New Zealand is all about going away to come together as a family. Be brave and venture to places where the Wi-Fi signals are weak because this is where you will detox from everyday life and reconnect with one another. Handcrafted for families with teenage children, this ten-day adventure will take you to the South Island’s wild and wonderful places. It is packed with once-in-a-lifetime experiences, including a Heli-Hike, jet boating in Siberia Valley, and an overnight adventure on Milford Sound.
Christchurch – Early Arrive in an Easy City
Christchurch is cute and compact, and it is a city that is rebuilding itself through art and ingenuity. The earthquake destroyed so much, but this is not a sad place, and it is one that displays a visible resilience and pride. You can feel this from the moment you begin walking around the city center and most especially in places like the Cardboard Cathedral. Graffiti-style murals cover many of the ruined walls, and these can be very engaging for teenagers. After an early arrival into Christchurch’s airport, you will be transferred to your hotel and have the day to pick and choose which attractions that you dedicate your time to visiting. A local guide will explain different options and show you the most impressive sights.
Paparoa National Park – The TranzAlpine Train and Pancake Rocks
Paparoa National Park – Rafting and Hiking With the Glowworms
Fox Glacier – Spectacular Family Heli-Hike
Wanaka – An Adventure in New Zealand’s Most Pristine Wilderness
Wanaka – Free Day to Explore Wanaka and the Lake
Milford Sound – Enchanting Overnight Milford Sound Cruise
Queenstown – Relaxation On the Lakeshore
Queenstown – Lord of the Rings Territory
Queenstown – Departure
- Discover an untouched winter wonderland on a Heli-Hike to the ice caves of Fox Glacier
- Explore Lord of the Rings territory with an exclusive tour of the movies’ filming locations
- Spend the night on a Milford Sound cruise and witness the magic of a Milford morning
- Indulge in a rafting and walking experience in the mysterious glowworm caves of Paparoa
- Bask in some family downtime with a day around the lake in Wanaka
- Admire New Zealand’s changing landscapes on the beautiful TranzAlpine train from Christchurch to Greymouth
- Jet boat and helicopter through the incredibly remote Siberia Valley, which is a wild and safe adventure for all ages
- Luxuriate in Queenstown and catch your breath before the flight home
In New Zealand, you can unplug from your daily life. A switch is flicked from the moment you land, and the further you travel into the wilderness, the more you can feel the detox. With a vacation here, you will really go away to landscapes and destinations that have been cast adrift from the everyday world. More importantly, ten days provides a space for you to reconnect. You will be rushing down rivers in a jet boat, hiking over glaciers to ice caves, bumping on off-road trails to Middle Earth, and rafting with glowworms. Make no doubt about it, this really is a family adventure and an opportunity for everyone to venture a little from their comfort zone. It is in these exclusive activities and destinations that you will find the space to really come together.
This ten-day tour is handcrafted for families with teenage or older children. Some of the activities are not suitable for younger kids; however, this itinerary can be customized to experience what your children want and like. Some of the activities will be private while others are in small groups. The tour is privately guided and uses premium lodges throughout, which are places that you can sit around a campfire beneath the stars or find some alone time after an exhilarating day on a glacier or lake. You will land in New Zealand and can let go of your mantle as the family vacation planner. Local guides will take over, so you can relax and really enjoy the time that you have with your kids.
You will have six overnight destinations in ten days, which is another reason this tour may not be suitable for younger kids. The journey is part of the adventure, and you will not simply be driving across New Zealand. For example, on day two, you will travel by TranzAlpine train, and on day five, your journey includes a helicopter and jet boat. Sticking to the South Island does reduce travel time, and with only ten days, it is not possible to do everything. It is also the south that is complete with some of the best experiences that New Zealand has to offer.
You will fly into Christchurch, and your first day will be left free. A local guide will discuss your options for the afternoon that can be as laid-back or active as you choose. You will take the train on day two and settle into an ecolodge inside Paparoa National Park, where you can roast marshmallows on a fire and explore a dazzling forest. Later, you will ease into the adventure on day three, which is when you will go hiking and rafting in caves that are stuffed with glowworms. Fox Glacier will provide an exclusive experience on day four, and after a helicopter ride, you will touch down on the glacier, strap on the crampons, and then hike to ice caves, blue pools, and a wilderness that will be as surreal as Narnia.
Day five will be just as thrilling. From Makarora, you will take a scenic helicopter flight to Siberia Valley, and then walk and jet boat through one of New Zealand’s most remote wildernesses. This is a long, thrilling, and eventually exhausting day. So, you will spend day six on the lake in Wanaka, where you will do nothing at all. From here, you will travel to Milford Sound for a beautiful and relaxing overnight cruise before ending your vacation with two nights in Queenstown. On day nine, you go by four-wheel drive to Middle Earth, visiting and exploring many of the filming locations from Lord of the Rings. Rather than backtrack to Christchurch, you will then depart directly from Queenstown.
Consider learning more about the New Zealand tour companies whom we partner with, who seek to create a customized experience just for you.
$3,245 per person (excluding international flights)
Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.
- In-country transportation
- Some or all activities and tours
- Expert trip planning
- 24x7 support during your trip
Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.
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