13 days in New Zealand Itinerary

13 days in New Zealand Itinerary

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Route & dates

13 days in New Zealand Itinerary

Start: Sydney
Fly:  3​h
1
Christchurch
— Few hours
bus:  3​h
2
Kaikoura
— 1 night
Drive:  4​h
3
Abel Tasman National Park
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h
4
Westport
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h
5
Hokitika
— 1 night
bus:  2​h
6
Franz Josef
— 2 nights
bus:  7​h
7
Wanaka
— 1 night
bus:  1​h
8
Queenstown
— 3 nights
bus:  3​h
9
Lake Tekapo
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h
10
Christchurch
— Few hours
Fly:  6​h 15​min
End: Sydney

few
hours
Christchurch

Christchurch
Recovering from the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 was no easy task, but Christchurch has faced the challenges with aplomb.
For where to stay, other places to visit, maps, and more tourist information, read our Christchurch travel planner.

Sydney, Australia to Christchurch is an approximately 6.5-hour flight. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 2 hours traveling from Sydney to Christchurch. Traveling from Sydney in October, expect Christchurch to be a bit cooler, temps between 20°C and 6°C. You will leave for Kaikoura on the 3rd (Thu).

Things to do in Christchurch

Tours Outdoors Parks
Find places to stay Oct 2 — 3:

1
night
Kaikoura

Head to the small town of Kaikoura, a humble setting from which to witness some of nature's grandest designs.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Peninsula Seal Colony as well as Dolphin & Whale Watching. Kick off your visit on the 3rd (Thu): get up close to creatures of the deep with a dolphin and whale watching tour, then identify plant and animal life at Peninsula Seal Colony, and then look for gifts at Kaikoura Cheese.

To see more things to do, traveler tips, ratings, and tourist information, go to the Kaikoura trip itinerary builder site .

Getting from Christchurch to Kaikoura by bus takes about 3 hours. Other options: take a train; or drive. You'll have a few hours on the 4th (Fri) to wrap things up before traveling to Abel Tasman National Park.

Things to do in Kaikoura

Wildlife Outdoors Tours
Find places to stay Oct 3 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Dolphin & Whale Watching
Peninsula Seal Colony ©
Peninsula Seal Colony

1
night
Abel Tasman National Park

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.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Kaiteriteri Beach as well as Split Apple Rock. Start off your visit on the 4th (Fri): enjoy the sand and surf at Kaiteriteri Beach.

Take the guesswork out of planning a Abel Tasman National Park vacation by using our trip itinerary maker.

Explore your travel options from Kaikoura to Abel Tasman National Park with the Route module. On the 5th (Sat), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Westport.

Things to do in Abel Tasman National Park

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Kaiteriteri
Find places to stay Oct 4 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Split Apple Rock ©
Split Apple Rock

1
night
Westport

Westport
Westport is a town in the West Coast region of the South Island of New Zealand. To find where to stay, photos, and other tourist information, use the Westport day trip planning app .

Explore your travel options from Abel Tasman National Park to Westport with the Route module. You'll have a few hours on the 6th (Sun) to wrap things up before traveling to Hokitika.

Things to do in Westport

Outdoors Parks Tours
Find places to stay Oct 5 — 6:

1
night
Hokitika

Hokitika ©
Hokitika is a township in the West Coast region of New Zealand's South Island, 40km south of Greymouth, and close to the mouth of the Hokitika River. You've now added Pancake Rocks and Blowholes Walk to your itinerary. On the 6th (Sun), trek along Cape Foulwind Walkway and then explore the striking landscape at Pancake Rocks and Blowholes Walk.

To see reviews, where to stay, other places to visit, and tourist information, read Hokitika route planner.

Getting from Westport to Hokitika by car takes about 2 hours. You will have some time to spend on the 7th (Mon) before leaving for Franz Josef.

