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Taieri Gorge Railway and the Otago Peninsula Day Trip from Dunedin

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Dunedin, New Zealand
Taieri Gorge Railway and the Otago Peninsula Day Trip from Dunedin

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Free Cancellation
up to 24 hours in advance
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Safety measures
icon7 hours  (Approx.)
Hotel pickup offered
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English


Ride the Taieri Gorge Railway on a round-trip route from Dunedin to Pukerangi, and take a guided tour of the Otago Peninsula by minivan in the afternoon. The train steams through vivid South Island landscapes including the Taieri Plains and Taieri Gorge, stopping en route for photo ops plus a leg stretch in Pukerangi. Then dig your toes in the sand at Otago’s gorgeous beaches and keep a lookout for oceanic wildlife. Upgrade to include a gourmet boxed lunch.
  • Full-day excursion with Taieri Gorge Railway journey and sightseeing in the Otago Peninsula, from Dunedin
  • Travel aboard the Taieri Gorge Railway for spectacular mountain scenery of New Zealand’s South Island
  • Admire the Renaissance Revival architecture of Dunedin Railway Station
  • Stroll along the sandy beaches of the Otago Peninsula during your afternoon tour
  • Pickup and drop-off available from Dunedin hotels or Port Chalmers cruise port
  • Small-group tour with a maximum of 19 people ensures customized attention from your guide
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Local guide
Transport by air-conditioned minivan
Hotel/Port pickup and drop-off

Departure Point

Traveler pickup is offered
Departure Point: Dunedin hotels, iSite Vistor Centre or Port Chalmers Cruise Port
Address: Dunedin iSite Vistor Centre, 26 Princes St, Dunedin
Dates: Daily
Return point: Returns to original departure point at approximately 4:45pm


  • Port Chalmers

After hotel or cruise port pickup in Dunedin, you’re transferred to the Dunedin Railway Station. Before your train departs, you have free time to meander the 19th-century train station whose exquisite Renaissance revival style was designed by the architect known as ‘Gingerbread George.’

Ticket in hand, board the Taieri Gorge Railway and take a comfortable seat in a heated carriage that is equipped with sizable windows and restrooms. En route to Pukerangi, the train motors along the Taieri Plains, crossing over bridges and viaducts that span canyons such as Taieri Gorge, then curves around mountains, slowing down at scenic locales for a better glimpse of the South Island’s rugged wilderness.

Throughout the round-trip excursion, listen to informative commentary about the historical and natural features of the region. Visit the open-air platform cars for unobstructed views, and stretch your legs at a stop or two. Enjoy a gourmet boxed lunch (if option selected), or purchase your own sandwiches, snacks and beverages at the onboard cafe.

Once your train reaches its destination, enjoy free time to wander around while the engine is switched for the return journey to Dunedin, where your guide awaits.

On arrival, hop aboard your minivan for a guided tour of the Otago Peninsula, including visits to several spectacular beaches where you can stroll the shoreline in search of penguins and other New Zealand wildlife before returning to your Dunedin hotel or the cruise port.
Stop At:  
Dunedin Railway Station
Enjoy Dunedin's iconic Railway Station before you board the train.
Duration: 20 minutes
Admission Ticket Free
Stop At:  
Taieri Gorge Railway
This 4.5 hour train trip takes you up the Taieri Gorge to Pukerangi station where you'll get the chance to stretch your legs before coming back to the Dunedin Railway Station.
Duration: 4 hours 
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
Back to Nature Tours
Once you've finished you inland train excursion your Back to Nature Tours guide will take you on a journey out onto the majestic Otago Peninsula.
Duration: 2 hours 
Admission Ticket Included
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Bring a waterproof jacket, sunglasses, hat and closed-toe shoes suitable for walking
  • Operates in all weather conditions, please dress appropriately
  • A maximum of 19 people per tour
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Near public transportation
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 15 travelers
  • OPERATED BY Back to Nature Tours

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.

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What is the policy on sanitization during Taieri Gorge Railway and the Otago Peninsula Day Trip from Dunedin?
The policies on sanitization are:

  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
  • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
See all safety measures taken by Taieri Gorge Railway and the Otago Peninsula Day Trip from Dunedin.
What measures are being taken to ensure staff health & safety during Taieri Gorge Railway and the Otago Peninsula Day Trip from Dunedin?
The policy on staff health & safety is:

  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
See all safety measures taken by Taieri Gorge Railway and the Otago Peninsula Day Trip from Dunedin.

