Lakeside resort town

Dawn over the lake, May 2016

Traditionally Tekapo has been a gas and comfort stop on the route between Christchurch and Queenstown. Fifty years ago the town would have had less than 100 permanent residents, but today like so many other small towns, it’s bursting at the seams and struggling to cater for the increasing number of tourists.

Back in the old days, working people from the East Coast cities and towns may have had a weekend holiday home at Tekapo where they could go boating and fishing or use the village as a base to explore further afield into the mountains. Today it has a permanent population of about 380 and is one of

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Kaikoura Earthquake 2016 - updated

14-11-2016 00:04 A.M.

Travel update 27-07-2017

State Highway one linking Blenheim and Christchurch is open with delays as roadworks and landslide clearance continues.

Travel update 21-12-2016

As of today, Kaikoura can now be accessed via State Highway one from Christchurch as well as by the inland route from Culverden. You can expect minor delays as road crews are still working to improve sections of the highways, but the people of Kaikoura will be delighted to see you.

Travel update 18-11-2016

The inland resort town of Hanmer Springs is slightly damaged but has re-opened for business. All pools are open, including the water slides and accommodation.

For anyone planning on using the Kaikoura Earthquake 2016

4 Kids in Christchurch

Activities for the young at heart include:

Free Stuff There are many parks including Hagley Park and the Botanic Gardens in the city centre where kids can feed the ducks and there is play equipment and a paddling pool (in summer). Parents can sit back, relax and watch the children play.

Nearby in the Canterbury Museum there is a natural history centre for children with many weird and wonderful things to for them explore.

Skateboard at Washington Way Reserve, corner of Morehouse Avenue and Barbadoes Street.

Swim sunbathe, or walk at Brighton, Sumner and Taylor’s Mistake beaches. Walk the Port Hills.

Paid Stuff Antigua Boat Shed Boat (row boat, canoe and, paddle boat) Hire Open daily Summer 9.30am – 5.30pm.

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Diamond harbour ferries

Time for recreation

The Diamond Harbour Ferry berthed in Lyttleton.

Diamond Harbour is a popular destination on Banks Peninsula, a leisurely forty minutes by car from down town Christchurch and many Christchurch locals head there for Sunday drives, a stroll and coffee.

But it’s also home to city workers and stay at home artists. It makes for a great for a day trip as there are interesting walks around the headland, a more vigorous day trip to Mt Herbert and an easy wander around to Purau bay for a swim in summer.

There are several cafĂ©’s and plenty of parking, but it’s less than ten minutes from Lyttleton by the fast

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Christchurch renewing

Four years on

The newly restored Theatre Royal

After the city of Christchurch was almost completely destroyed by earthquakes in December 2010 and February 2011, the city is beginning to find its feet.

While a great many homeowners are still battling with the insurance companies and living in broken homes, a major building boom is underway in central city re-establishing shops and mauls to replace the temporary shopping precinct made up of shipping containers.

Being a joint host of the cricket World Cup is a test of the city’s resources, but it seems to be coping quite well one of the ongoing daily problems in the city’s traffic. As so many businesses and shops relocated away from the

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Mackenzie Country

Blue sky’s, openness and sometimes drama

Geographically, what the locals refer to as the Mackenzie Country is actually the Mackenzie Basin. It is a wide alluvial plain and a tussock grassland within the South Canterbury region of New Zealand’s South Island.

After travelling south from the plains of Canterbury, the Mackenzie country provides a refreshing change of vista as well as some refreshingly fresh air.

Despite being nestled between the mountains, the daytime temperatures in summer can be very hot and in winter heavy snows will occasionally is the roads. As such this is a delightful winter playground with ski fields at Ohou, Round Hill and Mount Dobson.

Some scenes for Peter Jackson’s movies the Lord of The Rings and

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Highway 7

From Waipara and Highway 1 to Greymouth and HWY 6.

Upper Waiau River with spring/early summer broom flowers in bloom.

Highway 7 is one of the four routes to the West Coast and the primary route between Christchurch, Reefton and Westport, and a longer alternate route between Christchurch and Greymouth. The section from Waipara to Springs junction is a main route to Murchison, Nelson lakes National Park and Nelson.

Waipara is home to the Weka Pass Railway, it is a small agricultural town with a focus on sheep farming and wine and home to the Weka Pass Railway.

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Lewis Pass

In the Southern Alps

The Lewis Pass National Reserve is situated where hwy7 crosses the Southern Alps. There are many walking trails and hunting opportunities. The main walkway is the St James Walkway which takes 4 – 5 days and is best done in summer and autumn due to the avalanche danger in winter.

For the casual visitor there are many picnic areas and short walks available on both sides of Lewis Pass, and even some natural hot thermal pools (at Sylvia Flats near the Boyle Village).

The St James Walkway meanders through pastoral and forested country with combines diverse scenery, wildlife and vegetation and is suitable for both beginners and experienced trampers, while for family groups, the descent into

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South Canterbury

Agricultural heartland

Cloud formation over Timaru

South Canterbury is the geographic centre of the eastern South Island, it’s bounded by the Rangitata River to the north and the Waitaki River to the south. It stretches from the Pacific Ocean to the Southern Alps with the land ranging from flat to mountainous.

You will find many delights from Maori rock art and heritage trails to white water rafting on the Rangatata river. The are many golf courses, picnic areas and walkways, with local horse riding and hunting. An Artisan Gallery and Forge, Temuka Pottery, the Geraldine Vintage Car and Machinery Museum and wineries.

The region is reputed as one of the best in the world for fly-fishing for Rainbow

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The regional centre for South Canterbury

Timaru style

Timaru is a sea side city in South Canterbury with a population about 30,000 people near to the centre of the South Island and it’s 2 – 3 hours driving time or 160 kilometres south of Christchurch and 200 kilometres north of Dunedin.

It is an excellent location to stop and relax from ones travels, or as a base from which to explore the South Canterbury region including the nearby towns. One claim to fame is the Racehorse Phar Lap who was born just to the north of of Timaru. Phar Lap was a New Zealand thoroughbred horse considered to be one of the world’s greatest

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