Welcome to the forum EC :)
You have two routes to consider.
1 - bus or train Arthur's Pass to Greymouth, bus to Franz or Fox. This is a full one-day trip.
2 - bus Lindis Pass to Wanaka, the following day bus Haast Pass to Fox or Franz. This is a full two-day trip.
Safe travels :)
Thanks for the help! Just to make sure I'm reading that correctly - it's possible to get from Christchurch to Franz Josef in one day with public transport? I guess from the stuff we'd read, it seemed that it would take a full day to get to Greymouth and then we'd have to sleep there to catch a bus the next day to FJ. But if it's possible to get off the train and then on a bus that same day, we'd love to do that instead. Do you happen to know what bus company we should be looking at?
Thanks for your help!! I just want to make sure I understand this correctly, it's possible to take the train to Greymouth and then get on a bus that same day to Franz Josef. Do you happen to know the name of the bus company we should be looking at? From most of the info we've read it seemed that we'd have to train it to Greymouth and would not be able to get to FJ until the next day. If we can get it all done in one day that would be fantastic. Thanks again for such a quick response!
(sorry, thought the first post didn't work!)
You have a couple of choices, as WL above has suggested traveling with Atomic Shuttles leaving Chch at 7.30 am arriving in Greymouth just after midday, then catching either atomic shuttles or Intercity GM to Franz Joseph.
You could catch the train on the Christchurch to Greymouth leg.
If you are arriving in Christchurch before 3 pm, another option would be to break your travel a wee bit and stay the night in Greymouth, leave Chch at 3 pm and even with a pick up at the chch airport, arrive GM at 7 pm, stay the night, then catch atomic shuttles at 7.30 am from GM and arrive FJ about 10.am.
the second option wuld get you into FJ half a day earlier so more time for activities
The shuttle/bus services make sure to connect with the train so you will have no problem getting from ChCh to FJ in one day. It is a very pleasant trip - someone else does the driving and you get to sit back and focus on the views
For this route, Naked bus sells cheap tickets that are actually run by Atomic so check prices from both operators.
I booked the Tranzalpine by calling the ChCh isite and got free Devonshire tea coupons, yummy!
If you are considering using 'naked bus', make sure that you are not travelling during weekends as they still take bookings, they do not operate and simply leave people standing, and the 0900 phone number isn't answered by anyone
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