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  #1  
Old August 4th, 2012, 03:34 PM
TLCOhio TLCOhio is offline
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Default Christchurch vs. Arthur's Pass, Other Nature Options?

As posted on another thread on this board, it seem that it will take lots longer than 18 months to get Christchurch re-built back to its previous glory and beauty. We have already seen lots and lots of charming cities in the Europe and the U.S. Our leaning for those in our group for eight to ten from central Ohio will be towards more nature, wildlife and other such options away from this city.

What are the reactions about the timing and trade-offs in going to Arthur's Pass National Park, the Southern Alps, etc.? The Tranz Alpine Express sounds like a great way to go through the heart of the Southern Alps in comfort and style. But, it would be departing Christchurch at 8:15 am and arriving Arthurs Pass at 10:42 am. Then, it would be departing Arthurs Pass at 3:57 pm and be returning to arrive at Christchurch at 6:05 pm. With our ship's schedule being arrive at 8 am and departing at 6 pm from our docking location at some distance from the Christchurch rail station, these logistics seemingly would not work. I understand it is 30 minutes from the pier at Lyttelton to Christchurch.

Added reactions and thoughts on other great places and options around Christchurch? Our cruise is Jan. 20-Feb. 3, 2014, Sydney to Auckland. By that time, our ships and others should be back to docking at Lyttelton, not Akaroa as now being done.

Korowai-Torlesse Tussocklands Park seems closer, but is that park worth that much to go there?

THANKS for the great help! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio


Did a June 7-19, 2011, Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in Villefranche, ports near Pisa and Rome, Naples, Kotor, Venice and Dubrovnik. Enjoyed great weather and a wonderful trip. Dozens of wonderful visuals with key highlights, tips, comments, etc., on these postings. We are now at 95,632 views for this live/blog re-cap on our first sailing with Celebrity and much on wonderful Barcelona. Check these postings and added info at:
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  #2  
Old August 7th, 2012, 11:55 PM
erewhon erewhon is offline
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Looking at the Korowai-Torlesse park website, it would appear to be a park of tussocks where trampers/hikers visit and stay a night at a hut overnight. This park is maintained by the Department of Conservation (DOC).

If your ship berths at Lyttelton and you plan to hire a vehicle, are you interested in wine?

Approximately 40 minutes drive north of Christchurch is the Waipara Valley, home to many vineyards.
For instance, one of the vineyards is Waipara Hills.
http://www.waiparahills.co.nz they have refreshments available at The Mud House Cafe, www.mudhousecafe.co.nz

Also at Waipara http://www.wekapassrailway.co.nz (there is a map on that website showing the location of Waipara in relation to Christchurch).
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Old August 8th, 2012, 12:39 AM
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Kiwi Kruzer Kiwi Kruzer is offline
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Another spot to check out if you are looking for a "Nature Trip", would be Hanmer Springs.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanmer_Springs
When the ships docked in Lyttelton we had enough time to get into the City and catch the daily shuttle bus up there. We only had around 1 hour to look around the town before the return trip, but it was a great day with a huge variety of scenery on the way.

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Old August 9th, 2012, 05:35 AM
erewhon erewhon is offline
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If you decide to look around Christchurch,you may be interested to visit the Botanic Gardens. http://ccc.govt.nz

Information about the Gardens is listed under the heading "Parks and walkways."

Last edited by erewhon; August 9th, 2012 at 05:39 AM.
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Old August 9th, 2012, 05:42 AM
erewhon erewhon is offline
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Also available in Christchurch, .....punting on the Avon.
http://www.punting.co.nz
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  #6  
Old August 9th, 2012, 02:22 PM
Davian Davian is offline
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From a Christchurch local ....

Don't bother about anything around the city.

Best thing to do is the train trip to Arthurs Pass to see some of the scenery. Often the ships offer this as an excursion due to timing.
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Old August 9th, 2012, 04:45 PM
TLCOhio TLCOhio is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Davian View Post
From a Christchurch local .... Don't bother about anything around the city. Best thing to do is the train trip to Arthurs Pass to see some of the scenery. Often the ships offer this as an excursion due to timing.
Appreciate the above sad, but honest, evaluation about realities in Christchurch now for the next year or so. Glad to get the other suggestions and ideas. Will save to my laptop file.

Keep the good ideas and creative thoughts rolling along.

