A train journey is probably the most relaxed way to explore the beauty of New Zealand. Along the way, you will experience a rich diversity of places and people and many spectacular destinations. Just relax and sit back for the journey.
The Northern Explorer is the longest established passenger rail service of New Zealand. The long-distance scenic route runs between Auckland and Wellington. The journey through the Tongariro National Park is the highlight of this route. The landscape offers many surprises and extremes, with dense beech forests, ancient lava flows and snow-covered fields existing alongside each other. The train also passes three spectacular volcanos, Ruapehu, Ngauruhoe and Tongariro. The breathtaking route leads through the heart of the North Island.
The Tranzalpine train runs across the South Island between Greymouth and Christchurch. Its journey includes epic views, and leads through miles of magnificent beech forests, crosses the Southern Alps, and skirts the edges of the ice-fed Waimakariri river. The Tranzalpine route covers 139 miles in less than five hours and is one of the great train journeys of the world.
During the summer season, the Coastal Pacific train runs every day between Picton and the garden city of Christchurch. The Kaikoura Mountains reach to the sky on one side, and the roaring Pacific ocean stretches out all the way to the horizon on the other. The journey is breathtakingly beautiful. The Kaikoura coastline is famous for whale watching, and other marine mammals. The journey from Christchurch to Picton takes just over five hours and leads to the Interislander ferry, which connects the South Island to the North Island.
The Interislander ferry runs between Picton on the South Island and Wellington on the North Island and is the longest running ferry to cross the Cook Strait. It is known as one of the most beautiful ferry journeys of the world. It connects to the Northern Explorer and the Coastal Pacific trains.