15 days in Auckland & South Island Itinerary

15 days in Auckland & South Island Itinerary

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Route & dates

15 days in Auckland & South Island Itinerary

Start: Perth
Fly:  6​h 30​min
1
Auckland
— Few hours
Fly:  1​h 30​min
2
Christchurch
— Few hours
Drive:  3​h 30​min
3
Lake Tekapo
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h
4
Mt. Cook Village
— 1 night
Drive:  30​min
5
Twizel
— Few hours
Drive:  30​min
6
Omarama
— Few hours
Drive:  4​h
7
Wanaka
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
8
Cardrona
— Few hours
Drive:  1​h
9
Arrowtown
— Few hours
Drive:  1​h 30​min
10
Queenstown
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h
11
Glenorchy
— 1 night
Drive:  1​h 30​min
12
Te Anau
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h
13
Bluff
— Few hours
Drive:  30​min
14
Invercargill
— Few hours
Drive:  5​h
15
Dunedin
— 1 night
Drive:  1​h 30​min
16
Oamaru
— Few hours
Drive:  1​h 30​min
17
Timaru
— Few hours
Drive:  3​h
18
Akaroa
— 1 night
Drive:  1​h 30​min
19
Lyttelton
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h
20
Arthur's Pass National Park
— Few hours
Drive:  2​h 30​min
21
Christchurch
— 2 nights
Fly:  11​h
End: Perth

few
hours
Auckland

Auckland
The largest and most populous city in New Zealand, Auckland combines a rich history and thriving contemporary culture in an abundance of museums, art galleries, and performance venues.
To find where to stay, other places to visit, and other tourist information, use the Auckland journey maker app .

Perth, Australia to Auckland is an approximately 10-hour flight. Traveling from Perth to Auckland, you'll lose 4 hours due to the time zone difference. While traveling from Perth, expect much colder days and about the same nights in Auckland, ranging from highs of 22°C to lows of 22°C. On the 15th (Wed), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Christchurch.

Things to do in Auckland

Outdoors Tours Parks
Find places to stay Jan 15 — 16:

few
hours
Christchurch

Christchurch
Recovering from the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 was no easy task, but Christchurch has faced the challenges with aplomb.
To find other places to visit, traveler tips, maps, and other tourist information, read Christchurch vacation planning tool .

Fly from Auckland to Christchurch in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and flight; or do a combination of train and ferry. When traveling from Auckland in January, plan for a bit warmer days and slightly colder nights in Christchurch: temperatures range from 26°C by day to 13°C at night. On the 15th (Wed), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive to Lake Tekapo.

Things to do in Christchurch

Tours Outdoors Parks
Find places to stay Jan 15 — 16:

1
night
Lake Tekapo

Lake Tekapo
Located in a UNESCO Dark Sky Reserve, Lake Tekapo offers evenings of stargazing and days of long walks.
You've added Lake Tekapo, Tekapo Springs, Tekapo Star Gazing, and other attractions to your itinerary. Kick off your visit on the 15th (Wed): explore the activities along Lake Tekapo, take in the architecture and atmosphere at The Church of the Good Shepherd, then hike along Mount John Summit Circuit Track, then test the waters at Tekapo Springs, and finally join in the after-dark buzz at Tekapo Star Gazing.

To see traveler tips, ratings, maps, and tourist information, go to the Lake Tekapo day trip planning site .

Drive from Christchurch to Lake Tekapo in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. You will have some time to spend on the 16th (Thu) before leaving for Mt. Cook Village.

Things to do in Lake Tekapo

Parks Outdoors Trails
Find places to stay Jan 15 — 16:
Highlights from your plan
Lake Tekapo
Lake Tekapo
The Church of the Good Shepherd ©
The Church of the Good Shepherd
Tekapo Springs ©
Tekapo Springs

1
night
Mt. Cook Village

Mt. Cook Village ©
Siting under towering peaks of New Zealand's highest mountain, Mt.
You've added Hooker Valley Track, Aoraki Mount Cook National Park Visitor Centre, Red Tarns Track, and other attractions to your itinerary. Kick off your visit on the 16th (Thu): trek along Governors Bush Walk, trek along Red Tarns Track, get all the information you need at Aoraki Mount Cook National Park Visitor Centre, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Glencoe Walk, then look and learn at Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre, and finally trek along Kea Point Track.

For traveler tips, other places to visit, and more tourist information, go to the Mt. Cook Village trip itinerary planner.

You can drive from Lake Tekapo to Mt. Cook Village in an hour. You will have some time to spend on the 17th (Fri) before leaving for Twizel.

Things to do in Mt. Cook Village

Outdoors Trails Parks

Side Trip

Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu)
Find places to stay Jan 16 — 17:
Highlights from your plan
Kea Point Track ©
Kea Point Track
Hooker Valley Track ©
Hooker Valley Track
Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre ©
Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre

few
hours
Twizel

Twizel ©
You've now added High Country Salmon to your itinerary. On the 17th (Fri), experience rural life at High Country Salmon.

