Why the Timaru District should be on your summer road trip list
Looking for a scenic and exciting summer road trip destination? Consider the Timaru District. With its stunning coastline, lush native forest, outdoor adventures, and delicious food and drink, the Timaru District has something for everyone.
Above: Summer fun at Caroline Bay
Explore our diverse region
The Timaru District is conveniently located on State Highway 1, making it easy to reach from both Christchurch and Dunedin. It's also just an hour's drive from the iconic Mackenzie region, home to Lake Tekapo/Takapō and Aoraki/Mount Cook.
Within the Timaru District, you'll find a variety of distinct destinations, each with its own unique charm and attractions. In Timaru City, enjoy breathtaking coastal walks, explore family-friendly Caroline Bay, admire stunning heritage buildings, immerse yourself in art and culture, and savour the local flavours in exquisite dining and bars.
Temuka, renowned for its world-famous Temuka Pottery, is a charming town with a relaxed vibe. Pleasant Point is home to a beloved vintage steam train and museum, while the boutique town of Geraldine entices visitors with its delectable food and beverage offerings, vintage museums, enchanting bush walks, and charming shops and art galleries.
Peel Forest is a hiker's paradise, with trails suitable for all skill levels winding through lush native forest adorned with towering trees and cascading waterfalls. And at the top of the vast and rugged Rangitata River Valley, you'll discover Mesopotamia, a majestic and truly unique destination.
Above: Canyoning with Big Rock Adventures
Heaps of activities for the whole family
Whether you're looking for organised tours or prefer to explore on your own, the Timaru District has a wide range of activities to keep everyone entertained.
Unique experiences include the Te Ana Māori Rock Art and The Raptor Experience, as well as fantastic walking and biking trails, farmyard experiences, museums galore, the iconic Caroline Bay, and more.
A must-do walk is Little Mount Peel/Huatekerekere. Regarded as one of the best day walks in Canterbury, Little Mount Peel is a bit of an uphill slog, but the views from the top are breathtaking. The track is approximately 10km long and takes 7-9 hours to complete, depending on your fitness level and the route you take.
Above: Harbour View Motel located just minutes from Caroline Bay and the Timaru CBD
Plenty of accommodation options
There are plenty of accommodation options to suit all budgets and travel styles in the Timaru District.
For those after mid-range options, there is a great selection of premium motels and motor lodges around the district, and for those on a budget, check out one of our great holidays parks including the Timaru Top 10 Holiday Park or the Orari Farmyard Holiday Park.
No matter what your interests are, the Timaru District is a great destination for a summer road trip. With its stunning scenery, diverse attractions, and delicious food and drink, the Timaru District has something to offer everyone.