2022 - Wild South Island Photo Tour - 7 Days

NZD $5,900.00
  • Duration: 7 Days

Join Ken Wright and Shaun Barnett on a 7-day tour showcasing some of New Zealand’s rarest wildlife and most distinctive coastal landscapes. New Zealand’s underrated East Coast is full of surprises including fossilised forests, curious boulders, and outstanding coastal scenery. We will also observe some of the huge diversity of rare wildlife that this area boasts: penguins, sea lions, fur seals and albatross. This week-long East Coast Tour itinerary takes in the best photographic opportunities the area has to offer. Timing is planned to make the most of New Zealand’s most settled season and catch the last of the autumn colours.

Starting in Queenstown, the tour travels through the Catlins Coastal Rainforest Park, with opportunities to photograph the area’s waterfalls, rainforest, penguins and sea lions. North of the Catlins, we explore the Otago Peninsula, known as New Zealand’s wildlife capital. We photograph southern Royal Albatross and stay at Larnach Castle. Beyond the Otago Peninsula, tour highlights include the Moeraki Boulders and Mt Cook National Park, where we will photograph some of the amazing alpine scenery around New Zealand’s highest peak.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Amazing wildlife
  • Boat trip on the Otago Peninsula
  • Stay at Larnach Castle

 LOCATIONS: Queenstown - Queenstown

  • The Catlins Coast
  • Otago Peninsula
  • Moeraki Bolders
  • Aoraki/Mt Cook

ITINERARY

DAY 1 – THE CATLINS

Departing Queenstown, we head east towards the Catlins. En route, we visit the South Island’s most southerly point, Waipapa and its well-known lighthouse. From here we travel inland to explore the waterfalls of the Catlins Coastal Rainforest Park, these may not be high, but have a subtle beauty all of their own. Today will finish with a sunset over beautiful beach looking out over the Southern Ocean.

DAY 2 - THE CATLINS - OTAGO PENINSULA

Heading north through the Catlins, we take in the sunrise at the spectacular coastline of Nugget Point, where a lighthouse, wind-ruffled native shrubs, and off-shore islands make a photogenic scene. Travelling onward to the Otago Peninsula near Dunedin, we take a boat charter around the world's only mainland breeding colony of Northern Royal Albatross. We will photograph these majestic birds and other bird species from the sea. The day ends at Larnach Castle, one of New Zealand’s most stately buildings, dinner tonight, in the castle’s grand dining room, will be a culinary highlight of the tour.

DAY 3 - OTAGO PENINSULA

We spend the day exploring the Otago Peninsula; home to penguins, albatross and sea lions, is often called the wildlife capital of New Zealand. This afternoon will see us heading out to a private beach to photograph Yellow-eyed penguins as they return from a day out at sea.

DAY 4 - MOERAKI

This morning we capture a stunning panoramic vista across the peninsula from a high vantage point on private land. Heading north along the East Coast we stop to photograph the forest birds at Orokonui, which is home to New Zealand’s tuatara, a relic from the dinosaur age. Tonight we stay near Moeraki, famed Moeraki Boulders which are curiously round rocks known as ‘concretions’ set into a scenic beachscape where we will photograph the sunset.

DAY 5 - MOERAKI - AORAKI/MT COOK

An early start, returning to the Moeraki Boulders again for sunrise. Then we visit the historic town of Oamaru, having the opportunity to photograph the whitestone buildings of this heritage town, before heading inland towards Aoraki/Mt Cook. After assembling at the Hermitage Hotel, our home for the next two nights, we will head out to explore locations in the park and have an evening shoot in the Tasman Valley.

DAY 6 - AORAKI/MT COOK

This morning we will have the chance to do some aerial photography (see optional extras below), taking a flight over Aoraki/Mt Cook and landing on the Tasman glacier to capture high alpine views across the Southern Alps. The rest of the day will be taken up by visiting locations in the Tasman and Hooker valleys, including alpine lakes, sweeping river vistas, and views of New Zealand’s highest peaks. All the locations we visit are within easy walks along well-graded tracks on the valley floors.

DAY 7 - AORAKI/MT COOK - QUEENSTOWN

The day begins with the option for some pre-dawn astrophotography and sunrise shoot before heading back to the hotel for breakfast. We then leave Aoraki/Mt Cook and drive South toward Twizel, stopping to capture some lesser-known location for high country scenes. In the afternoon we travel back to Queenstown,  arriving in time to meet late afternoon flights.


PRICE INCLUDES