3
Moderate
Activities
  • 10 day Trek and Cycle
Accommodation
  • 6 nights hotel/motel 2 nights backcountry hut
  • 1 night cabin on luxury yacht
Meals
  • 6 Dinners
  • 9 Lunches
  • 9 Breakfasts

10 Days$6495NZD

Trip Code: SOG8306

Trip highlights


  • Hike to some of the most secluded ridges in the Southern Alps
  • Overnight in a backcountry hut with stunning views of the Mackenzie Basin
  • Admire the majesty of NZ's highest peak, Aoraki/Mt Cook from a high vantage point
  • Experience the stunningly engineered Lake Dunstan Trail by bike
  • Take a spectacular gondola ride in Queenstown overlooking Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkable Ranges
  • Overnight on a luxury yacht on the majestic Doubtful Sound - a once in a lifetime experience!
  • Ride the new Lake to Lake trail from Lake Manapouri to Lake Te Anau
  • Hike part of the Routeburn Track to Key Summit a NZ Great Walk and take in the impressive scenery and huge mountains of Fiordland National Park

Packed full of highlights, this is a spectacular hiking and cycling adventure which includes mountain peaks, remote lake and valley systems and the splendour of Aoraki Mount Cook. The trip begins with a drive to the highland region of Lake Tekapo with the first 2 nights on the trail spent at a private backcountry hut with superb alpine and lakeside vistas. Trek east along a ridgeline to a peak around 2000m before transfering to Aoraki Mount Cook National Park. Here we spend a day hiking on a ridge overlooking the Hooker Glacier and directly across from the spectacular Mt Sefton with its rumbling avalanches of ice and rock. Next up is the Lake Dunstan Trail, initially following the glistening lake's edge to Cromwell, with time to explore the Cromwell Heritage Precinct. Heading across the Bannockburn Bridge, into the picturesque Cromwell Gorge and through to the charming town of Clyde. We then head to Queenstown before continuing to Manapouri, the gateway of Fiordland National Park to join an excursion into Doubtful Sound which takes us across the lake and over Wilmot Pass to Deep Cove. Here we overnight and cruise through the extensive deep-sided fiord which has to be the highlight of this tour. From Lake Manapouri we ride the breathtaking Lake to Lake trail from Te Anau. Finally we embark on an amazing journey along the Milford Road stopping to enjoy walking along the famous Routeburn track to Key Summit and cycle through Fiordland National Parks' iconic beech forests and superb mountain scenery along the way. This sensational journey concludes with a scenic drive back to Queenstown Airport.


This morning we drive south through the Canterbury Plains to Fairlie and inland to Lake Tekapo for lunch. We drive along Tekapo's lakeside to Mt Gerald station and then hike 3-4 hours into the Rex Simpson Hut, (a 12 bunk private hut on the station). To greet us are stunning vistas across the lake and into the rolling tussock landscape that surrounds the area (up to 3-4 hours walking). As day turns to night we savour the sun setting behind mountain silhouettes and a star-studded sky - one of the clearest and darkest skies in the southern hemisphere and enjoy a hearty meal prepared by your guides. The hut consists of three rooms, sleeping 12 participants and 2 guides in total. There are no showers and the toilet is a traditional longdrop loo with a view! The hut is fully equipped with pot belly stove, firewood, gas, and solar lighting. Sleeping bags, pillows and mattresses are at the hut; liners and pillow cases are provided each trip. It provides a comfortable and unique place to call home for the first 2 nights. Note: Please remember we will be staying in an alpine hut, you will not need to take all your luggage with you and we suggest packing a small overnight bag with clothing suitable for staying in an alpine environment. If necessary we can provide small overnight packs and walking poles. Accommodation: Rex Simpson Hut (shared facilities)

Meals:  L,D

After breakfast, we head out from the hut and climb onto a broad easy spur which gradually gains height showcasing breathtaking views back down the lake and across to the Southern Alps with the prominent east faces of Mt Cook and Tasman. For the strong trekker, the summit of Beuzenberg Peak at 2070m is a just reward. We return back to the hut for another hearty meal and spectacular sunset should the weather play ball (up to 6-8 hours walking). Accommodation: Rex Simpson Hut (shared facilities)

Meals:  B,L,D

Today starts with a walk back down to the road end from Rex Simpson hut. There's time to look around Tekapo and pick up a coffee and packed lunch before heading to Aoraki/Mt Cook Village. This afternoon we'll choose from a number of short walks in the area dependent upon weather conditions and fitness levels from the previous day. A walk to the Red Tarns, named because of the red pond weed, offers stunning views directly onto Mt Sefton. Its a short steep climb with a number of steps that take us quickly to this panoramic high point. From here we can rest and take in the views directly up the Hooker Valley and back down the Tasman Valley. The Hooker Valley walk is also a favourite weaving under the towering peaks and across swing bridges to a beautiful glacial lake. (Up to 4-5 hours walking). Tonight’s accommodation is within Aoraki/Mt Cook Village itself with outstanding views of the sun setting on the surrounding mountains. Accommodation: Aoraki Court Motel

