Canterbury Springtime Gardens

Canterbury Springtime Gardens & Hanmer Springs Fete

7 day small group garden tour

On this springtime New Zealand garden tour the blooms are at their very best. You’ll enjoy private farmhouse lunches with country hospitality from the Hurunui to Banks Peninsula. Among the numerous highlights are lunches at Flaxmere Farm, Akaunui Homestead and Fishermans Bay and the gardens at Giant’s House and Ohinetahi.

WHAT TRACY LOVES ABOUT THIS TOUR: I love feeling like a local, not a visitor, and this is what makes this leisurely wander through Canterbury’s stunning farm gardens so much fun. It’s like meeting up with old friends, relaxing with the gardeners over delicious, long lunches in beautiful locations.

  • $4,290 (NZD) pp twin
  • $4,990 (NZD) pp single

Day 1

Fly to Christchurch - Flaxmere Farm - Hanmer Springs

On arrival in Christchurch we drive north through Waipara to lunch with Penny Zino at Flaxmere Farm, Hawarden a  six star Garden of International Significance. Penny has devoted 50 years to creating this beautiful seven acre garden on a terraced riverbed.

Later in the day we continue through the Hurunui farmlands to Hanmer Springs, our home for two nights. We dine out this evening.

  • Private lunch with Penny Zino at her Flaxmere Farm
  • Arrive at the pretty alpine village of Hanmer Springs

Accommodation

Mountain views from the Hanmer Springs Scenic Views motel

Hanmer Springs - Scenic Views Motel & Drifters Inn

In Hanmer Springs you’ll stay in one of two centrally located, well appointed, family run motels. You’ll be within walking distance of the thermal pools and town centre on our stay in this delightful alpine hamlet. 

What we love most about our time in Hanmer Springs – it has to be the hot pools. Taking a relaxing dip amidst the alpine scenery is the perfect end to an exciting day.

Day 2

Hanmer Springs - Hurunui Gardens - Hanmer Springs

After a leisurely start at Hanmer this morning we explore three very different farm gardens of the Hurunui – visiting Doreen and Michael Dryden at Loch Leaven, enjoying a picnic lunch with Vicki Collett and Andrew Dalzell at Coldstream and meeting Anita and Richard Todd at Saddlewood, 

In the afternoon we return to Hanmer in plenty of time to enjoy a soak in the hot pools or check out the boutique shops.

  • Visit the farmhouse gardens of the Hurunui district
  • There’s time to take a relaxing soak in the famous hot springs

Accommodation

Mountain views from the Hanmer Springs Scenic Views motel

Hanmer Springs - Scenic Views Motel & Drifters Inn

In Hanmer Springs you’ll stay in one of two centrally located, well appointed, family run motels. You’ll be within walking distance of the thermal pools and town centre on our stay in this delightful alpine hamlet. 

What we love most about our time in Hanmer Springs – it has to be the hot pools. Taking a relaxing dip amidst the alpine scenery is the perfect end to an exciting day.

Day 3

Hanmer Springs Fete - Methven

Relax and enjoy this one day event – the Hanmer Springs Fete. In the leafy grounds of the historic Princess Mary Hospital browse the stalls, including fine arts and crafts, local wine and food. South Islanders like to use the Fete to shop early for Christmas and this is the perfect place to get started. 

In the mid afternoon we travel down the Canterbury Plains to Methven where we stay two nights and dine in at Ski Time Lodge.

  • Check out the stalls and lunch on local produce at the Fete
  • Drive Canterbury’s country roads and travel over wide, braided rivers

Accommodation

Ski Time Lodge Methven

Methven - Ski Time Lodge

In Methven you’ll stay at the Ski Time Lodge, just a short walk to the town centre. You’ll enjoy all the creature comforts, an extensive wine list, great food, amazing views and brilliant service. 

What we love most about Methven Ski Time Lodge – it has to be the stunning views of the Southern Alps!

