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Kiwi Encounter (ex. Christchurch) 2017-18 (16 Days, Christchurch to Auckland)

Wherever you look it's beauty, beauty and more beauty. You'll see everything from thermal grounds, soaring volcans and towering mountains to mirror-like lakes. Journey through wine regions (and try the local tipples) and chill out in a craft beer capital. Make friends for life and see the best that NZ has to offer.
Please note: For departures dates in 2018/19 please check out Kiwi Encounter


Wine tasting in Marlborough
Overnight in a traditional Maori Marae
Haka & Poi class
Huka Falls
Lake Taupo
Te Papa Museum
Milford Sound nature cruise
Lake Matheson
Fiordland National Park
Kaikoura Peninsula Walk
Ohau Point Seal colony
15 Breakfasts
15 Dinners
Tour Provider Topdeck
Number of Days
Price From
AUD $2,910
Start Location
Christchurch, New Zealand
End Location
Christchurch, New Zealand
Age Range
Avg. 39+
Group Size
1 to 48
Tour Style
Tour Themes
Physical Rating
Tour departure dates
12 Nov 201727 Nov 2017Fully BookedAUD $2,910 
16 Nov 201701 Dec 2017Fully BookedAUD $2,910 
29 Nov 201714 Dec 2017Fully BookedAUD $2,910 
12 Dec 201727 Dec 20171AUD $2,910
21 Dec 201705 Jan 2018Fully BookedAUD $2,910 
03 Jan 201818 Jan 2018Fully BookedAUD $2,910 
11 Jan 201826 Jan 2018Fully BookedAUD $2,910 
22 Jan 201806 Feb 20188AUD $2,910
26 Jan 201810 Feb 20183AUD $2,910
07 Feb 201822 Feb 2018Fully BookedAUD $2,910 
16 Feb 201803 Mar 201820AUD $2,910
27 Feb 201814 Mar 201813AUD $2,910
02 Mar 201817 Mar 2018Fully BookedAUD $2,910 
15 Mar 201830 Mar 201812AUD $2,910
Day 1: Christchurch to Fox Glacier
Roll across the pastoral patchwork quilt that forms the Canterbury Plains and watch the shades of green melt into snow-topped peaks. Hang out in Hokitika for whitebait fritters and Pounamu (Jade) shopping, then take your best photography shot of NZ's two tallest mountain peaks reflected in Lake Matheson for the #picoftheday. Excited? You should be. Included today: -Lake Matheson walk Meals: -Dinner
Day 2: Fox Glacier to Queenstown
Today's your chance to walk on water. Well, frozen glacial water to be precise. Scale a mountain in minutes to get amongst ethereal ice caves and formations. With barely enough time to let your heart rate slow, we journey back through the mountains past Lake Wanaka and Lake Hawea. Feel your pulse start to quicken as we roll into Queenstown. Meals: -Breakfast Optional activities: -Fox Glacier hikes -Helicopter scenic flights -Glacier transfers
Day 3: Queenstown
Here's some basic math: Queenstown has over 220 activities-you have two days. No rush. This lakeside city has adrenaline on tap and will match any adventure you had in mind and then throw a Fergburger (amazing Queenstown burger place) in there for good measure. Get your fix with bungy, a narrow canyon swing, Shotover Jet, or paragliding, hiking, horse riding and the skyline gondola. If you're bored here, there's something wrong. Need some time out? Head to the Kiwi Birdlife Park, visit a local vineyard or kick back with a glass of local pinot. Meals: -Breakfast -Dinner Optional activities: -Jet boating -Bungy jumping -Canyon swinging -Horse riding -Skydiving -Skiing in winter -Wine tours -Hang-gliding -Zip lining -Birdlife Park -Whitewater rafting
Day 4: Queenstown
Free day, take two. Jump off more stuff or chill out and let your pulse drop. Your call. Meals: -Breakfast Optional activities: -Jet boating -Bungy jumping -Canyon swinging -Horse riding -Skydiving -Skiing in winter -Wine tours -Hang-gliding -Zip lining -Whitewater rafting
Day 5: Queenstown to Fiordland
You might already be a little desensitised to the otherworldly beauty of NZ but when you see the Fjords for the first time, it's okay to enter a total Instagram meltdown! Carved by glaciers during the ice age, the Milford Sound comes complete with seals, dolphins and thundering waterfalls. Steeped in Maori myth, this is a history and geology lesson rolled into one, minus the homework. Included today: -Milford Sound Nature Cruise -Fiordland National Park walks Meals: -Breakfast
Day 6: Fiordland to Lake Ohau
Back in the heyday of Arrowtown, everyone was here for the gold. Today jump on a bike and cruise along the Arrow River Rail Trail. Then chill out by the crystal clear river waters while you catch your breath. Then cue relaxation and a chance to practice your stone-skimming skills in Lake Ohau. Included today: -Mountain bike ride (13km/2hrs) along Arrow River Meals: -Breakfast -Dinner
Day 7: Lake Ohau to Christchurch
Lap up Lake Pukaki under the shadow of Mt Cook. It's about as Kiwi as 'fush and chups' (fish and chips with a local accent). Then shift into sheep country, where these furry things outnumber humans 12:1. It makes sense that today includes the Church of the Good Shepherd, a monument to the faithful sheep dog and a chance to watch them in action on a Kiwi farm. Then on to Christchurch, which has recovered from the 2011 Earthquake and bounced back with new pop-up bars and a shopping precinct, with still more to come. Included today: -Mt Cook Village (weather dependant) - Sheep farm visit -Scenic walks Meals: -Breakfast -Afternoon tea
