An epic 12-hour television show featuring all of KiwiRail’s Great Journeys of New Zealand reflects increasing demand for unhurried travel where the journey itself is part of the experience, says KiwiRail’s Head of Tourism and Marketing Ahleen Rayner.
Inspired by Norway’s ‘slow television’ concept, Prime’s GO SOUTH takes viewers from Auckland to Milford Sound. The New Zealand-first show features no narration, allowing viewers to sit back and be entranced by the beauty of Aotearoa.
Viewers will travel on the Northern Explorer from Auckland to Wellington, cross the Cook Strait on Interislander, take the Coastal Pacific from Picton to Christchurch and cross the Southern Alps to the West Coast on the TranzAlpine.
“The return of the Coastal Pacific in December connected the dots between Picton and Christchurch, and increasing numbers of customers are booking the entire journey from Auckland through to Greymouth,” says Ahleen.
“Worldwide, there has been a resurgence in demand for immersive journeys, and it’s definitely something we’ve seen reflected here in New Zealand.
“Last summer we experienced a record tourism season and we’re expecting similar results this year.
“While GO SOUTH isn’t in real time (the journey would take more than 40 hours), it will give viewers a taste of why our services are the perfect option for exploring New Zealand.
“To capture the footage, special cameras were positioned throughout our ferries and trains, including the cabs of our locomotives – meaning viewers also have the unique opportunity of seeing what our drivers see.
“The scenery they will enjoy is one of the reasons our Great Journeys of New Zealand train and ferry services are often named among the world’s best.
“Many of these views are only able to be seen from rail, so we’re thrilled everyone has a chance to witness the stunning scenery previously seen only by our passengers and staff.
“We hope Prime’s GO SOUTH will inspire viewers to experience the captivating views and our famous hospitality for themselves.”
GO SOUTH is made with the support of NZ On Air. The three-hour journey starts 9.30pm, Saturday 19 January on Prime. The extended 12-hour journey commences later the same evening at 1.30am. For more information visit www.primtetv.co.nz/go-south
For more information on Great Journeys of New Zealand, visit www.greatjourneysofnz.co.nz
About Prime’s GO SOUTH:
The vast overland route from Auckland to the deep south is a part of our national identity, an iconic piece of Kiwiana. A journey where city and sprawl gently yields to rolling pastures, volcanic extremes, tranquil waterways, the rough Otago high country and the grandeur of the Southern Alps and Milford Sound. Imagine taking this epic trip down the country with a group of your closest friends and family. Curating more than 40 hours of total travel time into individual three-hour and 12-hour commercial-free programmes, GO SOUTH embraces taking the slow route.
Around each bend, hidden stories and amazing views are revealed. It’s hypnotic, addictive and meditative. With the push of a button you can be transported somewhere else. You can experience this country in a way you might never consider in your real life – by rail, by water and by road. That’s the promise of GO SOUTH. But this journey isn’t just a collection of stunning landscapes, at its heart is the story of who we are as a people.
With no score, no narration, an intentionally immersive soundscape, and beauty shots held far longer than expected, the experience is a signature piece of television - and a New Zealand first.