South Island trips

Inland Scenic Route 72

6 Days


Christchurch to Christchurch


  • Horse riding in Oxford
  • Fishing, Rakaia River
  • Skiing or hiking

Best time of year

All year

Inland Scenic Route 72 showcases some of the best of what Canterbury has to offer.

This itinerary journeys from Christchurch, north to Amberly then to the farming centre of Oxford. The route continues along the foot of the alps to Mount Hutt, Canterbury''s premier ski field. Mount Somers is next, for a hike in the mountains. Then it's over the Rangitata River to Geraldine, where you can link to State Highway 1 and head north to Ashburton and the French-inspired town of Akaroa.  

Get familar with driving in New Zealand and set out on this spectacular journey through New Zealand's heartland. Our tips for driving in winter will be useful if you are planning to drive between June and September.

Day 3

Methven to Geraldine

49 mins

69 km

43 mi

Christchurch - Canterbury

A short drive from Methven is the charming town of Geraldine.

Geraldine offers clear mountain views, beautiful walks, a vibrant boutique shopping village and, if you're here in winter, it's conveniently located within two hours' drive of eight ski fields.


The dramatic Rakaia Gorge

Start in Methven

In winter, Methven is a snow sport town. In every other season, it’s a place to launch yourself into all kinds of outdoor adventure activities.

Geraldine in Autumn

End in Geraldine

Geraldine is a pretty country town with an artistic streak. Shop for arts and crafts, refresh at a friendly café and take a stroll around the historic trail.

Things to see and do

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