Day in Kaikoura or Akoroa NZ??

Old Oct 26th, 2009, 11:41 AM
  #1  
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Day in Kaikoura or Akoroa NZ??

I need to get from the west coast of the South Island (near Pancake Rocks) to Christchurch and want to know which way you would go. Either up through Hanmer Springs to Kaikoura or through Arthur's pass straight to Christchurch and then down to Akoroa for the day??? Would you rather spend the day in Kaikoura or Akoroa before ending your vacation? I thought 10 days on the South Island would be plenty, but the itinerary is getting filled rather quickly!!!

Thanks for your input!
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Old Oct 26th, 2009, 01:22 PM
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Here is a link to the blog of our time in NZ with some info and a few photos. Entries 39 and 47 cover Akaroa and Kaikoura. Both places are beautiful but on balance I think I preferred Kaikoura. Even though we spent a month on the SI we still missed out on loads (notably Arthur'Pass). I wasn't terribly impressed with Hamner Springs.

http://www.travelpod.com/travel-blog...2980/tpod.html
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Old Oct 26th, 2009, 07:43 PM
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Punakaiki to Christchurch via Arthur's Pass is about a three and a half hour drive without allowing much time for stops - say four hours. Akaroa is about an hour's drive from Christchurch. I'm not sure if I am reading your intention correctly, but to do Punakaiki to Akaroa and back to Christchurch in one day would involve about six hours driving. In reality, it would be longer than that because you will want to stop to look at the scenery, have lunch, etc.

Punakaiki to Kaikoura would be about four and a half to five hours (at least, depending on the route that you take) and then it is a two and a half hour drive from Kaikoura to Christchurch.

Either way, it would be a lot of travelling in one day with very little time to enjoy either Kaikoura or Akaroa.

Rob.
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Old Oct 26th, 2009, 07:46 PM
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Ah! I have just seen you other post with your proposed itinerary and see that you are not trying to do it all in one day.
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Old Oct 27th, 2009, 10:39 AM
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Yeah...sorry about the confusion. I think I can swing going to both cities. Any stops along the way to Kaikoura that you would suggest?

Thanks!
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Old Oct 27th, 2009, 06:28 PM
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You could also do Arthur's Pass than cut over the Waimakariri River near Bexley and meet up with the Main Coast Hwy around Rangiora. I did this with a night in Arthur's Pass Village, detoured to do a fair amount of wine tasting around Waipara, to Gore Bay and then up to Kaikoura.

There is limited lodging round there but if you overnight in Arthur's Pass I think you can make it in a day and sleep in Kaikoura.

Pegasus Bay and Amberley"s Norwester Cafe are two good foodie stops.
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Old Oct 28th, 2009, 01:38 AM
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Hi, Gills.

I would suggest that you drive from Punakaki to Kaikoura via the Buller Gorge and Lewis Pass, aim to get to Hanmer Springs for lunch, and then continue on to Kaikoura via the inland route through Waiau. This brings you out to the coast just south of Kaikoura. You would miss the Arthur's Pass scenery, but the Lewis Pass is worth seeing too.

As mentioned, the drive down from Kaikoura to Christchurch takes about two and a half hours. As mlgb has said, Pegasus Bay is nice place to stop for lunch. It is about two hours from Kaikoura, though, and this may not fit in with your whale watching if you are trying to do this on the same day.

Enjoy the rest of your planning.

Rob.
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Old Oct 28th, 2009, 03:52 PM
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Thanks again Rob. That looks like a good route. I'm bummed we won't have enough time to go up to Abel Tasman. Should we try to fit it in on this trip or save it for another time........way down the road?

Any spot in particular on the road to Kaikoura that we should stop at besides Hanmer Springs?
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