Wine and wildlife in South Island

New Zealand’s South Island can only be described as the ultimate outdoor playground – spectacular scenery and adventure await at every corner. In addition to the varied beauty of the landscapes, the South Island beholds a myriad of renowned wineries and superb wildlife watching opportunities.

Prepare for a 10 day wildlife, wine and adventure packed holiday as you explore some of the island’s gems.

Day 1: Arrival

Upon arrival at Chrischurch Airport, you will be met by a representative who will assist you with the collection of your rental vehicle.

Then, start off your journey as your drive to Annandale on Banks Peninsula. Set amid a rugged landscape of hills and bays on Banks Peninsula, this historic farm features a restored five-bedroom homestead with magnificent gardens, infinity pool, spa pool and tennis court. The heart of the Annandale homestead is undoubtedly the large kitchen, with its farmhouse table and views out to the lawns and kitchen garden beyond.

You will have the remainder of the day at leisure to explore the surroundings or just relax.

Stay: Annandale

Day 2: Exploring Banks Peninsula

You have the day at leisure to relax and enjoy the wonderful retreat on Pigeon Bay. While Annandale offers every luxury and comfort on the inside, it is what’s on the outside that really sets it apart.

Here are just a few suggested activities for your free time:

  • Hiking and Biking: there are several spectacular tracks on the Annandale property itself, varying in length and terrain, including the 14km Pigeon Bay Walkway.
  • Water activities
  • Local Tours: take to the skies in a helicopter for a bird’s eye perspective of the dramatic landscape, for example, or let a local fishing expert take you out in a boat or to one of the nearby rivers.
  • Culinary Skills: improve your kitchen skills or finding out more about New Zealand cuisine. Without even having to leave the property, you can specify what you’d like to learn about and spend a wonderful day transforming fresh produce into delicious dishes with the help of a professional.

Stay: Annandale

Day 3: Exploring Akaroa

Make your way to Akaroa Harbour for your two hour Akaroa Dolphine Cruise. The area is renowned for its sparkling waters and spectacular views, home to a variety of sea life. This includes the world’s smallest and rarest dolphins, the Hector’s dolphins, as well as New Zealand fur seals, little blue penguins and a myriad of bird life.

You will have the remainder of the day at leisure to explore the surroundings or just relax.

Stay: Annandale

Day 4: Whale Watching

After checking out of your hotel, you will drive your rental car to the Kaikoura township and enjoy the pleasant North Canterbury countryside en-route which is approximately 3 hours 30 minutes’ drive. A lunch reservation has been made at Pegasus Bay Restaurant.

After lunch, another incredible wildlife experience awaits: whale watching boat excursion during which time you will observe not only Sperm whales, but dolphins and fur seals as well.

In the evening, you will have dinner at Green Dolphin Restaurant before having a good night’s sleep at The Factory, located on the beachfront at Hapuku.

Stay: The Factory

Day 5: Heading to Picton

Today you will head to your next destination, Picton. En route we recommend a stop at Ohau to visit the resident seal colony. Then, make your way to Wither Hills for lunch.

Later on during the day, enjoy some time at leisure and indulge in one of the recommended activities:

  • Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre
  • Boutique breweries and gourmet foods
  • Marlborough Museum & Millennium Art Gallery
  • Boutique shopping at the Vines Village (15 minutes drive)

Once you have arrived in Picton, your private water taxi awaits to take you on a scenic transfer to your accommodation, Bay of Many Coves. Situated on the waters edge, the Resort offers a retreat in an unspoilt environment specializing in sailing, fishing, walking and kayaking.

Stay: Bay of Many Coves

Day 6: Day at Leisure

Today you will have the remainder of the day at leisure to explore nearby sites or simply relax at the resort.

Here are just a few suggested activities for your free time:

  • Kayaking
  • Paddle Boarding
  • Native Flora and Fauna
  • A boat ride in the Bay
  • Waterfall walk
  • Swim with Dolphins
  • Hiking or biking the Queens Charlotte Track
  • Wineries of Marlborough
  • Horse riding
  • Scenic flights

Stay: Bay of Many Coves

Day 7: Cruising the inner Pelorus and Kenepuru Sounds

After breakfast, you will return to Picton and drive onwards to Havelock. En route, we recommend stopping for lunch at ‘The Slip Inn Café’ at Havelock Marina.

