2024: South Island Showcase (3331)
9 Days from Christchurch to Queenstown
From the east coast to the west and back again, this 9-day journey through New Zealand's South Island comes filled with soul-stirring scenery and unique experiences. Beginning in Christchurch, you'll travel counter clockwise around the island, with overnight stays in Franz Josef, Wanaka, Te Anau and Queenstown.Don't forget your camera - photo opportunities abound throughout this tour! Explore picture-perfect Queenstown, framed by the aptly named Remarkable Mountains; embark on a cruise through UNESCO World Heritage Site, Milford Sound, and discover one of the most beautiful places on earth; spot endangered Hector dolphins while onboard a nature cruise in Akaroa; and be sure to grab a window seat as you board the TranzAlpine - one of the world's greatest train journeys.On this South Island tour, you'll also get the chance to learn about Maori culture. Watch a jade (pounamu) carving demonstration with a traditional carver and learn about its cultural significance, before exploring the beauty of Franz Josef Glacier on a guided walk, where you'll learn about the Maori legend behind this breath-taking landscape. With the perfect balance of active adventure and relaxation, this Cosmos tour is the best way to explore the spectacular South.
Call (630) 690-9600 for more information or to book today! Mention code 17275919
- Tour Operator
- Offer valid through 6/30/2023
- 9 Days
- Escorted - Yes
|Day 1||Christchurch||Welcome to Christchurch! Hotel rooms are available for immediate check-in. A pre-night is not required for early check-in. Please schedule flights to arrive by 4pm in time for a welcome meeting and drink.|
|Day 2||Christchurch||Travel to the charming village of Akaroa, a former French and British settlement. Take a nature cruise on Akaroa Harbour for a chance to see some of the native wildlife, including New Zealand fur seals, the white flippered blue penguin, and the Hector's dolphin, one of the smallest and rarest in the world. After lunch, you will have time to explore the village with its colonial architecture, galleries and cafes. Return to Christchurch where the remainder of the day is at leisure. (B,L)|
|Day 3||Franz Josef||Today, travel on the scenic TranzAlpine, one of the world's great train journeys. From the comfort of first-class carriages, see the fields of the Canterbury Plains and farmlands, followed by the spectacular gorges and rivers of the Waimakariri River. Your train then climbs into the majestic Southern Alps to Arthur's Pass National Park. The train features large panoramic windows, an onboard cafe, and in-seat audio commentary. Disembark in Greymouth and attend a private jade carving demonstration with a traditional carver. Spend the next two nights in the small town of Franz Josef, located at the base of the impressive Franz Josef Glacier. (B)|
|Day 4||Franz Josef||This morning, explore this spectacular UNESCO World Heritage area. A Local Guide will take you through the Franz Josef Valley and you will learn about the glacier's history, see what is left behind by this majestic giant, and learn the legend of Ka Roimate o Hine Hukatere. After a brief climb to the Glacier Viewpoint, you will be rewarded with spectacular views of the rapidly changing face of the glacier. The remainder of the day is at your leisure. You may opt to take a kayak tour, explore more walking tracks on your own, take a scenic flightseeing or helicopter tour, spend time at the West Coast Wildlife Centre, or relax in one of the glacier hot pools. (B,L)|
|Day 5||Wanaka||Today's journey takes us along New Zealand's rugged west coast, through rainforests, and over Haast Pass to the resort town of Wanaka. Free time this afternoon to explore as you wish. Recommendations include paddle boarding or kayaking along Lake Wanaka, take a horseback riding tour, or climb to the top of Mt Iron for amazing views of the Southern Alps, Pisa Range, and Lake Wanaka. Tonight, enjoy dinner at a local restaurant. (B,D)|
|Day 6||Te Anau||This morning, visit Broken Heart Spirits Distillery in Queenstown to learn about the friendship that founded the distillery and to taste some of the award-winning spirits crafted from some of the purest waters in the world. Then embark on a scenic drive across the heart of the South Island to the picturesque township of Te Anau. Known as the gateway to Fiordland National Park, the town sits on the edge of the largest lake in the South Island, with Mt Luxmore and Murchison Mountains providing a magnificent backdrop. Your evening is at leisure. (B)|
|Day 7||Queenstown||This morning, embark on an unforgettable cruise through Milford Sound (a UNESCO World Heritage Site). Enjoy this once-in-a-lifetime experience as you cruise past stunning waterfalls, dramatic cliffs, and towering mountain peaks, while keeping a look-out for New Zealand fur seals, dolphins, and Fiordland-crested penguins. Disembark the ship and continue to Queenstown, the "Adventure Capital of the World". As your evening is at leisure, why not take a gondola ride to the top of Bob's Peak for breathtaking views of Queenstown, Lake Wakatipu, and the Remarkable Mountains? (B,L)|
|Day 8||Queenstown||Enjoy a day at leisure. Options for your free time include an exciting jet boat ride on the Dart River, a self-guided cycling tour, see movie locations on a Lord of the Rings tour, grab a burger at the famous Fergburger, sample some of the region's best wines, go to new heights on a scenic helicopter flight, or browse the many shops and art galleries in town. Tonight, join your Tour Director and fellow travel companions for a scenic gondola ride to the top of Bob's Peak where you'll enjoy a delicious farewell dinner and breathtaking views of Queenstown, Lake Wakatipu, and the Remarkable Mountains. The perfect ending to your time in New Zealand! (B,D)|
|Day 9||Queenstown||Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (B)|
- US$ Price Details
Travel Terms & Conditions
The purchase of any travel services offered by Cosmos, constitutes a contractual arrangement between you (the Traveler) and Cosmos, and represents your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions. Please ensure that you read carefully and understand the Terms & Conditions prior to booking. These Terms & Conditions cover Deposit & Final Payment information, Air-Inclusive Deposits & Final Payment, Revisions & Revision Fees, Air Arrangements, Participation, Travelers Who Need Special Assistance, Young Travelers, Smoking, Price Policy, Visas and Passports, Hotels & Accommodations, Baggage Allowance, Travel Documents, Not Included in the Land Price, Refunds, Service Inquires After the Vacation, Holidays, Safety, Photos & Pictures, Optional Excursions, and Responsibility.
