Garden City Escape
Departing Greymouth, traverse the breathtaking terrain of the Southern Alps in comfort. Let us take you from one coast of New Zealand to the other as you journey to the charming city of Christchurch.
Explore New Zealand's Garden City
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Sit back and relax as you enjoy a spectacular journey aboard the world-famous TranzAlpine scenic train. Your adventure begins with a leisurely afternoon departure from Greymouth, travelling into the awe-inspiring landscape of New Zealand's Southern Alps. You will navigate river valleys and majestic mountain peaks, surrounded by an abundance of rugged natural beauty.
Emerging from the Alps, you will encounter a new terrain; the expansive horizons of the Canterbury Plains will lead you through to Christchurch, New Zealand's delightful Garden City, where you'll find plenty to see and do.
Day 1: Afternoon
Boarding the TranzAlpine in the early afternoon, you'll settle into the comfort of our world-class carriages as you begin your passage into the Southern Alps. Glide alongside the pristine waters of Lake Brunner and through distinctive native bush as you approach the substantial Otira Tunnel. On emerging, you’ll alight at Arthur's Pass to take in the fresh alpine air and striking views, where you may even discover a dusting of snow, before continuing to traverse the spectacular gorges and valleys of the Waimakariri River.
The mountains will begin to open and subside as you descend, and you will find a new sense of space as you enter onto the vast fields of the Canterbury Plains, charging through a patchwork of farmland. You'll enjoy Afternoon Tea onboard as you approach Christchurch.
On arriving at Christchurch Station, you will be greeted by your transfer and taken to your accommodation in Christchurch.
Day 2: Morning
You'll set off on a city tour of Christchurch, where you will experience the grand architecture, beautiful gardens and scenic view points of Christchurch. Wander the Monavale Gardens with tranquil ponds and water features, or explore the city centre, with its many historic buildings suffering extensive damage in the earthquake that hit the city in February 2011. See for yourself both the devastating impact of that event, and the triumphant stories of the rebuild that has been taking place over the past decade.
Next, you will visit the iconic Christchurch Botanic Gardens, a grand display of art through nature, dotted with interactive sculptures, a lively mix of traditional and modern. You will then travel to the idyllic seaside suburb of Sumner. Visit the Sign of the Takahe to admire spectacular views over the Canterbury Plains and Southern Alps.
The tour will then arrive at the International Antarctic Centre, featuring real snow and ice for a true Antarctic experience. You'll encounter New Zealand's native blue penguins, who also hold the title of the world's smallest penguin. Even more interactive is the opportunity to take an adventurous ride on a Hagglund, a heavy-duty vehicle designed for the most difficult terrain, making them a necessity for exploration in Antarctica.
The remainder of your afternoon is then free to relax or explore Christchurch at your leisure.
After cruising around the Christchurch sights in the morning, the afternoon is yours to explore as you please. We have the following recommended activities. Some require advance reservations, so please let us know at the time of booking if you would like to include these in your itinerary.
Soaring Kiwi Central Tour
Akaroa Day Tour
Tram City Tour and Punting
Enjoy a sleep-in before you check-out of your accommodation. Additional nights can be added just ask your Travel Consultant when booking this package.
The Muse Christchurch
Rydges Latimer Christchurch
Breakfree on Cashel
Room upgrades are available at a surcharge (subject to availability). During times of high demand, if the advertised package room is not available, a substitution of a similar or better room may be made to complete the package and a surcharge may apply.