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Premier

Great New Zealand Rail and Cruise Experience

Auckland to Christchurch
Trip Code: NRC16
  • Trip Highlights
  • Map & Itinerary
  • Travel & Accommodation
  • Pricing & Availability

Trip Highlights

Auckland In Full Glory

Auckland's stunning highlights are on display during your Hauraki blue Overnight Cruise aboard the Ipipiri

Wonderful Wellington

With a two-night stay in the New Zealand capital, you have plenty of opportunities to explore its best-loved landmarks

The Milford Mariner

Enjoy a stunning overnight cruise along Milford Sound, taking in the enchanting views of the fiord

Your Vacation Includes

  • Enriching Signature Experiences and Freedom of Choice Inclusions
  • 15 breakfasts, 6 dinners and 6 feature dinners
  • APT Tour Director, plus expert local guides
  • Arrival and departure transfers in New Zealand
  • Luggage porterage and tipping

Map & Itinerary

Save As Pdf
New Zealand Map NRC16 2017/18

Auckland to Christchurch

Designed Exclusively for APT guests
SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

These once-in-a-lifetime moments allow you to experience an unforgettable world of exclusive moments, incredible cultures and charming surprises

FREEDOM OF CHOICE™ - Sightseeing

Personalise your holiday with a choice of included sightseeing options sure to leave you with lifelong memories

FREEDOM OF CHOICE™ - Dining

Choose from a variety of included dining options sure to tantalise the tastebuds of every guest

FREEDOM OF CHOICE™ - Sightseeing

Perhaps take a cruise on Waitemata Harbour, soaking up the lively cityscape among raised sails. You might decide to head off to Waiheke Island, the coast of Auckland along the horizon, for an educational wine tour and sampling of the local fare. Or you may delve into the country’s history of art and culture at the fascinating Auckland Museum. Alternatively, get up close to marine life at Kelly Tarlton’s Sea Life Aquarium, or set off on a Wilderness Adventure into the Waitakere Rainforest, or the Devonport Explorer.


Today your New Zealand Rail and Cruise adventure begins. Prepare for a journey of discovery, delving into unique and traditional experiences and a colourful cultural history. Arrive in the City of Sails where you’ll be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. After settling in, you have the chance to explore the city with a range of sightseeing inclusions to fill your afternoon. Tonight, enjoy a Welcome Dinner as you get to know your Tour Director and fellow travellers.

Stay: Amora Hotel Auckland

Daily :
  • Dinner
SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

On arrival at Glenbrook, board the Glenbrook Vintage Steam Train. Lovingly restored, you’ll enjoy a journey through the beautiful rural Franklin countryside.


This morning travel to Glenbrook. Travel to Victoria Avenue and Waiuku before enjoying a stop at the Pukeoware Depot to explore the workshop and view other historic regional locomotives undergoing restoration.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

This evening, you’ll gain an insight into the culture of New Zealand’s Maori people as you enjoy a traditional Hangi Feast and cultural performance.


Enjoy breakfast on board before cruising back to port. Board your coach and head towards Rotorua.

Stay: Two Nights: Holiday Inn Rotorua, overlooking Whakarewarewa Thermal Reserve

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
FREEDOM OF CHOICE™ - Sightseeing

Perhaps experience Rotorua’s icons at the famed Agrodome Farm Show, followed by a visit to Rainbow Springs Nature Park. Alternatively, take a ‘Hobbiton Movie Set’ tour for an enthralling insight into the making of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, take a drive through forests and farmlands to visit New Zealand’s largest boiling mud pool. Or alternatively, discover the local art, history and culture at Rotorua Museum.


Following breakfast this morning, enjoy your sightseeing activity.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

This morning, ride a rail-cart over historic bridges and through hand-dug tunnels along the Forgotten World Railway, an iconic piece of New Zealand’s historic heritage.


After your Signature Experience this morning, continue through Tongariro National Park, famed for its breathtaking snowy volcanic mountains. Enjoy a night at the iconic Chateau Tongariro Hotel. Relax and allow yourself to be transported back to the glamour of yesteryear.

