We take a private cruise out on the Sound to visit Ship Cove in this 250th anniversary year of Cook’s first landfall. Hear the stories of the Polynesian voyagers’ settlement at Wairau Boulder Bank and discover the history of the eastern coastline at Kaikoura and Akaroa.

7 Day / 6 Night Tour departing Auckland visiting Blenheim, Picton, Ship Cove, Queen Charlotte Sound, Kaikoura, Akaroa and Christchurch

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Tour Price

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$3790 pp twin
$4390 pp single
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Tour Map

Day 1: Fly to Blenheim – Omaka – Picton

Omaka Heritage Centre Airplane

We celebrate arriving in Blenheim with a wine tasting and lunch at Brancott Estate restaurant overlooking the vineyards.

Later we visit Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre to see Sir Peter Jackson’s collection of WW1 and WW2 aircraft and memorabilia. We drive to Picton and stay three nights at the Picton Beachcomber Inn and dine in this evening.

What you'll love today
  • Wine tasting and lunch at Brancott Estate, home to the first ever Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc
  • See Sir Peter Jackson's collection of WW1 & WW2 aircraft and memorabilia
Accommodation

Day 2: Picton – Queen Charlotte Sound, Ship Cove – Picton

Water Taxi at the Ship Cove Wharf, Marlborough Sounds

We take a private discovery cruise out on magnificent Queen Charlotte Sound to Ship Cove near the entrance to the Sound. We lunch at the Cove and enjoy time soaking up the atmosphere at this historic site.

Maori valued Ship Cove's sheltered waters and it’s easy to see why Captain Cook did too, returning four times to drop anchor in this idyllic cove. We cruise back to port in the mid afternoon.

What you'll love today
  • Exploring magnificent Queen Charlotte Sound
  • Soaking up the atmosphere at idyllic Ship Cove
Accommodation

Day 3: Picton – Blenheim – Picton

Edwin Fox Merchant Ship

We visit the “Edwin Fox” sitting in a dry dock on the Picton waterfront. Built in 1853 it’s a massive and fascinating restoration project.

Later we meet our private guide at Marlborough Museum for insights into the early history of the Wairau Bar Boulder Bank which in 1250 was the home of the first Polynesian settlers.

What you'll love today
  • Be amazed at the massive restoration project of the 'second oldest surviving merchant ship'
  • Learn about the history of the Wairau Bar Boulder Bank
Accommodation

Day 4: Picton – Seaview Vineyard – Kekerangu – Kaikoura

Aerial views of the Kaikoura Peninsula and Ranges

We drive around the perimeter of Yealands vineyard to enjoy the expansive views to Cook Strait. We call into The Store for lunch before heading down the dramatically changed coastline. 

At Kaikoura the museum tells the story of the earthquake with the "New Normal" exhibition and we take a guided tour of historic Fyffe House and visit the seal colony. We stay at The White Morph Inn.

What you'll love today
  • Drive the Kaikoura coastline 
  • Visiting historic Fyffe House and Kaikoura's museum "New Normal" earthquake exhibition

Day 5: Kaikoura – Christchurch – Birdlings Flat – Akaroa

Yachts on Akaroa Harbour

Continuing down the Kaikoura Coast and across the Canterbury Plains to Christchurch we tour the inner city rebuild zone before continuing to Banks Peninsula.

At Birdlings Flat we visit the Burkes’ gemstone collection found nearby on the beach. We stay at the Bruce Apartments on the Akaroa waterfront for two nights and dine out this evening.

What you'll love today
  • Tour the inner city of Christchurch
  • Visit Burkes' gemstone collection at Birdlings Flat

Day 6: Banks Peninsula sightseeing – Okains Bay Museum – Giant’s House

The Giant's House

There are panoramic views along the Summit Road. At Okains Bay we visit the Maori and Colonial Museum, a diverse collection of treasures.

Back in Akaroa Josie Martin’s Giant’s House, a six star Garden of International Significance, features Josie’s quirky mosaic sculptures. We dine out in Akaroa this evening.

What you'll love today
  • Visiting the Maori and Colonial Museum
  • Seeing the amazing mosaic sculptures at the Giants House

Day 7: Akaroa – Little River – Christchurch – Fly to Auckland

Little River Railway Station Banks Peninsular

After breakfast at Bully Hayes, named for an early American “pirate” visitor and a stroll in the village, we visit Akaroa Museum where exhibits tell the stories of the Ngai Tahu, whalers and French settlers.

Returning over the Peninsula we stop at Little River on the way to Christchurch airport.

What you'll love today
  • Seeing the exhibits at the Akaroa Museum
  • Enjoy lunch at Little River 

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