To see reviews, traveler tips, maps, and tourist information, go to the Twizel trip builder app .

Twizel is just a short distance from Mt. Cook Village. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 17th (Fri) to allow time for the car ride to Omarama.
Find places to stay Jan 17 — 18:
Highlights from your plan
High Country Salmon ©
High Country Salmon

few
hours
Omarama

Omarama
Omarama is a small township at the junction of State Highways 8 and 83, near the southern end of the Mackenzie Basin, in the South Island of New Zealand. To see reviews, maps, more things to do, and other tourist information, go to the Omarama driving holiday planner.

Omarama is very close to Twizel. You'll set off for Wanaka on the 17th (Fri).

Things to do in Omarama

Outdoors Shopping Parks
Find places to stay Jan 17 — 18:

2
nights
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.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Lake Wanaka, Warbirds & Wheels and Roys Peak Track. Kick off your visit on the 17th (Fri): explore the activities along Lake Wanaka.

To find traveler tips, ratings, reviews, and other tourist information, refer to the Wanaka attractions planner .

The Route module can help you plan travel from Omarama to Wanaka. On the 19th (Sun), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Cardrona.

Things to do in Wanaka

Parks Outdoors Trails
Find places to stay Jan 17 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Lake Wanaka ©
Lake Wanaka
Roys Peak Track ©
Roys Peak Track
Warbirds & Wheels ©
Warbirds & Wheels

few
hours
Cardrona

Cardrona
Cardrona is the name of a locality in the Cardrona Valley in New Zealand, with the nearby skifield of Cardrona Alpine Resort and Mount Cardrona also using the same name. To see traveler tips, photos, more things to do, and tourist information, read our Cardrona trip itinerary planning website .

Explore your travel options from Wanaka to Cardrona with the Route module. On the 19th (Sun), you're off toArrowtown.

Things to do in Cardrona

Outdoors Parks Winter Sports
Find places to stay Jan 19 — 20:

few
hours
Arrowtown

Arrowtown
Hello! This is Arrowtown - the much visited, much loved, 4-season, southern hemisphere holiday destination, located only 15mins drive from the Adventure Capital of the World - Queenstown, South Island, New Zealand. For traveler tips, maps, where to stay, and other tourist information, you can read our Arrowtown itinerary maker tool .

Traveling by car from Cardrona to Arrowtown takes an hour. You will leave for Queenstown on the 19th (Sun).

Things to do in Arrowtown

Outdoors Parks Tours
Find places to stay Jan 19 — 20:

2
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.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Skyline Queenstown, Coronet Peak and Real Journeys - TSS Earnslaw Vintage Steamship Cruises. Here are some ideas for day two: get interesting insight from Real Journeys - TSS Earnslaw Vintage Steamship Cruises and then get your game on at Skyline Queenstown.

To see where to stay, photos, other places to visit, and more tourist information, use the Queenstown trip planner .

Queenstown is just a short distance from Arrowtown. Finish your sightseeing early on the 21st (Tue) so you can drive to Glenorchy.

Things to do in Queenstown

Outdoors Tours Fun & Games
Find places to stay Jan 19 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
Skyline Queenstown ©
Skyline Queenstown
Coronet Peak ©
Coronet Peak

1
night
Glenorchy

Glenorchy ©
Glenorchy is a small settlement at the northern end of Lake Wakatipu in the South Island region of Otago, New Zealand. You've now added Glenorchy Waterfront Reserve to your itinerary. Start off your visit on the 21st (Tue): make a trip to Glenorchy Waterfront Reserve.

To find more things to do, maps, traveler tips, and more tourist information, refer to the Glenorchy road trip site .

You can drive from Queenstown to Glenorchy in an hour. On the 22nd (Wed), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Te Anau.
Find places to stay Jan 21 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Glenorchy Waterfront Reserve ©
Glenorchy Waterfront Reserve

1
night
Te Anau

Te Anau ©
Set among the picturesque peaks and glacially carved fiords of Fiordland National Park, Te Anau offers those wishing to explore the park a great place to stay and enjoy the relaxing atmosphere of a small town in an enviable location.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Cruise Milford as well as Fiordland i-SITE Visitor Information Centre. Start off your visit on the 22nd (Wed): take a tour by water with Cruise Milford and then get all the information you need at Fiordland i-SITE Visitor Information Centre.

To see more things to do, where to stay, and more tourist information, refer to the Te Anau tour planning site .

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Glenorchy to Te Anau. You'll have a few hours on the 23rd (Thu) to wrap things up before traveling to Bluff.

Things to do in Te Anau

Outdoors Tours

Side Trip

Cruise Milford
Find places to stay Jan 22 — 23:
Highlights from your plan
Cruise Milford ©
Cruise Milford

few
hours
Bluff

Bluff ©
Bluff, previously known as Campbelltown, is a town and seaport in the Southland region, on the southern coast of the South Island of New Zealand. You've now added Stirling Point to your itinerary. On the 23rd (Thu), head outdoors with Stirling Point.

