Alternatively, walk from Akaroa (30-45 minutes one way). This small peninsula / pa (fortified settlement) is a short drive from Akaroa (it’s just before Akaroa on the main road from Christchurch) and there’s an easy walking track which takes you to the end. Top things to do in Akaroa 2020.11. Are you planning a trip to New Zealand? And last on our free things to do in Akaroa… Who doesn’t like a good waterfall? Akaroa has a huge French influence, which means great food! Top Attractions in Akaroa. Akaroa Lighthouse. You’ll find your typical French food options but there are plenty of cafes and restaurants that don’t lean into that side of things. The city and its French … 5. Highly rated activities with free entry in Akaroa: The top things to do for free. Boat Tours in Akaroa. There’s also a camping ground there which would be an awesome place to stay in the summer. If you’re looking for a compact tourist town full of historic sights, awesome short walks and waters teeming with dolphins, you’ll want to add Akaroa to your New Zealand itinerary. The church is accessible to the public and well worth checking out. The walk itself is straightforward (and there are some nice views of Akaroa from the top) but it’s the big animal statues that will catch your eye. 4. We’ve also included some extra free and cheap activities in Akaroa giving you variety in things to do. 1. Near Airports. Things to Do in Akaroa. Of course, hiking is the free option for things to do in Akaroa, … The best way to save money in Akaroa is to do a few hikes. There’s a cafe on-site and an art gallery. Luckily, the town and the surrounding Banks Peninsula are full of them. It’s a short drive to get there (the roads are winding though) and it’s a good place to add to your itinerary if you’re also keen to explore some of the other places above (it’s close to the Hinewai Reserve and the Otepatotu Scenic Reserve). There’s a cave, a museum and a lovely stretch of beach at Okains Bay. (But once you’ve tried the baguettes at the French bakery, it’s easy to let things spiral out of control. It’s great for a late afternoon stroll! I visited this place in winter, so it wasn’t really at its best, but it’d be a good place to visit in the warmer months. In Akaroa, swim with dolphins for an experience many people only dream of. 1. 15th Oct 2021 through to 17th Oct 2021. www.akaroafrenchfest.co.nz Escape to picturesque Akaroa and immerse yourself in French culture, entertainment and romance as we celebrate Banks Peninsula's unique history at the biennial Akaroa French Festival. The Akaroa Lighthouse is a fantastic picture opportunity itself while being situated at a great viewpoint. Nestled in native bush, the Newton’s Waterfall makes a pretty picture opportunity. Only found in waters around the South Island of New Zealand, Akaroa Harbour boasts the highest population of the Hector's dolphins. Akaroa Museum. See Dolphins, Penguins, Seals and More on a Wildlife Cruise. Join me as I see as much of the South Island as I can. The hills above town are home to heaps of walks and viewpoints and you’ll struggle to find a better dolphin watching experience anywhere in else in New Zealand. I haven’t been to all of them, but I hear the ones below are some of the best (as well as Hickory Bay and Flea Bay). French bakeries, creperies, cafes and more can be experienced in Akaroa. Hotels near (CHC) Christchurch Intl Airport. Walk alongside farmland and forest to a spectacular viewpoint overlooking the Akaroa Harbour. There are plenty of places to sit and there’s a path running a long much of it. Hike or Mountain bike to Misty Peaks. All things to do in Akaroa. Of course, hiking is the free option for things to do in Akaroa, and another fantastic hike is the Misty Peaks hike. There are lots of walks in and around Akaroa and most of them are fairly short and easy. Other than that, there isn’t much else to specifically seek out, just wander the streets and enjoy the vibe! Discover 2020's top Akaroa attractions. One of the best things to do in Akaroa is also the easiest – exploring the old town on foot! If your kids can handle a bit of uphill hiking, they’ll love the animals! This 3-hour return track takes you along the ridgeline overlooking Akaroa and other bays in the Banks Peninsula. Board one of the wildlife cruises or sailing trips from Akaroa so the whole family can ... 2. By using this website you agree to our, Advertise your business on New Zealand's most popular travel guide, 5 Best Places to Swim with Dolphins in New Zealand, South Island in Two Weeks: New Zealand Road Trip Itinerary, 11 Things to Do in Westport on a Rainy Day, Where to Spend New Year’s Eve in New Zealand. For more Akaroa inspiration, see 10 Things We Love About Akaroa, as well as our complete guide to Akaroa. The lighthouse is easy to spot from the town centre so simply walk toward it! It’s also a short walk from town and is close to Newton’s Waterfall. Other Things to Do in Akaroa. The cruises also give you a good look at the scenery near Akaroa, and you might spot some seals and maybe a penguin. Akaroa Museum. Children’s Bay Walkway is one of the closer walks to downtown Akaroa and it features something a little out of the ordinary. Take a nature cruise. Garden of Tane. …. As well as the walks I’ve mentioned, there are heaps of little viewpoints on the roads above Akaroa. Bask in the scenery of remote bays and inlets, and catch a glimpse of local marine life, including penguins, orcas, and endangered Hector’s dolphins. Location: Start from Children’s Bay or the boardwalk to Children’s Bay from the north side of Akaroa town waterfront. Some are proper places (Akaroa Heritage Park) but some of the best views are when you pull over by the side of the road. Spot Akaroa Harbour’s rare Hector’s dolphins on a catamaran wildlife cruise that includes fresh-baked cookies and a drink. 