Explore the Best of South Island: A Comprehensive 2-Week Campervan Itinerary [With Insider Tips and Must-See Destinations]

Explore the Best of South Island: A Comprehensive 2-Week Campervan Itinerary [With Insider Tips and Must-See Destinations]

Short answer 2 week campervan itinerary south island new zealand

Explore New Zealand’s stunning South Island on a 2-week campervan adventure. Start in Christchurch, head to the West Coast for Franz Josef and Fox Glacier before heading down to Queenstown and Milford Sound. Visit Wanaka, Mt Aspiring National Park and Dunedin then end your trip in Kaikoura enjoying charming towns, beautiful beaches and breathtaking scenery along the way.

Step-by-Step guide for your 2 Week Campervan Itinerary in South Island, New Zealand

If you’re planning a campervan trip to New Zealand’s South Island, then you’re in for an adventure filled with breathtaking landscapes, epic hikes and adventures that will make memories to last a lifetime. With so much to see and do in the South Island, it can be overwhelming to plan out your itinerary, but we’ve got you covered. Here is a step-by-step guide for your 2-week campervan itinerary in the gorgeous South Island of New Zealand.

Day 1: Christchurch

Begin your South Island journey by flying into Christchurch and picking up your rental campervan. After getting settled in, take a walk around the city center and enjoy its quirky street art and beautiful botanical gardens.

Day 2-3: Kaikoura

Hop aboard the Whale Watch Tour or go sea kayaking with seals in Kaikoura. Stay at one of Kaikoura’s popular campsites overlooking stunning scenery. Don’t forget to indulge yourself with seafood along the way!

Day 4-5: Abel Tasman National Park

Drive to Abel Tasman National Park, home to over 50km of coastline trails through native forests and golden sand beaches. Take a few days for hiking or sea-kayaking while camping under stars near Marahau or Takaka.

Day 6-7: West Coast Drive

Next up on our itinerary is driving through West Coast, which stretches from Nelson down to Punakaiki where Pancake Rocks are located. Stop at Hokitika Gorge for sightseeing before heading down rugged coastlines intertwining tranquil sleepy towns as Greymouth & Ross until you reach Fox Glacier / Franz Josef Glacier region.

Day 8-9: Fox Glacier / Franz Josef Glacier

Take a guided hike on either glacier whilst admiring stunning views of snowcapped Southern Alps or let Skydive Franz turn ‘your’ life upside down (literally). Relax at hot springs in Franz Josef at the end of a long day and remind yourself, it’s just the start of your bucket list experience!

Day 10-11: Wanaka

Drive to one of New Zealand’s favorite towns, Wanaka. With an abundance of outdoor activities in both summer and winter seasons, you won’t get bored here. Head up to Treble Cone or Cardrona for a full day skiing & snowboarding before strolling around Lake Wanaka shoreline during sunset for an unforgettable views.

Day 12-13: Queenstown

The adventure capital of New Zealand – Queenstown! From adrenaline pumping activities such as bungy jumping and skydiving to more relaxing ones like hiking or wine-tasting in Gibbston Valley, this town has something to offer everyone. Staying out all night due to its lively bar culture is not uncommon here!

Day 14: Milford Sound

On your last day make way down towards Milford Sound that boasts high snowcapped peaks, waterfalls that shoot off from steep cliffs surrounding a deep fjord system right until into Tasman Sea. Take a scenic boat ride through its waters known as Eighth Wonder Of The World where fur seals sunbathe on rock walls before driving back up towards Christchurch.

And there you have it – a comprehensive 2-week campervan itinerary for exploring South Island’s stunning landscapes and endless adventures. Just pack appropriate clothes for different seasons because ‘Four Seasons In A Day’ does happen quite literally down here!

Top 5 Facts You Need to Know About a 2 Week Campervan Itinerary in South Island, New Zealand

If you’re planning a trip to the South Island of New Zealand and have decided on a campervan as your mode of transportation, well done – you’ve made an excellent choice! With its winding roads, stunning scenery and unique flora and fauna, the South Island is truly a wonderland for adventurers. To ensure that you get the most out of your trip, here are the top 5 facts you need to know about a 2-week campervan itinerary in South Island, New Zealand.

1. Take advantage of freedom camping

One of the best things about campervan travel in New Zealand is that there are plenty of opportunities for free camping. This means parking up in picturesque locations around the country and taking in all that natural beauty without paying anything more than the fuel it took to get there. However, remember to check regulations with each site before setting up camp as some places might be restricted.

