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Banks Peninsula Questions & Answers

Cologne, Germany

Hi, we will arrive in Christchurch April 6th and are looking for a nice camping place for the first night or two and visit the Bank Peninsula. Would you recommend driving to BP with a campervan. We prefer a walk by foot cause first time in nzl and no route experience so far. What about Little River Campground as bivouac? Any other recommendations for a base camp. Cheers

over a year ago Answer

8 answers

United Kingdom
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We had a camper van for six weeks and really enjoyed our travels. We used a site on Banks Peninsular for our last couple of nights - Akaroa Top 10 site. Not cheap but very well catered and in a great position above the town. It is a beautiful area with some good walks along the coast and up in the hills. The drive takes about 2.5 hours and the roads are quite narrow and bendy, but with fantastic views. so probably not great if it's dark for a first drive. If you are into bird watching, the area around Lake Ellesmere was full of wildlife when we were there in Nov.

over a year ago
Christchurch, New Zealand
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The best place to use as a base for camping with a campervan would be in Akaroa on the Banks Peninsula. Little River is a very small settlement with not many walks only a cycling trail. It does have a very nice cafe and art gallery, a nice break on your trip to Akaroa. Akaroa is 90 kms from Christchurch and the last part of the journey is quite hilly with winding roads so would advise that you leave early morning for your trip there to give you plenty of time as many areas on the way are very scenic and worth stopping at. Akaroa harbour also has cruise ships visiting as the Christchurch (Lyttelton Harbour) was damaged in the ChCh earthquakes.Akaroa was the first French settlement in the early years. There are many walks and interesting places to visit, The Giants House is a must. You can also travel to other bays not far away on the Peninsula.The Imformation Centre will be happy to give you all the details. Hope this information is of some help, I am sure you will enjoy your trip to Christchurch.

over a year ago
Christchurch, New Zealand
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It is no problem driving to BP in a campervan, just be aware of the many hills and keep an eye in your mirrors for other motorists and when safe allow other motorist to pass, so they don't perform dangerous moves around you.. There are many lovely walking tracks on BP so basing yourself in Akaroa would be perfect. Akaroa also has many freedom camping areas too, just check in with the friendly information centre to gain any maps and local knowledge.

over a year ago
Christchurch, New Zealand
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It is no problem driving to BP in a campervan. There are many lovely walking tracks on BP so basing yourself in Akaroa would be perfect. Outside of Banks Peninsula you might consider Arthur's Pass which has some lovely alpine bush walks.

over a year ago
Somerset, United Kingdom
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Hi. You can go anywhere in a motor home provided you are happy with narrow, winding hills. Freedom camping can be amazing and stunning locations. I'm not a walker, my loss, as there are amazing places to see on foot. Make the most of daylight hours when traveling the roads which can require concentration and better with good visibility. We went for a month, worst camp site was on Banks Peninsula and there are fewer there than we found anywhere else. Banks Peninsula didn't float our boat. There is an app for campsites called camping New Zealand, we found it very helpful. A month was not long enough

over a year ago
Canterbury Region, New Zealand
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Driving tired, with an (to you) unknown and large vehicle and on the (for you) wrong side of the road over the quite curvy roads of Banks Peninsula is probably not he best (and certainly not the safest) way to start your holidays.

While I have no personal experiences with the camp sites on BP (not a camper, sorry ...) - there is a camp in Le Bons Bay - and the beach there is a dream. Just don't get there on your first day - see above. If you are looking for something more "central" maybe try Akaroa or something on the main road between ChCh and Akaroa. This includes Little River, but you won't be there close to the sea ...

As well - I am not sure whether I (used to driving on the left and knowing the local road conditions) would really like to drive with a campervan over the smaller roads on Banks Peninsula (that's all but the highway to Akaroa). They are all small (you might need to back up if somebody comes the other way, steep and very curvy ... some are 4WD only.

If you like to walk and see the real BP - why don't you book the Banks Peninsula Track (I prefer the 4 day version) and walk from Akaroa). Lovely landscape and beaches to dream of (though the water might be already fresh in the time of the year you arrive ...).

Anyway - Viel Spass und einen schoenen Urlaub ...

over a year ago
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I have heard that Little River campground is a good campground. Also I recommend the AA campground at Akaroa, it has a lovely view of Akaroa which is a lovely French town.

over a year ago
Athens
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Yes drive with a campervan - the roads can be strenuously windind esp. Akaroa. Inspect the Christchurch Hills.

BArdangas

over a year ago
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