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Tour Milford Sound, Ski Queenstown or call in to Christchurch

The Southern Alps arc down the South Island's spine in a stunning tribute to the forces of the Earth. The northern tip, around Nelson and Marlborough, has the sunniest and finest wine growing region in New Zealand. Facing the Tasman Sea, the West Coast is rugged: it's rivers, glaciers and rainforests.

South Island: Milford SoundKayaking in Milford Sound | by Flight Centre's Kim Bui

East coast cities – Christchurch and Dunedin – have quaint architectural gems amid their naturally beautiful surroundings. Adrenalin and adventure tourism fuel southern-central Queenstown. Food, wine and nature lovers find slices of heaven all over these parts but whatever you fancy, be sure to include Fiordland on your itinerary. It's tucked on the South Island's south-western tip and is aesthetically and ecologically remarkable.

South Island: Paua ShellsPaua Shells | by Flight Centre's Katrina Imbruglia

Christchurch has an international airport so you can get here from anywhere. The food is divine, hospitality warm and wherever you lay your head – in a wilderness camp or on the fine featheriness of 5-star pillows – you'll dream of a beautiful land, only to step right into it when you wake.

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