COASTAL PACIFIC UPDATE
Work is continuing at pace on the reinstatement of the Main North Line following November’s Kaikoura earthquake. Parts of the line are open for freight goods and crews are working fast in both directions but higher safety standards and ongoing seismic events mean that passenger services will be delayed longer than freight. Because of this, it is unlikely that the Coastal Pacific will operate this summer season (September 2017-April 2018).
The Coastal Pacific will be back to service as early as possible for the 2018/2019 season and it is hoped the season will be extended if possible. This could mean an earlier start date than September 2018. We will continue to keep you updated as a return to service date becomes clearer. In the meantime we can book coach transportation for you between Picton and Christchurch.
See three of New Zealand's most popular tourist destinations with this two-day combo pass including the beautiful Bay of Islands, the underground marvels of the Waitomo Caves and the thermal wonderland of Rotorua.
Day 1: Bay of Islands Day Tour and Hole in the Rock Dolphin Cruise
Departs 7:30am, returns 8:10pm
Sit back and soak up New Zealand's spectacular scenery as you head north from Auckland to the Bay of Islands for a half-day dolphin cruise. After arriving in Paihia, join the crew aboard our purpose-built catamaran Dolphin Seeker for a three-hour cruise through sheltered clear waters. Throughout your cruise your skipper will keep an eye out for dolphins and other marine life, and where possible get up close to these playful creatures.
Enjoy the views as you cruise out past gem-like islands and the Cape Brett Lighthouse to the majestic Hole in the Rock. If conditions permit, your skipper will navigate right through the hole. At the end of the cruise, rejoin your driver for the return journey to Auckland.
Day 2: Waitomo Caves and Rotorua Experience
Departs 7:30am, returns 8:10pm
Experience magical glowworms and world-famous limestone formations at Waitomo Caves, as well as the rich cultural heritage and geothermal bounty of Rotorua.
Travel south through the lush farmland of the Waikato and King Country regions, enjoying entertaining commentary from your driver guide. On arrival in the small town of Waitomo, take a guided tour through the famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves. Over 45 minutes you'll see amazing stalactites, stalagmites, huge caverns and other limestone rock formations, formed over 30 million years ago. Your tour finishes with a magical boat ride through the Glowworm Grotto – a cavern illuminated by the twinkling lights of thousands of tiny glowworms.
Leaving Waitomo, enjoy a picnic-style lunch (vegetarian and other dietary options available on request) en route to Rotorua, where at the Agrodome you'll tour an organic working farm on an all-terrain vehicle, see sheep being shorn and view a live sheep dog trial.
Next we make our way to Te Puia, one of New Zealand's foremost cultural venues. Experience a traditional M?ori welcome and cultural performance at the marae (meeting house), before entering the weird and wonderful landscape of the Whakarewarewa Thermal Valley for a guided tour of its bubbling mud pools and powerful geysers. The tour also includes a visit to Te Puia's woodcarving and weaving schools, where apprentices are trained in traditional skills. A delicious afternoon snack, including traditional M?ori rewana bread, can be enjoyed as your coach returns to Auckland.
>Useful tips: This tour combo must be taken over two consecutive days in the abovementioned order. To book this combo in reverse order, select tour option GSWRB. Please note accommodation is not included with this tour combo.Availability: If the Waitomo Caves tour cannot operate, a free upgrade to the Ruakuri Cave will be provided subject to availability. If the Ruakuri upgrade is provided, the Waitomo Caves portion is non refundable.
Free WiFi available on board the coach