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Moeraki Boulders

Roving Southern Explorer – Motorhome Trail

Roving Southern Explorer - Motorhome Trail

HIGHLIGHTS

Drive at your own pace, visit and stay at working farms, Invercargill, Te Anau, Fox Glacier, Marae visits

FROM

NZ$5,990

DURATION

18 Days

Why choose this Motorhome trail?

Carefully crafted motorhome tour to get you off the beaten track while experiencing local hospitality. This is not a convoy tour! You’ll head off each morning with time to visit the sights that interest you along the way. Then we’ll all meet up at our overnight stop, in time for Happy Hour and to share tales of the day on the road! This trail is limited to only eight motorhomes.

Roving Southern Explorer trail gives you the opportunity to visit New Zealand in a way you may never have done before. Enjoy driving at your own pace and taking time to stop and explore places along the way. You will be provided with an information pack with lists of options in each place you travel through. Do as much or as little as you like!

What’s the Activity level?

This is quite a laid back and relaxed itinerary. There are walks available throughout the trip should you choose to do them. The only included walks apart from the guided farm walks are our helihike at Glentanner Station which is an easy walk back to base, and the Treetops Walk.

What’s the transport and accommodation like?

We will be travelling in a 3 berth motor home for the tour, plus a helicopter ride at Glentanner and a cruise on both Doubtful Sound and on Lake Wakitpu. Our accommodation is in our comfortable 3 berth motor homes throughout the trip with one night hotel accommodation in Christchurch at the start.

*All our tours are non-smoking/vaping

TRIP SUMMARY

Duration: 18 days from Christchurch to Christchurch
Trip focus: A moderately active sightseeing trip of the Southern NZ region
Accommodation: 1 night in Christchurch hotel and 16 nights in a 3 berth motor home, with en suite facilities.
Transport: Motor home, helicopter, boat
Group size: Maximum 8 vehicles + tour leader, Minimum 5 vehicles
Vehicle upgrades: Upgrade to a 4 berth motor home, POA

WHAT’S INCLUDED:

  • First night in Christchurch hotel
  • 17 days 3 berth motor home hire
  • Unlimited kms
  • Fully inclusive vehicle insurance, zero excess
  • Camping chairs & table
  • All utensils, linen & full gas bottle
  • Goodie starter pack with essentials
  • Meals as per itinerary
  • Orientation tour at each farm
  • Helihike at Glentanner
  • Entry to Curioscape Interactive Experience
  • Entry to Transport World Invercargill
  • Marae stay in Invercargill
  • Entry to Riverton Museum
  • Doubtful Sound Cruise
  • TSS Earnslaw Cruise
  • Tree Tops Walk
  • Entry to Puzzle World
  • Marae visit in Hokitika 
  • Tour host so you get the best out of your trip
  • 15% GST

WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED:

  • Transport to/from Christchurch
  • Travel insurance
  • Meals not listed
  • Pre and post trip accommodation

DAY 1 - ARRIVAL DAY CHRISTCHURCH

On arrival at Christchurch Airport, you’ll be transferred to your accommodation. Tonight, meet your fellow travellers and tour hosts at your welcome dinner. You will receive your comprehensive tour notes, along with a briefing on the exciting days ahead. 

Meals included: Dinner

Distance travelled: 0 kms

DAY 2 - CHRISTCHURCH TO LAKE HERON

After breakfast, we’ll head off to pick up our roving accommodation. Our travels today take us from the Canterbury plains, through the picturesque Rakaia Gorge, to the South Canterbury high country. Once at our destination, we’ll settle into our overnight sites in time for an introductory walk around the farm, and then we’ll have happy hour before our hosted dinner in the homestead.

Meals Included: Breakfast and 2 course Dinner with wine

Distance travelled: 155 kms, approx driving time 2 hours 30 minutes

DAY 3 - LAKE HERON TO RAINCLIFF

This morning as we leave, we will have plenty of opportunity for walks near Lake Heron and time to take in the vistas. Once back on the main road we head towards the quaint town of Geraldine. Take time for a stop here, where the Barkers store and café is a unique attraction. On arrival at our next destination we’ll be treated to a fascinating hour’s tour, showing how this working deer farm operates. Enjoy a BBQ dinner this evening hosted by the farm owners. 

Meals Included: BBQ Dinner
Distance travelled: 130 kms, approx driving time 2 hours

DAY 4 - RAINCLIFF TO GLENTANNER

There’s so much to see and do today! If you’d like a morning coffee stop, the Farm Barn Café is 20 mins down the road. You’ll also pass through Fairlie, which is famous for its pies, and for good reason. Take time to visit an Alpaca farm and the Garage art gallery. At Burkes Pass Heritage Township you’ll find Three Creeks Service Station, full of yesteryear charm and knick knacks. Soon you’re greeted by views of beautiful Lake Tekapo. There’s lots to keep you busy today! We’ll enjoy a BBQ this evening at the park.

