The Kaka tour is all about the scenery! Each day delivers more breathtaking views, epic hiking and insane landscapes. Hop aboard a scenic train journey across the Southern Alps, then aboard the Stray bus to take in the icy glaciers of the West Coast, reach new levels of adrenaline in Queenstown, gaze at Lake Tekapo and hike in the impressive Mount Cook National Park.
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✔️ Money-back guarantee: full refund if the tour doesn't go ahead.
✔️ Flexibility: no fee to make changes.
✔️ Departures in November 2022 are GUARANTEED for all NZ tours!
Scroll through to see what you'll get up to or watch the video
High quality twin share rooms are included. You'll stay in comfy 3-4 star hotels for most of nights and high country farm or scenic lodges close to waterfront or national park in our unique destinations. Hotel rooms are with ensuite, while shared facilities are in Strademark places.
Take the pressure off, kick back, relax, soak up the scenery and let someone else do the driving. You'll travel by private, air-conditioned bus.
Expect entertaining anecdotes, great recommendations, extra support and local insider knowledge from your charismatic guide. They know every inch of this country. You can't get this from a google search!
Experience the South Island's striking natural landscape as you travel on one of the world's greatest train journeys. From Christchurch to Greymouth, The TranzAlpine train is a New Zealand Must Do!
- 18 June
- 16 July
- 13 August
- 17 September
- 8 October
- 19 November (guaranteed!)
- 10 December
- 21 January
- 11 February
- 11 March
- 22 April
What our customers say:
"I loved the trip so much that I did it twice. The tour takes you around most of New Zealand. You meet the most awesome people and has the best guide on the planet. I would even go on a third trip!"
- Christina, December 2020 & April 2021
"This trip was the happiest 24 days of my 6 months in New Zealand. Thank you for adding so much joy to this journey!"
- Monica, March 2021
"I'd say that the last few weeks were the best time for me in New Zealand and probably the best time of my life as well. This trip was incredibly awesome!"
- Jacob, June 2021
What we're all about...
We're locals who support locals. We're not about mass produced tourism.
We're all about finding one-of-a kind experiences and supporting small communities.
We spearheaded the 'off the beaten track' movement in New Zealand.
Stray are the original experts in seeking out secluded destinations, taking our travellers off the grid since 2002.
Our Stray Guides are next level and will, no doubt, play a starring role in your travel stories.
Read our reviews and you'll see what we mean!
Travel is about creating lasting connections and sharing experiences.
Stray travellers are open minded adventurers who make the most of every moment.
We aim to leave New Zealand better than we found it, protecting our environment for future generations.
Travel with us and together we can make a positive change.
Christchurch TranzAlpine Train Departure Info
8:15AM, Christchurch Railway Station, Addington, Christchurch
*Subject to change. Check in closes 20 minutes prior to the time.
Kia Ora (hello) and welcome to your Stray Adventure. You'll start the day by travelling through the stunning Arthur's Pass to the historic gold mining town of Greymouth on the West Coast where you’ll meet your Stray group outside the Greymouth train station. From here we’ll make our way to Hokitika, a vibrant, artistic town and the best place to buy ‘Pounamu’, a native greenstone. Our accommodation tonight is absolute beachfront, located on the shores of the Tasman Sea. Treat yourself to some dinner in their Ocean View restaurant or go for a walk and explore Hokitika.
It’s a short drive today towards the charming little village of Franz Josef. The landscape will change from coastline to dramatic, lush rainforest so basically another day of incredible views and stunning scenery (have your phone charged for pics). We’ll get to Franz Josef around lunchtime and we’ll have the rest of the day to explore the town or relax at our accommodation.
Ice, ice baby! Today is about experiencing Franz Josef Glacier, an iconic highlight of the West Coast and New Zealand in general. We can get a shuttle to the beginning of the track and then hike through native bush and across glacial streams to the terminal face of the glacier for spectacular photos or just relax in the township and enjoy the views. If you’d like to see the glacier up close (before that pesky climate change melts it for good) you can go for an incredible heli-hike and actually stand on the glacier!