Meals:  B,L,D

The entire day awaits to explore Aoraki Mt Cook National Park and immerse ourselves in the awe inspiring landscapes and mighty peaks that surround. Today we climb up to the Sealy Tarns gaining 450m in the first hour. From here there are awesome views around the neighbouring valleys, the Mt Cook Range and Mt Sefton. Then the path becomes less defined, a little rocky in places, and as it gets higher and starts to leave the alpine scrub and tussock, it enters boulder fields. The final ascent to the ridge line is up a steep-ish scree slope. At around 1600m, the view opens up to an amazing vista of Mt Sefton and the Mueller Glacier far below. Mueller Hut is then about a kilometre away, at an altitude just short of 1800m. The route to the hut is marked by poles, across boulder fields, and requires some rock-hopping, but later on crosses a couple of small basins before reaching the hut. The hut is located at a unique vantage point with 360-degree views of uninterrupted alpine beauty. It makes a wonderful location for lunch before returning the same way. A second night in the village provides another opportunity to view these peaks at sundown and the incredible starry night sky that follows. Accommodation: Aoraki Court Motel

Meals:  B,L

This morning there is another opportunity for a short walk in Aoraki Mount Cook National Park, again largely dictated by what we've achieved the previous two days, it could be a Hooker Valley walk or visit to the Tasman Glacier View point. Leaving the Mackenzie basin we cross ‘water-sheds’ and drive over the Lindis Pass through to Cromwell with a lunch stop along the way. Nestled in the heart of Central Otago, Cromwell is surrounded by rugged mountains, two magnificent rivers, and the crystal clear waters of Lake Dunstan where the Lake Dunstan Trail awaits! Take the time this afternoon to relax after a big few days of walking. Accommodation: Asure Central Gold Motel

Meals:  B,L,D

We unload the bikes at Smith’s Way and start our journey with an easy ride following the glistening shores of Lake Dunstan. We pass through Cromwell’s Old Town, a small historic precinct dating back to the gold rush days of the 1800s, where galleries, coffee shops and boutiques give us a short break from the bike. The trail continues along the Kawarau arm of Lake Dunstan to the Bannockburn Bridge offering stunning views across the lake while passing by wineries and olive groves, making the perfect stop for lunch. From Cornish Point some riders will continue on along the new Lake Dunstan Trail into the dramatic Cromwell Gorge, where the track winds around sheer rockfaces and over lake inlets on impressively engineered platforms and bridges rising above the lake to Clyde. This afternoon we drive through the picturesque Kawarau Gorge to Queenstown. This evening you are free to explore and enjoy the ‘Adventure Capital of NZ’ known for it's adrenaline activities as well as it's stunning lakeside and mountain views. Finish your day with a Gondola ride, taking you 480m up over Lake Wakatipu to the top of Bob’s Peak. Enjoy spectacular views of Coronet Peak, The Remarkables, Walter and Cecil Peak, and, of course, Queenstown. Cycling Distances: Smith’s Way to Cornish Point – 30km/18miles Cornish Point to Clyde via Lake Dunstan (Moderate) – 25km/15miles Clyde to Alexandra River Trail (Introductory) – 12km/7miles each way. Accommodation: Blue Peaks Lodge

Meals:  B,L

This morning we will drive to Manapouri where we are dwarfed by the mountains looming all around us and there is no question that we are on the edge of the wonderfully remote Fiordland National Park. At midday we join a spectacular Doubtful Sound experience beginning with a short ride across Lake Manapouri, a drive over Wilmot Pass to Deep Cove to meet our boat. We cruise out into the Doubtful Sound, formed by glaciers, with huge cascading waterfalls and vertical cliff faces. As we sail we are surrounded by magnificent views with a nature guide sharing their knowledge of the region, and wildlife which might include dolphins, fur seals and the rare Fiordland crested penguin. There is also the chance to kayak from the boat. At the end of the day we relax into an evening of entertainment, fine food and comfortable sleep in our private cabins. In the heart of the wilderness of the Fiordland National Park we are constantly surrounded by magnificent views of the mountains, the sunset is superb and we feel quite insignificant amongst this grandeur. Accommodation: Doubtful Sound Navigator