Meals Included: BBQ Dinner
Distance travelled: 152 kms, approx driving time 2 hours

DAY 5 - GLENTANNER TO OMARAMA

Sure to be a highlight of the journey is the included helicopter trip. This includes a flight to a wonderful vantage point and a guide to talk about the various aspects of farming at Glentanner, morning tea and a pleasant walk back to base. The drive to Omarama is relatively short today. On arrival at the station, we’ll have a guided walk around the farm that takes in the historic woolshed, brought over from the UK in the late 1800’s, and the operation of the farm. Then we’ll share stories of our day over happy hour and enjoy a hosted BBQ dinner up at the homestead. 

Meals Included:  BBQ Dinner
Distance travelled: 71 kms, approx driving time 1 hour

DAY 6 - OMARAMA TO MOERAKI

Today we head out of Omarama towards Oamaru, taking the back road over the Benmore Dam. There’s a wetlands walk and also a longer loop from the Dam and it’s a beautiful lakeside drive. Back on the main road there’s Olster’s Wines in the center of Kurow, Elephant Rock walks and Maori drawings, all on the way to Oamaru. The town of Oamaru has a fascinating Victorian centre. Checkout the quirky Steampunk HQ and head up to the lookout which then leads you onto the coastal route towards Moeraki. Tonight you’re treated to dinner at Fleur’s iconic restaurant in Moeraki. 

Meals Included:  Dinner
Distance travelled: 180 kms, approx driving time 2 hours and 40 minutes

DAY 7 - MOERAKI TO POUNAWEA

Discover more scenic coastal routes today as you travel to Dunedin and on to the Catlins. Take the scenic coastal route through Karitane and Seacliff, site of the infamous mental asylum where writer Janet Frame spent time. Then enjoy some time discovering Dunedin. Maybe visit Olverston House, Baldwin Street and the Octagon. Again head off the beaten track on the coastal route via Taieri Mouth to Waihola. Then enjoy your first stop in the Catlins at beautiful Kaka Point. A highlight is the short walk to Nugget Point Lighthouse, before ehading off to our camp at Pounawea for the evening.

Meals Included:  None
Distance travelled: 208 kms, approx driving time 3 hours and 10 minutes

DAY 8 - POUNAWEA TO CURIO BAY

Enjoy a full day of Catlins exploration today. Start with the Owaka Country Store and Mancave! The info centre is also worth a look along with the Teapot Garden. There are too many stops to mention today. But take the time to do the beautiful short walks to waterfalls and beaches. Jacks blowhole is great if the sea is really rough. A highlight is a stop at the Lost Gypsy Gallery to tinker with all the curios he’s invented. After you settle in at stunning Curio Bay, walk to the beach as Hectors Dolphins often come to the bay in the afternoons.

Meals Included:  None
Distance travelled: 79 kms, approx driving time 1 hour and 20 minutes

DAY 9 - CURIO BAY TO INVERCARGILL

This morning you’ll have time to visit the Curioscape Interactive Experience, and the Petrified Forest before heading off towards Invercargill. Stop at Slope Point to walk to the southernmost point on mainland NZ. Next is the Waipapa Lighthouse, with its truly amazing windblown Macrocarpa trees. Make your way to Bluff for a drive around the point, then head to Invercargill and explore the amazing Bill Richardson’s Transport Musuem. Tonight we have a very special stay at Murihiku Marae. You’ll be welcomed to the Marae with a Powhiri, enjoy a kai cooker Hangi and have the local culture and history of the Marae explained.

Meals Included:  Kai Cooker Hangi Dinner
Distance travelled: 125 kms, approx driving time 1 hour and 50 minutes

DAY 10 - INVERCARGILL TO TE ANAU

Enjoy the splendid south coast as you head west and stop in at the Riverton Museum. Drive around to Howells Point for stunning views of Stewart Island and short walk to a lookout. The Orepuki Beach Cafe is a great lunch stop. Then enjoy a fossick at Gemstone beach with views of the mountains in the background. You can stock up on the best sausages in NZ as you pass through Tuatapere. Perfect for an evening BBQ at the Holiday Park. Tonight we settle in for two nights by the shores of Lake Te Anau to enjoy the magical scenery.

Meals Included:  None
Distance travelled: 188 kms, approx driving time 2 hours and 20 minutes

DAY 11 - DOUBTFUL SOUND CRUISE

Experience the spectacular, remote wilderness of Doubtful Sound on a guided full day trip. Journey across Lake Manapouri, over the breathtaking Wilmot Pass and into the heart of Fiordland National Park.