Traveler Photos


58 Reviews
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Reviews by Viator travelers

Showing 1-10 of 58 reviews
Great tour! Train Ride Spectacular with plenty of wildlife spotted- Perfect Cruise Excursion
, Mar 2020
Great tour with a great driver. The train ride was spectacular and we had a great experience seeing a Sea Lion & other wildlife on the beach. It was a great day and they got us back to the ship on time with a brief stop for souvenirs. I would definitely recommend this tour. Driver was great! Small group was also nice.
icon Response from Host , Mar 2020
Hi SRJUSA, We only employ people that can drive safely. Infact, before we even sit down and speak to a potential guide we ask them to take us for a drive. Our guides always enjoy this type of feedback, its something we focus on during training. Great to see your guide went the extra mile to stop for souvenirs - your're a Back to Nature Tours Legend - Haste Ye Back!
Lovely train ride.
, Feb 2020
Fab trip even though didn’t stop raining all day. Good food choices & drink selection at very reasonable prices.
icon Response from Host , Feb 2020
Hi angiefo, People like you live for the moment and don't let the rain dampen their spirit - the world needs more like you:) With a spirit like yours you make a rainy days feel sunny!! You'll always be welcome here - Haste Ye Back!
Trip Review
Christopher M
, Nov 2019
Nice train ride, enjoyed the views and commentary. Octagon Peninsular - Driver done very well due to limited time available.
icon Response from Host , Dec 2019
Hi Chris, Thanks for your feedback - we really appreciate it! The Taieri Gorge is goes through some fine country - you manged see inland and coastal Otago in one day! Take care!
Derailed trip
, Oct 2019
It was a beautiful day in Dunedin. We met our guide Glenn and he gave us a great tour of the town, but when we got to the train station we learned there was a derailment and we wouldn't go any further on our excursion. Glenn did a good job of showing us the other sites but disappointed we didn't get to experience the train.
icon Response from Host , Oct 2019
Hi Adventurer, Thanks for your feedback and apologies on behalf of Dunedin Railways for the train de-railing, this is the first time we've experienced that situation - the main thing was that nobody was hurt as the train was traveling slowly. We're glad you enjoyed Glenn and Back to Nature Tours component!! Haste Ye Back!
Magnificent scenery. Lunch...
John O
, Feb 2018
Magnificent scenery. Lunch provided, a small picnic box containing a soggy roll, piece of fruit and a cake of some sort was not worth the trouble to eat.
It would be unfair to say it was not...
, Nov 2017
It would be unfair to say it was not good. As a tourist the area has so much to offer if its the great outdoors you enjoy, or in this case a trip on a train through a gorge. The train was basic and the Viator train ticket meant one of the less glamorous carriages with only one viewing platform in between the generator wagon and our carriage. The rear viewing platform was adjacent to the refreshments carriage therefore unavailable. this meant it was a little crowded at times on the one side that gave the best scenery and views. Luckily we had great company and it was a happy trip. The end of the line stop was not at a village but a clearing with a small number of locals selling their wares. not much on offer! Our guide was great though and we were taken on a great drive through the Dunedin/Otago area which was worth the price of the trip alone stopping off at relevant sites. The cool weather did not stop us visiting the beach and it was worth it. Beautiful bays. Gorgeous scenery. Lovely people. Looks nothing like Edinburgh but the area is very Scottish and a fond memory for us back in Scotland. So the train was OK and the minibus was ideal which meant the trip overall was good.
The train trip was fantastic. The Otago...
Miriam S
, Nov 2017
The train trip was fantastic. The Otago Peninsula trip was too short.
HelpfulHelpful1 traveler found this review helpful
This is a magnificently beautiful...
, Mar 2017
This is a magnificently beautiful area - the terrain reminded us somewhat of Scotland. Gorge rail tour was great - the best view is from the right side of the train. We bought the lunch offered by the tour and it was good and very convenient others bought food on the train and that looked good, too. The peninsula tour was a great opportunity to see the scenery closer to the coast.
We went into the new cruise terminal...
Mary O
, Mar 2017
We went into the new cruise terminal at this stop and after a little confusion found our tour. We got into our bus and were taken to the train station in Dunedin to get ready to board our trip up the Taieri Gorge. Fortunately the seats were assigned on the train so there was no scrambling for seats. We didn't order lunch but were able to pick something up to eat on the way. We had a very nice day so the trip up was quite fascinating. If we had to do it over again I would only ride one way as after you have seen one way that is all you really need. Upon our return to Dunedin we boarded a small bus and our guide took us around the Otago Peninsula. It was a beautiful area with its mountain and water. Another beautiful place to visit in New Zealand.
The train journey was somewhat...
Robin M C
, Jan 2017
The train journey was somewhat boring, having the same view on the outward journey as on the return journey. The peninsula tour was limited, without even a glimpse of the castle and no penguins

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