==== ====New Zealand - World Travel: Where is Explore your Next Travel PlansExpedia APAC Presents The 72 Hour Hotel Sale! Save up to 30% on Select Stays in NewZealand!==== ====If time (and budget) permit, this itinerary will take you from the northern tip, to the very southernreaches of the South Island.If you really want to see as much as you can on the South Island, then this South Island 21 dayitinerary should suit you.My suggested itinerary is:Day 1.Arrive in Christchurch. There are numerous motels close to the international airport, so collect yourhire car, check into your motel, and have a sound nights sleep, because your adventure beginstomorrow.Day 2.Today on your New Zealand itinerary, take your time to explore Christchurch. Christchurch has avery "English" feel to it, and even has the river Avon running through it. Perhaps a trip on thegondola, or a drive to the sea side "French" settlement of Akaroa, located nearby on the beautifulBanks Peninsula. There is plenty to see and do in Christchurch.Day 3.Take the short drive (1.5 hours) north to the thermal village of Hanmer Springs. Hanmer has alarge thermal pool complex, with pools of varying temperatures. What a relaxing way to spend afew hours. The complex also houses a water slide complex for the kids and the young at heart.Day 4.There are so many highlights on your South Island Showcase New Zealand itinerary, and this isone of them. Today you head off to the stunning coastal town of Kaikoura (2 hours). Kaikoura isfamous for its seafood, whale watching, seal colony, and scenery, where the mountains seem tocome all the way down to the sea. In the colder months the peaks are covered in snow, providingsome amazing photo opportunities.Day 5.Today is the day to take a whale watching trip. Best to do it early in the morning before the windand seas pick up. The whale watching tours are well run, and very enjoyable. You may also seedolphins, seals, and other marine life.Day 6.
Today your New Zealand itinerary takes you from Kaikoura to Nelson. Nelson is a "largish" town ofaround 50,000 people, perfectly located on the shores of Tasman Bay. In the winter months, snowcaps the surrounding ranges.Nelson is also the gateway to the famous Abel Tasman National Park. Access to the park is viathe small bayside village of Marahau, which is about 1 hours drive from Nelson.Days 7 & 8.You have two full days to explore the Nelson region. The Abel Tasman National Park is a "mustsee". You can choose to take a short walk in the park, overnight walks, or a kayak trip. Nelsonalso has a vibrant wine industry, so perhaps a visit to a local winery? If your plans include a trip tothe Abel Tasman, take the time to visit the stunning little village of Kaiteriteri. A beautiful spot for asnack looking over the bay.If time permits, a trip to Golden Bay and Farewell Spit is also recommended. On the way stop offat Te Waikoropupu Springs (Pupu Springs).Day 9.Today your South Island Showcase New Zealand itinerary takes you from Nelson on the northcoast, to Punakaiki (3.5 hours)on the rugged west coast. Punakaiki is known for the PancakeRocks and blowhole. The rocks are columns of limestone, which resemble stacks of pancakes.Punakaiki is surrounded by the Paparoa National Park, which covers some 30,000 hectares.Punakaiki has a couple of accommodation options, but my favourite is the Punakaiki Resort, abeautiful sea side hotel located beachfront. Your room looks directly over the ocean, and theexcellent restaurant offers you the chance to watch the sun setting over the ocean. A great way toend the day.Day 10.Today takes you from Punakaiki to Franz Josef village (2.5 hours drive). The village has manyaccommodation options, and is the base for various tour operators. Franz Josef Glacier ( a WorldHeritage Area) drops from a height of 2,700 metres above sea level, to about 240 metres abovesea level, within a distance of 11 kilometres, making for spectacular viewing.When you arrive in the village, check out the options for tours, as you may need to book ahead forday 11. Also be aware that weather conditions change quickly in this part of New Zealand, so youritinerary allows a full day free tomorrow for flexibility when booking tours.Day 11.Today on your South Island Showcase New Zealand itinerary you are free to explore Franz Josef(and nearby Fox Glacier). There are various options for guided tours, helicopter flights etc. Theheli flight and landing on the top of the glacier is highly recommended (if a little expensive).If you are looking for something a little more sedate, a walk to the face of Franz Josef Glacier maybe more to your liking. Make sure that you take a comfortable pair of shoes as the walk takesaround 1.5 hours return from the carpark.Fox Glacier is also nearby.
