Situated just south of the surrounding Southern Alps, Ashburton is an idyllic first stop when embarking on a 7-day road trip from Christchurch to Invercargill. Not only is it home to two great rivers for fly fishing, but it also serves as a major service centre for the surrounding rural farming district. Whether you decide to spend your first day wandering through the bustling streets or partaking in some of the activities heavily influenced by nature, such as tramping and kayaking, you can be sure that there will be an enjoyable experience awaiting you within Ashburton.
Sightseeing #1: Ashburton Domain
From fishing and kayaking to picnic lunches, Ashburton Domain offers a delightful outdoor experience that everyone can enjoy. Take in stunning views of Lake Hood while strolling the gardens with many species of birds. Trek along walking trails that lead you to historic buildings and sporting grounds like cricket, soccer, rugby union and golfing facilities, or hop on long cycleways featuring fitness points for exercise fanatics.
Sightseeing #2: Lake Hood
Located just 15 minutes from Ashburton (Hakatere), Lake Hood provides locals and visitors alike the opportunity to enjoy water sports and recreational activities. With an impressive span of 80 hectares, the artificial lake allows users to partake in activities such as swimming, kayaking, sailing, rowing, jet skiing and more. Besides these exciting pastimes, visitors can also take advantage of scenic walking trails in close proximity to the lake as well as the convenience of having residential houses dotted around its perimeter, with some including access to a jetty ideal for mooring boats and kayaks.