- Vacation departures, itineraries and prices are subject to change.
- A non-refundable, non-transferable deposit is required for Cosmos to reserve space for you. View Terms & Conditions for limited exceptions.
- The following charges are not included in the land vacation price unless otherwise noted: airfare to and from the start of your vacation; Intra-vacation air unless specified in the itinerary; airline baggage fees including checked and/or excess baggage fees; Federal inspection fees for the Federal U.S. Customs and Immigrations; International Air Transportation tax; agricultural tax; other per person taxes imposed by government entities; airport taxes and fees including the September 11th Security fee up to $11.20 per person, passenger facility charges up to $18 per person, Federal domestic flight segment fees up to $4.00 per segment, and U.S. and International arrival and departure and other government-imposed added by the airline and applicable at time of booking; port taxes; passports; visas (except on Cuba programs) and vaccinations; tips to your Tour or Cruise Director, Local Host, driver, Local Guides, and/or ship's crew; gratuities on ferries, trains, and cruise ships; laundry; telephone; minibar; alcohol, beverages, and food outside of the contracted Cosmos menu as presented at a hotel or restaurant or onboard your vessel (these extra items will be billed to you before leaving the hotel, ship, or restaurant); airport transfers on non-qualifying flights; optional excursions; porterage at airports and train stations; Travel Protection; and all other items of a personal nature.
Booking your Vacation with Air
For air departure dates within 331 days, you'll be offered a choice of carriers and flight schedules as well as price points to choose from when selecting your flights. Your schedule will be provided to you at the time of booking (schedules are subject to change by carriers). Cosmos offers 2 air options: Flex Air and Instant Purchase Air. Flex Air allows flexibility if you want to make changes to your vacation schedule. Instant Purchase Air may offer additional airline options but has more restrictions. Some vacations may only offer one Air type option. Guaranteed air-inclusive prices: air is only available to passengers traveling from the United States and only available when booked in conjunction with a land vacation. An additional $300 per person non-refundable air deposit is required for Flex Air booked in conjunction with any land vacation (i.e. air-inclusive vacation). Air can only be booked by Cosmos in conjunction with a vacation package. Instant Purchase Air requires air payment in full at time of booking (i.e. air-inclusive vacation) plus non-refundable per person service fee ($30 for North/Central America, $50 for Europe/Middle East and $80 for all other destinations. Once booked, Instant Purchase Air is non-refundable, and non-changeable. However, once your airfare is confirmed and Cosmos has received your full air and land deposit, your air-inclusive vacation price is guaranteed.
Air-Inclusive Vacations - Applicable Taxes & Fees
Air-inclusive vacations include government-imposed taxes and fees applicable at the time of booking and will be shown as a Total Amount. Additional airline fees for baggage may apply. At the time of booking your air-inclusive vacation online, carrier Websites will be provided to check baggage fees, or you can visit www.iflybags.com for up-to-date baggage pricing/restrictions. For return travel from some countries, international travelers are required to pay entry and/or exit fees at the airport. These fees will be collected by the local government and are payable by the traveler at time of travel. Your confirmation booking information will contain information about these fees.
"Starting at" Disclaimer
The "Starting at" or listed price is based on the lowest price available to book. Price is per passenger based on double occupancy and does not include International airfare; additional fees/charges are not included. If a price is crossed out, the new price includes a limited time promotional offer(s) - please review current promotions or deals for additional information. Some tours require intra-vacation flights (and in some cases intra-vacation segments must be purchased from Cosmos).