Except the Kitchen Sink Queenstown Heli Tour
Duration: Full day from Queenstown (5-7 hours)
Distance: Hike 2 to 4 hours (about 10kms/6 milies, tailored to your fitness level)
If you’re looking for a comprehensive Queenstown heli tour that captures the very best scenery on the South Island in one day, look no further. Fly over waterfalls and hidden valleys in lush Fiordland National Park and over famed Milford Sound to land on a remote beach on the rugged West Coast. Then touch down on Cecil Peak Station and get a feel of farm life on a hike in this iconic high country station before jumping on a water taxi back across the lake to Queenstown.
Glacier Snow Landing
This morning you’ll be picked up outside your hotel for a short transfer to the airport where you’ll board a helicopter for an unforgettable flight. Leave the deep blues of Lake Wakatipu behind as we fly northwest past jaw-dropping ice shelves at the head of the lake to land on one of the stunning glaciers.
We then continue on to Milford Sound, an absolute must see, via Fiordland National Park. Rudyard Kipling called Milford Sound the ‘eighth wonder of the world’ and its World Heritage status confirms its unique beauty. Your scenic flight will take you above rainforest-covered hidden valleys, past spectacular alpine lakes and over several mountain ranges as you enjoy this world-famous area from a bird’s eye view. From the remote township, we fly down the length of the Sound (actually a fjord!) alongside dramatic Bowen and Stirling Falls pouring from sheer granite cliffs to have a close look at iconic snow-capped Mitre Peak.
Wild West Coast Beach
We’ll gently touch down on a remote West Coast beach, where we’ll have the chance to curl our toes in the sand, dip our feet in the Tasman and breathe in the refreshing sea air. From here, we head deeper into Fiordland over dense subtropic rainforest, hidden lakes and rivers. Admire Sutherland Falls, New Zealand’s highest waterfall, from above and enjoy breathtaking views of beautiful Lake Quill and Lake Erskine before heading back towards Queenstown.
Hike on a High Country Station
The helicopter will drop you off at remote Cecil Peak Station, a 32,000-acre true high country farm run by third generation Kiwi farmers that is only accessible by boat or aircraft. Countless rainbow and brown trout jump in the crystal clear waters of the Lochy River that flows through these parts and if you look closely, you might spot some wild fallow deer on the lower slopes around the bushline. Enjoy a rolling hike back to the homestead while learning about life on the land (2-4 hour hike, all levels of fitness catered for) or, if the weather permits, you’ll hike along the ridgeline for dramatic lake and mountain views. Meet the dogs who work the Merino sheep grazing on the lush lower paddocks as you explore the yards and gain new insight on rural Kiwi life.
Water Taxi back to Queenstown
Before you know it, it’ll be time to head back across Lake Wakatipu on a 30-minute water taxi ride to Queenstown, where you’ll be met and dropped off at your accommodation.
INCLUDES: Door to door pick up, 2-hour scenic helicopter flight, picnic lunch, farm tour, 2-4 hour guided hike and water taxi transfer from Cecil Peak to Queenstown.