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Help in working out best itinary for 5 days in top part of S

Sydney, Australia
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Help in working out best itinary for 5 days in top part of S

Hi, we are travelling to NZ early January. 2 adults and three sons ranging in age from 13-21 years. We will be arriving in Picton around lunch time on the inter island ferry and leaving early morning Christchurch 5 days later. We will have a car.

I love wine, culture and scenery, my hubby likes fishing, the kids love adventure and chocolate.

Budget isn't extensive but also not on a shoestring.

Should we stay on the eastern side or will we have time to go across the western as well if we don't go below Christchurch/ Greymouth?

Thanks for any advice

New Zealand
Destination Expert
for South Island
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28,461 posts
85 reviews
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1. Re: Help in working out best itinary for 5 days in top part of S

Welcome to the forum SueC :)

here's one option;

1 arrive Picton, explore Marlborough wines and chocolate https:/…makana_wheretobuy.aspx

2 drive Queen Charlotte to Nelson newzealand.com/ca/…

3 hike/kayak Abel Tasman National Park http://www.abeltasman.co.nz/

4 drive Lewis Pass to Chch

5 fly out

hope this helps :)

Sydney, Australia
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2. Re: Help in working out best itinary for 5 days in top part of S

Thanks for that. The links are great.

Nelson, New Zealand
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3. Re: Help in working out best itinary for 5 days in top part of S

Hi Sue, The Queen Charlotte Drive is very windy and slow but very pretty.

You can take a more direct route on the main highway if time or carsickness is a factor.

For fabulous wineries Nelson has oodles, here's a link to a small boutique winery I've been too in Neudorf but there are plenty of others closer to town.

http://www.neudorf.co.nz/

Nelson also has great cafes, beaches, and arts and crafts. and as wanakalakes has mentioned a day trip into the Abel Tasman is a good trip.

The fishing in Nelson can be pretty good too.

There's Happy Valley adventures http://www.happyvalleyadventures.co.nz/ for lots of fun for adults and kids, the skywire is very popular :)

Kaikoura also has fantastic fishing, Whalewatching, seal encounters and bird watching.

If heading to ChCh via Lewis Pass, Hanmer is a nice place to spend a night.

You can get a thrill on a jetboat ride up the river and a bungy jump, then relax in the thermal pools in the evening http://www.hanmersprings.co.nz/

New Zealand
Destination Expert
for South Island
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28,461 posts
85 reviews
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4. Re: Help in working out best itinary for 5 days in top part of S

The Queen Charlotte is indeed twisty but also very scenic.

The alternate route to Nelson via Blenheim is far more kms so while you drive faster than on the QC, both routes take the exact same amount of time, not counting any stops.

Edited: 26 December 2012, 19:46
Canandaigua
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5. Re: Help in working out best itinary for 5 days in top part of S

We had car- sickness issues for our back seat passengers, especially the 12 year old.

I suggest making time to stop at the Pelorus River DOC site on the way between Picton and Nelson. There are a few hiking trails, a swing bridge, and our entire family enjoyed swimming in the gorgeous water. Plus, that is the scene where the dwarves float down the river in barrels in the next part of The Hobbit!It was a favorite stop on our recent trip with my 12 and 21 year old children. An hour or two should suffice, and there is a cafe if you don't bring lunch.

Another stop I would recommend if not already booked is at the Hopewell BBH hostel on Kennepuru sound, near Picton. We stayed 2 nights and I wish it had been longer. they have fishing, kayaking, hiking with glowworms, a hot tub and fabulous owners, so instead of having to seek out all these activities, they are centered right there. There is a small extra charge for fishing or kayaking, but much less than a catered trip. It was a great spot for a family of outdoor enthusiasists with older kids!

Because of price(and kayaking at Hopewell) we did not do a separate kayaking trip in Abel Tasman. We went hiking instead. One great hike was to Wanui Falls.

Have a great trip!

6. Re: Help in working out best itinary for 5 days in top part of S

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