Kaikoura, New Zealand

Christchurch and Kaikoura

The Canterbury landscape covers the northeastern part of New Zealand’s South Island and ranges from miles of silvery beach to the jagged peaks of the Southern Alps.

Big scenery is the order of the day, huge panoramas of ocean or mountains, great sweeps of pastureland and vast skies.

Dusky Dolphin, Christchurch, New Zealand
Dusky Dolphin

Explore the diverse landscapes and wildlife

The highest point of the region is the highest point of New Zealand, the spectacular Aoraki Mount Cook, standing at 3,754 metres (Aoraki is Maori for Cloud Piercer). At the other end of the scale, the submarine trenches off the coast of Kaikoura are thousands of metres deep, providing an ideal environment for the whales, dolphins and seals that reside there. This is the place in New Zealand to whale watch and swim with dolphins. Between the mountains and the sea, the vast plains are patchworked with the patterns of rural life.

Christchurch Gondola Station at Port Hills, New Zealand
Christchurch, New Zealand


Christchurch is South Island’s largest city, and great care has been taken to preserve its colonial heritage. Grand architecture, historic homesteads and charming parks intermingle with the technology and style of modern life. A short drive east of Christchurch leads to the Banks Peninsula and the harbour towns of Akaroa and Lyttelton; the former being the only French settlement in New Zealand.


What do you really love doing? We curate your itinerary especially for you.

TranzAlpine train

TranzAlpine Train Journey

Board the TranzAlpine train for a spectacular journey between Greymouth and Christchurch, passing through epic scenery.

Suggested Holiday Idea

Dusky Dolphin Jumping, Kaikoura, New Zealand

Kaikoura Marine Life

Swim with dolphins or take to the skies in search of whales in Kaikoura.

Suggested Holiday Idea

Whale, Kaikoura, New Zealand

Whale Watching

Search for sperm, humpback, pilot and blue whale as well as orca, dolphin and albatross off the coast of Kaikoura. Take to the skies for an aerial view or by boat to get closer to the action.

Suggested Holiday Idea

Fur Seal, Kaikoura, New Zealand

Sea Kayaking

Explore the coastline around Kaikoura by kayak, keeping a look out for fur seals, blue penguin and albatross.

Suggested Holiday Idea

Hapuku Lodge Treehouses in Kaikoura

A Treetop Stay

Stay in a treehouse at Hapuku Lodge and dine out on the freshest crayfish in Kaikoura.

Suggested Holiday Idea

Akaroa Harbor, Akaroa, New Zealand

The Banks Peninsula

Explore the Banks Peninsula, home to the historic harbour towns of Akaroa and Lyttelton.

Where to stay

Some of the wonderful places to stay that we frequently recommended.

Orari Bed and Breakfast £££££

  • New Zealand
  • B&B, Motel and Guesthouse

Orari Bed and Breakfast is a Grade 2 heritage Victorian home dating from the 1890s. Retaining its original kauri framework the property now houses 10 spacious and elegant guestrooms as well a communal lounge and dining area. The sites of Christchurch are all within easy walking distance.

Annandale Homestead £££££

  • New Zealand
  • Beach and Island Escapes

Annandale is a 4,000-acre working sheep and cattle farm with 10 kilometres of remote coastline, housing four distinctive luxury villas. This wild and secluded corner of New Zealand is a true escape from the modern world with each of the four properties reached via 4WD, helicopter or boat. Meals are delivered to your villa with a strong farm to table ethos, using the freshest ingredients. Alternatively, hire a personal chef for the duration of your stay.

View Property

Lemon Tree Lodge £££££

  • New Zealand
  • Boutique

Lemon Tree Lodge is a charming bed and breakfast located atop the limestone cliffs of Kaikoura. Just a few minutes’ walk from the town, four of the six pretty rooms have panoramic views of the ocean with a private balcony or deck to enjoy them from. The remaining two rooms overlook the gardens from their private deck.

View Property

Otahuna Lodge £££££

  • New Zealand
  • Boutique

Otahuna Lodge is New Zealand’s largest private historic residence. Dating back to 1895 this handsome house, set in 30 acres of beautiful gardens is now a boutique hotel offering five suites and two master suites. Overflowing with history the decor showcases the buildings original features with ornate fireplaces and stained-glass windows coupled with modern comforts. The dining room creates an opulent atmosphere for dinner, showcasing seasonal New Zealand produce and additional facilities include a gym, outdoor swimming pool and tennis courts.

View Property

The George Hotel £££££

  • New Zealand
  • City

Overlooking Hagley Park and the River Avon in central Christchurch, The George Hotel has 53 elegant rooms, most of which make the most of the verdant views from either a balcony or floor to ceiling picture windows. The two restaurants serve award-winning innovative cuisine and the service levels are extremely high.

View Property

Hapuku Lodge £££££

  • New Zealand
  • Boutique

In one of the South Island’s most spectacular settings, sandwiched between the ocean and snow-capped peaks, Hapuku Lodge offers the chance to stay in a treehouse suspended 10 metres up in native Manuka trees. Set in a peaceful location in the heart of the rolling countryside, the 1,600 acres surrounding the property include olive groves and the family’s deer farm.

View Property

Need Inspiration?
Browse our New Zealand holiday ideas.

Our New Zealand experts have created and curated these holiday ideas to get you started. Take the time to search through them and find something to spark ideas for a unique adventure.

Start planning your trip

Send us an enquiry

Complete our enquiry form and start your next journey.

Review Contact Form


Explore other regions in New Zealand

Why Choose Steppes?

Our knowledge, curiosity and expertise set us apart, driving us to create remarkable holidays and Beautiful Adventures tailored perfectly to you, carefully curated to help protect and conserve our planet.

Are you ready to Discover Extraordinary?

More about Steppes