In the afternoon, hop aboard a cruise to inner Pelorus and Kenepu Sounds. Take in the natural beauty of this tranquil environment, learn the Intricacies of growing this delicacy in the Sounds, and taste freshly steamed mussels with a glass of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc.

Following your cruise, you will continue to Nelson and your accommodation at Edenhouse. Nestled in a serene valley in the heart of rural Nelson, Edenhouse is an overdue reminder of the genuine meaning of luxury. This enchanting country retreat is set in fifty acres of private grounds and eight acres of gardens.

Stay: Edenhouse

Day 8: Enjoying Abel Tasman National Park

Drive to Stephens Bay in the morning for your private day cruise in the Abel Tasman National Park.

Your scenic cruise begins at Split Apple Rock where you may see several shags drying their wings after their early morning fishing expeditions. The cruise itinerary is flexible so if there is a particular bay or park feature you want to see, please let the skipper know and he will try to accommodate your wishes.

The boat will make a stop at a sheltered bay for a light lunch. Swim, sea kayak, go ashore for a bush walk, or just relax on the boat while lunch is prepared. The delicious platter style lunch with fresh local ingredients, whilst local beer and wine is available for purchase. Enjoy the beauty of the Abel Tasman National Park and the Tonga Island marine reserve in a relaxed and unhurried day.

Stay: Edenhouse

Day 9: From Nelson to Christchurch

After checking out of your hotel, you will drive your rental car to Nelson Airport and catch your flight to Christchurch.

Upon arrival at Christchurch Airport, you will be met in the arrivals hall by a Lightfoot Travel representative, who will transfer you to your hotel, Hotel Montreal. Hotel Montreal effortlessly blends European flair with contemporary style, providing Christchurch with a unique boutique experience. Perfectly positioned in the heart of Christchurch, just a short stroll to boutiques, eateries and Hagley Park

In the evening, a dinner reservation has been made on your behalf at Strawberry Fare.

Stay: Hotel Montreal

Day 10: Departure

Today you will be transferred to the Christchurch International Airport to catch your return flight home.


Duration Description Overnight
Day 1: Arrival Annandale
Day 2: Exploring Banks Peninsula Annandale
Day 3: Exploring Akaroa Annandale
Day 4: Whale Watching The Factory
Day 5: Heading to Picton Bay of Many Coves
Day 6: Day at Leisure Bay of Many Coves
Day 7: Cruising the inner Pelorus and Kenepuru Sounds Edenhouse
Day 8: Enjoying Abel Tasman National Park Edenhouse
Day 9: From Nelson to Christchurch Hotel Montreal
Day 10: Departure



  • Accommodation based on double/twin occupancy in room category and on board basis specified
  • Meet and greet on arrival
  • Transfers as noted
  • Full size 4WD automatic rental vehicle including daily insurance, unlimited mileage, accident excess reduction and GPS – Price will reduce by SGD 1,850 total if you book car rental
  • 2 Hours Akaroa Harbour Cruise
  • 3 Hours Whale Watching
  • Full day privately guided Abel Tasman National Park excursion including lunch
  • Return water taxi transfers between Picton and Bay of Many Coves
  • Green Mussels Cruise
  • Domestic flight Nelson to Christchurch
  • New Zealand Goods and Services Tax (GST) at 15%

Not Included

  • International flights
  • Any meals other than those specified
  • Any changes you may choose to make during your holiday
  • Any expenses of personal nature such as drinks, laundry, phone calls, spa treatments, camera/video fees etc.
  • Restaurant payments
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Tourist visa and processing fees for New Zealand
  • Travel insurance
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Any increases in taxes (eg. government, fuel, departure, airline etc.)
  • Any item not mentioned in the ‘quote includes’ section


Annandale The Factory Bay Of Many Coves Edenhouse Hotel Montreal

From USD 16,925 per person based on two guests travelling

Notes on our prices

• This price guide provides you with a broad indication of how much to budget for your holiday.
• Prices are generally based on two people travelling together (unless stated otherwise) on a shared room basis.
• Prices can fluctuate depending on season, standard of accommodation, excursions selected (private versus shared) etc.
• This basic structure works very nicely, but don’t forget that Lightfoot Travel can provide a range of experiences and we tailor-make each itinerary based on your travel requirements. Get in touch to start planning your perfect trip with your own travel consultant.