2. Don’t miss Queenstown

Queenstown is one of those cities where everyone has heard of it but not many know all about it, fortunately this bustling city shouldn’t be missed on any South Island adventure! Known as The Adventure Capital of the World, this city offers everything from snow sports like skiing or snowboarding to bungy jumping off bridges over blue water rapids amidst magnificent natural landscapes.

3. Visit Te Anau

Te Anau is located at the entranceway to Fiordland National Park which boasts countless walking trails through epic forests teeming with New Zealand’s unique birdlife including infamous Kea and Kiwi species perfect for travelers who enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking or lake kayaking with breathtaking scenes around every turn.

4. Explore Milford Sound

Milford Sound is frequently described as ”the eighth wonder of the world” for good reason – its dramatic cliffs rising out from turquoise waters make it an unforgettable sight. Struggles locating a great place near this marvel may occur due to limited parking options but there are plenty of tours cruises to enjoy the Sound from above and below.

5. Brace yourself for weather

While South Island is gorgeous, its weather can be intense, Particularly during April. Be sure to pack and gear up for various harsh scenarios such as snow- just like they say in New Zealand: prepare for the worst, hope for the best! Checking a daily forecast before starting your adventure could definitely prevent potential trouble storing unnecessary challenge-solving equipment.

A campervan trip through South Island is truly an experience of a lifetime and with these five facts under your belt you’re well on your way to creating memories that will last forever! Don’t forget to take plenty of pictures too – it’s a beautiful part of the world that deserves documentation. Happy road-tripping!

FAQ: Everything You Need to Know About a 2 Week Campervan Itinerary in South Island, New Zealand

Are you ready for an adventure? A campervan road trip is the perfect way to explore the natural beauty of South Island, New Zealand. With stunning landscapes, vast mountain ranges, lakes, and rugged coastline, there’s no shortage of things to see and do. We’ve put together a comprehensive guide to help you plan your 2 week campervan itinerary in South Island and experience all that this incredible destination has to offer.

1. What’s the best time to visit South Island?

The best time to visit South Island depends on your interests. The summer months (December – February) are popular for camping and hiking because of the warm weather and long daylight hours. However, if you prefer fewer crowds, cooler temperatures and vivid autumnal colours March – May or spring blooms from September – November are nice options too.

2. Can I park my camper anywhere overnight?

While freedom camping (parking overnight outside designated campsites) is allowed in some areas of New Zealand most places require a fully self-contained camper van with toilet waste caught in an onboard holding tank & grey water collected by jerry can or recycling filtered through the sink into a wastewater storage container where it’s pumped out safely at appropriate facilities.

3. How much should I budget for fuel?

Depending on your route and driving style fuel costs vary but expect an average cost per kilometre & variable exchange rates for foreign visitors means allocating plenty of fund reserves into gas fill-up budget as gas isn’t cheap!

4.Should I book campsites in advance?

Ideally yes! In peak season sites south island campsites quickly become full —giving preferred scenic spots such as Abel Tasman Coastal Walkways, Fiordland National Park Milford Sound Drive or Fox Glacier access book early — but even non peak travellers may want to ensure ease of finding accommodation by booking ahead . Alternatively check app/software options which show availability/best locations/facilities at any given time in real-time.

5.How many nights should I spend in each location?

South Island is filled with stunning landscapes, unique regions & activities. Plan to spend between 2-3 nights per location for a comfortable pace to fit highlight enjoying, hiking, sightseeing and participating in local offerings. Remember scenery transitions are frequent so allow room for unexpected stops!

6.What are the must-see destinations in South Island?

There are numerous must-see locations to visit on a South Island camper van trip such asFiordland National Park’sMilford Sound (+Te Anau),Fox GlacierFranz Josef Glacier,Wanaka/Queenstown region,Mt Cook/Aoraki National Park,Lake Tekapo/Mackenzie Region plus Marlborough Sounds/Abel Tasman/Nelson providing scenic driving options not to be missed

7.Do I need a special license to drive a campervan?

For visitors holding an international licence issued by countries compliant with United Nations Conventions upon Road Traffic— this allows driving legally within New Zealand for up to 12 months but if your overseas licence is not printed in English you’ll also require an International Driving Permit(IDP).

8.Can I bring my pets on the road trip?

Travellers with animals – (Dogs/Cats) who wish travel are welcome! Whilst allowed on DOC land signing onto larger parks such as national parks limits where they’re accessible. Snug/foldable cages can help keep pets safe/sound while moving and tour kennels or pet motels let you head off duty without leaving them – just remember their leash/collars/dog tags.

