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Akaroa Shore Excursion: Banks Peninsula, Christchurch City Tour and Jet Boat on Waimak River

Akaroa, New Zealand
Akaroa Shore Excursion: Banks Peninsula, Christchurch City Tour and Jet Boat on Waimak River

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Free cancellation
Up to 7 days in advance. Learn more
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Safety measures
icon6 hours  (approx.)
Pickup offered
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English


When your cruise ship docks in Akaroa, take a shore excursion to Christchurch for a sightseeing tour, followed by an adrenaline-charged jet-boat ride on the Waimak River. Escorted by a knowledgeable guide, you’ll combine a drive through the Banks Peninsula with the city landmarks of Christchurch and an exhilarating jet-boat ride. Round-trip port transport is included.
  • Travel from Akaroa through picturesque countryside to Christchurch
  • Visit the Christchurch Botanic Gardens
  • See the city sights of Christchurch with it's grand architecture
  • Enjoy the thrill of jet-boating on Waimak River
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Port pickup and drop-off
Local guide
Jet-boat ride
Covered by Viator’s worry-free policy: guaranteed on-time return to your ship
Food and drinks
Akaroa Dolphins , 65 Beach Road, Akaroa 7520, New Zealand

From the Main Wharf in Akaroa, head down to the end where you will see the Akaroa I-Site and a small park on the right-hand side. Next to the Canon statue, a representative will be waiting for you. Please arrive by 10.15am for a 10.30am departure.

10:30 AM
This activity will end right where it started.
Your shore excursion begins with port pickup in Akaroa, where you’ll meet your informative guide. After making the journey past the eastern coastline and scenic bays of the South Island’s Banks Peninsula, arrive in Christchurch for your city sightseeing tour of ‘The Garden City.’ 

See the central city highlights including the Museum and Art Centre, Avon River and the Bridge of Remembrance, and stroll around the Christchurch Botanic Gardens with your guide.

Then take a scenic drive to the foothills of the Southern Alps for an exhilarating jet-boat ride on the Waimak River — one of New Zealand's largest braided rivers. Slip on your provided life jacket and splash-proof gear, then blast through river streams at high speed and hold tight during thrilling 360-degree spins. 

The return to Christchurch takes you through the pastoral landscapes of the Canterbury Plains before you’re transferred back to the Akoroa cruise port.

Worry-free Shore Excursion: We will ensure your timely return to the Akaroa port for this activity. In the rare event your ship has departed, we will arrange for transportation to the next port-of-call. If your ship is delayed and you are unable to attend this activity, your money will be refunded.
Pass By:  
Akaroa Village Inn
First you will be collected at the park at the end of Akaroa Wharf (opposite the Akaroa Village Inn) at 10.30am and driven through the village of Akaroa and the Banks Peninsula with stunning views of rolling hills, lakes and coastlines before arriving in Christchurch.
Stop At:  
Christchurch Botanic Gardens
After boarding our coaches from the Akaroa Port, we'll take you through to the Christchurch Botanic Gardens & Christchurch Museum via the scenic Banks Peninsula. Explore on your own for 30 minutes.
Duration: 30 minutes
Admission Ticket Free
Pass By:  
Cathedral Square
Depart the Botanical Gardens for a brief Christchurch City tour highlighting city landmarks and the rebuild of city centre after the 2011 Earthquake.
Stop At:  
Alpine Jet Thrills - Braided Shallows
Enjoy an exhilarating Jet boat ride, “The Braided Blast”, on the snow-fed Waimakariri River in the shallow river flats. Speed and spin in waters that is sometimes only centimetres deep.
Duration: 35 minutes
Admission Ticket Free
Pass By:  
Banks Peninsula
Travel back to Akaroa via the Banks Peninsula to board your cruise ship.
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • At time of booking, Cruise ship passengers must provide the following information: ship name, docking time, disembarkation time and re-boarding time
  • Life-vests and splash-proof jackets provided on jet-boat
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Infants must sit on laps
  • Transportation is wheelchair accessible
  • Not recommended for travelers with back problems
  • Not recommended for pregnant travelers
  • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
  • Please note that activity times and schedules can be slightly amended depending on your cruise ships timetable.
  • The minimum age for jet-boating is two years of age.
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 100 travelers
  • OPERATED BY Leisure Tours
You can cancel up to 7 days in advance of the experience for a full refund.
  • Any changes made less than 6 full days before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • For a 50% refund, you must cancel 3–6 full days before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 2 full days before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 2 full days before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 7 full days before the experience’s start time.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
  • 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

Traveler Tips

  • "The 'raw power' of the engine and its pump which propelled the boat in only about 60mm water depth just above rocks and pebbles made it a " must epxperience"; stongly recommended!" See review


