South Island in 2 weeks

Oct 23rd, 2007, 01:46 AM
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South Island in 2 weeks

Greetings travelers, itís my first trip to NZ, after much reading from the forum Iím still not certain about direction of the island, my trip will start/end from Christchurch, I plan to visit all scenic locations, a bit of trekking and limit driving distance per day.

Please kindly help out for plan driving around SI (late Nov) and advise if Iím on the right track.

Christchurch 2 nights
Hokitika 1 night
Fox Glacier 2 nights
Wanaka 2 nights
Queenstown 2 nights
Te Anau 3 nights
Dunedin 1 night
Lake Tekapo 1 night
Christchurch 1 night
Lewy is offline  
Oct 23rd, 2007, 04:27 AM
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Yes, you're on the right track - all of your drives are under four hours, although this will vary considerably depending on stops.

I have to wonder why you're traveling all the way to Dunedin for only one night though. Seems a long way to go, just to turn back and head towards Christchurch.

BTW - you're missing quite a few of the "scenic locations" by not visiting the top of the South Island, although I can certainly understand how time constraints might be a factor.
Melnq8 is online now  
Oct 23rd, 2007, 04:34 PM
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Hi Melnq8, I thought travel back to Christchurch will go via Dunedin?pardon for my lack of knowledge. Please give me some suggestions and scenic locations I should visit. Thanking you.
Lewy is offline  
Oct 23rd, 2007, 05:38 PM
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Well, you can certainly go back to CH from Te Anau via Dunedin, but it's not the most direct route, and with only one night to spend in Dunedin, it might not be worth the extra drive time.

Te Anau - Dunedin - 290 km, 3:40
Dunedin - Lake Tekapo - 303 km, 3:45
Lake Tekapo - CH - 226 km, 2:45

You might consider something like this:

Wanaka to Te Anau (273 km, 3:25)
Te Anau to Queenstown (170 km, 2:00)
Queenstown to Lake Tekapo (258 km, 3:15
Lake Tekapo to CH (226 km, 2:45)

This cuts out a few hours of drive time and frees up an extra night to spend in Queenstown, Mt. Cook, Lake Tekapo or Christchurch.

Just a thought...
Melnq8 is online now  
Oct 23rd, 2007, 10:42 PM
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I assume you are doing some trekking or an overnight fiord trip from Te Anau? Otherwise you don't need 3 nites there and could add one to Dunedin.
mlgb is offline  
Oct 23rd, 2007, 11:28 PM
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I still havenít sort out activities for each location but I will take the route Melnq8 recommended and skip Dunedin, stay an extra day in QT or Mt Cook, thanks for all the helps.
Lewy is offline  
Oct 25th, 2007, 07:20 AM
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A lot depends on your interests, but some find Dunedin more interesting and attractive than Queenstown. You can add interest by taking the southern route from Te Anau to Dunedin, through the Catlins. An overnight on one of the sounds (recommended in any case) followed by a fairly short drive to the south coast (Invercargill, say) makes good use of time.
someotherguy is offline  
Oct 26th, 2007, 11:48 AM
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Anything special with Hokitika? You could drive from CC to Fox or take the Tranzalpine and drive from Greymouth to Fox.

Also, consider skipping Lake Tekapo and flying from Dunedin to CC, adding a day somewhere. It's a long drive.
Jed is offline  
Oct 31st, 2007, 08:32 PM
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If you visit you will find information on the walks in the national parks. You can do day trips in.

I have been into the first hut on the greenstone track, in from Queenstown. Also have been into Ball Shelter and up the ridge part way to Caroline hut to get a close view of Mount Aoraki (Cook). (this was quite hard but I was really unfit and we stayed in the ball hut for a night.) Plus I have walked some of the Kepler at TeAnau.

I'm from Dunedin and if you want to see albatross, fur seals, penguins, or sea lions you can see them here. Also cool buildings.

I don't think I would stay two nights at Fox Glacier only thing I remember to do is see the Glacier. And I have only done it on the way past. Maybe you need one big driving day.

Queenstown has got really touristly but needs to be seen and is promoted as the adventure capital with lots on offer.

When you drive Wanaka to Te Anua you drive very close to Queenstown. I'd think about missing Wanaka. just look on the way.

This would give you 3 more nights.

If you could i'd book as you go gives you more flexibilty.

hope it doesn't confuse you any
Bosworth_Family is offline  
Oct 31st, 2007, 08:35 PM
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more from me
go to for driving times.

Bosworth_Family is offline  
Nov 1st, 2007, 01:25 PM
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hi me again
need to say about mount cook into ball shelter and up the ridge is a little bit of mountain climbing.
also doc huts are just that. a bunk room. water and a sink, toilet and a table and chairs.
Also on the west coast I would maybe spend a night just south of the pancake rocks, (punakaiki). As it is a bit different on the west coast.
hope i have been some help
Bosworth_Family is offline  
Nov 1st, 2007, 07:07 PM
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Thanks all again! I'm really looking forward to my trip
Lewy is offline  
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