In summary, taking a campervan trip around South Island is an amazing way to explore the country’s beauty at your own leisurely pace—mixing adventure in unique natural settings mixed itineraries creates memorable experiences of all kinds. Be prepared for contingencies like weather precautions or finding convenient resources either through advance planning or having software/tools readily available. As much as you plan, there’s always room for happy impromptu surprises too!

The Best Places to Visit on Your 2 Week Campervan Itinerary in South Island, New Zealand

New Zealand is known for its breath-taking natural landscapes, which make it a perfect destination for anyone who enjoys travelling in campervans. The South Island of New Zealand has some of the most spectacular views on offer, with snow-capped mountains, crystal-clear lakes and endless miles of coastline to explore. If you’re planning a 2-week trip to the South Island in your campervan, then we have some suggestions that will make your adventure unforgettable.

1. Christchurch

Christchurch is the largest city on the South Island and has become one of New Zealand’s must-visit destinations. It’s a great place to start your campervan journey as there are plenty of rental companies located here. While in Christchurch, make sure to check out the Botanical Gardens and Hagley Park, wander around the city centre, or take a trip up to the Port Hills for sweeping views over the Canterbury Plains.

2. Lake Tekapo

Located on New Zealand’s southern alps is Lake Tekapo; home to some breathtaking natural beauty such as pristine glacial waters surrounded by alpine mountain ranges that depict an impressive turquoise color. Here tourists can explore unique geothermal activities like hot springs into Lake Tekapo bathhouses which provides visitors repose & tranquility with aquatic treatments.

3. Wanaka

Wanaka is well-known for its stunning scenery and outdoor adventure activities just 45 minutes from Queenstown across magnificent Crown Range alpine route. From hiking trails through forests and mountains along flower-lined lakesides beside open roads where you can enjoy cycling adventures or perhaps paddleboards across deep blue waters before retiring at night within one of many campsites this town has got everything nature enthusiast dream off – breathtaking landscapes complemented by adrenaline-filled adventures at every turn.


Queenstown should be on every traveller’s list when visiting the South Island as it’s arguably one of New Zealand’s most beguiling cities & will make the perfect location to end your journey. The city is a popular spot for adventure, with options like bungee jumping at Kawarau Bridge or skydiving over the surrounding mountain scenery to appease eager adventurers. Queenstown’s vibrant restaurant and bar scene is also well worth exploring, along with its stunning views of Lake Wakatipu.

5. Milford Sound

A few hours drive west from Queenstown is Milford Sound, a place widely regarded as one of New Zealand’s most spectacular natural attractions. This fiord offers an amazing experience for campervan travellers, surrounded by mountains that rise straight out of blue-green waters that are ideal for kayaking adventures or taking a boat tour where you’ll see seals, dolphins and even penguins!

In conclusion; There’s no question about it, two weeks isn’t nearly enough time to explore all the gems South Island has on offer but visiting these sites we’ve recommended above should provide the ultimate road trip experience in Aotearoa. So what are you waiting for? Plan your next campervan adventure soon!

Insider Tips for a Memorable Adventure on a 2 Week Campervan Itinerary in South Island, New Zealand

New Zealand is a paradise for nature enthusiasts. With its breathtaking landscapes, pristine beaches, and crystal-clear lakes, it’s no surprise that it has become one of the world’s top destinations for travelers seeking an unforgettable adventure. And what could be better than exploring this stunning country with a 2-week campervan itinerary in South Island?

Before you hit the road on your New Zealand adventure, here are some insider tips to help you make the most out of your trip:

1. Plan Your Route

South Island in New Zealand is known for having some of the best scenic drives in the world. From winding coastlines to snow-capped mountains and glaciers, there’s plenty to see and do along your route.

However, it’s important to plan your itinerary beforehand so you don’t miss out on any significant attractions or experiences en route. For example, if you want to hike up Mount Cook or explore Milford Sound, then make sure you factor in additional time in your itinerary.

2. Choose Your Campsites Wisely

New Zealand offers a vast selection of campsites to choose from. However not all campgrounds are created equal.

Choose campsites that offer unique experiences such as beachfront locations, mountain views or hot springs nearby! It’s also important to note that many campsites will have limited facilities so ensure you come prepared with enough food supplies before heading on the road!

3. Stay Safe

The safety aspect when traveling should never be overlooked – especially if you’re driving through remote areas where there may be spotty cellphone reception.