Day 4

Methven - Surrey Hills Station - Coniston Gardens - Akaunui Farm - Methven

We visit Sara and Paul Grigg’s lovely garden at Surrey Hills Station nestled in the foothills of the Southern Alps. Carol and Donald Williamson’s Coniston Gardens features a lake and woodland gardens along with vintage, classic cars and farm machinery collections.

We join Ian and Di Mackenzie for lunch at Akaunui, their 118 year old farm homestead set in magnificent gardens. Relax and enjoy country hospitality. We return to Methven and dine in this evening.

  • See vintage, classic cars and farm machinery collections at Coniston Gardens
  • Akaunui Farm – enjoy a private lunch at this mid-Canterbury farm homestead

Accommodation

Ski Time Lodge Methven

Methven - Ski Time Lodge

In Methven you’ll stay at the Ski Time Lodge, just a short walk to the town centre. You’ll enjoy all the creature comforts, an extensive wine list, great food, amazing views and brilliant service. 

What we love most about Methven Ski Time Lodge – it has to be the stunning views of the Southern Alps!

Day 5

Methven - Blythcliffe House - The Giant's House - Akaroa

We leave the Canterbury Plains for the hills of Banks Peninsula to lunch with John and Lesley at Blythcliffe in Akaroa. Built in 1857, the architecture and expansive garden reflects its history.

Later we meet Josie Martin at Giant’s House, a six star garden of International Significance that’s alive with Josie’s sculptural mosaics. This unique garden is always a highlight. We stay two nights at the Akaroa Village Inn on the waterfront and dine out both evenings.

  • Lunch at historic Blythcliffe House in Akaroa
  • The quirky, colourful sculptures at The Giant’s House

Accommodation

Akaroa Village Inn

Akaroa Village Inn

Spacious apartments on the Akaroa waterfront just 50 metres from the wharf and within easy walking distance of the boutique shops along Rue Lavaud and village streets of this unique French settlement.

What we love about Akaroa Village Inn – A central location makes soaking up the atmosphere of this small town super easy.

Day 6

Akaroa - Fishermans Bay - Banks Peninsula touring

We set off for some local touring, visiting Jos and Stew Howden’s Potter’s Croft garden then driving to Fishermans Bay. Along a dramatic clifftop Richard and Jill Simpson have created a stunning garden with a variety of planting themes. We lunch with the Simpsons and explore the garden.

We return to Akaroa in time to wander this pretty village French connections and dine along the waterfront this evening.

  • Jos and Stew Howden’s Potter’s Croft garden in Akaroa
  • Private lunch with Richard and Jill Simpson at Fishermans Bay

Accommodation

Akaroa Village Inn

Akaroa Village Inn

Spacious apartments on the Akaroa waterfront just 50 metres from the wharf and within easy walking distance of the boutique shops along Rue Lavaud and village streets of this unique French settlement.

What we love about Akaroa Village Inn – A central location makes soaking up the atmosphere of this small town super easy.

Day 7

Akaroa - Coombe Farm - Ohinetahi - Christchurch - Return flight

We meet Kathrine Fraser at Coombe Farm garden in Takamatua Valley established by early French settlers. We sample the cheeses at Barry’s Bay Traditional Cheese shop before returning over the hill to lunch at Little River and visit the Gallery.

We take Gebbes Pass to Governors Bay for afternoon tea at superb Ohinetahi Garden, galleries and sculptures, a six star Garden of International Significance. It’s just a short distance to Christchurch Airport for our late afternoon flight.

  • Coombes Farm Homestead and Garden
  • Historic Ohinetahi Homestead and Garden

Next departures

Tour DatePrice (from)Availability
31 Oct 2024 - 06 Nov 2024
$4,290 (NZD)
Sorry it's full
Enquire

Please contact us if you have any questions about our tour departure dates.

Tour DatePrice (from)Availability
31 Oct 2024 - 06 Nov 2024
$4,290 (NZD)
Sorry it's full
Enquire
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