Things to do in Hokitika

Outdoors Parks Trails

Side Trips

Pancake Rocks and Blowholes Walk, Cape Foulwind Walkway
Find places to stay Oct 6 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
Pancake Rocks and Blowholes Walk ©
Cape Foulwind Walkway ©
Cape Foulwind Walkway

2
nights
Franz Josef

Franz Josef ©
Located in the World Heritage Site that is home to its eponymous glacier, the town of Franz Josef provides a comfortable and welcoming rest spot for adventurers after a long day out on the ice.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Sealy Tarns Track, Hooker Valley Track, Lake Matheson Walk, and other attractions you added. On the 7th (Mon), trek along Sealy Tarns Track and then stroll through Hooker Valley Track. On the 8th (Tue), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: hike along Franz Josef Glacier, contemplate the waterfront views at Lake Mapourika, and then explore the activities along Lake Matheson Walk.

For reviews, maps, other places to visit, and other tourist information, you can read our Franz Josef trip planner .

Traveling by car from Hokitika to Franz Josef takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. On the 9th (Wed), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Wanaka.

Things to do in Franz Josef

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu), Lake Matheson Walk
Find places to stay Oct 7 — 9:
Highlights from your plan
Hooker Valley Track ©
Hooker Valley Track
Franz Josef Glacier ©
Franz Josef Glacier
Sealy Tarns Track ©
Sealy Tarns Track

1
night
Wanaka

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.
Start off your visit on the 9th (Wed): contemplate the waterfront views at Lake Wanaka.

To see photos, traveler tips, maps, and other tourist information, use the Wanaka trip itinerary maker app .

Take a bus from Franz Josef to Wanaka in 5.5 hours. On the 10th (Thu), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Queenstown.

Things to do in Wanaka

Parks Nature
Find places to stay Oct 9 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Lake Wanaka ©
Lake Wanaka

3
nights
Queenstown

Queenstown ©
Sheltered in an inlet of Lake Wakatipu, the resort town of Queenstown enjoys a strong reputation for its adventuring and skiing opportunities.
Queenstown is known for fun & games, parks, spas, nightlife, and outdoors. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: have some family-friendly fun at Skyline Queenstown, race across the water with a speed boat tour, do a tasting at Chard Farm Winery, and view the masterpieces at Silver Fern Gallery.

For where to stay, traveler tips, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read our Queenstown online travel planner .

You can take a bus from Wanaka to Queenstown in 2.5 hours. You will have some time to spend on the 13th (Sun) before leaving for Lake Tekapo.

Things to do in Queenstown

Outdoors Tours Parks
Find places to stay Oct 10 — 13:
Highlights from your plan
Skyline Queenstown ©
Skyline Queenstown
Adrenaline & Extreme Tours
Zipline

1
night
Lake Tekapo

Lake Tekapo ©
Located in a UNESCO Dark Sky Reserve, Lake Tekapo offers evenings of stargazing and days of long walks.
On the 13th (Sun), take in panoramic vistas at Mount John University Observatory, don't miss a visit to Mackenzie Sheep Dog Statue, and then take in the architecture and atmosphere at The Church of the Good Shepherd.

For maps, ratings, reviews, and other tourist information, you can read our Lake Tekapo tour itinerary planner.

Drive from Queenstown to Lake Tekapo in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. On the 14th (Mon), you'll have the morning to explore before heading back home.

Things to do in Lake Tekapo

Historic Sites
Find places to stay Oct 13 — 14:
Highlights from your plan
The Church of the Good Shepherd ©
The Church of the Good Shepherd
Mount John University Observatory ©
Mount John University Observatory

few
hours
Christchurch

Christchurch ©
Start off your visit on the 14th (Mon): catch a ride on TranzAlpine Train.

To find traveler tips, photos, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Christchurch attractions planner .

Drive from Lake Tekapo to Christchurch in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 14th (Mon) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Christchurch

Transportation Tours
Find places to stay Oct 14 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
TranzAlpine Train ©
TranzAlpine Train

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