Christchurch sits on the edge of the Canterbury Plains and is bounded on the South by the Port Hills. Looking to the West are the magnificent Southern Alps home to major ski-fields such as Mount Hutt and Porter Heights. Within an hour's drive are crystal clear lakes and rivers populated by some of the healthiest and hard fighting trout in the World.
Akaroa peninsular comprises the remains of two massive volcanoes. Lyttelton Harbour is just over the hill from Amherst on Cashmere and the Port of Lyttelton itself has great restaurants, local bars and entertainment. Further afield is the small town of Akaroa that sits on the Northern edge of the other great harbour (Akaroa Harbour) with its proud French heritage, many superb restaurants, bars and eateries.
Here you can take a boat to swim with dolphins or simply enjoy the walks along the breakwater and local beaches. Akaroa is about an hour away on roads that wind up and over the hills,
Lyttelton Harbour at dawn
Christchurch is rapidly recovering from the devastating earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 and in the town you will find a range of restaurants and entertainment. As well are theatres with shows as good as any you will find, the lovely Botanical Gardens and Hagley Park, many art galleries and the Museum with its special focus on the Antarctic expeditions, many of which left from Lyttelton.
Akaroa Village and harbour
Fishing the back country, clear water, warm days and great fish!
If you are feeling adventurous, close by is the new Christchurch Adventure Park with over 50 Kms of downhill cycle trails and a 2 Km chair lift if you don't feel like the cycle uphill.