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help with 15 day drive in south island, catlins or not..

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help with 15 day drive in south island, catlins or not..

We are two couples in the 60s coming to the South Island November 3 and will drive around for 15 nights. We are not adventurous and go for the scenic. We plan to stay in YHA or BBH. We have great help from TripAdvisor, but now we need more help.

Our planning is

3 14:50 landing in Christchurch and drive the scenic road to Tekapo (no jetlag, coming from Sydney

4 to Mount Cook, stay in Twizel or Omarama?

5 Drive to Dunedin over Lindis Pass. Which is the most scenic road?

6 Otago Peninsula

7 Dunedin to Queenstown, which is the most scenic road. the same road back to Queenstown or what is your suggestion?

9 Queenstown

10 Oueenstown to Te Anau

11 Millford Sound

12 Te Anau to Wanaka

13 Wanaka to Franz Josef

14 Franz Josef to Hokitika

15 to Punakaiki and then over Albert's Passport to Kaurikoura

16-18 Kaurikoura to Akarao and Christchurch. We fly from Christchurck in the evening.

We need help planning the last days from Frans Josef or Hokitika to Christchurch. Your suggestion where to stay?

If we change the planning and drive from Dunedin to the Catlin and then to Te Anau, one overnight.. What is the most scenic road? Where shall we plan to stay?

Is it worth driving the long trip over Catlin to Te Anau?

Where is the best chance to see the penguins? We would like to see them coming back in the evening?

Thanks for the help

New Zealand
Destination Expert
for South Island
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29,900 posts
91 reviews
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1. Re: help with 15 day drive in south island, catlins or not..

Hello ST, your route looks good :)

I would just tweak your trip a bit to make it more relaxing...

3 drive to Akaroa

4 drive to Aoraki/Mt Cook

5 explore - Tasman glacier icebergs?

6 drive Lindis Pass to Dunedin (via Cromwell) 5 hours

7 explore

8 drive Catlins to Te Anau (all day) or drive via Gore to Te Anau (4 hours)

9 explore Milford, stay Te Anau

10 drive to Queenstown

11 explore

12 drive to Wanaka :)

13 drive Haast Pass to Franz Josef

14 explore glaciers

15 drive to Punakaiki

16 drive to Kaikoura (5.5 hours)

17 drive to Chch

18 fly home

hope this helps :)

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2. Re: help with 15 day drive in south island, catlins or not..

When we were in S island several years ago, we decided as we were driving from Te Anau to Dunedin to go via the Catlins. It proved to be one of the best days of our whole trip. Also, the Yha hostel at mount cook village has amazing views of mount cook at a fraction of the price of the hotel there. Happy travelling!

3. Re: help with 15 day drive in south island, catlins or not..

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