Akaroa Visitor Information

Make the most of your time and discover all you need to know about the amenities available in Akaroa.

Wharf location and distance to Christchurch

Located approximately 1.5 hours' drive (86 kms) from Christchurch, Akaroa is a beautiful harbour-side town with charming colonial architecture remanent of the French and British settlers who founded the area.

Akaroa main wharf is situated on the south side of the town centre and is within metres of shops and cafes. A 20 minute tender ride is required to get cruise ship passengers ashore.

Many bays around Banks Peninsula are accessible within 30 minutes' drive of Akaroa.

Size of Akaroa

  • Population: 662
  • Land area: 1.8 km²

Transport options

  • Akaroa is very compact and everything is within walking distance. When cruise ships are in port there's also a free shuttle available. The shuttle operates approximately every 15 minutes, departing from the main wharf travelling through the town centre to the Recreation Ground at the north end of Akaroa. It's also possible to take the shuttle to The Giant's House. 
  • Akaroa Shuttle (Red Bus) and French Connection (Cityline) buses to Christchurch leave from the main wharf at 9.45 am (Akaroa Shuttle), 9.30am and 10.30am (French Connection). It costs NZD $45 return per adult.
  • Taxi services - local tour drivers are available but no commercial taxi company operates in Akaroa.

Climate

  • Summer: High of 30˚C (72F), low of 16˚C (61F)
  • Winter: High of 13˚C (55F), low of 2˚C (36F)

Making international calls

  • To make an international phone call, you need to dial '00' followed by your country code, area code, then phone number.

Akaroa amenities

ATM machines and banks

  • The Bank of New Zealand is located in the centre of Akaroa. Banking and foreign exchange services are available Monday to Friday 9am - 4.30pm (excluding public holidays). ATM services are available 24 hours. Foreign currency exchange is also available.

Shopping hours

  • Shops hours vary, but most are open from 9am - 5.30pm.

Internet and WiFi

  • Computers along with free WiFi access are available at the Akaroa Library, 141 Rue Jolie, +64 3 304 8782.
  • WiFi is available at various restaurants and cafes throughout town.

Post office

  • Situated inside the Akaroa Adventure Centre. Open daily from 9am - 6pm.

Churches

  • St Peters Anglican Church, 10 Rue Balguerie, +64 3 304 7051
  • Church of St Patrick (Catholic), Rue Lavaud, +64 3 304 7083
  • Trinity Church (Presbyterian), 57 Rue Lavaud, +64 3 304 7098

Local doctor

  • Akaroa Health Hub, Onuku Road, +64 3 304 7004. In an emergency phone 111.

Visitor information centre

If you need advice on what to do or want to book a tour when you arrive in Akaroa, then visit the Akaroa Adventure Centre. Situated at 74 Rue Lavaud, it's open 7 days from 9am - 6pm, +64 3 304 7784. 

Book your Christchurch day trip

To ensure you secure your Christchurch experience, contact the Christchurch i-SITE Visitor Centre before you arrive in Akaroa. Often cruise visitors try to book activities on arrival, which is not always possible and leads to disappointment.

The Christchurch i-SITE Visitor Centre, has exclusive deals and a team of experts to help you find the attractions, activities and transport options to best suit you and your budget before you travel to the Garden City.

Roads and driving conditions

It's important to note that the roads in New Zealand can often be narrrow and windy sometimes making your journey longer than anticipated. Ensure you adhere to the speed limits and always stay to the left side of the road.

You must carry your driver's licence with you when driving. If your licence is not in English, you're required to carry an approved translated version.

Learn more about what to expect when driving in New Zealand.