Stay: Chateau Tongariro Hotel

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

Upon arrival in Featherston, explore the fascinating Fell Locomotive Museum. Home to H199, the only locomotive of its type in the world, this museum offers a great insider’s look at New Zealand’s intriguing rail history.

FREEDOM OF CHOICE™ - Dining

This evening, perhaps enjoy dinner at the Hummingbird Eatery and Bar for a multi-award winning meal. Maybe you’d prefer to try Lido Cafe or Arizona Restaurant for their renowned welcoming service and delicious meals. Of course, your hotel’s restaurant will also be available to dine at.


Farewell beautiful Tongariro National Park following breakfast this morning. Travel to the town of Featherston and delight in a relaxing afternoon tea before rejoining your coach and travelling to Wellington. Arrive at your hotel and enjoy time to settle in before choosing where to dine from a selection of restaurants.

Stay: Two Nights: Rydges Wellington

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

After breakfast, set off on a sightseeing tour that will take you to the city’s best-loved landmarks and sights, including New Zealand’s national museum – Te Papa Tongarewa, which is renowned for being interactive and innovative. Its collection spans the areas of art, history, Pacific, Maori, and natural environment. A visit here presents a great chance to become educated on what has made New Zealand the country it is today. Afterwards, ride Wellington’s iconic Cable Car. Along the way you’ll see many landmarks including the Nagasaki Peace flame which commemorates the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, at the end of World War Two.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

This morning say goodbye to the North Island as you step aboard the Interislander ferry. Cruise from Wellington Harbour across the Cook Strait and through the natural beauty of the Marlborough and Queen Charlotte sounds to Picton.


After arriving in Piction, continue to the South Island’s largest city, Christchurch. Traverse rolling fields and glimpse tiny towns as you proceed through the country’s famed South Island. Promising a remarkable combination of historic culture and contemporary elegance, Christchurch is famous for its English heritage which, these days, is only interrupted by the stunning natural surrounds. As you arrive this evening, settle in to your comfortable surrounds and rest for another day of sightseeing ahead.

Stay: Christchurch, Commodore Hotel

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

This morning, board the TranzAlpine train for what is renowned as one of the world’s greatest rail adventures. Head to the open air viewing platform and enjoy stunning views as you journey through the striking patchwork farmlands of the Canterbury Plains.

SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

You’ll have the opportunity to take in the dramatic terrain and icy surrounds of the striking Franz Josef Glacier. Sitting at just 250 metres above sea level, Franz Josef is quite unique as it is one of just three glaciers in the world that descends into temperate rainforest.


Journey to Greymouth and travel by coach along the dramatic New Zealand west coast to Franz Josef.

Stay: Franz Josef, Scenic Hotel

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
FREEDOM OF CHOICE™ - Dining

Perhaps sample the delicious fresh produce at waterside Finz seafood restaurant, or take a picturesque gondola ride to the Skyline Restaurant which offers tantalising tastes with some of the best views in town. You may prefer to cruise on the TSS Earnslaw, a vintage steamboat and enjoy dinner at The Great Kiwi Carvery, or perhaps simply dine at your hotel’s restaurant.


Enjoy a day of truly breathtaking scenery as you travel along the picturesque Haast River, which is rich in cultural and geological significance and offers simply breathtaking views. After arriving in Queenstown this afternoon, you’ll choose from four tempting restaurants in which to dine.

Stay: Two Nights: Queenstown, Novotel Queenstown Lakeside

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
FREEDOM OF CHOICE™ - Sightseeing

Perhaps embark on a Safari of the Scenes tour and visit several local sites where the popular The Lord of the Rings trilogy was filmed. Alternatively, your inner thrill-seeker may prefer to take an exhilarating ride on the famous Shotover Jet Boat through the breathtaking Shotover River Canyons. A tour of the country’s premier wine producing region is a tempting option today, otherwise you may choose to take part in the Mt Nicholas 4WD experience, or a relaxing Million Dollar Cruise on the lake.