1,241 reviews. Sightseeing Tours in Akaroa. Be sure to visit the museum - it tells the story of Akaroa with displays and an audio visual presentation. The road follows the ridge of the volcano and has great views. While the drive to Akaroa itself is great, there is heaps to see and do once you get there to make it more of a full day trip. The waterfall itself is pretty, if low-key, and the walk to get there takes you through the forest and is quite relaxing. 1. 1,239 reviews. 4. Better yet, a free thing to do in Akaroa?! I saw a little group of giraffes on the way and there’s a big metallic rhino at the top. Types of Things to Do in Akaroa Tours (29) Outdoor Activities (24) Boat Tours & Water Sports (16) Shopping (9) Sights & Landmarks (8) Nature & Parks (8) Food & Drink (5) Museums (3) Classes & Workshops (1) Fun & Games (1) Transportation (1) Traveller Resources (1) This hike takes about an hour round trip and takes you to see a waterfall. The easiest and nicest thing to do in Akaroa is to take the Summit Road. It’s true, Akaroa is a small town packed with activities: dolphin swimming, sailing cruises, wildlife tours and more! (And some cheap stuff too). There are several Banks Peninsula walks I would like to explore next time and add to my list of best day hikes in New Zealand. Things to See at Akaroa. A trip out on the water is one of our favourite things to do in Akaroa and is a fantastic way to encounter the world’s smallest and rarest dolphin. Check out the coastline of the local harbour and you never know, you might even meet a dolphin or two! Here a few suggestions to get you started. 2. 3. Hinewai Reserve. Welcome/Kia Ora! Find Rhinos and Other Surprises on the Children’s Bay Walkway. Find what to do today, this weekend, or in October. Dolphin watching trips depart almost every day and you have a great chance of seeing dolphins (we saw a dozen or so on our trip). You’ll notice the French influence straight away, especially the street names and the way some of the business are decorated. Banks Peninsula native bush in it's natural state, all under the control … Park in the Misty Peaks Reserve car park. Check Out the Akaroa Museum…. High on the hills above Akaroa, the Otepatotu Scenic Reserve is one of the best places to see this beautiful area in all its glory. The Giants House is a creation of a local artist where the garden is decorated with mosaic art, water features and more. Trust us!) Visit top-rated & must-see attractions. Step into this garden that looks like something out of a fairy tale. I don’t think many of the buildings actually date back to the French settlement origins, but the atmosphere makes up for it. A travel blogger from New Zealand who has just returned home after 6 years abroad. Book Akaroa Harbour Nature Cruise, Shore Excursion: Guided Sea Kayaking through Akaroa Marine Reserve + Akaroa Harbour Nature Cruise with Dolphin Watching tours. There are a few other things to do in Akaroa, including galleries, kayaking and penguin spotting tours and the two popular places listed below. Hector's dolphins are common here -- they are known for being the smallest marine dolphins in the world. 4. Best Things to Do in Akaroa New Zealand See the Akaroa Dolphins – the World’s Smallest Dolphins The one thing that drew us to visiting Akaroa was to see the world’s smallest and rarestdolphins – the Hector’s Dolphins! Additionally, the fish and chips is also a must! Check out the details of this walk and others in Akaroa with our Akaroa – Guide for Backpackers. The Giants House. The Hinewai Reserve is a 15-minute drive away from Akaroa. Sitting 800m high above the Banks Peninsula, it’s a great place to soak in the scenery. Top Things to Do in Akaroa, Canterbury Region: See Tripadvisor's 10,089 traveller reviews and photos of 32 things to do when in Akaroa. Functional facts: Approximate population 700, information centre, restaurants, bank. Tours in Akaroa. Home / Things To Do In Akaroa – Dolphin Swim, Boat Trips & Nature Tours. Dolphin watching is easily one of the best things to do in Akaroa and is the main reason to visit outside of the old town. Another of the free things to do in Akaroa is a short hike to see Newtons Falls. There’s a lot to explore and there are some decent views in some areas. We have reviews of the best places to see in Akaroa. You’ll turn off at Duvauchelle if you’re doing the Onawe Pa Walk, which is a few minutes drive from the hotel. I listed some of the most popular ones below, but they aren’t the only ones. It’s one of the many free things to do in Akaroa! The walk is either a 3-hour loop, or another good option is to walk to The Rhino, taking about an hour, and return the same way. 10 Things to Do in