3.5 star rating: Worth doing 27 Reviews

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  • Location:Christchurch, New Zealand
  • Duration:6 hours (approx.)

Read what other Viator.com travelers think about the Akaroa Shore Excursion: Banks Peninsula, Christchurch City Tour and the International Antarctic Centre. What they loved, what they liked and what they think could be improved, it's all here to help you make the most of your next trip.

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5 star rating: Highly Recommended
March 2015

Was everything promised, and really enjoyed the history given by our bus driver as well, book the tour you won't be disappointed.

Murray T
New Zealand

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2014

Such a pretty scenic drive into Christchurch from Akaroa and Hank our driver returned another way and it to had views to die for .Excellent trip and felt very sad for christchurch when we saw what 22seconds of quake could do. Great day

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
March 2014

excellent

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2014

Great tour guide -- loved the Antarctic experience.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
April 2013

There is a 1 1/2 hr. drive from the Akaroa dock into Christchurch, but you get to see alot of the beautiful country side. When you are in Christchurch you truly do see what the people are doing to recover from the 2010 earthquake.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
March 2013

Very enjoyable, good local knowledge from coach driver. Tour of Christchurch "red zone" was thought provoking. Antarctic visit interesting and fun.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2013

Great day

4 star rating: Recommended
April 2015

Could have spent longer at the Antartic Center. Very good!

4 star rating: Recommended
March 2015

The driver made an extra effort to listen to our desires. The city tour was interesting with all the earthquake damage still visible, and the guide had the information and statistics about it for us. The Antarctic Center was great fun! I'd do it again!

John-Edward A
United States of America

4 star rating: Recommended
March 2015

We are glad we were able to make this excurion but it is too bad that it takes so long to get to and from Christchurch. We were glad tho that we did get to see the City and the International Antarctic visit was interesting and enjoyable as well.

4 star rating: Recommended
March 2014

an excellent tour. Our driver was very friendly and informative.

4 star rating: Recommended
March 2014

Beautiful scenery. and the Antarctic exhibit was very interesting.

4 star rating: Recommended
February 2014

We would have liked more time at the Antarctic Center and the museum. We understand the ships schedule precluded longer stays at these places.

4 star rating: Recommended
March 2013

A good tour in a very comfortable little coach and bigger coach. It would have been nice to have been taken to a picturesque part of the river and seen a punt in action instead of being told where to go but only having enough time to find the toilet. Good commentary on drive from Akaroa but continuous. Passengers need a break from listening all of the time.

3 star rating: Worth doing
April 2015

Our guide spent too much time showing us damaged buildings from the earthquake and vacant blocks of land where buildings used to be. We also stopped for 30minutes to view the Botanical gardens and Museum in Christchurch, that time would be better spent at the Antarctic Centre where time was limited and we did not get to see everything and only had 5 minutes to get something to eat. Tour guides need to concentrate more on the Antarctic Centre.

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better
April 2015

Tour didn't start till 10.30am. There were too many things packed into this tour and not enough time. Also didn't help the fact that some people were late in arriving at the start and the bus waited for them. Not enough time to do anything - too much time spent driving through the ruins of Christchurch and not enough time at the Antarctic Centre only 1.5 hrs. Advice would be to start the tour earlier say 9.30am, skip the stop at the museum 20 mins wasn't enough time and have more time at the Antartic Centre.

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better
February 2015

First, International Antarctic was wonderful. I've been there and it was most realistic. Enjoyed the simulated storm. Ride in land transportation fun. Well planned, well executed, accurate, realistic. Drive to Christchurch long, but necessary since ship harbored in Akaroa. Bus tour of Christchurch much too long. Once you've seen structurally failed buildings, either obvious or not, it's not necessary to see it for 1 1/2 hours. Would have preferred more of the Antarctic exhibit and more narrative on way to Christchurch. Ask driver not to tell the tour how pressed for time we are and how much we'll miss. Just adds to anxiety, not to tour enjoyment.

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better
January 2014

Antartic trip was great, but we only had 1 hour at the center. We were driven around Christchurch to see some sights but most of this was the devistation from the earthquake,

We had 2 children with our party of 8 and they were really looking forward to see the Antartic centre, but with on 1 hour they were really disappointed that we had such a short time there. i must say though that the drivers were very informative, I think it would be much better if we were taken to the Antartic centre first
and given 2 hours there, then the drivers could show us the wreckage of Christchurch on the way back to the ship, We changed buses during the trip and they both showed us the earthquake damage, 1 would have been plenty.

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better
December 2013

The bus ride from Akaroa was beautiful and the earthquake destruction was interesting but the tour was too short. Maybe 3 hours travel. It did not leave the dock until 10:30 and returned about 4:30. A visit to the botanical garden was about 15 minute to use the facilities and look at the garden. Nice museum there that was completely missed. Impossible. The Antarctic center was very good and fun. Guide was good but the tour needs to lengthen about an hour. Why the 10:30 departure when our ship was in at 8? Find another tour operator with a little longer schedule.

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better
June 2013

There was someone right outside the port with a Canterbury Leisure Tours sign, so was easy to know what to do, But we could not understand the tour driver from Akaroa to Christchurch and returning to Akaroa. Don't know if it was the bus sound system or how he used it. We could hear the driver from CC to the Antarctic center fine. The tour was fine, but would have been nice to hear the naration with the scenery going and coming.

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better
March 2013

A little disappointing. Christchurch 2011 earthquake devastation was incredible but spent too much time driving around looking at it. The International Antarctic Center was a little too commercial. Penguins were cute.

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better
March 2013

The bus ride from Akaroa was beautiful, but 1.5 hours to get to Christchurch was not worth it. Christchurch is still recovering from the earthquakes and there wasn't much left to see. There wasn't enough time to enjoy the Antarctic exhibits which were mediocre at best. No time set aside on the excursion for eating so the whole group had to eat at the small cafe at the Antarctic experience which ate up a lot of the time there. Looking back, we would have just stayed in Akaroa and enjoyed the town.

1 star rating: I do not recommend this
April 2015

this tour was like watching a movie on fast forward, you are rushed everywhere on a small very bouncy bus, not worth doing. you will be disappointed.

1 star rating: I do not recommend this
March 2015

The bus had terrible sound system. The bus driver spoke in a low voice and when I asked him to speak up, he was very rude saying "what do you want me to shout? I will lose my voice!". A very bad tour with a terrible and rude guide.

1 star rating: I do not recommend this
April 2014

We (the group of 6) were very unhappy with our tour guide. First of all, he bought us the wrong tickets to International Antarctic Centre and left. Then we found out that we couldn't ride on the Hagglund all-terrain vehicle because we were given the cheapest entrance bracelets. We had to waste 40 minutes resolving this issue with the Antarctic Centre's personnel. The guide didn't even apologize for his mistake. Secondly, he didn't take us to visit the Christchurch Botanic Gardens because "he didn't have time". We told him numerous times that it was supposed to be included in the tour, and we were waiting for this but he refused to take us there. Instead he took us to the downtown of Christchurch and wasn't SHOWING us the sights of the town, he was just telling us "it was lovely before the earthquake". We didn't gain anything from him as a tour guide; it was the worst tour we had in our trips!

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Tour code: 2950PRTCHCCLT66CS

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