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Thread: SI Holiday "booked"

  1. #1
    hatter5's Avatar
    hatter5 is offline Senior Member
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    Default SI Holiday "booked"

    Can anyone offer any advice on an itinerary for an 8 day trip down south (from Wellington) in January flying into Christchurch and probably being based there.

    Main problem is that there's just too much to see in such a short time (*) and we'd rather not spend hours driving to get to Queenstown etc for the sake of it.

    We have an option to spend a couple of days in Kiakoura as our sponsor (Father in Law) would like to do the whale watching trip so reason that staying in or around ChCh would be the best option.

    We've dug out the trusted Lonely Planet guide and looked through plenty of NZ tourist websites and we end up with too much choice (*)

    Any personal experiences to share? Reasonably priced accommodation recommendations if possible. Need to cater for the following aged group 70,40,39,7 & 4.

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    Hi Hatter,

    I don't know if this is any good to you and might only send you into information overload mode. It's 101 Must Dos for Kiwis . It covers all of NZ but looks like there might be some nice photos on there, tips from other visitors about various places and an interactive map that you can fiddle about with. Also there's info about accommodation including chalets, B & B, and motels. I'm not sure if the accommodation being on this site is a good recommendation e.g. AA approved. Perhaps the others can confirm or deny this to put your mind at rest that you're getting a decent room to rest your heads. If you want to plan an itinerary there are some ready-made ones that you can check up on, too, along with some road trips and a time and distance calculator .

    Sorry, no personal info as yet from me ( ) but this site is worth a look.
    Mother Bear

    Try to bloom wherever you are planted.

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    Dawn's Avatar
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    PM Kokopeli He sent me an amazing itinerary when we came over. The poor soul spent far too much time in his campervan and knows all the 'off the beaten track' spots.

    Have a good time and post back with piccies
    Passionate about the unfathomableness opportunities of kiwi-a-gogo-land

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    In the Chch area, these are the things we've done in the short time we've been here that would be good for the group you've got:

    1. Akaroa--lovely 90-minute drive from Chch. Nice little downtown area with shops and cafes. You could do whale/dolphin watching from there, too.

    2. Kaikoura--The downside is the long drive (2 1/2 hours) from Chch but if you were going to stay overnight, it's not a problem. I haven't done a whalewatch there, yet, but I hear it is *the* place to do one. There's also a seal colony to see, a nice beach, and some good walks. I don't know that there's really much more than a day's worth of stuff to do there, though. (On edit: there's always lots to do, but the challenge is finding something that appeals to a mixed-age group!)

    3. Arthur's Pass--Not really as much of a destination as a journey. Lots of good places to stop and walk around on the way there and back. If you're like me, you'll want to stop and take pictures every 5 minutes. Each bend in the road seems to reveal another breath-taking vista.

    In Chch itself, there are several things worth seeing:

    *The Int'l Antarctic Center--my wife and I enjoyed it, but no so much my kids (5 and 2 1/2). Great museum dedicated to Antarctic exploration, good blue penguin exhibit, and a fun indoor snowstorm.

    *The Cultural Precinct--The Canterbury Museum (which is very kid-friendly), the Art Museum, the Tram, Victoria Square ... It actually is quite nice, most stuff is free, and it isn't all that tourist-y. Spending the day wandering around it and the city is worthwhile.

    *Botanic Gardens--Great place for the kids to run around, feed the ducks, and play on the playground, while the adults check out the flowers.

    *The Port Hills Drive--Another must-do. Drive up from Cashmere, end in Sumner, where you can have lunch on the Esplanade.

    I'm sure others will weigh in with their recommendations, too.

    For accommodation, when we first arrived, we spent 2 weeks at the Central Park Motor Lodge. It isn't posh, but it is clean and well-maintained. I have no hesitation in recommending it. It is near Hagley Park, with dairy and restaurants close by. They have a 2 bedroom suite (one bedroom with a queen bed, the other with 2 twins) that worked perfectly for the 4 of us.

    I hope that helps.
    Last edited by KiwiHopeful; 24-10-2007 at 07:39 AM.
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    Thanks for the info KiwiHopeful.

    I think we'll spend a few days in and around ChCh, Kaikoura and possibly Nelson and take the ferry back.

    We recently returned from a weeks holiday traveling through Rotorua, Papamoa, Cape Runaway and Ohope Beach also covering a lot of places in between.

    The only problem was having to unpack, pack and clean before moving onto the next place and repeating the process each day.

    We won't see as much but will spend a lot less time on the road and packing.

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    So you were up this way and didn't let us know eh? Tut tut!!!
    Passionate about the unfathomableness opportunities of kiwi-a-gogo-land

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    KiwiHopeful's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hatter5 View Post

    The only problem was having to unpack, pack and clean before moving onto the next place and repeating the process each day.

    We won't see as much but will spend a lot less time on the road and packing.
    You are welcome!

    I can totally relate to that! Having kids makes everything at least twice as difficult, doesn't it? I remember the days when I could fit everything I needed into a single suitecase. Now I'm lucky if I can fit everything we need into a single car!
    EOI Submitted: July 20, 2006
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    hatter5's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tips.

    Had a wonderful time down south

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