Truly the scenic wonderland of New Zealand, it's easy to run out of superlatives when describing an island relatively sparsely populated by man but with an abundance of breathtaking natural gems.

The spectacular Southern Alps run down the spine of the South Island; to their east the patchworked agricultural landscape of the Canterbury plains, the 'english' city of Christchurch and the renowned whale-watching base of Kaikoura; at their heart, the alpine glories of Aoraki Mount Cook National Park.

The rugged West Coast is hemmed between the Tasman Sea and the imposing mountain chain, making for spectacular contrasts in the surrounding scenery and creating fabulous opportunities for once in a lifetime experiences, such as a helicopter flight up onto the Franz Josef Glacier followed by a guided hike through the glacial ice formations.

The less populated of the two islands, it’s easy to run out of superlatives when describing a place with such a wealth of breathtaking natural wonders. The spectacular Southern Alps run down the spine of the South Island; to their east, the patch worked agricultural landscape of the Canterbury plains, the ‘English’ city of Christchurch and the renowned whale watching base of Kaikoura; at their heart, the alpine glories of Aoraki Mount Cook National Park. The rugged West Coast is hemmed between the Tasman Sea and the imposing mountain chain with fabulous opportunities for once in a lifetime experiences, such as a helicopter flight onto the Franz Josef Glacier. Queenstown’s reputation as the adventure capital of New Zealand is well founded, but it’s also a fantastic ski resort too. Off the beaten track there’s nearby Wanaka, a picture postcard lakeside setting with a reputation for tranquillity.

Neighbouring Fiordland’s enchanting glacier cut valleys, cascading waterfalls and ancient forests should be on your ‘to do’ list and the scenic flight back from Milford Sound to Queenstown, over lakes, mountains, waterfalls and forests will take your breath away. Finally, the sunshine rich town of Blenheim is the ideal base from which to explore the vineyards of Marlborough and sample a sauvignon blanc or two.

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Where to go in South Island

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Luxury New Zealand
Itinerary

Luxury New Zealand

New Zealand
North Island
Wellington
+3 others
20 nights from £15,199 per person
Itinerary Highlights
  • Explore the quaint villages and secluded beach of the Bay of Islands
  • Visit Rotorua’s volcanic and geothermal attractions
  • Take a tour of Pukaha Mount Bruce National Wildlife Centre with a park ranger and learn more about New Zealand’s unique flora and fauna
  • Enjoy the pristine coastline on a private cruise in the Abel Tasman National Park
Edenhouse
Hotel

Edenhouse

New Zealand
South Island
Nelson

Edenhouse sets the blueprint for what true hospitality should be: warm, friendly and personal, and it’s precisely such attributes that have led this boutique New Zealand lodge to star on many a ‘top hotels’ list over the years. Owners Peter and Bobbie have poured their passions into a 50-acre estate, creating some of the most beautiful gardens you will ever lay your eyes on (thanks to Bobbie’s de...

Discover New Zealand's South Island
Self-Drive

Discover New Zealand's South Island

New Zealand
South Island
Christchurch
+1 others
13 nights from £4,275 per person
Itinerary Highlights
  • Enjoy a scenic flight and cruise of Milford Sound
  • Take a helicopter flight over the Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers
  • Join the mail run by boat around the beautiful Queen Charlotte Sound
  • Visit three of Marlborough’s best wineries on a gentle cycling tour
Blanket Bay
Hotel

Blanket Bay

New Zealand
South Island
Queenstown

Blanket Bay lodge lives and breathes the wild New Zealand landscape in which it sits, perched on the shores of Lake Wakatipu with views of Mount Earnslaw on one side and the Humboldt Mountain Range the other. And though the small town of Glenorchy is just a few minutes away, your time at Blanket Bay feels as remote and intimate as any boutique South Island experience. Away from the blissful luxury...

Set amidst beautifully manicured gardens, this boutique resort offers both hotel rooms, studio apartments and self-contained cottages, ensuring the perfect accommodation option for every guest. Boutique Hotel Rooms feature one queen-size bed and views of either the Waimea Inlet or across the gardens. Studio Apartments include either one king-size or two twin beds and a separate living/dining area...

The George
Hotel

The George

New Zealand
South Island
Christchurch

This five-star hotel is on the doorstep of many of Christchurch’s best attractions, and yet retains a peaceful and secluded atmosphere for guests. The hotel is the only one in the city to feature one staff member per guest, and as such, excellent and attentive service is guaranteed. A member of the exclusive Small Luxury Hotels of the World group, the hotel offers plush accommodation with top-cla...

Hotel Montreal
Hotel

Hotel Montreal

New Zealand
South Island
Christchurch

This all-suite hotel offers unique and tranquil accommodation in the heart of Christchurch. With picture-perfect Hagley Park on its doorstep, Hotel Montreal offers guests plenty of outdoor spaces for relaxing, admiring the views and even playing a game or two of croquet. The sheltered courtyard is the perfect spot to enjoy a glass of New Zealand’s finest and indulge in a pizza from the wood-fire...

Sofitel Queenstown and Spa
Hotel

Sofitel Queenstown and Spa

New Zealand
South Island
Queenstown

With a unique blend of French style and Queenstown hospitality, this hotel is in the perfect location to explore the local attractions and highlights. Choose from Superior or Luxury Rooms, each featuring a king-size Sofitel MyBed and pillow menu, and offering mountain or lake views. Prestige Suites offer more space, with a separate living and dining area and private Juliet balcony. For the ultima...

Just a short walk from the centre of Queenstown, The Rees Hotel enjoys a privileged position on the shores of the magnificent Lake Wakatipu. The hotel offers guests a complimentary shuttle service to and from the centre of town, so you can easily combine a morning wandering the shores of the lake with an afternoon of shopping or exploring. Enjoy lake and mountain views from the spacious accommoda...

Wanaka’s only accommodation set right on the banks of the town’s lake, this hotel offers travellers a prime position and stunning views. Choose from spacious rooms, One Bedroom Suites or even Two Bedroom Apartments. The apartments sleep up to six and come complete with their own kitchenette, so are perfect for families and groups who wish to cater for themselves some of the time. Having said that,...

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