To see traveler tips, reviews, and more tourist information, go to the Bluff route planner .

The Route module can help you plan travel from Te Anau to Bluff. You will have some time to spend on the 23rd (Thu) before leaving for Invercargill.

Things to do in Bluff

Outdoors
Find places to stay Jan 23 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Stirling Point ©
Stirling Point

few
hours
Invercargill

Invercargill ©
Invercargill is the southernmost and westernmost city in New Zealand, and one of the southernmost cities in the world. Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Bill Richardson Transport World as well as Burt Munro Statue. On the 23rd (Thu), see the interesting displays at Bill Richardson Transport World and then make a trip to Burt Munro Statue.

To see maps and more tourist information, you can read our Invercargill trip itinerary planner.

Invercargill is very close to Bluff. Cap off your sightseeing on the 23rd (Thu) early enough to go by car to Dunedin.

Things to do in Invercargill

Museums
Find places to stay Jan 23 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Bill Richardson Transport World ©
Bill Richardson Transport World

1
night
Dunedin

Dunedin
With its history proudly stemming from the Scottish settlers who came here during the colonial era, Dunedin's streets are lined with well-preserved examples of Victorian and Edwardian architecture, while a new culture of nightlife and fine dining takes hold around them.
To find photos, maps, traveler tips, and more tourist information, you can read our Dunedin tour itinerary maker website .

You can drive from Invercargill to Dunedin in 3 hours. Another option is to take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 24th (Fri) to allow time for the car ride to Oamaru.

Things to do in Dunedin

Outdoors Tours Parks
Find places to stay Jan 23 — 24:

few
hours
Oamaru

Oamaru ©
Moeraki Boulders Beach has been added to your itinerary. Kick off your visit on the 24th (Fri): don't miss a visit to Moeraki Boulders Beach.

For maps, where to stay, photos, and other tourist information, go to the Oamaru tour itinerary builder tool .

You can drive from Dunedin to Oamaru in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a train. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 24th (Fri) to allow time for the car ride to Timaru.
Find places to stay Jan 24 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Moeraki Boulders Beach ©
Moeraki Boulders Beach

few
hours
Timaru

Timaru ©
Timaru is a port city in the southern Canterbury region of New Zealand, located 157 kilometres southwest of Christchurch and about 196 kilometres northeast of Dunedin on the eastern Pacific coast of the South Island. Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Caroline Bay Beach. Kick off your visit on the 24th (Fri): enjoy the sand and surf at Caroline Bay Beach.

For other places to visit, more things to do, and more tourist information, read our Timaru itinerary planner .

Traveling by car from Oamaru to Timaru takes 1.5 hours. Cap off your sightseeing on the 24th (Fri) early enough to travel to Akaroa.

Things to do in Timaru

Outdoors Beaches Parks
Find places to stay Jan 24 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Caroline Bay Beach ©
Caroline Bay Beach

1
night
Akaroa

Akaroa ©
The French heritage and colonial architecture of Akaroa has broad appeal to anthropologists, historians, architects--and just about anyone with an eye for beautiful, historical buildings and a palate for fine dining.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Akaroa i-SITE Visitor Information Centre as well as Akaroa Lighthouse.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, photos, and tourist information, refer to the Akaroa road trip planning site .

You can drive from Timaru to Akaroa in 3 hours. Expect a daytime high around 25°C in January, and nighttime lows around 13°C. On the 25th (Sat), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Lyttelton.

Things to do in Akaroa

Historic Sites
Find places to stay Jan 24 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Akaroa Lighthouse ©
Akaroa Lighthouse

1
night
Lyttelton

Lyttelton
For where to stay, maps, reviews, and more tourist information, refer to the Lyttelton online vacation planner .

Traveling by car from Akaroa to Lyttelton takes 1.5 hours. In January in Lyttelton, expect temperatures between 25°C during the day and 13°C at night. On the 26th (Sun), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Arthur's Pass National Park.

Things to do in Lyttelton

Parks Tours Nature
Find places to stay Jan 25 — 26:

few
hours
Arthur's Pass National Park

Arthur's Pass National Park
To find ratings, reviews, photos, and other tourist information, read Arthur's Pass National Park trip planner .

Explore your travel options from Lyttelton to Arthur's Pass National Park with the Route module. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 26th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel to Christchurch.

Things to do in Arthur's Pass National Park

Outdoors Parks Trails
Find places to stay Jan 26 — 27:

2
nights
Christchurch

Christchurch ©
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Orana Wildlife Park. Here are some ideas for day two: get to know the resident critters at Orana Wildlife Park.

To see more things to do, maps, traveler tips, and tourist information, refer to the Christchurch trip itinerary planner.

The Route module can help you plan travel from Arthur's Pass National Park to Christchurch. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Tue) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Christchurch

Zoos & Aquariums Parks
Find places to stay Jan 26 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Orana Wildlife Park ©
Orana Wildlife Park

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