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south island tour - 2 weeks - from christchurch
This itinerary is a general guide what you may want to do on a 2 week tour of the South Island, Assuming you fly into Christchurch International Airport (CHC). Times can easily be extended to make the trip longer.
DAY 1: Arrive at CHC, and pick up a rental car from airport (see Car Rental Links). You can hire a car later on if you wish, and bus around Christchurch. Check in at a motel/hotel. Tour around the central city, taking in the sights and sounds of the city.
DAY 2 - 4: Continue to tour around Christchurch. See Christchurch Attractions for more info.
DAY 5:Drive down to Dunedin. It's a 5-hour drive from Christchurch, along State Highway 1. Spend the day looking around the city.
DAY 6: Drive west from Dunedin, to Queenstown. Expect a three-hour drive. Check into a hotel/motel when you get there.
DAY 7 - 9:Continue exploring Queenstown at both ends of the scale; thrill-seeking attractions, and idyllic scenery. If these are not what you like, then you can cut Queenstown short and continue on. You can also venture out to the Southern Lakes; Te Anau and Wanaka are just a short drive away.
DAY 10: Most of Day 10 will be spent driving up the West Coast. You can stop at towns along the way, especially the old Gold Mining towns like Shantytown. You can stay somewhere along the West Coast for the tenth night, like Hokitika or Greymouth.
DAY 11:Arrive in Nelson. This is a good time to tour around the Nelson Bays. If you like fishing or water recreation, you can hire a boat at Picton and travel around the Marlborough Sounds for a few days.
DAY 12: Driving along State Highway 7 from Nelson, it should take approximately 3.5 hours to reach the junction with Highway 7A, to Hanmer Springs, which is only 30 minutes north of this junction. In Hanmer, you will find thrill-seeking, and scenery, but the biggest attraction is the Thermal Reserve, where you can relax under the beauty of the mountains. Spend the night at one of Hanmer's many hotels and motels.
DAY 13: Return to Christchurch along SH7 again. If whale-watching interests you, continue north at SH1 to reach Kaikoura, where you can see whales, dolphins and seals in their natural environment.

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