"Brrrrrrr" Top 5 Page for this destination International Antarctic Centre Tip by TheWanderingCamel


This is as close as most people will ever get to experiencing truly Antarctic conditions. Christchurch has been used as a launching pad for the south polar region from the earliest days of exploration there so when the International Antarctic Centre was first mooted there was plenty of experience to draw on to make the place as authentic as possible. As part of a working scientific establishment that supports not only New Zealand's Antarctic programmes but also Italy's and the USA's, this is actually a huge enterprise of which visitors only get to see a small part , but what you do see is great fun and very informative. You even get the chance to experience a polar storm, complete with howling winds and driving snow (suitable gear is provided to withstand the icy blasts).

Do allow yourself plenty of time to see all that's on offer here - there's been more than one visitor who has missed their plane because they got so bound up in this chilly world! The Centre is just a few minutes walk from both Christchurch Airport terminals - you can walk between the two buildings - just follow the penguin footprints or take the free shuttle from the terminals. Luggage lockers are available at the Centre if you're flying in or out.
Otherwise, catch the Red Flyer from Cathedral Square or drive yourself - there's oodles of free parking..

It's a few years since we visited the Antarctic Centre and we really do need to go again - if only to see the new Penguin encounter - it will be open when we make our next trip to New Zealand.

Address: Orchard Road
Directions: Open every day of the year at 9. Closes at 7 in Summer (April-October) and 5.30 in Winter (May/September). Entry price varies according to how much you want to do once you're there - check the website for current prices.
Phone: +64 3-357 0519
Website: http://www.iceberg.co.nz/

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated May 31, 2006
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