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Christchurch Botanic Gardens Tour with Optional Hop-On Hop-Off Tram Gondola and Avon River Punting

Christchurch Botanic Gardens Tour with Optional Hop-On Hop-Off Tram Gondola and Avon River Punting

Christchurch, New Zealand
icon9 hours  (Approx.)
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English
icon9 hours  (Approx.)
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English

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icon9 hours  (Approx.)
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English


Get a narrated tour of the Christchurch Botanic Gardens by electric-powered caterpillar shuttle. The ride makes frequent stops where you can disembark to explore the lovely landscapes and extensive plant collection. Combine your experience with a hop-on hop-off tour aboard the Christchurch Tram, a restored heritage vehicle that travels between 17 stops. Other optional upgrades include a punt cruise on the Avon River, a ride on the Christchurch Gondola, or a combination of all four tours.
  • Christchurch Botanic Gardens caterpillar tour
  • View native and exotic plant species on an open-air electric vehicle
  • See downtown sights on the optional hop-on hop-off tram tour
  • Choose from optional add-ons for a customized Christchurch sightseeing experience
  • Upgrade to the Christchurch Gondola for panoramic views from the summit lookout
  • Upgrade to the Avon River punt ride for a relaxing cruise
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Christchurch Botanic Gardens caterpillar tour
Avon River punt ride (if option selected at time of booking)
Round-trip Christchurch Gondola ride (if option selected at time of booking)
Transport to/from the attractions
Food and drinks
Hotel pickup and drop-off

Departure Point

Christchurch Central City, Christchurch 8013, New Zealand

Return Details

Returns to original departure point
Make your way to the Christchurch Botanic Gardens to board an electric-powered caterpillar bus for your open-top tour through the 52-acre (21-hectare) preserve, situated between Hagley Park and the Avon River.

During the approx. 1-hour ride, hear live commentary as you learn about culinary and medicinal herbs, tropical plants, and more. Hop off at frequent stops to explore the glass conservatories and see some of the 250 types of roses in two rose gardens.

When booking, you have the option of four tour upgrades, which are detailed in the Itinerary section. If you wish, combine your exploration of the Christchurch Botanic Gardens with a hop-on hop-off city sightseeing tour on the meticulously restored Christchurch Tram (see list of stops below). Alternatively, opt to include a ride on the Christchurch Gondola, Avon River punting or a combination of all of the above.

Tram stops:
• Cathedral Junction
• Cathedral Square
• Mill Island
• Re:START Mall
• Ballantynes
• The Crossing
• Manchester Street
• High Street
• City Punting
• Art Gallery
• Worcester Boulevard
• Museum and Botanic Gardens
• Hagley Park Corner
• Cramner Square
• Casino
• Victoria Square
• New Regent Street


Botanic Gardens and Christchurch Tram:

Includes the Christchurch Botanic Gardens and Christchurch Tram. The heritage vehicle stops at 17 destinations in central Christchurch, including Cathedral Square, Avon River, Hagley Park, Canterbury Museum, Re:START Mall and New Regent Street. A knowledgeable driver provides commentary about the city’s history and landmarks during the ride. Your ticket is valid for the entire day and you can disembark as many times as you like. The entire circuit without hopping off takes about 50 minutes.

Botanic Gardens, Christchurch and Christchurch Gondola:

Includes the Christchurch Botanic Gardens, plus a ride on the Christchurch Gondola. Located in Heathcote Valley, about 15 minutes by vehicle from central Christchurch, the gondola climbs Mt Cavendish in the Port Hills. The smooth ascent takes about 10 minutes and ends at Summit Station, 1,500 feet (500 meters) above sea level. Indoor and outdoor viewing decks provide panoramic views over the Southern Alps, Christchurch, Lyttelton Harbour (Whakaraupo) and the ocean. Additional facilities include a cafe with spectacular views and a gift shop. Don’t miss the Time Tunnel exhibit, a short, amusement-park-style ride with audiovisuals that describe the natural and human history of the region. Walking and biking trails are also accessible from the summit.