It goes without saying that wearing seatbelts while driving is mandatory but it’s just as important to observe safe speed limits – many roads can be treacherous due to narrow bends and unpredictable weather conditions.

4. Be Respectful of Nature

We cannot stress enough how beautiful nature is; however we must remember that we’re guests on this land and need take steps towards preserving Mother Nature for future generations to experience. This can mean sticking to designated trails, refraining from littering and keeping distance from the wildlife.

5. Be Open to Meeting New People

The beauty of a campervan trip is that you have the freedom to explore without following a strict schedule, opening up opportunities for meeting new people.

Whether it’s chatting with fellow travelers at campsites or striking up conversations with locals in small towns along your route, try to be open-minded and willing to learn from others’ experiences. Who knows – you may even make lifelong friendships!

Final thoughts

A campervan journey through South Island New Zealand offers an enriching experience like no other. However as much fun as it sounds, planning plays a pivotal role in ensuring that your adventure is memorable for all the right reasons!

If you’re looking for a way to satisfy your wanderlust and see some breathtaking sights, look no further than a 2 week campervan road trip around New Zealand’s South Island. With its stunning alpine landscapes, pristine beaches and fascinating cultural history, this island has something for everyone.

First things first: Choosing a rental company that offers reliable vehicles is key to having a successful road trip. Do your research beforehand and select one that fits your budget and travel needs. Some companies offer fully-equipped campervans with kitchenettes and amenities such as linen and towels included in the rental price.

With your wheels sorted out, it’s time to hit the open road! Here are some of the best stops to make along the way:

1) Queenstown – This vibrant town is known as the adventure capital of New Zealand. From bungee jumping to skydiving and everything in between, adrenaline junkies won’t be disappointed here. Don’t forget to take a scenic gondola ride up Bob’s Peak for panoramic views of Lake Wakatipu below.

2) Milford Sound – A must-see destination on any South Island itinerary, Milford Sound is famed for its incredible natural beauty which includes cascading waterfalls and towering mountains rising up from serene waters below.

3) Wanaka – A picturesque lakeside town surrounded by snow-capped mountains where you can get active with hiking trails nearby or just relax by taking in the beautiful scenery.

4) Franz Josef Glacier – Take an unforgettable helicopter tour above this icy wonderland or don crampons for a guided glacier trek.

5) Kaikoura – Known for its marine wildlife including whales, seals and dolphins; it’s an amazing place filled with natural wonders worth exploring.

6) Abel Tasman National Park – Famous for golden beaches, dense forests, stunning coastline and walking trails. One of the best places to kayak around South Island.

7) Christchurch – A vibrant city that’s bouncing back from the 2011 earthquake. Don’t miss the Botanical Gardens or Punakaiki Caves for impressive rock formations.

These are just a few of the many amazing stops you can make on your two-week South Island campervan road trip. Be sure to take your time and explore each location thoroughly because this island has a wealth of hidden treasures awaiting discovery too!

Table with useful data:

Day Location Activity
1 Christchurch Explore the city
2-3 Kaikoura Whale watching, seal colony visit
4-5 Nelson Bike trip to Abel Tasman National Park, kayaking
6 Westport Morere Hot Springs visit
7-8 Franz Josef Glacier Hiking, glacier tour
9-10 Queenstown Bungee jumping, jet boating, hiking
11-12 Te Anau Visit Milford Sound, glowworm caves
13-14 Dunedin Penguin tour, cadbury chocolate factory visit
15 Christchurch Return the campervan

Information from an expert: Planning a 2-week campervan itinerary in South Island, New Zealand is one of the best ways to explore this beautiful destination. Begin your journey in Christchurch and make your way down to the stunning Milford Sound. Stop by Lake Tekapo for some stargazing and take a dip in the hot pools at Hanmer Springs. Don’t miss out on hiking in Mount Cook National Park, visiting Abel Tasman National Park or whale watching in Kaikoura. Be sure to stock up on supplies and prepare for occasional harsh weather conditions during your road trip adventure through this amazing region of New Zealand.

Historical fact:

The South Island of New Zealand has a rich history, including the arrival of the Maori people over 1,000 years ago and the later explorations by European navigators such as Abel Tasman in 1642. It was also the site of many important events during the New Zealand Wars in the mid to late 19th century, including the famous Battle of Gate Pā. Despite its often rugged landscapes and remote areas, this region has played a significant role in shaping the country’s past and present.

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