South Island Foodie Itinerary: One Week / 7 Days
South Island Foodie Itinerary: One Week / 7 Days

South Island Food Itinerary: One Week / 7 Days 🥝 [2022]

© ChristchurchNZ

7-Day Food Itinerary for the South Island

Diverse South Island wineries, cheese factory tours, New Zealand breweries, artisan chocolate factories and traditional Maori fare: that’s what a foodie road trip on the South Island is all about! Treat your tastebuds to a gastronomical trip with this one-week adventure. While we always recommend staying at least two weeks on the South Island, this South Island food itinerary for one week will help you make the most of 7 days.

Start planning a flavoursome road trip with this South Island food itinerary for one week (7 days). Oh, and don’t forget to bookmark The Food Guide to New Zealand – you’re definitely going to need that.

South Island Food Itinerary for One Week: Overview

  • Day 1 – Christchurch Airport to Christchurch
  • Day 2 – Christchurch to Oamaru
  • Day 3 – Explore Oamaru
  • Day 4 – Oamaru to Dunedin
  • Day 5 – Dunedin to Alexandra
  • Day 6 – Alexandra to Queenstown
  • Day 7 – Queenstown to Queenstown Airport

How to Get Around the South Island in One Week

This 7-day food itinerary for New Zealand is a self-drive itinerary. If you’d rather not drive, however, skip to the second point. We also have some information on taking flights within New Zealand just in case you need to make a connecting flight up to Auckland, for example. The ways to get around the South Island include:

South Island Foodie Itinerary: One Week / 7 Days© Unsplash

Day 1 – Christchurch Airport to Christchurch

Travel time: 15 minutes

Welcome to Christchurch and the South Island! Either pick up your rental vehicle at the airport or take a taxi, shuttle or bus into Christchurch city centre – you can always pick up your rental vehicle tomorrow.

Celebrate your first day in New Zealand by trying a Maori hangi at Ko Tane Maori Experience or treat yourself to a four-course dinner while sightseeing on the Christchurch Tramway Restaurant (find out more about the experience, read reviews and book a ride on the tram on Viator and Tripadvisor). More ideas for things to do are listed below.

Food Experiences in Christchurch

  • Take a tour of the Waipara wine region (more info Viator and Tripadvisor)
  • Try a Maori hangi with Ko Tane Maori Experience
  • Enjoy fine dining while touring in the Christchurch Tram (on Viator and Tripadvisor)
  • Taste and tour The Spirits Workshop Distillery
  • Experience Christchurch’s iconic farmers’ markets.

For more details on each experience, see the 9 Things to Do in Christchurch for Foodies.

The Best Accommodation in Christchurch with Restaurants

Find out more about our top picks in the 10 Best Accommodations in Christchurch for Foodies.

South Island Foodie Itinerary: One Week / 7 Days© NZPocketGuide.com

Day 2 – Christchurch to Oamaru

Travel time: 3h10mins

It’s time to leave the city and make your way to Oamaru today. Stop by Ashburton and Timaru for their wonderful selection of cafes.

Once you reach Oamaru, you have the choice between a cheese factory tour (see on Viator and Tripadvisor), artisan goods in the Victorian Precinct, a confectionary factory and New Zealand’s newest wine region.

We’ll go over the food tours and experiences tomorrow. Until then, book a table at Cucina for their artful plates of Italian and South American cuisine or the Riverstone Kitchen which grows its own produce on-site. See The Foodie Guide to Oamaru for more dining recommendations.

The Beach Accommodation in Oamaru with Restaurants/Meals/Breakfasts

For more information on our top picks, see the 10 Best Accommodations in Oamaru for Foodies.

South Island Foodie Itinerary: One Week / 7 Days© NZPocketGuide.com

Day 3 – Explore Oamaru

Get your day in Oamaru off to a cheesy start at Whitestone Cheese! They offer comprehensive tours of their cheese factory, which includes cheese tastings and optional wine tastings. Find out more on Viator and Tripadvisor.

Alternatively (or additionally – we’re not judging), travel part-way up the Waitaki Valley to pop into its boutique wineries like River-T Estate and Ostler Wines. You can also spend some time browsing the Victorian Precinct not only for its brewbars like Scott’s Brewing Co., homemade artisan products at the Riverstone Larder, and European-style Harbour Street Bakery but to admire the magnificent white limestone architecture.

Food Experiences in Oamaru

  • Tour a cheese factory complete with tastings (more info on Viator and Tripadvisor)
  • Venture to the Waitaki Valley wine region
  • Try some craft beer in the Victorian Precinct…
  • … Then pick up a pie, ice cream and artisan goods in the Victorian Precinct
  • Get some naughty snacks for the road from Rainbow Confectionery.

Take a look at the 7 Things to Do in Oamaru for Foodies for more details on each experience.

South Island Foodie Itinerary: One Week / 7 Days© DunedinNZ

Day 4 – Oamaru to Dunedin

Travel time: 1h35mins

Head south today to the city of Dunedin, perhaps stopping by the perfectly spherical natural wonders of the Moeraki Boulders and grabbing a coffee at its cafe. Aim to get there at low tide for the best views of the boulders.