This morning we’ll go for a scenic walk around Lake Matheson, known for its stunning views and mirror-like quality on particularly still days, and then we’ll make our way to Queenstown. Known in New Zealand as the ‘Adventure Capital of the World’ and the spiritual home of bungy jumping, Queenstown is a crazy combination of adventure and entertainment. We’ll stop at Kawarau Bridge on our way into town a.k.a. the first commercial bungy jumping site in the world and watch people jumping off with only a rope tied to their ankles. We highly recommend ticking this off your list if you’re feeling brave but otherwise we’ll just cheer on our mates from the viewing platform! When we get to Queenstown we’ll head straight to our accommodation. Stay at the Mercure Resort will provide a touch of luxury to your Queenstown adventure, with a swimming pool, fitness centre and sauna, it’s the best way to relax and ease yourself into life in this truly stunning resort town.
Today we’ll hop aboard a Coach which will take us to the iconic Milford Sound. We’ll drive along one of the most scenic alpine roads in the world and then cruise across the Sound (fun fact: it's not actually a sound, it’s a fjord!) to see towering Mitre Peak plus rainforests and waterfalls, as well as spotting some amazing wildlife like Fur Seals, Penguins and Dolphins. Once we’ve snapped as many pics as we possibly can, it’s back to Queenstown. This evening, we recommend checking out the buzzy nightlife and sampling a famous Fergerber or just checking out one of the many restaurants Queenstown has to offer.
Yaaaasssss Queen(stown)! We’ve got a full day in the adventure capital today. With beautiful mountain scenery and plenty of outdoor activities, it’s easy to understand why so many backpackers refuse to leave this place. We’ll have brekkie at the hotel and then the rest of the day is freeeee.
We’ll depart Queenstown early to drive over the Lindis Pass and through the Mackenzie Country, past the vivid blue waters of Lake Pukaki on the way to our amazing stop at the base of New Zealand’s highest mountain, Aoraki/Mt Cook. We’ve made this drive sound great but honestly - we reckon it’s one of the most stunning days you’ll have in the whole of NZ.
We arrive in the early afternoon with time to do an optional experience like a boat tour on a glacial lake surrounded by snow capped alps (sounds epic? It is.) Alternatively we can check out the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre or do one of the many great short walks in the park. We would be remiss if we didn’t recommend the Hooker Valley track (weather dependent) which in our opinion is in the top 3 day walks in NZ. If it’s a clear night, head outside to experience one of the best stargazing spots in the country.
Leaving Mount Cook we make our way through a landscape made famous by the ‘Lord of the Rings’ films. We’ll stop to check out the turquoise waters of Lake Tekapo and the Church of the Good Shepherd (an iconic photo stop) and if you like you can go and relax in the Tekapo hot pools, do some snow tubing or ice skating (winter only) or hike up to the Mt John Observatory for incredible views of the lake from above. After lunch, we’ll continue to our overnight stop in Christchurch where we’ll spend the afternoon wandering the city streets and laneways to discover creative street art intended to bring cheer and colour to a city once buried in rubble.
Today our adventure comes to an end, we’ll say goodbye (or see you soon) to our mates and go our separate ways for now. We hope everyone had a blast and remains Stray Mates for 4ever!
You'll stay in comfy 3-4 star hotels for most of nights and high country farm or scenic lodges close to waterfront or national park in our unique destinations. Hotel rooms are with ensuite, while shared facilities are in Strademark places. Upgrade to solo occupancy may be possible and subject to availability.
You can choose to upgrade your accommodation to a solo occupied private room (subject to availability).
- Single Room: +$970
To request an accommodation upgrade, please choose Solo Traveller - Private Room from the drop-down menu, before you click BOOK YOUR TRAVEL button. Please email us to check availability before your booking: [email protected]
Health and Safety
COVID-19 Safety Measures
To minimise risk to our travellers, staff and operators we will be doing everything we can to reduce the risk of transmission and we will be playing it safe.
- Handrails and surfaces inside the bus will be wiped down daily
- Disinfectant will be used on the air conditioning filters in the bus daily
- Hand sanitizer will be available on the bus
If you would like a copy of our full WorkSafe COVID-19 Safety Plan, please email [email protected]