Christmas in Marlborough

Christmas in Marlborough

6 day small group Marlborough Christmas tour

Travel up the Kaikoura Coast to lunch in a Marlborough vineyard and visit Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre. Celebrate Christmas on Endeavour Inlet at Furneaux Lodge, reached only by water from Picton. Check out the sights and stay a night in Nelson and a final night in Punakaiki on the edge of the Tasman Sea.

WHAT TRACY LOVES ABOUT THIS TOUR: I love this itinerary’s variety of land and seascapes. From the Canterbury farmland giving way to the wild, raw Kaikoura coastline to the Punakaiki Rocks on the West Coast. We make the most of beautiful Queen Charlotte Sound with a private dinner cruise and then on Christmas Day cruising further down the Sound to lunch at Furneaux Lodge on Endeavour Inlet.
  • $3,990 (NZD) pp twin
  • $4,690 (NZD) pp single

Day 1

Fly to Christchurch – Waipara - Kaikoura

Your Kiwi Guide meets your flight at Christchurch airport, then we head northwards for lunch at a Waipara vineyard. Continuing over the Hunderlee Hills to Kaikoura we visit Fyffe House, Kaikoura’s oldest building dating back to the 1840s and the nearby seal colony.

At the museum the “New Normal, the Kaikoura Earthquake Exhibition” looks at the quake’s impact. No visit to Kaikoura is complete without the stunning views and wildlife of the Peninsula lookout. We stay at the White Morph Inn.

  • Lunch and wine taste at a Waipara Vineyard 
  • Stunning views of the Kaikoura ranges and Pacific Ocean

Accommodation

Kaikoura, White Morph Inn

Kaikoura - White Morph Inn

Here’s how someone summed it up on Tripadvisor recently: “You can sit and watch the whales from your balcony – town is a 5 min walk away and the views of Kaikoura are stunning. The staff were all very friendly and helpful, nice people all round.”

What we love about the White Morph – The great coffee next door, being right across from the beach and on a quiet street.

Day 2

Kaikoura – Kekerengu – Blenheim - Queen Charlotte Sound – Blenheim

We drive up the stunning Kaikoura coastline to the Store at Kekerengu. In Blenheim we lunch and wine taste at Wither Hills vineyard and visit the outstanding Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre which features a large collection of First and Second World War flying memorabilia.

This evening we take a relaxed, private dinner cruise to explore the bays and stunning beauty of Queen Charlotte Sound. We return to Blenheim to stay two nights at the Scenic Hotel Marlborough.

  • Visit the Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre 
  • See Queen Charlotte Sound’s beauty close-up on a private dinner cruise

Accommodation

Scenic Hotel Blenheim

BLENHEIM - SCENIC HOTEL MARLBOROUGH

Located in the heart of sunny Marlborough, this Blenheim hotel is just minutes walk from the middle of town. This contemporary 4-star plus property sparkles with style and comfort and has signature kiwi-made wool and down bedding. 

What we love about Scenic Hotel Marlborough – You will know you are in the heart of Sauvignon Blanc country with the hotel offering a wine tasting which includes a selection of six of the best wines of the region. Head to the the bar and enjoy.

Day 3

Blenheim – Furneaux Lodge, Endeavour Inlet - Picton - Blenheim

We breakfast at our hotel and head to the Picton waterfront where we board a launch to cruise down beautiful Queen Charlotte Sound to Endeavour Inlet where we celebrate Christmas with lunch at Furneaux Lodge, reached only by water or the Queen Charlotte Track. Stroll the lawns and enjoy the views.

In the mid afternoon we cruise back down the Sound to Picton and return to Blenheim to dine back in our hotel this evening. 

  • Cruise on Queen Charlotte Sound to Endeavour Inlet
  • Enjoy Christmas lunch at remote Furneaux Lodge

Accommodation

Scenic Hotel Blenheim

BLENHEIM - SCENIC HOTEL MARLBOROUGH

Located in the heart of sunny Marlborough, this Blenheim hotel is just minutes walk from the middle of town. This contemporary 4-star plus property sparkles with style and comfort and has signature kiwi-made wool and down bedding. 

What we love about Scenic Hotel Marlborough – You will know you are in the heart of Sauvignon Blanc country with the hotel offering a wine tasting which includes a selection of six of the best wines of the region. Head to the the bar and enjoy.

Day 4

Blenheim – Picton ”Edwin Fox” – Havelock – Nelson

This morning we find out the history of the old sailing ship “Edwin Fox” on the Picton waterfront – from troop carrier to immigrant ship, even convict transporter. Built in 1853, this massive restoration project gives a fascinating insight into life on board a sailing ship.

We drive to Havelock for a short stroll and lunch near Pelorus Sound. Continuing to Nelson we sightsee in the city before checking into Tides Hotel, we dine in this evening.  

  • Get an insight into life on board a sailing ship 
  • Lunch in Havelock and end the day in Nelson

Accommodation

Tides Hotel

Nelson - Tides Hotel

You’ll feel the family South Island hospitality here, the team at Tides always welcome us as friends. Three minutes from the centre of town and 10 minutes from the cathedral, the best spot in sunny Nelson.

What we love about Tides – You can’t beat this location, just a stone’s throw into town and great riverside walking right out the door too.

Day 5

Driving the Art Deco Trail - Havelock North - Te Awanga

We drive through the stunning scenery of the Buller Gorge and on to visit the seal colony at Cape Foulwind. At Charleston we stop for lunch and take a ride on the rainforest train to see the limestone formations of the Nile River Valley in the Paparoa National Park.

It’s just a short walk out to the Punakaiki Pancake Rocks. If the tide is right blowholes will be spreading clouds of spray. We stay nearby at the Scenic Hotel, Punakaiki, on the edge of the Tasman Sea, and dine in this evening.

  • Discover the lost world of the Nile Valley in Paparoa National Park
  • Stroll out to the Punakaiki Pancake Rocks and Blowholes

Accommodation

Scenic Hotel Punakaiki

Punakaiki - Scenic Hotel

What a spot for our final night, we’re so close to the beach you can smell the sea air and hear the waves crashing on the shore. Just around the corner from the Pancake Rocks and tucked in beside our own little beach, most the world just passes on by.

What we love about Scenic Hotel Punakaiki – sharing a farewell drink on the beach right outside our rooms for our last sunset on tour.

Day 6

Punakaiki – Kumara – Arthur’s Pass – Christchurch – Return flight

Leaving the coast, we call into Kumara for refreshments at the beautifully restored Theatre Royal Hotel, an historic gem, before driving up the Otira Viaduct, a spectacular, cantilevered road. We stop at the summit to admire the views back down the valley before continuing to Arthur’s Pass village.

We follow the Waimakariri River through beech forests and magnificent alpine scenery to Kura Tawhiti Castle Hill, where there’s time for a short stroll, before descending Porter’s Pass to the Canterbury Plains and Christchurch Airport.

  • Wake up by the beach and cross the mountains to Christchurch
  • The Otira Viaduct, a spectacular cantilevered road

Next departures

Tour DatePrice (from)Availability
23 Dec 2024 - 28 Dec 2024
$3,990 (NZD)
Sorry it's full
Enquire

Please contact us if you have any questions about our tour departure dates.

Tour DatePrice (from)Availability
23 Dec 2024 - 28 Dec 2024
$3,990 (NZD)
Sorry it's full
Enquire
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