Tranz-Alpine Express & Wild West Coast Discovery Tour 2019
Door to Door pickups, Flights, Transport, Train, Accommodation, All Tours, Meals as listed (B breakfast, MT Morning Tea, L Lunch, D Dinner)
Monday September 2nd DAY ONE D
Departing from Tauranga, we fly to Christchurch. After we have settled into our accommodation, we will be picked up for a tour of the Rebuild Zone, The Ingenious Cardboard Cathedral and outer districts of Christchurch taking in the devastation and viewing the emergence of the exciting new city centre. Once we have returned to the Hotel, we will enjoy some free time after which we will meet for dinner at the onsite Restaurant.
Tuesday September 3rd DAY TWO B, L, D
We are starting with a short journey to the Rail Station. We depart for the mountain vistas of the Southern Alps on the modernised Tranz Alpine Train. Sit back in luxury and travel through the Torlesse Range, across the Waimakariri River, Arthur’s Pass, Taramakau River, Lake Brunner, Arnold River, the Grey River and arrive on the West Coast at Greymouth. Train facilities include café carriage, luxury seating, informative commentary, outdoor viewing carriage and spacious modern toilets. We will be met at the station by our West Coast Guide. Then on to the famous Monteith Brewery for lunch. Recently opened, this is a fantastic place to learn more about the iconic Kiwi Company. After our short Tour and Tasting, we travel up the Grey Valley through Dobson and Wallsend passing the Brunner Mine site. If time allows we will take a walk across the bridge and explore the buildings and Coke Ovens. Crossing back over the bridge we continue onto our accommodation, the Punakaiki Resort a stunning complex located at Punakaiki Beach and 300 meters from the famous Pancake Rocks and Blowholes. Once checked in we will meet in the onsite seaside restaurant “Jacobs Grill”.
Wednesday September 4th DAY THREE B, MT, D
This morning we take a short walk around the fantastic Pancake Rocks then travel up the spectacular coast road to Tauranga Bay. This road is rated as one of the world’s most scenic coastal drives. At Cape Foul Wind and Tauranga Bay, we will visit the Seal Colony and local Weka hangout and then continue to Westport for lunch. We climb to the summit of the Denniston Plateau the location of the infamous 1880’s Denniston Mine. The old coal transport road travels high above the dramatic Waimangaroa Gorge. Here we will learn of those that lived and worked in the windswept bleakness of Denniston`s infamous mountain plateau and was the basis for Jenny Patrick’s book Denniston Rose. From here we travel back to Westport and have a guided tour around the award-winning Coal Town Museum, before heading back to our accommodation and enjoying a lovely buffet dinner.
Thursday September 5th DAY FOUR B
This morning we track the scenic Buller River to Murchison travelling through the mountain beech forests of the Brunner Range and Kahurangi National Park. On our way, we will stop at Murchison for lunch then continue our journey up the Hope River, through the Hope Saddle and down into the Wai-iti Valley to Nelson where we’ll catch our flight back home.
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