Lyttelton is a port town on the north shore of Lyttelton Harbour next to Banks Peninsula, 12 km by road from Christchurch, with a population of about 3000 people. The town is connected to Christchurch by New Zealand's oldest railway tunnel, opened on 1867, and New Zealand's longest road tunnel, at 1.9 km long, through the Port Hills, opened 1867.
The Lyttelton harbour is on the north western side of Banks Peninsula, it extends 18 km inland from the southern end of Pegasus Bay. It is surrounded by steep hills formed from the sides of an extinct volcanic crater. Governors Bay and Diamond Harbour are a couple of the smaller village's dotted along the shore of the harbour. Lyttleton is a small attractive port town, rich in history and has plenty of comfortable cafe's and restaurant’s along the water front to please most visitors.
Lyttelton is a port town, not so attractive like Akaroa, but a hard working, hard living town catering for Canterbury’s imports and exports for well over 150 years. You can still see much of the history today as you walk the steep and narrow streets, You will see the bars where dock workers and seamen drank, and the original houses of many of Canterbury’s first settlers.
Lyttelton's activities are endless, you can also visit the Lyttelton Gaol, Canterbury’s prison until the 1920s, three historic churches on Winchester Street, and the Timeball Station, walk the signposted Lyttleton Harbour Heritage Trail, go for a Harbour Cruise and explore the history on Quail and Ripapa Islands, go sea kayaking on the harbour, visit Governor's Bays cafes and gardens, climb the Bridal Path over the Port Hill to Christchurch just as the first settlers did, find a seat on the port hills and watch the ships, yachts and boats come and go plus much more.
Around Lyttelton Harbour you can easily visit many attractions, you can take boattrips to the Quail and Ripapa islands on the harbour, Rapaki and its historic Maori church, another charming old church at Governor’s Bay, Charteris Bay is the location of the Orton Bradley Park, the tranquil Purau and Diamond Harbour with the attractive Godley House and a nice village with awesome sunsets and an end of the day drink.
Lyttelton's accommodation offers a wonderful selection for the discerning traveller, ranging from backpackers to four star plus motel facilities, bed and breakfasts, apartments, condominiums, camping grounds, luxury lodges, holiday homes, hotels, resorts, motels and farmstays, many in historic buildings and most add a personal touch from their dedicated owners.
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