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French Bay House is a historic home dating back to 1874, set in the heart of Akaroa. As you walk through the white swing gate, you're greeted with leafy gardens and a beautiful, traditionally styled white clapboard building with a gabled roof and bay window. The owners, Jacqui and Tim, provide a warm welcome, and they have a small, friendly dog who might wander over to say hello. They have a wealth of knowledge about Akaroa and can help suggest activities to fill your time in the town.

Our rating: First Class

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Rooms

Inside, the four rooms are individually decorated and vary in size. The smallest, Tikao, is up in the eaves of the house and looks out over the garden. Two rooms, Onawe and Mt Bossu, have large windows that create a light, airy space enjoying views over the distant mountains or the harbour. The spacious Onuku room is on the ground floor and has a large bay window with a table facing the front garden. All are tastefully decorated in neutral tones and have an ensuite bathrooms, as well as amenities such as a heater, fan, hairdryer and radio. Complimentary Wi-Fi is also available throughout the property. In the evening you can relax in the common lounge to meet fellow travelers or relax and watch TV.

Location

The house is just a two-minute walk from the main pier, where many of the harbor cruises depart from. There are also plenty of shops, restaurants and cafés within a 10-15 walk of the house. From French Bay House you can access some of the walking tracks in the area including other bays and beaches and a local Maori village.

Food and Drink

Jacqui and Tim are excellent cooks and breakfast is always homemade using fresh local produce. All guests dine together in their communal dining area and the whole property feels like a home away from home. They can also provide gourmet picnic baskets for your days out exploring on the Banks Peninsula.

Our opinion

This quaint, historic property that is full of character, and we find the owners are very welcoming and helpful. Staying here, you're well-placed for exploring Akaroa and the surrounding areas.

Akaroa & Banks Peninsula itinerary suggestions

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    Alternative places to stay nearby

    Where possible, we like to offer a range of accommodation for each stop of your trip, chosen by our specialists as some of their favorite places to stay. To help you make the right choice, we give each property a rating based on its facilities and service, but we also look for hotels with distinct character or a location that can’t be bettered.

    • Beaufort House, Akaroa & Banks Peninsula

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      Beaufort House provides seclusion and privacy whilst being close to local attractions, making it an ideal place to stay and experience Akaroa.

    • The Olive Grove, Akaroa & Banks Peninsula

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      Located in a sheltered valley, just a short drive from picturesque Akaroa and an hour from Christchurch, The Olive Grove offers B&B accommodation with breathtaking views.

    Experiences while staying here

    The following activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences of the area where you’re staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident’s eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can also suggest outdoor pursuits and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the traditions of the area’s inhabitants.

    • Akaroa & Banks Peninsula, New Zealand

      Harbour Wildlife Cruise

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      This harbour cruise is one of the most picturesque in New Zealand and gives you the chance to experience the Banks Peninsulas most majestic scenery.