You Can Now See New Zealand by Train With These New KiwiRail Tours

Your new New Zealand journey begins in 2023

Crossing New Zealand By Train
Photo by Toni Greaves (Photo by Toni Greaves/Getty Images for Lumix) / Getty Images

New Zealand’s state-owned rail service recently launched a tourism arm that provides travelers with packaged rail tours on three of KiwiRail’s routes.

Tours on the Northern Explorer Train include itineraries and stops, predictably, on the North Island, between Auckland and Wellington. Coastal Pacific Train journeys cover South Island destinations like Kaikoura, known for its stunning marine life, and Christchurch, a traveler favorite. Itineraries along the TranzAlpine Train take travelers across the South Island from coast to coast, serving up breathtaking landscapes along the way. Depending on the tour, you may also find yourself riding the Interisland Ferry or jumping on a bus south of Christchurch.

Tours range from one day to 17 days and cover destinations on both islands. 

Multi-day tours will give travelers two options, depending on their travel style. Both styles will include an experienced guide leading the tour group for the duration of the journey. (It’s worth noting that these tours include overnight stays in hotels, not on the trains.)

Classic tours, ranging from six to 15 days, take travelers to staple destinations like Wellington or Auckland. Designed with an independent traveler in mind, classic tours take care of the main outline of a trip—accommodations, transfers, and visitor experiences—but also offer built-in free time. Customization includes optional add-on experiences, so you get maximum freedom and flexibility.

Signature Tours range between six and 17 days and are designed for travelers looking for an experience where nearly everything has been taken care of and experienced tour professionals manage the day-to-day.

New shorter break tours between two to four days have also been announced. These tours will focus on getting travelers off the beaten track to explore some of New Zealand’s most unique experiences, such as staying overnight in the independent republic, Whangamomona; whale watching and diving; wine tasting in Marlborough, New Zealand’s most famous wine region; and hiking volcanoes.

Consider these new rail packages as the ultimate tours with a view, in one of the world’s most scenic countries. To look at the full selection of tours, visit the Greater Journeys New Zealand website.