Canterbury is a region of contrasts. Rugged alps sit alongside flat green plains, silvery Pacific Ocean beaches lie next to the magnificent Kaikoura Ranges and fresh blue lakes are framed by golden tussock. Step off the plane in Christchurch and straight into all that Canterbury has to offer. You’ll be spoilt for choice no matter what’s on your holiday itinerary.
Tour the Alpine Pacific Triangle, the spa delights of Hanmer Springs and the whales and dolphins of the ecotourism destination, Kaikoura.
Situated between the Canterbury Plains and the West Coast, in the heart of the Southern Alps is Arthur’s Pass National Park. Discover it by road, hiking on foot or take the TranzAlpine train journey, either way you won’t be disappointed.
A little further south, follow the Inland Scenic Route 72 for beautiful vistas of the Canterbury Plains on one side of the road and fabulous views of the mountains on the other. The welcoming town of Methven is a base for skiing adventures in winter and at other times jet boating, sky diving, fishing and golf are on offer.
English influence is all around in Christchurch, with lush gardens, expansive parks and the Avon River winding its way around the city. Take a journey on the gondola high above the city and delight in the truly awe-inspiring views of the Canterbury Plains, Southern Alps and Banks Peninsula. Enjoy some retail therapy at Re:Start, an outdoor container mall located in the heart of Christchurch. Built from colourful shipping containers and boasting a large range of fashion retailers, market stalls, cafés and street performers.
For lasting memories, head out to Banks Peninsula for the day. Discover the historic French influenced village of Akaroa. Enjoy a harbour cruise and see the rare Hector’s dolphin, seals and penguins up close or visit a French café before taking a stroll around local art and craft boutiques.