Packhorse Hut Day Tour

On this stunning journey to Packhorse Hut, we visit all four of the historic “rest houses” that were once part of a grand walking experience over the Port Hills. The hut is situated on a saddle above Lyttelton Harbour with unforgettable views of the Harbour and Banks Penninsula. This scenic drive and walk start in Christchurch by driving up the Port Hills following the historical track up Dyer’s Pass road before heading south along Summit Road to Gebbies Pass. Our walk starts and finishes at Gebbie’s pass, is approximately 11km (6.8 Mi) and takes most groups 3-4 hrs of walking to reach the hut and return to Gebbie’s Pass.

Tour Highlights

  • Visit the four historic “rest houses”- Sign of the Takahe, Sign of the Kiwi, Sign of the Bellbird & Sign of the Packhorse.
  • Scenic drive over the Port Hills & Summit Road overlooking Christchurch and Lyttleton Harbour.
  • Walk to Packhorse Hut.
  • Local guide.
  • Picnic style lunch included.
  • Transport with A/C.
  • Small-group tour.


This tour starts by driving up the Port Hills through the affluent suburb of Cashmere, to our first stop at the “Sign of the Takahe” (The first historic rest house). Before continuing to the “Sign of the Kiwi” where you will get uninterrupted views of Christchurch and your first glimpse of Lyttelton Harbour. Heading south along summit road and out of the city we stop at the third rest house the “Sign of the Bellbird” for morning tea. From the Sign of the Bellbird, it’s a short but very scenic drive to Gebbie’s Pass at the southern end of Lyttelton Harbour. Our walk begins at Gebbie’s Pass, first passing through open farmland before heading into pine forests. After 45mins the track breaks out of the trees and into open tussock grasslands affording beautiful views of Lyttelton Harbour and Quail Island. Along the way, we pass by volcanic rock formation named the “Remarkable Dykes” before reaching the historic Packhorse Hut. Your guide will prepare lunch at the hut. After lunch, you will have plenty of time to explore the area around the hut and get some photos before returning to Gebbies Pass. From Gebbie’s Pass, we return via the scenic coastal road passing through Governors Bay before heading back over the Port Hills, past the Sign of the Kiwi and on to Christchurch. Your guide will drop you back at your accommodation or the Canterbury Museum on Rolleston Ave, in the city centre.

Packhorse Hut FAQ’S

Where does the tour start & finish

This tour starts and finishes in Christchurch. Your guide will collect you from one of the meeting points listed below.

What time does the tour start?

Your guide will collect you between 8:45-9:30 am on the day of your tour.

What time does the tour end?

You will be dropped back at your accommodation between 4:30-5:00 pm.

Is lunch included?

Yes, morning tea, lunch & afternoon tea.

Is transport included?

Yes, A/C transport

Can I do this tour as a shore excursion from Lyttleton/Christchurch?

Yes, we do a pick-up from Lyttleton Port for cruise ship passengers.

How challenging is the walk?

The walk is approx. 11km’s (6.8 Mi) on well-formed tracks and takes most groups 3-4 hrs of walking.

Are their minimum numbers?

The minimum number for this tour is two people. If only one person has booked, we will offer them a private tour on the same day.

What is the maximum group size?

The maximum group size for this trip is 11 people.

How far in advance do I need to book?

We recommend booking at least 48hrs in advance to secure your reservation.

Is the trip family-friendly?

Yes, we are happy to cater for family groups on this tour; however, we do suggest family groups book a private tour.

Where are the meeting locations?

Directly from your hotel- any accommodation within 3.5 km’s of Christchurch city centre – See on google maps Canterbury Museum meeting location- See on Google maps Princess Margarate Hospital meeting location (free all day parking) – See on Google maps Lyttelton Port meeting location (for shore excursions) – See on google maps

1 Day  |  $349 pp

Pick-up Time

9:00-9:30 am

Finish time

4:30-5:00 pm





Shore Excursion

Yes, Pick-up is available form Lyttleton Port for cruise ship passengers.


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