
— 1 night
bus:  3​h 30​min
4
Te Anau, New Zealand
— 2 nights
bus:  6​h 30​min
5
Wanaka, New Zealand
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h
6
Mt. Cook Village, New Zealand
— 1 night
Drive:  5​h 30​min
7
Fox Glacier, New Zealand
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h 30​min
8
Punakaiki, New Zealand
— 4 nights
bus:  5​h 15​min
9
Abel Tasman National Park, New Zealand
— 3 nights
bus:  4​h 45​min
10
Picton, New Zealand
— 3 nights
Drive + Fly:  23​h
End: Los Angeles, United States

2
nights
Sydney, Australia

Sydney ©
Lent iconic status as a result of its famous bridge and opera house, Sydney has a down-to-earth charm that enhances its spectacular setting and functional efficiency.
On your second day here, hike along Bondi to Coogee Beach Coastal Walk, then kick back and relax at Manly Beach, then snap pictures at Sydney Harbour Bridge, and finally listen to music at Sydney Opera House.

To see traveler tips, photos, reviews, and tourist information, go to the Sydney sightseeing site .

Los Angeles, USA to Sydney is an approximately 18-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and train; or do a combination of flight and bus. The time zone difference when traveling from Los Angeles to Sydney is 18 hours. Plan for somewhat warmer nights when traveling from Los Angeles in November since evenings lows in Sydney dip to 62°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 14th (Thu) to allow time to travel to Melbourne.

Things to do in Sydney

Parks Outdoors Beaches
Find places to stay Nov 12 — 14:
Highlights from your plan
Sydney Opera House ©
Sydney Opera House
Bondi to Coogee Beach Coastal Walk ©
Sydney Harbour Bridge ©
Sydney Harbour Bridge

4
nights
Melbourne, Australia

Melbourne ©
The state of Victoria crown jewel, Melbourne boasts shaded streets, leafy residential neighborhoods, vibrant street life, and a picturesque city center.
Melbourne is known for museums, shopping, nightlife, parks, and zoos & aquariums. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: take in nature's colorful creations at Royal Botanic Gardens, pause for some photo ops at Shrine of Remembrance, see the interesting displays at Melbourne Museum, and meet the residents at Melbourne Zoo.

To find other places to visit, ratings, photos, and other tourist information, use the Melbourne day trip planning tool .

You can fly from Sydney to Melbourne in 3.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of flight and shuttle; or drive. Traveling from Sydney in November, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be slightly colder in Melbourne, with lows of 50°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 18th (Mon) early enough to travel to Queenstown.

Things to do in Melbourne

Parks Museums Zoos & Aquariums
Find places to stay Nov 14 — 18:
Highlights from your plan
Royal Botanic Gardens ©
Royal Botanic Gardens
Melbourne Zoo ©
Melbourne Zoo
Melbourne Museum ©
Melbourne Museum

1
night
Queenstown, New Zealand

Queenstown ©
Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
You've now added Glenorchy-Queenstown Road to your itinerary. Start off your visit on the 18th (Mon): take in the exciting artwork at Queenstown Arts Centre and then see Off-Road Tours.

To find reviews, where to stay, ratings, and other tourist information, read Queenstown trip planner .

Traveling by flight from Melbourne to Queenstown takes 6 hours. The time zone difference when traveling from Melbourne to Queenstown is 2 hours. On the 19th (Tue), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Te Anau.

Things to do in Queenstown

Outdoors Tours Scenic Drive
Find places to stay Nov 18 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Glenorchy-Queenstown Road ©
Glenorchy-Queenstown Road
Queenstown Arts Centre ©
Queenstown Arts Centre

2
nights
Te Anau, New Zealand

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.
On the 19th (Tue), contemplate the waterfront views at Lake Te Anau. Keep things going the next day: look for all kinds of wild species at Doubtful Sound, explore the fascinating underground world of Te Anau Glowworm Caves, then trek along Lake Gunn, then hike along The Chasm Walk, and finally tour the pleasant surroundings at Gertrude Saddle.

Before you visit Te Anau, use our trip planner to discover what you can do and see there.

Take a bus from Queenstown to Te Anau in 3.5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 21st (Thu) to allow enough time to take a bus to Wanaka.

Things to do in Te Anau

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Lake Gunn
Find places to stay Nov 19 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
Milford Sound ©
Milford Sound
Doubtful Sound ©
Doubtful Sound
Lake Te Anau ©
Lake Te Anau

3
nights
Wanaka, New Zealand

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.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes That Wanaka Tree as well as Mount Aspiring National Park. On the 22nd (Fri), hike along Roys Peak Track, then take in the exciting artwork at Wanaka Fine Art Gallery, then make a trip to That Wanaka Tree, and finally contemplate the waterfront views at Lake Wanaka. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: trek along Mount Iron Track, get your game on at Puzzling World, have some family-friendly fun at Crossfire Wanaka, then scramble along the landscape with a canyoning and rapelling tour, and finally explore the wealth of natural beauty at Mount Aspiring National Park.

For photos, traveler tips, where to stay, and other tourist information, you can read our Wanaka trip itinerary maker .

Take a bus from Te Anau to Wanaka in 6.5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 24th (Sun) early enough to travel to Mt. Cook Village.

