• Limited Spaces Available
  • Escorted Tour

High Country Gardens & Akaroa

In Autumn

This planned escape is to two outstanding areas of the South Island.  Akaroa with its French influence and quieter atmosphere just waiting for us kiwis to visit, here we have handpicked gardens for you to visit and allowed time to wander and enjoy this different 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.

Your travel itinerary

Wednesday 14 April

Auckland (or alternative) to Christchurch

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


Thursday 15 April

Christchurch – Akaroa

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


Friday 16 April


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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 now 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 a painter, sculptor and artist alongside her horticulturist skills. This is a Garden of National significance. Rest of the afternoon to explore Akaroa.


Saturday 17 April

Akaroa – Methven

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


Sunday 18 April


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Today is 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 a 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.

Monday 19 April

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 up to the upper Rangitata River, Erewhon and Mt Potts Station. Lunch is included at the now closed Mesopotamia School. This is sure to be a highlight. 

Tuesday 20 April

Methven – Ashburton

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Today’s journey takes us on a visit to the outskirts of Ashburton to Trott’s Garden. 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 times when the azaleas, roses, peonies & Himalayan lilies are in flower. A day to remember



Wednesday 21 April

Ashburton – Christchurch

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Coach return to Christchurch airport for your return flights.




• 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, plus three more gardens. 

• Barry Bay Cheese tasting 

• 4WD adventure from Methven with local guides

• Pukekohe Travel escort subject to 15 passengers.


Cost Per Person *
Auckland - Auckland
Twin ShareSingle 





*This is a cash or cheque 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

• On confirmation of booking full payment is required.



•After full payment - no refund is available 


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