Grand Traverse Tour - Overview
Our Grand Traverse trip launches from the City of Sails (Auckland) and takes in the country's finest natural highs as you head south. You get to enjoy amazing natural wonders, fantastic hike and cycle options and stunning accommodation by lakes, mountains, beaches and forest. You will see a diverse set of landscapes from white sand beaches and dramatic Fiords to thermal geysers and towering forests.
If you’re keen to tackle some of New Zealand’s great walks, the Grand Traverse won’t let you down! Traversing New Zealand’s greatest one day hike, the Tongariro Crossing as well as the Routeburn Track taking in dramatic vistas of Fiordland National Park are a must do! .
Perfect if you don’t have time for the Ultimate Explorer, this trip, in 15 days will provide you with a journey of grand experiences that you’ll never forget! Finish up in Queenstown, ready to either relax or combat those personal challenges, maybe a bungy or a skydive - Regardless of what you do, you’ll leave New Zealand on a high!
Starting in Auckland the Grand Traverse has you finishing your tour in Queenstown.
Customise Your Trip: If your arrival date into Auckland doesn’t match with our departure date, talk to our crew in the office about how we can make it work, perhaps you can start one or two days later in either Taupo or Rotorua, we will do our best to make it work for you.
If you have a few days after your trip why not extend it with one of these great options:
- Beach It Tour - Take time to chill in the Bay of Islands and unwind on golden beaches and in turquoise water. This great 4 day trip can be added on before your Grand Traverse departure from Auckland.
- Wild West Tour - After the thrills and spills of Queenstown continue your journey up the stunning west coast of the south island to finish in Nelson or Picton or contact us for options back to Christchurch/Wellington or Auckland. This 8 day trip continues on from the end of your Grand Traverse trip.
- Fox Glacier - Add an extra 2 nights to your trip and continue with us through Mt Aspiring National Park and into glacier country, finishing in the alpine village of Fox Glacier. Enjoy time on the ice with Fox Glacier Guides before returning to Queenstown via by bus the following day.
- Greymouth - Add an extra 3 nights to your trip and continue with us through Mt Aspiring National Park and up the west coast to Greymouth. From here you can take the Tranz Alpine scenic train ride through the Southern Alps to Christchurch.
GRAND TRAVERSE TRAVEL DAYS
You can have a look at the detailed day-to-day itinerary on our Flying Kiwi Detailed Itinerary page. The Grand Traverse starts in Auckland and finishes in the adventure capital of Queenstown.
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE GRAND TRAVERSE TOUR
We have included the following must do experiences and essential trip requirements so you don’t need to worry about missing anything:
- Accommodation: Included in the tour price is shared tent accommodation, two people per tent. You can upgrade to your own tent for a small additional cost.
- Food: Most meals are included (see the detailed itinerary which outlines exactly what is included on a day-to-day basis). We can also cater for a broad range of dietary requirements.
- Seafood Feast: Surrounded by the sea, us Kiwi’s love our seafood and we want to treat you to a fresh seafood feast from one of our premium seafood locations.
- Wai-o-tapu Thermal Wonderland: Labelled by Tripadvisor as “One of the 20 most surreal places in the world”, you be the judge!
- Queenstown Gondola: A must do while in Queenstown, get a bird's eye view of this magnificent area.
- Cook Strait Ferry Crossing: Connecting the North and South Islands, this 3 hour journey through the tranquil Marlborough Sounds is an experience on its own, complete with stunning views.
- Sports Equipment: Dependent on the bus there will be a cricket set, bodyboards, frisbee and more.
- Hikes: There are numerous free walks to choose from and we will show you some of our secret spots off the main tourist trails including glow worm caves, 1,000 year old Kauri trees and the roaring Huka Falls.
- Bike Rides: If you have hired one of our bikes then our guides will point you in the direction of incredible daily rides, these will include cycling on roads, beside lakes, mountain bike tracks and cycle trails.
Kiwis are a generous bunch and lots of attractions are free of charge, we take in many of these on the Grand Traverse tour such as the Rotorua Mountain Bike Park (bike hire not included), Otago Early Settlers museum, Te Papa museum, dig your own thermal pool on Hot Water beach, plus much much more!
Visit our bike rides page and the hiking pages for more details.
For more information on freebees offered during the Grand Traverse tour visit our activities page.
IMPORTANT THINGS WE WANT YOU TO KNOW ABOUT THE GRAND TRAVERSE TOUR
During the Grand Traverse we stay at 2 Bush camps, both in the South Island on two consecutive nights. Due to their remote locations there are no cabin upgrade options and they also come with only basic toilet facilities. These two camps are stunning and rated by past travellers as some of their fondest memories.
There is one night where camping isn’t feasible and we stay in a hostel (at your own cost), this is in Picton. Your guide takes care of booking this for you and we have dorm beds reserved for everyone. If you would like a private room (subject to availability) please contact us to book this in advance. Payment is made direct to the hostel on check-in.
End of Trip Transport Options:
The Grand Traverse tour has you finishing in Queenstown where there are regular daily flights to Christchurch, Wellington or Auckland with either Air New Zealand or Jetstar. There are also bus and shuttle services travelling daily from Queenstown to Christchurch costing from $55 NZD.
For more useful information visit our How It Works page here.