53 Reviews

Reviews by Viator travelers

Showing 1-10 of 53 reviews
Jet Boat.... so cool!
, Mar 2020
Jet Boat was so much fun with a great driver that explained the phenomenon of the river! Great scenery all along the way on the trip.
icon Response from Host , Mar 2020
Thanks for the great review Bill! I'm really happy you had an awesome time on your Christchurch City Tour with Jet Boating from Akaroa Port. I truly hope you get to return to this country someday soon!
Jet Boat Ride
, Feb 2020
The time in Christchurch was too rushed due to time constraints. We spent way too much time sitting and waiting at the Antartic Museum after we dropped people there. Then at the last minute they decided we needed to go inside the museum and get a quick bite to eat on the bus. Felt very unorganized and rushed. The Jet Boat ride was AMAZING. It is the only thing that saved the tour in my opinion.
icon Response from Host , Feb 2020
It is great to hear that you enjoyed the jet Boating. We are sorry to learn that you felt like there was too much time waiting at the International Antarctic Centre. Considering that on the day of travel the initial tendering was very slow and that the cruise ship brought its departure time forward by 2 hours the tour had to be shorten to accommodate and hence you may have felt rushed. Given the operating parameters we were provided to operate this tour, the excursion was extremely orgainsed and the International Antarctic Centre was an ideal stop to get some lunch..
Good Raft Trip
, Jan 2020
Deon was very good at communicating with us prior to the trip and coordinating pickup from our cruise ship. The journey to the river was nice and we were supplied a full set of wet suits and dry gear to keep us warm and dry. He picked us up and dropped us on schedule. We were able to meet his wife and dog as well. Very personable and enjoyable. The rafting was fun and enjoyable. If you are looking for something fun, but not dangerous, this is perfect.
icon Response from Host , Jan 2020
Thanks for the review! I'm glad you had such a nice time. We hope you get to visit New Zealand again soon!
Mario S
, Jan 2019
The jet-boat driver ( Malcolm?), was extremely confident and professional! The ride was exhilarating and informative about the sport of racing such boats. The 'raw power' of the engine and its pump which propelled the boat in only about 60mm water depth just above rocks and pebbles made it a " must epxperience"; stongly recommended!
Akoroa Shore Excursion
, Dec 2018
Very entertaining and thrilling. If I have one complaint it's that none of the excursions give you enough time to order & eat in the options where they provide you to get your lunch.
Great trip
, Dec 2018
We were picked up in Akaroa for our trip to Christchurch. Our guide was very informative and we had a great time on the river. We can highly recommend this trip
Very beautiful country side. The bus...
, Apr 2018
Very beautiful country side. The bus ride is a bit long but it was worth it with stops in Christchurch and then the river for our jet boat ride. The jet boat ride was very fun even with a light rain falling.
Beautiful scenery!! The city tour...
James T
, Mar 2018
Beautiful scenery!! The city tour was great. The jet boat ride amazing a professional jet boat race driver!!
We took a large bus to get from...
, Mar 2018
We took a large bus to get from Akaroa to Christchurch and after switching drivers in Christchurch, it just wasn't fun anymore. The woman wasn't chatty and was more into taking us back to the ship on time. The jet boat experience was fun tho, as we sped through the river, experiencing several donuts along the way.
we had a very informative guide and the...
Eric D
, Mar 2018
we had a very informative guide and the boat ride was great
Jet boat was great. Quick stop for...
Alan F
, Feb 2018
Jet boat was great. Quick stop for lunch was not good. Long trip to Christchurch.
This tour was great. Picked up on...
Pat D
, Feb 2018
This tour was great. Picked up on time from Akaroa wharf. Small group from cruise ship. Comfortable coach. Commentary all the way. Toured around Christchurch and the rebuilding. Sad to see that so many of the buildings had been damaged. Lovely parks and gardens. Afterwards we went on a Jet Boat on the Waimak River. Fantastic fun. Highly recommended. We were back in Akaroa in plenty of time to rejoin our ship after a very enjoyable day. Great excursion and well organized.
Enjoyed this thoroughly. The jet...
, Jan 2018
Enjoyed this thoroughly. The jet boat experience was very enjoyable and we were the only boat on the river. The Banks Peninsula and Christchurch city tour were very informative and interesting. Woudl recommend this tour.
The driver that picked us up and...
, Jan 2018
The driver that picked us up and took us to the first museum was excellent and very good about talking on the history of the area. Could have used a bit longer at the first stop, by the time you found the restroom and worked your way in and out of the museum you didn't get to see a lot. The next driver who took over from the museum through Christchurch was not over enthusiastic about the job - here is an empty lot, this is a piece of art that was a waste of money - that sort of thing - although we laughed and still talk about it - not sure it was the most educational. Unfortunately the JetBoat was cut short, due to blowing an engine just a few 360 in - the drive was very professional and managed to get it back to shore safely and as dry as can be expected. Be prepared there is no water proof clothing provided for this ride - so depending on the weather you may get cold and wet.
The drive to Christchurch was very...
, Dec 2017
The drive to Christchurch was very scenic and beautiful. The highlight was really the jet boating. Luv this tour!
Was a great experience. Loved...
Susan S
, Oct 2017
Was a great experience. Loved Akaroa such a pretty village. Christchurch is about 80km from Akaroa. There were six of us in the mini bus which was fabulous as it was nice and roomy and easy to chat to each other and the driver/guide John was easy going and very informative. Unfortunately it was rainy off and on so we didn't get off the bus in Christchurch but we saw pretty much all of the CBD area. We were then taken out to the Waimak river and went on the most amazing jet boat ride! One of the best experiences in NZ! We then got back to the ship in plenty of time.
Wild and wooly ride- got stuck but...
Eleanor K
, May 2017
Wild and wooly ride- got stuck but we didn't have to get out of boat into icey wate to haul the boat off the rocksr- guide was most pleasant
This was a good trip. The jet boat...
, Mar 2017
This was a good trip. The jet boat ride was really exciting. Lots of long rides in a bus.
While it was a little chaotic at the...
, Mar 2017
While it was a little chaotic at the start, but no fault of the tour company, the cruise line was the problem. Very informative and accommodating. The jet boat was a the fun fun.
Christchurch was disappointing but...
peter l
, Feb 2017
Christchurch was disappointing but banks peninsula and akaroa were great. Jet boat was pretty average.

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Akaroa Shore Excursion: Banks Peninsula, Christchurch City Tour and Jet Boat on Waimak River
Akaroa Shore Excursion: Banks Peninsula, Christchurch City Tour and Jet Boat on Waimak River


6 hours

Free Cancellation


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