Botanic Gardens, Christchurch and Avon River Punting:

Includes the Christchurch Botanic Gardens, plus a relaxing 30-minute ride down the Avon River in a classic boat known as a punt. Designed for small rivers and shallow water, the flat-bottomed boat is operated by a punter who uses a long pole to propel you across the water. Take in trailing willows, leafy woodlands, the Botanic Gardens and other sights along the river while you snuggle up with your sweetie or hang out with friends on comfortable deep-cushioned seats. Umbrellas and blankets are provided.

Botanic Gardens, Christchurch Tram, Christchurch Gondola and Avon River Punting:

The most comprehensive option includes all four attractions for a well-rounded experience of Christchurch.
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Please dress warmly and wear comfortable shoes
  • Children must be accompanied by an adult
  • Upgrade to the Gardens and Tram combo to include Punting and Gondola and receive included transport to and from the Gondola on-board the Gondola shuttle
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Near public transportation
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 15 travelers
  • OPERATED BY Christchurch Attractions

For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.

  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.

Learn more about cancellations.

Traveler Photos


16 Reviews
2 stars

Reviews by Viator travelers

Showing 1-5 of 16 reviews
On a cruise? You won't have time...
, Dec 2018
Very disappointing. We booked the bus travel (See that review - the bus leaves SO LATE from Akaroa - we couldn't use the majority of our purchase) over to Christchurch from Akaroa where the ship anchored, to drop off point at the Botanic Gardens. We went over to the trolley stop where we were met by a representative that viewed our tickets and said we could only take a 4 PM River Punting and that we had to go to the main ticketing office to figure out the rest. We did that and because of the lateness we found that our only option was to do the Gardens tour and if we wanted to do the Gondola, we would have to pay for a taxi out there as the shuttle we could have taken had already left and another was not available for another 90 minutes. There was no offer of a discount or refund for the Punting or Gondola. We did end up taking a taxi ($45) to the gondola - that was nice, we did get the shuttle return to the Gardens .... but when we went in to take that tour, the 'caterpillers' were all reserved for the cruise ship booked passengers and we had to wait an additional hour for another tour which had to rush as we were then rushed to meet the bus back to Akaroa. Make sure you find a bus that leaves Akaroa EARLY so you can get to see the sights etc ...
HelpfulHelpful1 traveler found this review helpful
We booked and experienced our...
Jeff S
, Mar 2017
We booked and experienced our package tour in February 2017. The tours are a great way to both see and learn lots about Christchurch through the guided information provided by the vendors. Economical too! One piece of advice -- allow yourself plenty of time to soak all this in! Due to overbooking ourselves, we had to 'speed' tour the gardens which are worth an extended walk or even a picnic lunch if you allow yourself the time! Unfortunately we did not get to do the Gondola as we needed to dash to the airport -- something to do the next time! This is a great package that you can purchase ahead of time and then book your day when you arrive with a phone call. There were some options to purchase in Christchurch but those were for more . Buy ahead of time, plan to make a full day if you wish to enjoy all of these in a single day!
Connection with our cruise ship...
Beverley B
, Mar 2017
Connection with our cruise ship shuttle from Akaroa and the tram was smooth and convenient as was the Botanic Garden Caterpillar Train . . . A snack at a local pub/cafe garden and a spot of shopping at a wood craft marketplace nearby and it was time for the return trip to Akaroa. Easy independent way of seeing a great deal of Christchurch in a short space of time.
Was great and Faye was an...
Bob T
, Mar 2017
Was great and Faye was an outstanding guide Would have like more time to get into all the nooks and crannies
This was a great tour. It was...
Blaine P A
, Mar 2017
This was a great tour. It was almost too much to do in a day though. We went on a really great walking tour of Christchurch with a local guide the day before, so we didn't need the Hop-on Hop-off tram. The gondola was nothing exceptional. If I had to do it over again I would have only done the Botanic Gardens and the Avon River Punting. We didn't get to spend enough time in the gardens. The punting was relaxing and enjoyable but didn't take much time. All in all in was an enjoyable way to spend the day.

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