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High Country Gardens & Akaroa

This planned escape is to two outstanding areas of the South Island. Akaroa with its French influence and quieter atmosphere. Where we have handpicked gardens for you to visit, allowing time to wander and enjoy this corner of our country. From Methven, a gateway to the High Country, we have a day of garden visits as well as a memorable day of 4WD adventure to Mesopotamia Station.


This tour can be combined with our Hanmer Fete and Huranui Garden Festival Tour 27 October - 01 November 2021



Your travel itinerary

Wednesday 20 October

Auckland (or alternative) to Christchurch

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On arrival transfer to a central city hotel and meet your guide for a walking tour of the regenerated city. Welcome dinner with fellow travelers this evening. 

Thursday 21 October

Christchurch – Akaroa

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This morning our travel is to Little River to visit the gallery and craft shop, continue to the renowned Barry’s Bay Cheese (tasting) before travelling to French Farm Garden including lunch.
The impressive garden of Jendy Brooks has protected native bush as well as herbaceous borders that form a natural amphitheatre of daylilies, dahlias and much more. Then on to Akaroa, for a two
night stay.

Friday 22 October


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After, a leisurely breakfast, head out of town to Fisherman’s Bay to visit Jill and Richard Simpson’s garden established on the rugged coastline of Banks Peninsula. The strong focus is on evergreen native plants with many areas of daylilies, poppy paddocks, roses and much more. Return to Akaroa and the quirky ‘Giants Garden’ of Josie Martin. She is also apainter, sculptor and artist alongside her horticulturist skills. This is a Garden of National significance.
Rest of the afternoon to explore Akaroa.

Saturday 23 October

Akaroa – Methven

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Today we plan a visit to the 6 star 3.5 hectare garden ‘Broadfield Estates, now 20 years old. Originality in design, planting and maintenance was the aim; the plantings include natives, a beech
forest, kauri forest, a rose garden, lilies, peonies and a canal. On leaving we continue via Darfield and Windwhistle and onto Methven for three night stay. 

Sunday 24 October


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Today is the rural garden day, visiting gardens developed around the homesteads of sheep and cattle stations. We head to Rangiatea Gardens on Blair and Sara Gallagher’s hill country beef & sheep property. The extensive garden surrounds
the homestead with great views of Mt Somers. The Tack Room Gallery displays the varied agate rock mined on the property and the Rangiatea jewelry shop is there to browse and buy. Next we visit Paul and Sara Grigg’s, at nearby Surrey Hills Station a garden of National Significance. A large country garden which makes the most of its foothills setting and relatively harsh climate. Sara and Paul have created an incredibly beautiful garden to wander around and soak in its history: a garden full of detailed, lush, perennial borders surrounding their beautiful home where we will have lunch. On return to Methven visit a town garden, with its ‘Redwood Walk’.

Monday 25 October

Methven (Adventure Day)

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Today’s adventure includes 4WD vehicles best suited to explore the back country and appreciate life in this part of New Zealand.
Our coach takes us to Peel Forest Park where we meet our local guides then on to Mesopotamia (an iconic station) with the guide describing the landscape and history. The group now splits in two with a 4WD van taking you to the upper Rangitata River. Lunch is included at the now closed Mesopotamia School. This day is sure to be a highlight. Return to Methven late afternoon.

Tuesday 26 October

Methven – Ashburton

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Today’s journey takes us to Ashburton for a visit to Trott’s Garden on the outskirts of Ashburton. This is a six star garden
of excellence. See some of the 650 Rhododendrons in flower in the Woodland area, the formal tightly trimmed hedges that
form a backdrop for the border plantings. The newest being a red border. Then, on to Akaunui for lunch and a visit to Diana and
Ian Mackenzie’s 100 year old home and garden. This is a garden of such diversity – our visit is when some of the azaleas, roses and peonies are in flower. A day to remember. Overnight in Ashburton and a farewell dinner.

Wednesday 27 October

Ashburton – Christchurch - Auckland

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Coach return to Christchurch airport for your return flights.

This tour can be combined with our Hanmer Fete and Huranui Garden Festival Tour 27 October - 01 November 2021



• Air travel Auckland to Christchurch return (Please request other options)
• Coach transport as outlined
• Seven nights’ accommodation including breakfast
• Six dinners
• Four lunches
• Entry fees to the following gardens: Fisherman’s Bay, French Farm, Giants Garden, Broadfield Estate, Rangiatea, Surrey Hills, Akaunui and Trotts Garden.
• Barry Bay Cheese tasting
• 4WD adventure from Methven with local guides
• Pukekohe Travel escort subject to 15 passengers.



Cost Per Person *
Auckland - Auckland
   $2,797  $3,334

*This is a cash or direct debit price. Credit cards will incur a 2% fee
*Itinerary and costs subject to change, airline and fuel charges and currency fluctuations prior to final payment


• Cancellation Insurance

• Items of a personal nature

Booking Conditions

•A non-refundable deposit of $300 per person will secure a place on the tour
•Full payment by 03 September 2021


•Deposit is non refundable
•After full payment 03 September 2021– no refund is available
• If this tour is cancelled due to Covid 19 government travel restrictions, and a refund is available,Pukekohe Travel reserves the right in addition to any supplier imposed amendment and cancellation fees, to charge a service and administrative fee of $100 per person

Travel Insurance

We recommend Travel Insurance. Please feel free to contact us for a quote.

Health and Fitness

•To ensure the tour is enjoyable for the whole group, a  reasonable standard of fitness is required.

•Mobility frames and wheelchairs are not practical or permitted

Note: Pukekohe Travel reserves the right to correct errors and omissions on our website without recourse.
* Itinerary subject to change