Visit North Canterbury with Mighway

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Explore New Zealand! Find campervan hire in North Canterbury, Canterbury Region

Campervan Hire North Canterbury

$250 / Day


Christchurch, Canterbury

Sleeps 5
Length 6.5m

Places to Visit near North Canterbury

Orana Wildlife Park

The Park is home to New Zealand's only gorillas ... and the country's only orangutans too!

Set in 80 hectares within 15 minutes’ drive of Christchurch Airport, Orana Wildlife Park provides the ultimate animal adventure. We get you up close and personal with the animals.

Imagine hand feeding a majestic giraffe; eye balling the magnificent white rhino; meeting New Zealand’s national icon, the kiwi or travelling through the Lion Reserve!

Orana is internationally renowned for its involvement in zoo-based breeding programmes for endangered exotic and native species. When you visit, you are supporting our conservation work.

There is something to entertain people of all ages, for the entire day, at Orana Wildlife Park!

Willowbank Wildlife Reserve

If you were going to invent an animal you probably wouldn’t do this: give it some mammal features, like two heavily muscled back legs, functioning ovaries, heavy bone marrow and cat like whiskers then plonk on some bird features, such as feathery hair, a very long beak with nostrils perched at the end and the ability to lay an egg – and just for a joke make it the largest egg in proportion to body size than any other species so it’s really hard to look after – and then as a second joke don’t give it any wings so all the poor bugger can do is grub around on the ground. If a creature like that existed you would hope there would be millions of them so they would survive. Fortunately, the kiwi population used to be just that, around five million, now it’s been depleted to 50 to 60,000 birds.

It’s distressing that there are so few around now as the chicks and eggs are very vulnerable to possums, stoats, ferrets, feral cats, pigs and dogs. We all do our bit to protect them and one of the best places in the South Island to witness kiwis first hand is Willowbank Wildlife Reserve. Here the kiwis are housed in two hectares of natural enclosure which gives you incredibly good visibility, especially after dark as you can watch the breeding pairs do the moonlight fandango under the stars – which is, according to Willowbank a world first.

Aside from the inquisitive kiwis at Willowbank, there are the other 'top five' kea, kaka, tukahe, tuatara, plus peacocks, monkeys, chimps, turtles, otters, deer, wallabies, donkeys (and rides), pigs, sheep, chickens, Clydesdale horses, goats, llamas, tractors, gibbons, more pigs, trout, swan, eels, blue whistling ducks (rare), salmon, parakeet, owls, tuataras, loads of birds including the mischievous kea, the world’s only mountain parrot.

Willowbank is not like a zoo, it’s more like a trip through natural New Zealand flora and fauna. Its spacious and the animals are housed in as close to their natural habitat as possible. You can look, touch and feed the native wildlife too – although it’s optional with the eels. There is Maori (Ko Tane) cultural performances on offer every evening with complimentary return transport and an award-winning restaurant to feast in.

Lake Pukaki

Lake Pukaki looks like sapphire and ice got married then melted into a shimmering pool of milk forever. Its milky turquoise colour is mesmerizing and very popular on Instagram, especially as it has Mount Cook/Aoraki looming in the background like a Lord Of The Lake. Actually, speaking of Lords, Peter Jackson did a lot of filming of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug in this area, using Lake Pukaki as the location for JK Tolkien’s ‘Lake Town’.

Lake Pukaki is the largest of three alpine lakes fed by glaciers, surrounded by tussocks, and shrouded in an incredible light. The colour of the water comes from glacial flour - extremely fine particles ground down from glacial rocks (not something to make glacial bread out of). When the sun hits the surface of the lake it reflects off the particles giving it its brilliant hue.

You can view the lake on the drive down State Highway 80 to Aoraki/ Mount Cook Village or the road between Twizel and Lake Tekapo Village. Or ditch the car and enjoy the lake on foot or by bike on one of the many tracks around it – including the mighty Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail. Or get your photos from the air on a scenic flight.

Canterbury Museum

Rare Maori artefacts and the stories behind them will fascinate you. See the famous Paua Shell House recreated in the Museum. Walk down the Christchurch Street and be transported back in time with the sights and sounds of pioneering days. Discover the heroic age of exploration and discovery in the Antarctic subcontinent.

The museum store selects the best New Zealand-inspired arts, crafts and souvenirs. From paua to penguins, pottery to pounamu, the friendly staff will help to find the perfect gift.

The cafe offers views of the Botanic Gardens for you to enjoy. Choose from a selection of delicious sweet and savoury goodies and expertly made espresso coffee. Relax, refresh and enjoy.

Some top experience around this region

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