Meals Included:  None
Distance travelled: 0 kms

DAY 12 - TE ANAU TO QUEENSTOWN

Take your time today as you head to Queenstown. Drop in at the Athol Art Gallery, then  Kingston at the head of Lake Wakitipu. If we’re lucky the Kingston Flyer will be up and running again. However the pub cafe is a great place to stop for lunch. Drive the picturesque route along the lake to our boutique family run holiday park in Queenstown. Depending on schedules, we’ll include a TSS Earnslaw cruise either today or tomorrow. 

Meals Included: Dinner
Distance travelled: 171 kms, approx driving time 2 hours 5 minutes

DAY 13 - QUEENSTOWN

Today is a free day for you to choose from the many options in the surrounding area. The bike trails here are interesting and well organised, ride up the Skyline Gondola, explore the historic part of Arrowtown, walk the winery trail of Cromwell, or you may like to just relax for the day and check out Queenstown itself. 

Meals Included: None
Distance travelled: 0 kms

DAY 14 - QUEENSTOWN TO LAKE HAWEA

On the way to Lake Hawea, head via Cromwell and take time to explore Wanaka and its attractions. There’s so much to see on the way! Warbirds & Wheels Museum, The Lavender Farm featured on Country Calendar, Puzzling World and the Hook Salmon Farm and Eatery, to name a few. We’ll arrive at our lakeside campground in the evening. Surrounded by trees, it’s the perfect place to relax. 

Meals Included: None
Distance travelled: 95 kms, approx driving time 1 hour 30 minutes

DAY 15 - LAKE HAWEA TO FOX GLACIER

Today we travel from east to west over the Haast Pass and into the rainforest of the magical West Coast. There are many short walks and sights along the way, such as; the Blue Pools, Fantail and Thunder Creek Falls, The Cray Pot Fish & chips at Jacksons Bay, and the beautiful Ship Creek river and dune walks. Our overnight stop is at scenic Fox Glacier with views of Mt Cook on a fine day. This evening we’ll enjoy dinner at a local restaurant. 

Meals Included: Dinner
Distance travelled: 186 kms, approx driving time 2 hours 45 minutes

DAY 16 - FOX GLACIER TO HOKITIKA

Our journey up the wild West Coast continues with a full day of sights. You’ll have the option of taking walks to Fox Glacier, though if it’s clear, we highly recommend Lake Matheson for spectacular views of Mount Cook. There’s also Franz Joseph Glacier and walks. The unique West Coast Treetop walk is included along the way. Our Holiday Park tonight is booked exclusively for our group. So enjoy a BBQ dinner and the glowworm grotto. You can even feed the tame eels as well! 

Meals Included: BBQ Dinner
Distance travelled: 203 kms, approx driving time 2 hours 50 minutes

DAY 17 - HOKITIKA TO OTIRA

This morning we’ve arranged a special group visit at a local Marae, including a Powhiri and to hear stories of Marae history and culture. There’s also time to visit Hokitika itself. You may like to drive to the Pancake Rocks and return via Blackball, and Lake Brunner to the settlement of Otira where we’ll spend the night. Lester Roundtree, the owner of the Otira Stagecoach Hotel, will explain the unusual collection of knickknacks and artefacts on display. Enjoy a final evening together and a roast dinner in the hotel tonight. 

Meals Included: Roast Dinner
Distance travelled: 127 kms, approx 1 hour 50 minutes via Greymouth and Lake Brunner

DAY 18 - DEPARTURE DAY OTIRA TO CHRISTCHURCH

This is our last day on the road before returning our motorhomes back to base in Christchurch. On the way you’ll pass over the amazing Otira viaduct and you may like to go on a bush walk in Arthurs Pass and walk amonst the unique rock formations at Castle Hill. As you return your motorhomes to the depot, we’re sure you’ll reflect upon the amazing country we live in and the new friends you’ve made. Safe travels.

Meals Included: None

Distance travelled: 156 kms, approx driving time 2 hours 5 minutes

SightseeingBoatWildlife WatchingCultural ExperiencesNatureFood and CookingHiking

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Travel at your own pace in your own motor home
  • Get a comprehensive dossier with points of interest
  • Stay on working Stations
  • Enjoy the stunning scenery of the South Island
  • Visit a Marae in Hokitika
  • Stop at the quirky Otira Stagecoach Hotel
  • Your tour host to help throughout the journey

DATES

Start Date End Date Availability Cost
12th Feb 2021 1st Mar 2021 AVAILABLE $6,215
1st Mar 2021 18th Mar 2021 AVAILABLE $5,990
6th Apr 2021 23rd Apr 2021 AVAILABLE $6,174
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