Jump aboard and take off with us as we take you to the must-see highlights of South Island on this epic snow adventure. We offer the best of both worlds giving you the opportunity to ski or snowboard at up to 4 different fields while showing you the best winter locations in New Zealand.
All about the 9 Day Alpine Explorer from Christchurch to Christchurch
The best New Zealand tour for winter in the South Island!
Our famous 9-day Alpine Explorer takes in the ritz and glamour of Queenstown and up the rugged and pristine West Coast of the South Island.
So much more than just a ski tour… our Alpine Explorer 9 day trip not only gives you the opportunity to ski 4 different mountains but also see mountains, glaciers, rainforests, rugged coastlines & NZ's best ski fields. Journey over the Southern Alps, hike by Mount Cook and try once in a lifetime activities. .... wow what more can you ask for within an action packed 9 days of showcasing NZ’s best winter wonderland.
On our small group overland tours, you have the benefit of a fun and knowledgeable guide with you at all times to teach you about the flora and fauna of New Zealand or Aotearoa as its known by the indigenous Maori meaning 'The land of the long white cloud'.
Our departure time from Christchurch is designed to work in with International flights coming from Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney, Australia. There are also regular flights departing from Queenstown to Australia daily so if you're coming from Australia it will only mean a few days off work to enjoy the best of our NZ ski fields! Our tours are designed to immerse you in the most stunning areas of the country - part of this experience is participatory with regards to accommodation and meal times.
9 Day Alpine Explorer from Christchurch to Christchurch Itinerary - 9 days
Christchurch to Methven
Leaving Christchurch at 4:30 pm we travel the short distance to the picturesque village of Methven, a snow sports magnet during the winter months as it sits in the shadow of New Zealand's best ski resort, Mt Hutt! This field offers breath-taking views along the Southern Alps and across the Canterbury Plains to the Pacific Ocean and is well worth a visit to test your skills on the slopes or just to marvel at the stunning views. (D)
Methven to Lake Tekapo
It's time to dust off your ski gear and hit the slopes! We've included mountain transfers and a full day lift pass to New Zealand's best ski resort! If spending the day on the mountain isn't for you, spend time exploring Methven village, enjoy a massage or explore the region with a Lord of the Rings tour. Leaving the mountain at 3 pm we make our way to the scenic lakeside township of Lake Tekapo. Next door to our perfectly located accommodation is the winter wonderland of Tekapo Springs where their Hot Pools are the perfect way to end our day (included free). Relax, enjoy and take in the stunning night sky this magical part of the country offers. In fact, this area is so excellent for star gazing that it was named the world’s largest International Dark Sky Reserve, meaning the skies are almost completely free from any light pollution, making it one of the best places in the world for stargazing! (B and D)
Activities (optional own cost): Lord of the Rings tour, massage, Earth & Sky Observatory
Lake Tekapo to Mt Cook
Today we take you up close to New Zealand’s highest peak Aoraki/Mt Cook. On arrival into the Mt Cook village tour the world-class Information Centre featuring interactive exhibits, mountain artwork along with stories and memorabilia of NZ's brave mountaineers. A must see to truly appreciate the majestic, beautiful and remote area we are here to explore. Hike to the Hooker Glacier with plenty of photo opportunities or see the Tasman Glacier on an optional 4WD & Argo tour. Tonight, our accommodation is located in the shadow of Mount Cook, relax and enjoy as we share stories and a few laughs around the fire. (B and D)
Activities (optional own cost): Tasman Valley 4WD & Argo tour
Mt Cook to Ohau
Getting away from commercial ski fields, today we venture to NZ's most well-known family run field and a local favorite, Ohau. With shuttle transfers and a full day lift pass included we get an early start up the mountain to be rewarded with stunning views to Aoraki Mount Cook and overlooking Lake Ohau. This ski field is suitable for all abilities but if you prefer, to relax and enjoy the comforts of the lodge or explore the remote and beautiful surrounding area by foot or cycle, you're most welcome. After a day of adventure, a comfortable lodge setting awaits complete with an open fire, a hot meal, and stunning lake views. (B and D)
Ohau to Queenstown
Today we travel the dramatic Lindis Pass linking the MacKenzie Basin with Central Otago. Prepare to be wowed as we travel through this alpine area of tall tussock covered mountains and roadside snow. Arriving by midday into the ‘Adventure Capital of the World’ - Queenstown we spend two nights in centrally located accommodation that's ideal for enjoying all on offer. Optional bungy jumping, skydiving, scenic lake cruises or take to the mountains skiing and snowboarding just to name a few! This town has a buzzing vibe with something for everyone along with great hikes and cycle options. (B)
Activities (optional own cost): Bungy jumping, skydiving, scenic lake cruises, skiing, snowboarding plus many more – the options are endless!!
