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Pigeon Bay, Lavericks Bay and Okains Bay are fine examples of the picturesque inlets and small villages that dot the peninsula.

Formed by the eruption of the Akaroa volcano, Banks Peninsula was once an island itself and reminders of this dramatic geological past are everywhere, with rocky volcanic outcrops, craggy headlands, deep valleys and precipitous bluffs.


Akaroa & Banks Peninsula, New ZealandAkaroa is the oldest town in Canterbury and lies in a scenic harbor on the peninsula in which the dolphins can often be seen.

The town has the feel of a French provincial village as it stands on the site of the first French settlement in New Zealand and this Gallic charm is still evident, with descendants of these early settlers still living in the area.

One of the best ways of exploring the area is on one of the excellent organized excursions from Christchurch.

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Start planning your tailor-made trip to Akaroa & Banks Peninsula by contacting one of our New Zealand specialists

Suggested itinerary featuring Akaroa & Banks Peninsula

This sample itinerary will give you an idea of what is possible when you travel in Akaroa & Banks Peninsula, and showcases routes we know work particularly well. Treat this as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.

Map of Akaroa & Banks Peninsula

Places & hotels on the map

    Places near Akaroa & Banks Peninsula

    Accommodation choices for Akaroa & Banks Peninsula

    We've selected a range of accommodation options for when you visit Akaroa & Banks Peninsula. Our choices usually come recommended for their character, facilities and service or location. Our specialists always aim to suggest properties that match your preferences.

    Ideas for experiencing Akaroa & Banks Peninsula

    Our specialists seek out authentic ways to get to know the places that could feature in your trip. These activities reflect some of the experiences they've most enjoyed while visiting Akaroa & Banks Peninsula, and which use the best local guides.

    • Harbor Wildlife Cruise
      Akaroa & Banks Peninsula, New Zealand

      Harbor Wildlife Cruise

      Harbor Wildlife Cruise

      This harbor cruise is one of the most picturesque in New Zealand and gives you the chance to experience the Banks Peninsula's most majestic scenery.

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    • Swimming with Hector's Dolphins in Akaroa Harbour
      A pair of Hector's dolphins

      Swimming with Hector's Dolphins in Akaroa Harbour

      Swimming with Hector's Dolphins in Akaroa Harbour

      The sheltered harbor of Akaroa is an ideal place for a unique encounter with the world's smallest, rarest and friendliest dolphins, the Hector's dolphins.

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