Akaroa Day Trip Hot Spots
Akaroa has been Ōtautahi Christchurch’s favourite coastal hideaway for yonks, largely for its remoteness and proximity to the city (1.5 hours from the city centre).
It was first settled by the French, and it shows. From the street names to the cuisine, Akaroa oozes culture and flavour – a delightful mash up of European grandeur and Kiwi coastal vibes.
With so much on offer it can be hard to narrow down your itinerary. Check out these day trip hot spots, or book yourself a room for a few nights and explore the town in depth.
It cannot be overstated how crazy the house and gardens are at The Giants House. Terraced lawns. Huge harbour views. Mosaic sculpture EVERYWHERE…and that’s just the garden. Creative genius Josie Martin has created a truly unique destination that is undoubtedly at the top of our Akaroa must-do list.
Black Cat Cruises
Your best way to get onto the water in Akaroa is Black Cat Cruises. They run quality tours of the harbour, including nature cruises out to the heads to see albatross, penguins and seals, and a chance to swim with the Hector’s dolphins, the smallest dolphin in the word. They’ve got the biggest boat on the harbour and serve drinks and snacks.
Harbar Beach Bar and Kitchen
This place is the closest you can get to the water’s edge in Akaroa while also sampling the region’s finest food and wine. Harbar sits on a seawall right in the middle of town with views of the wharf, the wildlife and the waves. Get there for a pizza and a pint, or a platter and a pinot. Guest beers on tap, and the best of the local stuff too.
Rolling green hills filled with seriously fluffy alpacas, all among the clouds above enormous harbour views. Your mates will not believe the photos you take at Shamarra Alpacas are real. The team here care for more than 170 grazing alpacas and have won awards for it. Feed the alpacas, pat them, give them cuddles. Cuteness awaits in the hills above Akaroa.
Prime location, premium menu and pristine harbour views, Ma Maison is a hospitality staple in Akaroa. There’s a playground right outside to entertain the kids and a fresh local menu to satisfy any and all cravings. A sure-fire pleaser is the fresh fish of the day, with myriad seafood options to complement the coastal vibe.