Canterbury is a large region on the East Coast of the South Island. Many top tourist towns and cities are in this area, just waiting to be explored! Christchurch is South Islands largest city and is known for its beautiful gardens, buildings, punt... Show More
Tourist Information About Canterbury
Canterbury is a large region on the East Coast of the South Island. Many top tourist towns and cities are in this area, just waiting to be explored! Christchurch is South Islands largest city and is known for its beautiful gardens, buildings, punting down the Avon River and many more activities! Kaikoura is one of New Zealand's top marine wildlife areas known for its dolphin, whale, seal and albatross encounters. Hanmer Springs is an attractive resort town, a perfect year-round holiday destination for action packed activities and relaxing in the popular natural hot water springs. Akaroa is New Zealands only French settlement, a beautiful quaint village and harbour. Canterbury is also home to Mt Cook, New Zealands highest mountain in the Southern Alps and the Tasman Glacier with fantastic scenic flights, heli-skiing and tramping areas. Stunning Lake Tekapo with many activities including ice-skating and its Observatory Stargazing Tours. There are many more top attractions and activities including great ski fields, hiking, biking and plenty more things to see and do in Canterbury.
Best Attractions and free things to do in Canterbury
There's always a calming moment at a golf course. This canterbury golf course has never-ending picturesque views and beautifully cut grass for miles.
The Woodlands Course at Harewood, remodeled in 2012 by renowned golf architect Turner McPherson, is one of Canterbury's finest golf venues. You won't find a finer facility to enhance your golf game than this one, which features a championship course, large short-game practice and putting areas, and a 23-bay covered driving range.
2. Seal Kayak Tour
This once in a lifetime experience is just what you and your family need this summer. Seal Kayak Kaikoura is the first kayak trip in New Zealand that allows you to choose between pedaling and paddling. With the Hobie Mirage Drive Pedal, kayaking in and around the gorgeous Kaikoura Peninsula will be a breeze. Viewing the New Zealand Fur Seal has a 100 percent success rate for us. Other marine life to see includes the blue penguin, albatross, and a variety of others. Come capture the fun and friendly fur seals that will be playing around and under your hands-free pedal kayak.
3. Skydiving Kiwis Otautahi
Skydiving Kiwis Ōtautahi is our latest initiative in conjunction with GCH Aviation - Garden City Helicopters, and it's a one-of-a-kind adventure for thrill enthusiasts. This renowned helidive combines a breathtaking helicopter trip over the skyline of tautahi Christchurch with a skydive from a helicopter over the Sumner Beach coastline. The one and only heli dive in New Zealand is Skydiving Kiwis tautahi. Only seven other destinations in the world offer a heli dive, including Switzerland, Hawaii, Mt. Everest, Australia, and Dubai.
4. Dolphin Encounter
Kaikoura has earned the distinction of being New Zealand's most sought-after spot for outstanding wildlife viewing in a stunning seaside setting. The Dolphin Encounter excursion gives you the option of swimming with dusky dolphins or staying on board and watching them from the comfort of the boat. The boats are all designed specifically for watching marine mammals, with walk around decks and access to the bow for the best views of the dusky dolphins.
5. Hot Air Balloon
Your flight will take off in Mt. Hutt's foothills, where the mountains give great protection from the North Westerly winds. Enjoy breathtaking views of the Southern Alps, including Mt. Cook and Mt. Aspiring! Enjoy the Eastern views as well as the patchwork beauty of the plains to the Pacific Coast along the journey. After taking off, you'll soar to an altitude that provides amazing panoramic views of the mountains, then descend to a lower height for the second half of the flight to enjoy a different perspective by flying closer to the ground. Enjoy a celebration drink and snack in the landing paddock before boarding the chase car and returning to Methven.
Take your friends and family and create lifelong memories atop the world!
6. Mt Cook scenic flights
Heliworks Mt Cook, based at Aoraki/Mt Cook Airport, offers breathtaking scenic flights throughout the Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park. Heliworks has access to a number of landing sites on the Tasman Glacier and throughout the National Park. A landing on the Tasman Glacier is included in every scenic flight. Join in on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure!
7. Meet Alpacas
Come meet these friendly award-winning alpacas, who are full of attitude, seriously cute, and very, very photogenic. Shamarra Alpaca Farm is located on the picturesque Banks Peninsula, across the harbor from Akaroa, and is only one hour from Christchurch. With over 170 grazing alpacas, you're sure to meet some new friends while taking in the breathtaking vistas. Visit our farm and shop, which sells only our luxury Shamarra alpaca knitwear manufactured in New Zealand.
8. Albatross Encounter
The Albatross Encounter tour provides an up close and personal look at Kaikoura's diverse assortment of seabirds, including the majestic albatross. The sights that are regularly seen on our tour will not disappoint. It is known as the "albatross capital of the world" because of the diversity of albatross species that can be seen in one compact location so close to shore. In just 2.5 hours, you will encounter a diverse range of species, providing excellent photographic chances to capture special moments from your tour. The experienced birding specialists' informative and factual commentary is also a pleasure.
9. Discovery Tour
Plant your own unique tree to aid with the regeneration of our native ecosystem and leave your stamp on the history of our newly founded "Mable Hope reserve."
You will acquire an understanding of the value of New Zealand native forest and explore some of the crucial connections created with our native fauna on a stunning scenic drive over an ancient volcano accompanied by our experience guide.
In Pohatu Bay, you'll find a wonderful blend of thriving sheep farms, penguin colonies, and native woods.
This farming family's conservation efforts have helped the penguins grow throughout the years, but they've also designed their agricultural operations to balance economy and ecological in order to conserve the biodiversity in their backyard.
10. Guided Wildlife Kayaking
On the Wildlife Kayaking experiences with Kaikoura Kayaks, experience the thrill of watching Fur Seals dodge, weave, and dive around your kayak. They paddle gracefully down the coast as they swim around the Kaikoura Peninsula in search of Octopus, their favorite food. Marvel as hundreds of Pelagic (ocean-going) birds swoop in to clean up the appetizing leftovers. This journey takes you around the magnificent coastal seas, where you'll see breathtaking vistas of sheer cliff faces, rugged rocks, and mountain ranges while looking for Dusky Dolphins and Blue Penguins.