So what is there to do once you arrive in Dunedin? Well, Dunedin is kinda famous for its beers. It’s home to one of the most popular brands of New Zealand beer, which you’ll see in every supermarket. What’s more, you can learn more about said brand on the Speight’s Brewery Tour (more info on Viator and Tripadvisor). Alternatively, take part in a chocolate factory tour at OCHO Chocolate Factory (on Viator and Tripadvisor) or treat yourself to high tea at New Zealand’s one and only castle, Larnach Castle (on Viator and Tripadvisor).

Food Experiences in Dunedin

  • Tour the Speight’s Brewery with beer tastings (more info on Viator and Tripadvisor)
  • Browse the Otago Farmers’ Market
  • Join a chocolate factory tour (on Viator and Tripadvisor)
  • Drink real cow’s milk at Windy Ridge Dairy or Holy Cow
  • Indulge in high tea at Larnach Castle (on Viator and Tripadvisor).

For more information on each activity and more, head to our 8 Things to Do in Dunedin for Foodies.

The Best Accommodation in Dunedin with Restaurants/Meals/Breakfasts

For more details on each accommodation, see the 10 Best Accommodations in Dunedin for Foodies.

South Island Foodie Itinerary: One Week / 7 Days© NZPocketGuide.com

Day 5 – Dunedin to Alexandra

Travel time: 2h20mins

As you make your way to Central Otago today, pitstops include Milton and Lawrence. The latter is a popular stop of the Clutha Gold Trail for its cool cafes and must-visit chocolate shop, The Lawrence Mint. The Gabriels Gully Walk among a historic gold mining site is pretty neat too. You’ll also find plenty of walks in Roxburgh on your way to Alexandra.

Enjoy an evening in the more off-the-beaten-track foodie’s paradise of Alexandra (or the neighbouring town of Clyde). Speaking of Clyde, Olivers is a must-try eatery, or should we say three eateries! We also like Paulina’s Bar pioneering railroad theme combined with Spanish, Italian and Japanese cuisine.

Food Experiences in Alexandra and Clyde

  • Tour the boutique wineries of Alexandra
  • Sample craft beer at the local breweries
  • Pick your own raspberries or enjoy afternoon tea at Monte Christo Raspberry Cafe
  • Check out the Alexandra Friday Food and Produce Market
  • Enjoy local cuisine at the restaurants and cafes.

For more details on each experience, check out the 5 Things to Do in Alexandra & Clyde for Foodies.

The Best Accommodation in Alexandra and Clyde with Restaurants and Vineyards

Stay at one of the wineries overnight, ideal for true wine lovers.

For more information on our top picks, take a look at the 10 Best Accommodations in Alexandra & Clyde for Foodies.

South Island Foodie Itinerary: One Week / 7 Days© NZPocketGuide.com

Day 6 – Alexandra to Queenstown

Travel time: 1h10mins

Your final destination today is Queenstown but not without passing through the Central Otago wine region where your first port of call is Cromwell. You can stop by a few more wineries here, but we recommend waiting to take a wine tour from Queenstown (more info on Viator and Tripadvisor) so you don’t have to worry about allocating a designated driver.

After passing by the vineyards of the Gibbston Valley, take a quick detour to Arrowtown for its charming historic buildings, sweet shops and ice cream parlours lining the town.

Queenstown is then your final destination on this foodie itinerary. Celebrate your amazing journey with a meal at the back alley-eatery of The Bunker. They specialise in game meats and cocktails. Or, let’s be honest, you just want to see what this “Fergburger” hype is about, so call in early to avoid the long queue. Check out The Foodie Guide to Queenstown for more suggestions.

The Best Accommodation in Queenstown with Restaurants

Find out more about each place to stay in our 10 Best Accommodations in Queenstown for Foodies.

South Island Foodie Itinerary: One Week / 7 Days© Destination Queenstown

Day 7 – Queenstown to Queenstown Airport

Travel time: 10 minutes

Book your flight out of Queenstown for the evening because you’re going to want to make the most out of your final day on the South Island. For instance, tour the Central Otago wine region by bike (more info on Viator and Tripadvisor) or on a small-group driving tour (on Viator and Tripadvisor). For something a little different by this point, we recommend experiencing a gourmet Kiwi barbecue on the high country farm at Walter Peak (more info on Viator, Tripadvisor, Klook and KKday).

Food Experiences in Queenstown

For more information on each activity, check out 10 Things to Do in Queenstown for Foodies.

Once all of the items have been ticked off your foodie bucket list, it’s time to head to Queenstown Airport and leave the South Island. It’s worth noting that there are some popular Queenstown brands at the airport should you need to pick up some last-minute souvenirs from The Remarkable Sweet Shop or Patagonia Chocolates.

More About a South Island Foodie Itinerary for One Week / 7 Days

That’s it for our South Island food itinerary for one week (7 days). If this itinerary didn’t quite suit you, perhaps you’d be more into these alternatives:

Finally, get more advice for planning an entire trip to New Zealand surrounding culinary experiences in The Foodie Guide to New Zealand.

Author

Laura S.

This article was reviewed and published by Laura, editor in chief and co-founder of NZ Pocket Guide. Since arriving solo in New Zealand over 10 years ago and with a background in journalism, her mission has been to show the world how easy (and awesome) it is to travel New Zealand. She knows Aotearoa inside-out and loves sharing tips on how best to experience New Zealand’s must-dos and hidden gems. Laura is also editor of several other South Pacific travel guides and is the co-host of NZ Pocket Guide’s live New Zealand travel Q&As on YouTube.

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