UPDATE: Services to return for the summer!

We are pleased to announce that the Northern Explorer and Coastal Pacific trains will be returning to the tracks this spring and summer and the Tranz Alpine is running as we are in Covid- 19 Alert Level 1.

The Northern Explorer running between Auckland and Wellington will recommence its normal weekly timetable from Wednesday 07 October 2020

The Coastal Pacific returns from Tuesday 13 October 2020, running between Christchurch and Piction and returning the same day on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.

The TranzAlpine running between Christchurch to Greymouth  runs on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays.

Cook Strait ferry bookings and some daytours and bus routes are also open for sale. Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any queries on 0800 143 669 or info@newzealandtravelteam.com

We understand that Covid-19 continues to add uncertainty in planning, and indeed all the train services rely on the country being at Covid - 19 Alert Level 1. Should there be cancellation of services due to Covid 19 restrictions, we will offer affected customers a transfer to an alternative date, a credit for 12 months, or a refund, regardless of the fare purchased less a $30 processing fee for the entire reservation.

 

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New Zealand long distance passenger train services

Northern Explorer: Auckland-Wellington-Auckland train service

A scenic rail journey through the heart of New Zealand's beautiful North Island. The Northern Explorer train service connects Auckland, New Zealand's largest city and home of the Sky Tower; to Wellington, New Zealand's arts and culture capital. You‘ll travel through rugged native bush, up the world famous Raurimu Spiral to the alpine desert Central Plateau. Enjoy views of its majestic volcanoes, then descend through stunning river gorges to the rocky seascapes of the lower North Island. See it all from the comfort of your carriage through panoramic windows. Read more

Coastal Pacific: Christchurch–Picton–Christchurch train service

A scenic rail journey from Christchurch to Kaikoura, Blenheim and Picton — the gateway to the beautiful Marlborough Sounds. Your journey takes you through picturesque countryside, with the Kaikoura mountain ranges on one side of your train and the rugged Pacific Ocean coastline on the other. Travel through some of New Zealand's finest farmland and wine growing regions, and see marine birds, seals and penguins from the comfort of your carriage. Panoramic windows ensure your stunning views are uninterrupted. Read more

Tranz Alpine: Christchurch–Greymouth–Christchurch train service

A scenic rail journey from one coast of the beautiful South Island to the other through the famed Arthurs Pass. You'll see the rich farmlands of the Canterbury Plains, then ascend the Southern Alps through the spectacular river gorges and valleys of the Waimakariri River to Arthurs Pass. Enjoy a stunning descent through the Otira Tunnel and lush beech alpine rain forests to Greymouth — the gateway to the South Island's West Coast and glaciers. Read more

Regional passenger train services in New Zealand

Alongside the three long distance passenger train services in New Zealand there are also two regional passenger train services.

  • The Capital Connection train operates between Wellington and Palmerston North Monday to Friday 
  • The Wairapapa Connection train operates between Wellington and Masterton seven days a week.

There are no overnight regional or long distance passenger train services in New Zealand.

Travel to other major tourist destinations in New Zealand is by scenic bus and coach services from either Auckland, Hamilton, Christchurch or Greymouth.