With so much to see and do we spend a full day in this scenic lakeside town to soak up the scenery, jump off a bridge or create tracks down the mountain. If you would like to explore further afield we recommend a day trip to the stunning Milford Sound for a scenic boat cruise. Get amongst it and enjoy! (B and D)
Activities (own cost): Milford Sound boat cruise, bungy jumping, skydiving, scenic lake cruises, skiing, snowboarding plus many more – the options are endless!!
Queenstown to Franz Josef
Just when you think the scenery can’t get any better…it does! Prepare yourself for the remote and rugged scenic beauty of the stunning West Coast, with its jaw-dropping views and great short walks. The wild West Coast is home to the majestic rainforest, thundering waterfalls and tranquil pools. Tonight, we stay in glacier country at the picturesque village of Franz Josef. Our accommodation is nestled in lush rainforest and located close to the Glacier Hot Pools, a haven of natural tranquility and the perfect way to unwind at the end of the day. (B, L and D)
Activities (optional own cost): Glacier hot pools
Today is your chance to explore one of NZ’s most unique and spectacular natural wonders – Franz Josef with an optional Guided Heli Hike or Guided Heli Ice Climb. This staggering beautiful work of nature is 12 kilometers and descends from the Southern Alps to less than 300 meters above sea level. Franz Josef is a quaint village offering scenic short walks or explore by bike or air with an optional skydive. To see nature at its best you can't go past a kayak trip along a narrow estuary amidst the lush ancient rainforest of the Okarito Kiwi Sanctuary. (B)
Activities (own cost): Guided Heli Hike, Guided Heli Ice Climb, skydiving, kayaking, Glacier hot pools
Franz Josef to Christchurch
Start the day with a great cycle ride, or hike to a stunning viewpoint overlooking the Westland Tai Poutini National Park. Continuing up this spectacular coastal stretch we stop in Hokitika – home to Greenstone factories where you can see the skilled craftsmen at work before taking to the mountains once again as we travel over the breathtaking Southern Alps! We stop along the way to enjoy a short mountainous walk before arriving into Christchurch early evening for our final farewells as we leave you to reflect back on the wonders you've seen and experiences you've had. (B)
|Tour code: Alpine|
4.30pm from Christchurch
28 July - 5 August
6 August - 14 August
15 August - 23 August
Important NotesThings you need to know about this tour
Accommodation types please add: Selected hostels and lodges (2-6 guest share). Private rooms available for an additional cost.
Our departure time from Christchurch is designed to work in with International flights coming from Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney, Australia. There are also regular flights departing from Queenstown to Australia daily so if you're coming from Australia it will only mean a few days off work to enjoy the best of our NZ ski fields.
Similar Tours to 9 Day Alpine Explorer from Christchurch to Christchurch
Starting in Christchurch and finishing in Queenstown, New Zealand, this tour focuses on the east coast and southern highlights of the South Island including visiting Milford Sound, Mt Cook, Dunedin and Queenstown.
A great way to see most of New Zealand by starting in Auckland in the North Island and finishing in Queenstown in the South Island. You can also spend some time exploring Queenstown pre-trip.