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio


Did a June 7-19, 2011, Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in Villefranche, ports near Pisa and Rome, Naples, Kotor, Venice and Dubrovnik. Enjoyed great weather and a wonderful trip. Dozens of wonderful visuals with key highlights, tips, comments, etc., on these postings. We are now at 96,032 views for this live/blog re-cap on our first sailing with Celebrity and much on wonderful Barcelona. Check these postings and added info at:
http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/s....php?t=1426474
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Old August 9th, 2012, 06:16 PM
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I would check to see whether your ship will offer a Transalpine Train Tour. Our ship did, it was more expensive than booking individually, however it is not to be missed. They shortened the time in Arthurs's Pass so we were back in time to quickly board the ship. They served a boxed lunch enroute. The scenery was just breathtaking, as you leave Christchurch there is flat prairie land which is green and verdent with of course many sheep ranches. You can see the Alps in the distance. As you approach the fields are full of alpine flowers in rich colors, the river which I can't remember the name of is beautiful in colour because of glacial runoff. I so wanted to see the Kakapo Parrot and didn't. Just gives me a reason to come back to this beautiful country. I was in Auckland this past January, visiting my brother and we flew to Queenstown for a long weekend. Wow! what an incredible city. We woke up to the vista of the "Remarkables" each morning and had a range of weather from sunny and beautiful to waking up to snow on the mountains the last morning.

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Old August 9th, 2012, 11:49 PM
erewhon erewhon is offline
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TLCOhio,

Another option is a jet boat ride, see http://www.jetthrills.com
can do horseback and the jet boat, or just the jet boat on the Waimakariri river braided river system.
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Old August 10th, 2012, 08:40 AM
Jayayeff Jayayeff is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erewhon View Post
TLCOhio,

Another option is a jet boat ride, see http://www.jetthrills.com
can do horseback and the jet boat, or just the jet boat on the Waimakariri river braided river system.
I will be doing a New Zealand/Australia cruise later this year and with the ship anchored in Akaroa time does not allow to do the full Alpine safari trip (jet boat ride, 4x4 high country drive and the transalpine train) however, I managed to find a tour operator who would do a similar tour but without the train ride as a private excursion for myself and friends who will be onboard with me. We are really looking forward to this 'adventure' day, especially the jet boat part...

Anne
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Old August 10th, 2012, 10:21 AM
TLCOhio TLCOhio is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayayeff View Post
I will be doing a New Zealand/Australia cruise later this year and with the ship anchored in Akaroa time does not allow to do the full Alpine safari trip (jet boat ride, 4x4 high country drive and the transalpine train) however, I managed to find a tour operator who would do a similar tour but without the train ride as a private excursion for myself and friends who will be onboard with me. We are really looking forward to this 'adventure' day, especially the jet boat part... Anne
Appreciate all of the added, great tips and ideas. For Anne, which tour operator are you using? Or, how to contact them to check on options, etc., for us in early 2014?

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio


Did a June 7-19, 2011, Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in Villefranche, ports near Pisa and Rome, Naples, Kotor, Venice and Dubrovnik. Enjoyed great weather and a wonderful trip. Dozens of wonderful visuals with key highlights, tips, comments, etc., on these postings. We are now at 96,115 views for this live/blog re-cap on our first sailing with Celebrity and much on wonderful Barcelona. Check these postings and added info at:
http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/s....php?t=1426474
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Old August 10th, 2012, 01:24 PM
Jayayeff Jayayeff is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TLCOhio View Post
Appreciate all of the added, great tips and ideas. For Anne, which tour operator are you using? Or, how to contact them to check on options, etc., for us in early 2014?

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

Did a June 7-19, 2011, Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in Villefranche, ports near Pisa and Rome, Naples, Kotor, Venice and Dubrovnik. Enjoyed great weather and a wonderful trip. Dozens of wonderful visuals with key highlights, tips, comments, etc., on these postings. We are now at 96,115 views for this live/blog re-cap on our first sailing with Celebrity and much on wonderful Barcelona. Check these postings and added info at:
www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1426474
Terry

The tour company is Hassle-free Tours of Christchurch. On the website the tour is advertised as half day from Christchurch but for us being anchored in Akaroa it will be full day so we have some flexibility in how long we spend where, just ensuring we get back to the ship on time!! We booked as a private excursion for a party of five. If you are on Facebook they also have a FB page...

Anne
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Old August 10th, 2012, 04:57 PM
TLCOhio TLCOhio is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayayeff View Post
Terry: The tour company is Hassle-free Tours of Christchurch. On the website the tour is advertised as half day from Christchurch but for us being anchored in Akaroa it will be full day so we have some flexibility in how long we spend where, just ensuring we get back to the ship on time!! We booked as a private excursion for a party of five. If you are on Facebook they also have a FB page... Anne
THANKS, Anne! Will follow-up to see what they offer and suggest.

Enjoy! Terry in Ohio


Did a June 7-19, 2011, Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in Villefranche, ports near Pisa and Rome, Naples, Kotor, Venice and Dubrovnik. Enjoyed great weather and a wonderful trip. Dozens of wonderful visuals with key highlights, tips, comments, etc., on these postings. We are now at 96,115 views for this live/blog re-cap on our first sailing with Celebrity and much on wonderful Barcelona. Check these postings and added info at:
http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/s....php?t=1426474
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