"A Round Trip by Car with the Best Views" Top 5 Page for this destination Christchurch Things to Do Tip by Kakapo2

Christchurch Things to Do: 440 reviews and 762 photos

  Lyttelton Harbour, view from Sign of the Bellbird.
by Kakapo2

In the meantime perhaps you already know that you have the best view over Christchurch and Lyttelton Harbour from the summit of the Gondola (Mt. Cavendish) and the Summit Road in the Port Hills. You can enjoy the scenery on a round-trip by car.

Starting on Colombo St (south of Cathedral Square) drive straight ahead. At the last roundabout Colombo St becomes Dyers Pass Road and moves uphill.

The first much photographed building appears on the left side, the Sign of the Takahe. This elegant Victorian granite building is now a fine dining restaurant and wedding venue.

The road now winds up the hill and at the summit it reaches the Sign of the Kiwi, which is a place for food, drink and ice-cream. From the carpark you have a nice view over Christchurch.

Carry on for several kilometres until you reach the remains of a stone building on the right side - the Sign of the Bellbird. Park on the left side on the carpark. From there you have the best view over the whole of Lyttelton Harbour, and the sunsets towards Chch are magic.

Drive back the same road to the Sign of the Kiwi. Cross the intersection at the Sign of the Kiwi, the Summit Road goes slightly uphill. Soon you will reach Castle Rock which is a favourite starting place for paragliders. Shortly afterwards stop on the right side at the carpark. The shelter there is the Pioneer Women's Memorial at the top of historic Bridle Path. To the right it leads down to Lyttelton, to the left to the base of the Gondola. You can also walk up to the Gondola from here (20mins) - but from a carpark 1 or 2km further the way up to the Gondola is shorter.

At the next intersection is Evans Pass. From here you can drive straight ahead to Godley Head which is the end of the land, or to the right down to Lyttelton. To finish the roundtrip, however, you have to turn left down to Sumner. There are many great cafés for a break, my favourite one is Coffee Culture although it has no seaview as others, and you can walk along the beaches.

Drive back along the shore to the city centre.

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Feb 9, 2007
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