North of the city is Caroline Bay, considered one of the jewels of the South Island. Timaru is a good base to stay for exploring the Mount Cook National Park and the country’s tallest mountain, Mount Cook. There’s much skiing to be enjoyed in the park in winter including heli-skiing and glacier skiing. Several walking trails lasting from hours to days crisscross the park where a lot of the filming for Lord of the Rings took place.
Christchurch is to the north of the city on route 1. Still reeling from the earthquake of February 2011, the city is struggling to attract the tourists it needs to aid recovery. There’s a lot of history to be found in the city although the older buildings, including the cathedral, were badly damaged in the tremors.
South on route 1 takes you to the city of Dunedin, a little piece of Scotland in the Southern Hemisphere. There’s the statue of Scotland’s most famous son, Robert Burns, in the Octagon as well as many other reminders of the country still held dear to the inhabitants.