My husband and I are travelling to New Zealand for our first time at the end of February. We are flying into Queenstown and out of Christchurch. We love to hike/tramp and enjoy nature, and plan to rent a car and perhaps camp a couple of nights in Mt Cook. Here's our plan so far. Would love to hear your thoughts. Specifically, trying to decide if we should keep in the 2 nights in the Catlins, or instead add an extra night each into Te Anau and Wanaka. We'd love to see and enjoy things, but also not be exhausted.
Day 1: arrive into QTN at 12:30pm (from SFO via Aukland). Overnight in QTN
Day 2: explore Glenorchy, overnight in QTN
Day 3: Drive to Routeburn shelter and start 3-day walk on Routeburn track. Overnight at DOC hut (booked)
Day 4: Tramp. DOC hut (booked)
Day 5: finish our tramp, pick up our re-located car and drive to Te Anau to overnight. (I assumed that if we finished our tramp ~1pm at the Divide, we would be too tired and it would be too late to drive the short distance to Milford Sound, take a cruise, then safely drive back to Te Anau to overnight--- does that sound like a correct assumption?)
Day 6: Day trip to Milford Sound (based on above, or around TA), boat cruise, Walking, overnight in Te Anau
Day 7: Walking, Manapouri, drive to Fortrose to see Catlins. Overnight in Fortrose
Day 8: Catlins. Overnight in Kaka Point
Day 9: Drive to Wakaka, stop in Arrowtown along the way (necessary?). Overnight in Wanaka
Day 10: Wanaka
Day 11: Drive to Aoraki Mt Cook. Set up Camp at Whitehorse Hill.
Day 12: Hooker Valley walk. Overnight in campground.
Day 13: Drive to Chch, see Lakes Pukaki and Tekapo along the way. Overnight in Chch
Day 14: Fly out of Chch
Does this sound reasonable? Would any of you suggest taking out the Catlins on days 7 & 8, replacing with additional days at Te Anau and Wanaka?
Thanks so much, appreciate all your advice while scouring the forums and putting together our plans!