High Country Stations 2022

4-11 November 2022

Double or twin share $3,870.00

No. of people

Single Accommodation $4,320.00

No. of people

Deposit to confirm booking $780.00

Balance payable by: 20 Sep 2022

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Explore the expansive Canterbury High Country and meet the owners who farm this remote and spectacular country, far up in the headwaters of the giant Canterbury Rivers and nestled against the Southern Alps. A horse drawn wagon ride over the moraine landscapes of Erewhon Station and a 4WD adventure up a remote glacially carved valley are unique highlights. This is country that is guaranteed to take your breath away! 

Day 1

Friday 04 November - Travelling to Blenheim

A leisurely start from all destinations today

A leisurely start from all destinations today as we are transferred to Wellington and meet at the ferry terminal for our mid-afternoon sailing across Cook Strait to Picton. Upon reaching Picton we travel the short distance to Blenheim in the heart of the Marlborough wine region, where we settle into our accommodation before dining in this evening.

Day 2

Saturday 05 November - Blenheim to Hanmer Springs

We make our way up the Wairau Valley, passing through the village of St Arnaud, in the Nelson Lakes area, and stopping for lunch (own choice and cost) in the country town of Murchison

Departing Blenheim this morning, we make our way up the Wairau Valley, passing through the village of St Arnaud, in the Nelson Lakes area, and stopping for lunch (own choice and cost) in the country town of Murchison. Our journey continues this afternoon through the scenic Lewis Pass to our destination Hanmer Springs. There should be time before dinner to soak in the natural mineral waters of the thermal pools for which this area is so renowned, or alternatively a wander in the exotic forests of Hanmer. We dine in at our hotel this evening.

Day 3

Sunday 06 November - Hanmer to Methven: BlackHills and Gunyah Estate

This morning we depart for Hurunui, where we visit BlackHills, an historic North Canterbury farm owned by the Forrester family, and featuring an historic precinct of restored cob farm buildings and pioneer farm machinery.

This morning we depart for Hurunui, where we visit BlackHills, an historic North Canterbury farm owned by the Forrester family, and featuring an historic precinct of restored cob farm buildings and pioneer farm machinery.

Our travels continue to Gunyah Country Estate at Hororata - a grand homestead built in 1912 and which has a historic places listing. Here owner Simonetta Ferrari will share the history of this elegant Edwardian home and property and provide a finger food lunch with silver tea service. Continuing on our way we make our way into the upper Rakaia Gorge, crossing the Rakaia River at this spectacular spot and making our way to Methven. Checking in to our hotel, there will be time to relax and explore our new surroundings or mingle for a pre-dinner drink before we dine in tonight.

Day 4

Monday 07 November - The Point, Middlerock and Ben Lea Stations

Today’s tour begins with a visit to The Point Station, a historic farming property at Windwhistle owned by Steve and Teena Richards. Over morning tea with our hosts, we will learn about the property, and can take a tour of the large garden with a glimpse into the historic homestead.

We then move on to Middle Rock Station where we are welcomed for lunch by hosts Lyn and Bruce Nell and their daughter Charlotte Rietveld, who with her father, runs the farming operation. We will have time for a leisurely wander of the large homestead garden framed by panoramic views of the Mt Hutt range, before reboarding the coach to take a tour of the farm. Middle Rock farms over 7,000 sheep producing fine wool and export lamb for international meat markets. We then travel to nearby Ben Lea Station, whose owners Sam and Cathie Bell will share the history of Ben Lea and provide a farm tour of the station’s diverse cropping river flats, including a peek at the magnificent Terrace Downs Resort, a luxury high country retreat and golf course. Afternoon tea back at Ben Lea Homestead ends our day. Returning to our hotel, we have time to relax and freshen up before dining out this evening at a popular restaurant in Methven Village.

Day 5

Tuesday 08 November - Ashburton Gorge: Erewhon Station

We travel up the Ashburton Gorge today; stopping to enjoy a Tranzit cuppa at Lake Camp, in the Hakatere Conservation Park. We then make our way up into the vast headwaters of the Rangitata River to Erewhon Station, nestled amongst the Southern Alps. Erewhon is named in honour of Samuel Butler, who wrote the novel “Erewhon”, and farmed on Mesopotamia Station, across the river. The 14,000 hectare Erewhon today is owned by Colin and Erin Drummond who breed Clydesdales and run 5000 merino. We enjoy a very special experience today, taking a wagon ride pulled by a team of Clydesdales over the spectacular terrain of this remote property, and watching a ploughing demonstration with these hard-working animals. We will enjoy a picnic lunch in the Erewhon woolshed and listen to Erin as she talks to us about high country life.

There is much to see in this magnificent, glaciated valley, and time to explore as we travel back down the valley. Mt Sunday was the setting for Edoras, the fortressed city of the Rohan people in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and we pass several other scenic montane lakes. We stop to explore the historic station buildings of the original great Hakatere run, the oldest a stone cottage built in 1860. This evening we dine out at Stronechrubie Country Restaurant, located at Mt Somers and featuring delicious cuisine from locally sourced produce.

Day 6

Wednesday 09 November - Glenfalloch Station

We will be travelling with a local company in comfortable 4 wheel drive vehicles today as we embark on another unique and unforgettable adventure. Travelling a short distance again up the Ashburton Gorge we then turn off to beautiful Lake Heron, where we stop to enjoy morning tea before heading off road through Lake Heron Station. Following Lake Stream down through a valley at the back of Mt Hutt, we then drop down into the upper Rakaia River Valley and onto Glenfalloch Station owned by Chas and Dietland Todhunter. We enjoy a delicious lunch in a special spot on the banks of the Rakaia before making our way down river and back to the tarmac. We dine in at our hotel again this evening, after today’s big adventure.

Day 7

Thursday 10 November - Terrace Station and Travelling to Kaikoura

Terrace Station and Travelling to Kaikoura
Before departing Methven this morning, we visit the Methven Heritage Centre to experience the Alpine and Agriculture Encounter, an interactive collection that will summarise our stay in this region, telling the story of Mid Canterbury – from the mountains to the plains.

We then visit Terrace Station at Hororata, where we enjoy our last taste of rural hospitality. Owned by Richard and Kate Foster, Terrace Station is the one-time hub of an extensive property dating from the 1850s that was established by Kate’s descendants. Most of the farm buildings, including the smithy and woolshed still exist, and a delightful garden surrounds the historic homestead. We will be able to view the front rooms of the homestead, which provide much information on the colonial period, as well as a swaggers hut, a 19th century ploughman’s caravan and a Carriage House with original family horse-drawn vehicles.

Lunch today is at Darfield (own expense) before we continue our travels north to Kaikoura. Settling into our hotel, pleasantly located on the Esplanade, we dine out this evening at a popular local restaurant.

Day 8

Friday 11 November - Travelling home

Our travels north this morning take us via the Pacific Coast, a scenic and fascinating journey through this much changed landscape. Lunch today is in Picton (own expense) prior to departing on our afternoon ferry sailing returning us to Wellington. Finally, we bid our fellow travellers goodbye before being transferred to our home locations.

The cost of the tour includes

Departure Detail

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I bought our Tranzit tour to the West Coast as a birthday present for Mum. We loved travelling together and made so many memories. I have travelled this coast before and never seen the views I saw from the coach - just amazing! - Meg453, Trip Advisor