Day 8: Christchurch to Kaikoura
From NZ's 'Garden City' and and through the North Canterbury vineyards, we'll head into Kaikoura. A place so famous for a certain type of crustacean, that they stuck it in the name Kai = Food, Koura = Crayfish / Lobster. You'll walk across the site of an ancient Maori Pa (fortified village), and get to taste what all the fuss is about with a crayfish tester. Included today: -Kaikoura Peninsula walk -Crayfish tasting Meals: -Breakfast
Day 9: Kaikoura to Nelson
Here's a place where you won't mind getting up a little earlier than usual. Today's your day to head out to see and swim amongst hundreds of wild dolphins and see whales in their natural habitat. Heck, even the sunrise here is the thing dreams are made of. This afternoon, we dial up the cute as we check out Ohau Point and some of the sweetest sea creatures you'll ever lay your eyes on (NZ fur Seals).Then we hit the road for the top of the South, Nelson! Included today: -Ohau Point seal colony Meals: -Breakfast Optional activities: -Dolphin swimming -Whale watching -Seal swimming -Scenic flights over whales
Day 10: Nelson
Dense forest, snow capped mountains and acres of pinot noir grapes. Green, white and red... no wonder Nelson has been referred to as the Naples of the southern hemisphere. Skydive, kayak or take a hike through the mountains, forests and waters of Abel Tasman National Park. Or go treasure hunting in Nelson's galleries. Round out the day with a traditional Kiwi BBQ dinner catered by yours truly. Not bad, Nelson. Not bad. Meals: -Breakfast -Dinner Optional activities: -Abel Tasman National Park -Kayaking -Skydiving -Horse riding
Day 11: Nelson to Wellington
Wake up and fall straight into the arms of the world's best Sav Blanc for a private tasting in a family- owned vineyard. With postcard-perfect vistas and 35,000 hectares under vines, it's a slice of heaven. Next up: a ferry through Marlborough Sounds and across the Cook Strait to the capital of New Zealand (no, it's not Auckland!). With more bars,restaurants and cafes per capita than New York, you won't be bored. Included today: -Cook Strait ferry crossing -Marlborough wine tasting Meals: -Breakfast
Day 12: Wellington to Tongariro National Park
After the morning spent in the Nation's Capital City we roll on to the World Heritage-listed Tongariro National Park. It's also time to meet the dessert that's caused a long-standing feud between NZ and Australia since someone whipped an egg white: the pavlova. Included today: -Te Papa Museum Meals: -Breakfast -Dinner
Day 13: Tongariro National Park
With dual cultural and natural heritage status, and often described as the most epic hike in NZ, Tongariro NP is home to two active volcans that will hopefully keep a lid on things. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing will quickly top your list of favourites if you don't mind heights and the odd dormant lava chamber (and walks from 20 mins to 8 hours). Hike, raft or mountain bike then hit the spa and warm your feet by the fire in an alpine lodge overlooking Mt Doom. Included today: -Short walks Meals: -Breakfast Optional activities: -Tongariro Crossing hikes -Winter skiing -Mountain biking
Day 14: Tongariro to Rotorua
Lake Taupo was formed by an explosion that extended the Ice Age, so yeah, it's pretty big. It's also the perfect place to jump off a bridge. Finish off with a night off Maori legends and mythology in a marae (sacred meeting house). You have one night here, so pay attention. After learning the tongue-thrusting Haka dance moves of the All Blacks, the finesse of the ladies' Poi dance, and polishing off a traditional maori dinner, you'll no longer be a guest but a part of their people. You lucky thing. Included today: -Huka Falls -Lake Taupo -Maori Marae cultural talks -Haka & Poi class Please note that the twin / double / or single upgrade is not applicable to the Overnight Maori Marae Stay in Rotorua. This has not been included in when upgrade rates were calculated. Meals: -Breakfast -Dinner
Day 15: Rotorua
Mud, Middle Earth and massages are the order of the day in the bubbling, sulphur-soaked town of Rotorua. If you're starting to resemble a muddy prune, flush out the mud rafting over the waterfalls, discover the Disneyland of mountain biking, or jump into the real-life landscapes of Tolkien's dreams on the Hobbiton Shire escape. Meals: -Breakfast Optional activities: -Hobbiton tour -Whitewater rafting -Te Puia Maori Thermal Grounds -Hells Gate Mud Baths -Canopy tours -Ogo -Mountain biking -Day spas & massage
Day 16: Rotorua to Auckland
The lush green rolling hills of the Waikato and King Country today line the roads as we trek towards Auckland. And there we'll wrap up the trip. Not ready to end your adventure just yet? You're in luck - we've got loads of trips on offer down under! Meals: -Breakfast