On this 5-day alpine journey, we follow “the Great Alpine Highway” from Christchurch to Hokitika. Explore the mountains and wildlife of the Craigieburn Forest Park and Arthurs Pass National Park with an experienced mountain guide.
- Scenic drive “The Great Alpine Highway”
- Visit Castle Hill/Kura Tawhiti
- Mountain walking with the possibility to summit 2 peaks (optional)
- Explore the Craigieburn Forest Park
- Stay in Arthurs Pass National Park
- Stay in 2 alpine lodges
- Finish in Hokitika or Christchurch
You will be collected from your hotel or our meeting point at the Canterbury Museum, Rolleston Ave, Christchurch
Leaving Christchurch we drive west across the Canterbury Plains, stopping at “The Famous Sheffield Pie Shop” (morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea are provided but you may like to try a classic NZ pie). Leaving the plains we drive over Porters Pass 920mts and into the mountains. Arriving at Castle Hill/Kura Tawhiti we have time to explore the labyrinth of limestone boulders before lunch.
From Castle Hill/Kura Tawhiti its a steep drive up a gravel road to get to Mt Cheeseman ski area at Mt Cheeseman. Our accommodation this evening is in the Mt Cheeseman mountain lodge, dinner is included.
Today your guide will fit you out with crampons, ice axes and suitable clothing for the day. The goal for today is to acquire some mountain skills and get comfortable moving around in the snow. If the conditions allow you will have the opportunity to make your way up to the Craigieburn ridge top and over to Mt Cockayne 1874 Mts).
In the afternoon we depart Mt Cheeseman and head into Arthurs Pass village. Our accommodation this evening is in Arthurs Pass Village at our private lodge. Dinner this evening is a classic kiwi pub meal served to us at the Wobbly Kea or Bealey Hotel.
A steep walk up a rough track will get us to our next destination at Temple Basin, a lodge situated high in the mountains of Arthurs Pass National Park.
Your bags will be sent up the hill in the goods lift so you will only need to carry a light backpack up to the lodge. This afternoon is free time, you may choose to go skiing (lift pass & ski hire is not included but can be purchased up the mountain) or just take in the serenity of the high mountains.
This evening we stay up at Temple Basin lodge and enjoy the delicious cuisine from the on-mountain chef. With a mountain bar option (alcohol not included in our package) you can treat yourself to snacks or a beer or wine.
Today is our planned summit day.
Your guide will take you high up the mountain to get to the summit of Mt Blimit 1921 Mts. It takes most groups 4-5 hrs to complete the round trip from the lodge to the summit and back to the lodge again.
We stay up at Temple Basin again this evening so you can enjoy the evening at your leisure.
The walk down from the lodge takes most groups about 1-1.5 hrs. After collecting our bags from the goods lift we rejoin “The great Alpine Highway”. Heading west we descend to the west coast until we reach the sea, following the ocean south we arrive in Hokitika approximatley midday.
Your guide will drop you to your accommodation or town center, alternatively there is an optional shuttle service back to Christchurch available upon request. The shuttle will arrive in Christchurch approx 3pm.