Akaroa with Kids. Summit Road – Banks Peninsula. Things to Do in Akaroa You’ll not be wanting for things to do in Akaroa. For those of you who love the great outdoors, look no further than the Hinewai Reserve! Hinewai Reserve. Either walk, bike or drive through the forested road to Onuku where the settlement boats a large carved marae “meeting house” and small Maori church. Spend your time in port in Akaroa on a small-group shore excursion, sea kayaking around the harbor. Akaroa is most famous for its French influence, but there are heaps of other fun things to do in Akaroa. Look out for animal sculptures along the way! Sail with dophins, see wildlife. There are great views from several points along the Onawe Pa Track and it’s an easy undertaking. The Newton’s Waterfall is in the Misty Peaks Reserve down a 10-minute walking track. See 2 Experiences. Learn about local history & help crew if you want. Location: Down the Aylmers Valley Road. Exploring the Akaroa Harbour by kayak or stand up paddleboard is an affordable experience with one-hour hire being around NZ$20. There are some great cafes and restaurants in Akaroa, as well as really good French deli. … Newton’s Waterfall is only a short walk or drive from town and is quite different to other walks in Akaroa. At NZ$20 per person, it’s definitely one of the more affordable things to do in Akaroa. The Giants House. 84 reviews. These are some of the most scenic coastal roads in New Zealand and there’s heaps to explore (stay tuned for my post about the drive from Christchurch to Akaroa for more info). There’s a museum to check out (it doesn’t take too long to look around) and the old lighthouse down by the waterfront is nice too. 5. There are several beaches and bays near Akaroa and it’s worth checking out one of two of them as you drive the scenic hilltop roads. 3. Hiring a bike for this mountain bike trail can be hired for as little as NZ$35 for four hours from the adventure centre on the waterfront of Akaroa. I only did a short section of the track (and the view was awesome) but it’d be worth descending into the bush if you have the time. If you have time, take a harbour cruise to view dolphins, penguins and fur seals. I visited this place in winter, so it wasn’t really at its best, but it’d be a good place to visit in the warmer months. We’ve listed the highlights in the list below. Take the boardwalk at the north end of town to Children’s Bay where the Children’s Bay Walkway begins. They offer cheese tastings every day in their store and factory. A great vantage point of Akaroa (that’s also easy to get to) is from the Akaroa Lighthouse. One of the popular things to do in Akaroa is to join an Akaroa Harbour 2-Hour Nature Cruise. There are a few other things to do in Akaroa, including galleries, kayaking and penguin spotting tours and the two popular places listed below. attractioncategory.name.v3.57. Book your tickets online for the top things to do in Akaroa, New Zealand on Tripadvisor: See 9,992 traveller reviews and photos of Akaroa tourist attractions. See 2 Experiences. Top Things to Do in Akaroa, Canterbury Region: See Tripadvisor's 9,986 traveller reviews and photos of 22 things to do when in Akaroa. Kayaking & Canoeing in Akaroa. Check out our two-week South Island itinerary! Le Bons Bay is pretty similar to Okains Bay (not sure you need to visit both) but a little quieter. The view from the car park is great, but it’s even better from the top of the track (it should take around an hour to walk there and back). I haven’t been to this quirky little garden thing, but I’ve heard it’s worth checking out. Popular Akaroa Categories. See Tripadvisor's 10,001 traveller reviews and photos of Akaroa free attractions 3 hour tour with historic narration, complementary fresh brewed coffee, tea, homemade hot chocolate and biscuits. 2. Things to Do in Akaroa, Canterbury Region: See Tripadvisor's 10 066 traveller reviews and photos of 23 Akaroa attractions. Depending on what you order, trying the tastes of Akaroa can be a pretty cheap experience. For a dose of Maori culture, visit the small settlement of Onuku, just 6km south of Akaroa. Garden of Tane. Explore the downtown area in search of museums and boutiques…or that next delicious meal. This is a relatively new hike as until recently the waterfall was located on private lands and was not accessible. Hiking the Kepler Track in 3 Days: Tips | What to Pack | What You’ll See, Iris Burn Hut to Rainbow Reach: Kepler Track Day 3, Luxmore Hut to Iris Burn Hut: Kepler Track Day 2, Te Anau to Luxmore Hut: Kepler Track Day 1, Hiking the Waipohatu Waterfall Track, The Catlins. Explore the remains of the sole French settlement in New Zealand on foot. These These are the only dolphins endemic to New Zealand and are a must for any New Zealand Bucket List! Akaroa Lighthouse. Hinewai Reserve. Akaroa harbour up close on New Zealand's oldest ketch Fox II. Location: 5807 Christchurch Akaroa Road, Duvauchelle. Dolphin & Whale Watching in Akaroa. We can help you there with this list of free things to do in Akaroa! Whether you’re looking to get active in the great outdoors sample the cuisine of Akaroa or catch up with the vibrant local culture our guides to Akaroa attractions ensure that you’ll have a successful trip whatever the season.