Day 12.Todays drive takes you along the west coast to the small village of Haast, then inland to the lovelylakeside township of Wanaka. Wanaka is a highlight of your New Zealand itinerary. Wanaka is, inmany ways, similar to Queenstown. It sits on the banks of a stunning lake, Lake Wanaka, and is abase for the two world class skifields, Cardrona and Treble Cone. Wanaka feels a little morerelaxed than Queenstown, and the layout of the town centre seems less cluttered. Dining optionsabound along the lake front, and provide the perfect setting for a relaxing coffee.There is plenty to see and do in Wanaka, with attractions like Puzzling World, the historicCardrona pub, trout fishing, and 4wd tours to name a few.Wanaka has many accommodation options, but a lake view is well worth the extra money if yourbudget allows.Day 13.Today takes us to Queenstown, the "Adventure Capital" of New Zealand. There are two roadsfrom Wanaka to Queenstown. The road through Cromwell takes around 1.5 hours, and is fairlyuninspiring by New Zealand standards. Much better to take the shorter (1 hour) drive viaCardrona, over the Crown Range. The views are stunning, and the road is claimed to be thehighest main road in the country. If you have time, stop off at the historic Cardrona hotel formorning tea or lunch.Days 14 & 15.Queenstown is one of the highlights of your South Island Showcase New Zealand itinerary.Well, where to start with Queenstown! This is one of my favourite New Zealand destinations. Seton the shores of Lake Wakatipu, Queenstown offers something for everyone. You can do as little,or as much as you like.A "must do" is a trip to Milford Sound. The trip from Queenstown is around 4 hours each way,which makes for a very long and tiring day if you drive yourself. Much better to take an organisedbus tour, or bus one way and fly the other (flights are very much dependant on weatherconditions). Milford Sound has been described as the eighth Wonder of the World, and is NewZealands most popular tourist attraction.Other things at the top of the "Queenstown list" are a trip on the Gondola to Bobs peak, a cruiseon lake Wakatipu on the old steamer TSS Earnslaw, a thrilling jet boat ride, or perhaps a bungyjump.Day 16.Travel today to the southern city of Invercargill (2.5 hours). Invercargill is located on the SouthernScenic Route, and is the southernmost and westernmost city in New Zealand. It is the gateway toStewart Island and the Catlins. Invercargill has several museums and art galleries, and a shortdrive away is Bluff, home of the famous Bluff Oyster. Stewart Island is the third largest NewZealand island, and is located 30 kilometres (19 miles) off the southern coast. The ferry trip fromBluff takes around 1 hour each way. Stewart Island has many interesting nature walks, andspectacular scenery.
For things to do in and around Invercargill, click here.Days 17 & 18.Today, your New Zealand itinerary takes you to Dunedin (around 2.5 hours drive). Dunedin is theSouth Islands second largest city, with a population of about 120,000. Dunedin is a universitytown, attracting students from many countries.Dunedin has a Scottish heritage, and in fact was formerly known as New Edinburgh. This Scottishinfluence can be seen in the local Edwardian architecture, such as St Pauls Cathedral, the TownHall, Dunedin Railwat Station, and the historic Larnach Castle, located some 13 kilometres fromthe city centre.Dunedin also houses New Zealands first Botanic Gardens, and is home to a wide range of marineand birdlife.Day 19.Your South Island Showcase New Zealand itinerary continues today with the drive to Mt Cook (4hours drive).Mt Cook (Aoraki) is New Zealands highest peak at 3,753 metres, and is part of Mt Cook NationalPark, which also contains the mighty Tasman Glacier. At 30 kilometres in length, it is one of thelargest glaciers outside the Himalayas.Mt Cook village has several accommodation options and is also home to the Sir Edmund HillaryAlpine Centre, which is located in the Hermitage Hotel complex. Other things to do include hiking(check on weather conditions before leaving), glacier flights and walks, and just lazing aroundlooking in awe at Mt Cook.Day 20.Your final car trip today is a 4 hour drive back to Christchurch. Along the way, stop off at LakeTekapo for a view of the unbelievable turquoise waters of the lake. The Southern Alps, includingMt Cook, form a backdrop, and provide a memorable photo opportunity. Tekapo is also home tothe Church of the Good Shepherd, which must be one of the most photographed buildings in NewZealand.Day 21.Fly home. Unfortunately, all good things must end, but I hope that this South Island ShowcaseNew Zealand itinerary has been helpful. Enjoy.Dave is the owner of New Zealand Travel Showcase, a New Zealand travel website.Dave is passionate about New Zealand and developed his website to offer travellers a one-stop-shop for their New Zealand holiday planning.If you are planning a New Zealand holiday, check out Daves website:http://www.new-zealand-travel-showcase.com
Article Source:http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Dave_Curran==== ====New Zealand - World Travel: Where is Explore your Next Travel PlansExpedia APAC Presents The 72 Hour Hotel Sale! Save up to 30% on Select Stays in NewZealand!==== ====