Meals:  B,L,D

After a delicious on-board breakfast we have more time cruising through the fiord. We then return to Deep Cove and travel back to Manapouri over Wilmot Pass and Lake Manapouri, arriving at midday. This afternoon, we enjoy a delightful ride on the new Lake to Lake trail connecting Lake Te Anau to Lake Manapouri, following the glistening Waiau River. In the heart of Fiordland with lake, mountain and riverside views as well as native bush, wetlands and farmland scenery. On arriving into Te Anau in the late afternoon there will be time to relax or wander along the shores of Lake Te Anau. There is an option to join an excursion to see the glowworm caves by boat. Your guides can help with suggestions and make any bookings. In the early evening we head to Fiordland Cinema to see "Ata Whenua" (Shadowland) a beautiful short movie showcasing Fiordland landscapes from the air. Cycling Distance: Lake to Lake Trail - 28km Accommodation: Distinction Luxmore

Meals:  B,L

Today is spent exploring the Milford Road, where we drive back into the Fiordland National Park amid the beech forests and mountains, that the region is famous for. The beautiful Milford road tracks through the wilderness and we stop to enjoy some of the short walks and views on the way. If weather conditions allow, we hop on the bikes here and enjoy the wonderful cycle down the Milford Sound Highway and along the very quiet and scenic Hollyford road. From The Divide we walk to Key Summit, a 3 hour return hike which forms part of the Routeburn Track, gives spectacular views of the Hollyford Valley and Humboldt and Earl mountain ranges. We then head back to Te Anau, where we spend our final night and meet in the early evening for our final group dinner together. Cycling Distance: Hollyford Road 27km / 17miles Accommodation: Distinction Luxmore

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast we head back to Queenstown, depending on your departing flight time there may to time to stop along the way for short walk, lake swim or explore the nearby Queenstown Trails by bike. Dropping off at Queenstown Airport is where we say a fond farewell and brings our fabulous journey to an end.

Meals:  B


Inclusions

  • Tasty cafe breakfasts (x9), gourmet picnic or cafe lunches (x9), two course restaurant dinners (x6) catered to all dietary requirements
  • 2 nights in a private mountain hut (shared facilities)
  • 6 nights hand picked hotel/motel ensuite accommodation on a twin/double share basis
  • 1 night Doubtful Sound Navigator double cabin (ensuite) & Quad cabin (shared facilities)
  • Experienced guide who handle all the hard bits and share epic stories
  • Private vehicle transport including trailer for luggage & bikes
  • Hybrid Mountain Bike hire and helmet
  • Skyline gondola ride into Queenstown
  • Entry to Ata Whenua movie at Fiordland Cinema
  • Tasty nutritious snacks, drinks and treats plus our famous morning and afternoon teas
  • Transfer to Queenstown Airport
  • Packs and poles (on request if required) - please let our staff know in advance
  • Pre departure information kit to help you plan and prepare
  • Access and concession fees paid to the Department of Conservation

  • International or domestic flights and taxes
  • Arrival transfer, pre and or post tour accommodation
  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary
  • All beverages, other than breakfast
  • Water bottle (help us save the environment and bring your own drink bottle or hydration system)
  • Optional activities not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Personal expenses (eg. phone calls, internet, laundry, shopping etc)
  • Travel insurance
  • Visa (if required)

About Your Leader

Our guides are one of our biggest assets. We pride ourselves on the standard and quality of these great people who you will be spending your holiday with. They come from all walks of life but they all have a common desire to give you the best possible experience, heaps of fun and lots of fond memories to take home with you. We provide you with the services of two guides for many of our trips, (this may depend on the size of the group). All are certified in first aid and CPR and many are advanced mountain guides.


Accommodation


Trail Surface


Grading

Moderate  
3

To determine the grade of a particular adventure we consider a number of factors. These include the condition of the terrain, the altitude, the number of pass crossings and the length of the trip. While part of this itinerary does utilise formed tracks, some days the hikes involve untracked scree and tussock. Some of the walking involves gradual climbing without a formed track to follow. The sense of isolation and wilderness is a strong feature of this trip. For you to be able to really enjoy this trip we recommend that you are confident walking across uneven terrain and are able to walk comfortably for up 4-6 hours at a time (with breaks included) and enjoy walking uphill, with some steep sections. The cycle trails on this trip are graded introductory-moderate. The trails are generally a good width with a compacted gravel trail surface but there can be exposure in places along the Gorges, as well as narrow sections with switchbacks so experience on this type of terrain is needed. Most of the trails are a gentle gradient, however there are a few hills and sharp inclines. You will need a reasonable level of fitness and we suggest 2-3 rides per week of 2-3 hours for the three months leading up to your trip. We recommend training on compacted gravel trails, and completing a multi-day ride prior to your trip to get used to being in the saddle for long periods of time. The more training you have done on hills with switchbacks and narrow trails and on compacted gravel, the more enjoyable your trip will be.


Departure dates


Want to organise a private group?

Fundraising events, sporting groups, family treats; learn how you can organise a Private Group from just 6 travellers.

Priceper person from

$6495NZD

Options & Supplements*
    *Prices listed are per person

Essential information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed Davies Family Southern Alps, Lake Dunstan & Fiordland trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.


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