Things to do in Wanaka

Parks Outdoors Nature
Find places to stay Nov 21 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Roys Peak Track ©
Roys Peak Track
Lake Wanaka ©
Lake Wanaka
Crossfire Wanaka ©
Crossfire Wanaka

1
night
Mt. Cook Village, New Zealand

Mt. Cook Village ©
Siting under towering peaks of New Zealand's highest mountain, Mt.
Start off your visit on the 24th (Sun): explore the activities along Lake Tekapo, explore the activities along Lake Pukaki, head outdoors with Aoraki/Mt. Cook, then trek along Governors Bush Walk, and finally hike along Glencoe Walk.

For reviews, where to stay, photos, and other tourist information, refer to the Mt. Cook Village online trip planner .

The Route module can help you plan travel from Wanaka to Mt. Cook Village. On the 25th (Mon), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive to Fox Glacier.

Things to do in Mt. Cook Village

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trips

Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu), Lake Tekapo, Lake Pukaki
Find places to stay Nov 24 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Lake Pukaki ©
Lake Pukaki
Aoraki/Mt. Cook ©
Aoraki/Mt. Cook
Kea Point Track ©
Kea Point Track

3
nights
Fox Glacier, New Zealand

Fox Glacier ©
A trip to Fox Glacier brings you close to one of New Zealand's most easily accessible natural wonders.
Hokitika Gorge Walk has been added to your itinerary. Kick off your visit on the 25th (Mon): relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas, take in the pleasant sights at Tatare Tunnels Walk, and then hike along Terrace Walk. On the next day, explore the activities along Lake Matheson Walk, take an unforgettable tour with a helicopter tour, take in the dramatic natural features at Franz Josef Glacier, then trek along Minnehaha Walk, and finally trek along Fox Glacier Hiking Trails.

For traveler tips, reviews, photos, and other tourist information, go to the Fox Glacier trip planner .

Drive from Mt. Cook Village to Fox Glacier in 5.5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 28th (Thu) to allow time for travel to Punakaiki.

Things to do in Fox Glacier

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trips

Franz Josef, Hokitika Gorge Walk
Find places to stay Nov 25 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Franz Josef Glacier ©
Franz Josef Glacier
Fox Glacier ©
Fox Glacier
Gillespies Beach ©
Gillespies Beach

4
nights
Punakaiki, New Zealand

Punakaiki ©
Punakaiki is a small community on the West Coast of the South Island of New Zealand, between Westport and Greymouth. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Punakaiki: Murchison (Maruia Falls, Buller Gorge Swing Bridge, & more), Mitchells Gully Gold Mine (in Charleston) and Westport (Tauranga Bay Seal Colony, The Old Ghost Road, & more). There's lots more to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at Pancake Rocks and Blowholes Walk, Head underground at Punakaiki Cavern, explore the striking landscape of Paparoa National Park, and trek along Fox River Cave Walk.

To find photos, traveler tips, more things to do, and more tourist information, go to the Punakaiki online tour itinerary planner .

Drive from Fox Glacier to Punakaiki in 3.5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 2nd (Mon) to allow time for the bus ride to Abel Tasman National Park.

Things to do in Punakaiki

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trips

Westport, Murchison, Paparoa National Park, Mitchells Gully Gold Mine
Find places to stay Nov 28 — Dec 2:
Highlights from your plan
The Old Ghost Road ©
The Old Ghost Road
Pancake Rocks and Blowholes Walk ©
Pancake Rocks and Blowholes Walk
Paparoa National Park ©
Paparoa National Park

3
nights
Abel Tasman National Park, New Zealand

Abel Tasman National Park ©
Pristine blue water, immaculate white sand, and a thick, temperate rainforest make Abel Tasman National Park a natural jewel on the northern coast of Tasmania's South Island.
Kick off your visit on the 3rd (Tue): admire the sheer force of Wainui Falls Track, tour the pleasant surroundings at Abel Tasman Coast Track, and then stroll through Kaiteriteri Beach. On your second day here, Head underground at Ngarua Caves, hike along Riwaka Resurgence, and then take in the local highlights with Walking tours.

To find traveler tips, reviews, where to stay, and more tourist information, you can read our Abel Tasman National Park trip builder website .

Take a bus from Punakaiki to Abel Tasman National Park in 5.5 hours. On the 5th (Thu), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can take a bus to Picton.

Things to do in Abel Tasman National Park

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

Kaiteriteri Beach, Te Waikoropupu Springs (Pupu Springs), Ngarua Caves, Riwaka Resurgence, Rawhiti Cave Track
Find places to stay Dec 2 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Abel Tasman Coast Track ©
Abel Tasman Coast Track
Wainui Falls Track ©
Wainui Falls Track
Walking tours

3
nights
Picton, New Zealand

Picton ©
Take photo after stunning photo in Picton, the gateway to South Island.
Queen Charlotte Track has been added to your itinerary. Kick off your visit on the 6th (Fri): examine the collection at The National Whale Centre and then hike along Queen Charlotte Track. Keep things going the next day: take in the waterfront activity at Picton Sound, explore the activities along Queen Charlotte Sound, and then explore the activities along Marlborough Sounds.

To find maps, other places to visit, where to stay, and other tourist information, refer to the Picton tour itinerary maker site .

Take a bus from Abel Tasman National Park to Picton in 5 hours. In December, daytime highs in Picton are 67°F, while nighttime lows are 56°F. On the 8th (Sun), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Picton

Parks Outdoors Trails
Find places to stay Dec 5 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Marlborough Sounds ©
Marlborough Sounds
Queen Charlotte Track ©
Queen Charlotte Track
Walking tours

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