Kaikoura, Marlborough & the Abel Tasman

The quintessential journey of the north of South Island! This journey takes you north from Christchurch to Kaikoura - the "capital of whales" and exceptional crayfish before entering into the realm of the Marlborough Sounds, a stunning natural landscape of ancient sunken valleys and finally the stunning nature of the Abel Tasman National Park. 

HIGHLIGHTS

Experience the northern splendors of South Island

Enjoy stays throughout in Luxury Lodges of New Zealand

Experience exceptional wine and gourmet experiences

Marvel some of South Island's most stunning landscapes

ITINERARY

DAY 1: ARRIVE CHRISTCHURCH / KAIKOURA

Arrive into Christchurch Intl Airport and then transfer to Kaikoura (2hrs drive) north along the Pacific coast. Renowned for its wide variety of marine life, the waters along Kaikoura is home to fur seals, dolphins, whales and an impressive variety of seabirds. Arrive at the stunning Hapuku Lodge & Tree Houses to rest from your jetlag. 

Overnight: Hapuku Lodge & Tree Houses, Kaikoura

Meals: NIL

DAY 2: KAIKOURA

Awake to a refreshing day in Kaikoura as you begin a day of discovery. Recommended activities include the acclaimed "Wings Over Whales" experience (optional), a sensational 30mins flight experience admiring the huge diversity of whales from an aerial perspective. Alternatively, you may like to join a Kaikoura Maori native for a custom tour (optional) of the town and the Maori way of life, sample fresh seafood and enjoy a relaxing beginning to your journey of the north of South Island. This evening, enjoy a sensational 5-course dinner with Executive Chef and MasterChef finalist, Fiona Read and her team to experience some of the finest cuisines matched with exquisite wine. 

Overnight: Hapuku Lodge & Tree Houses, Kaikoura

Meals: Breakfast & 5-Course Dinner

DAY 3: KAIKOURA / PICTON / MARLBOROUGH SOUNDS

Today, we continue our journey north to Picton (2hrs drive) where on arrival at the Picton Ferry Terminal, be escorted to your private boat for a stunning 25mins journey to the exceptional Bay of Many Coves nestled deep within the inspiring Marlborough Sounds, a hideaway in perfect seclusion in a pristine natural environment. Spend the rest of the day at leisure soaking up the wonderful surroundings. 

Overnight: Bay of Many Coves, Marlborough Sounds

Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4: MARLBOROUGH SOUNDS

After breakfast, we cruise the beautiful bays of the Marlborough Sounds aboard the "Lady Karen", a 43' Kauri twin engine launch, built in 1957. Drop a line down and try your luck for tasty blue cod, or dredge for some succulent scallops (cooked fresh on board by your skipper). Explore the labyrinth of bays and inlets, make a stop at the salmon farm or check out the basking seals. This is a memorable day that is intimate and personal. 

Overnight: Bay of Many Coves, Marlborough Sounds

Meals: Breakfast (Lunch is "Catch of the Day")

DAY 5: MARLBOROUGH SOUNDS

Spend a day at leisure. Consider self-guided walking on parts of the Queen Charlotte Track to admire the stunning bays and inlets or take an excursion to world class vineyard estates to savour the most exquisite wines of the Marlborough region. 

Overnight: Bay of Many Coves, Marlborough Sounds

Meals: Breakfast

DAY 6: MARLBOROUGH SOUNDS / NELSON / ABEL TASMAN NATIONAL PARK

An inspiring day begins with a boat transfer to Picton (25mins) where you will be met and transfer along the beautiful Tasman Bay to Nelson. We visit the township of Richmond and tour the famous and award-winning Waimea Estate. Spend some time for lunch (on own expenses) at the Cellar Door Restaurant before continuing to the remote Peppers Awaroa Lodge by helicopter. 

Overnight: Peppers Awaroa Lodge, Abel Tasman National Park

Meals: Breakfast

DAY 7: ABEL TASMAN NATIONAL PARK

Today, we cruise into the heart of Abel Tasman National Park before starting our walk on the most varied section of the Abel Tasman Coastal Track, around the spectacular Torrent Bay estuary to the long, golden sands of Anchorage Beach. Weaving our way through sunny groves of Manuka and fern between breathtaking views of the granite coast and lush gullies of mature forest to reach tranquil forest pools and long golden-sand beaches, we then cross the rushing Falls River by an impressive swing bridge. Spend some time surrounded by gorgeous nature with a side track beside a crystal forest stream to visit the tranquil Cleopatra's Pool

Overnight: Peppers Awaroa Lodge, Abel Tasman National Park

Meals: Breakfast & Picnic Lunch

DAY 8: ABEL TASMAN NATIONAL PARK / NELSON / CHRISTCHURCH

This morning, be transferred to Nelson Airport by helicopter for a short domestic flight to Christchurch before connecting to your international flight return. 

Meals: Breakfast 

HOTELS

Hapuku Lodge & Tree Houses was designed to provide guests a great night's sleep in Kaikoura, one of the world's most beautiful places. The lodge was designed by a family of architects, complimenting the spectacular environment. Lodge accommodation consists of five spacious luxury lodge suites and five unique tree houses. Dining showcases fresh flavours of local and organic produce, including local specialty, the crayfish. 

Hapuku Lodge & Tree Houses, Kaikoura

Perfect seclusion on the water's edge deep in the Marlborough Sounds with 5-star luxury accommodation, world class cuisine and a taste of 100& pure relaxation. Bay of Many Coves offers luxurious apartments set in Arthur's Bay just a 30mins ferry ride from Picton. The resort also has a cafe and a world class restaurant. 

Bay of Many Coves, Marlborough Sounds

Peppers Awaroa Lodge is nestled in the heart of the Abel Tasman National Park and is only accessible via helicopter or boat providing an idyllic setting from which to enjoy the Abel Tasman. Despite its remoteness, the lodge is extremely comfortable and has been one of the best small boutique lodges in New Zealand. 

Peppers Awaroa Lodge, Abel Tasman National Park

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