Following an increasing number of potential safety incidents on KiwiRail’s Great Journeys of New Zealand scenic rail services, the outdoor viewing carriages will be closed until further notice while a safety solution is found.
Experience the beauty and grandeur of the Southern Alps on a sightseeing day tour to Mount Cook.
Leaving Christchurch in the morning, we travel through the fertile farmland of the Canterbury Plains to the shores of the stunning, glacier-fed Lake Tekapo, where you can view the solitary Church of the Good Shepherd and take in the sights of the spectacular Southern Alps. We then continue to the location of New Zealand's tallest mountain, Aoraki / Mount Cook, situated in a national park and UNESCO World Heritage site. Rising to 3,754 metres high, Aoraki certainly lives up to its name, which in M?ori can be translated as 'cloud piercer'. Legend tells of a young boy named Aoraki who was stranded with his brothers when their canoe struck a reef. As it tilted, the brothers climbed to the high side, where they were frozen by the south wind and turned into stone. Aoraki and his brothers now form the Southern Alps.
Enjoy lunch (optional extra) at the famous Hermitage Hotel in Mount Cook Village. After lunch you'll have time to explore the village and soak up the view. Alternatively there is time to experience a scenic helicopter or ski plane flight for incredible views of mountain peaks and glaciers (additional cost, weather permitting – this flight can be arranged with your driver guide on the day).
The tour continues south, past Lake Pukaki and through the tawny tussock of the Mackenzie Country. En route, enjoy afternoon tea (own expense) in the quaint village of Omarama and if time permits, visit the Jones Family Orchard near Cromwell. Your tour concludes in the evening upon reaching Queenstown, the adventure capital of New Zealand.
Full day tour
Departs Christchurch, arrives Queenstown
Lake Tekapo and Lake Pukaki
Aoraki / Mount Cook National Park
Mackenzie Country scenery
Free WiFi available on board