Queenstown is known as the country’s Adventure Capital thanks to its stunning lake and alpine surrounds which offer a range of exciting activities to take part in. Enjoy the opportunity to personalise your experience by selecting from one of our Freedom of Choice Inclusions.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

Explore the full length of Milford Sound with a specialist nature guide taking you past magical waterfalls, untamed rainforest and towering mountains.


Embark on a scenic drive today as you journey along the Milford Road to Milford Sound, where you’ll enjoy a stunning cruise along the majestic waterway. Later, travel to Te Anau where you will stay the night.

Stay: Distinction Te Anau Hotel and Villas

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

This afternoon, step aboard the Taieri Gorge Railway and journey through the beautiful Southland countryside. One of the world’s greatest train trips, the Taieri Gorge Railway reveals some of the South Island’s most diverse and spectacular scenery. The train snakes through tunnels and over bridges with ease, almost becoming part of the wider landscape.


Leave the Fiordland region and travel through the rolling and spectacular Southland countryside to Dunedin on the east coast. Known as the Edinburgh of the South, Dunedin originally was planned in Scotland and still maintains its Victorian and Edwardian heritage.

Stay: Dunedin, Scenic Hotel Southern Cross

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

Board the Seasider train this morning and travel along Otango Harbour, past Port Chalmers on the Pacific Coast.

SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

Later this afternoon, venture to World Heritage-listed Aoraki Mt Cook National Park to view Australasia’s highest mountain, Mt Cook, and admire the sublime alpine scenery.


Journey north to view the unusual Moeraki Boulders. These large spherical stones, formed over 60 million years ago, can be found along a stretch of Koekohe Beach on the Otago Coast. Maori legend tells that the boulders are remains of calabashes, kumaras and eel baskets that washed ashore after the legendary canoe, the Araiteuru was wrecked at nearby Shag Point. Continue to Mt Cook this afternoon where you will spend two evenings.

Stay: Two Nights: Mt Cook, The Hermitage Hotel

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
FREEDOM OF CHOICE™ - Sightseeing

Perhaps visit The Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre, a state-of-the-art facility which features a 3D movie and a digital planetarium. Or perhaps join a guided nature walk, discovering some of New Zealand’s beautiful native flora and fauna. Alternatively, board a MAC boat and get up close to icebergs on the Tasman Glacier Terminal Lake (summer months only). This is an exciting adventure that will give you a unique insight into the Tasman Glacier. You may like to explore the stars of the southern night sky with binoculars and telescopes with the help and experience of an expert astronomer.


Choose an exciting sightseeing activity and explore Mt Cook at your leisure today. After an exciting day of memorable sightseeing, you’ll enjoy an unforgettable Farewell Dinner at your hotel. Enjoy an evening with your fellow passengers to recount stories and tales from your New Zealand travels.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

Wake among New Zealand’s native flora and fauna for a final time this morning. Your journey comes to an end, but not before more incredible sightseeing and travel opportunities. Visit the picturesque Lake Tekapo after breakfast and see the iconic Church of the Good Shepherd. Built of locally gathered stone and oak, this charming church was erected as a tribute to the early pioneers of the region. Take a moment to reflect from inside the church and appreciate the breathtaking views that it offers. Later, head back to Christchurch where your tour concludes as you transfer to the airport for your return flight.

Daily :
  • Breakfast

Travel & Accommodation

Stylish Hotels and Resorts

Stay in hotels that enhance your destination, including The Hermitage in Mount Cook

Flavours of New Zealand

Enjoy feature dinners including a four-course meal degustation at Franz Josef

Chateau Sanctuary

Be taken to the blissful sanctuary of national park scenery at the iconic Chateau Tongariro Hotel, built in the 1920s

It has been a privilege to welcome so many guests aboard APT’s award-winning journeys, and a joy to see those guests fall in love with each new experience the world presents.

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