The TranzAlpine Train The TranzAlpine Train

The TranzAlpine Train

The TranzAlpine Train is a scenic rail journey from Christchurch to Arthur's Pass and Greymouth passing  though the Southern Alps from one coast of New Zealand's South Island to the other. The TranzAlpine Train is one of the world’s great scenic train trips through the dramatic contrast of dry beech forests and tussock land on one side of the Alps and lush green landscapes on the other.
From Christchurch, cross the patchwork farmland of the Canterbury plains, follow the Waimakariri river, climbing into alpine scenery on a series of spectacular viaducts. Then, after stopping at Arthur's Pass, emerge from the long Otira Tunnel and descend through sub tropical rain forest past beautiful Lake Brunner and on to Greymouth. The full journey takes four and a half hours one way, and is 224 kilometres long. It passes through 19 tunnels, and over four viaducts, the highest of which is over 70 metres.
For those who want to prolong their journey, there is an option: to disembark at Arthur's Pass station and start to explore the Arthur’s Pass National Park which has an incredible diversity of flora and landscape. It’s indicated to take a guide who will show you a series of short walks to experience beech forests, rivers, waterfalls and mountains vistas. Then the guide will take you along the old stage coach route through the spectacular Otira Gorge, testament to the road builders of the 1860's and the route taken by the Maori in their quest for green stone. From Arthur's Pass you pass through high country where you stop to view the Cave Stream as it tunnels underground through the rugged limestone of the surrounding alps. The incredible Castle Hill rocks, unique weatherworn rain smoothed outcrops of limestone are seen from the highway and a sacred site for the Maori’s.The return journey to Christchurch goes over the sub-alpine Porter's Pass and then crosses the Canterbury Plains.
The TranzAlpine carriages are heated in winter and air conditioned in summer, with Airline style reclining seats and Table Group seating. Both styles allow tourists to experience the amazing views through large panoramic windows.
The TranzAlpine Train journey is a wonderfully relaxing way to see some of the best scenery in New Zealand: the amazing fields of the Canterbury Plains and farmland, followed by the spectacular gorges and river valleys of the Waimakariri River. The scenery is breathtaking mostly in winter. From the train’s open air observation car, tourists have the opportunity to get even closer to the stunning scenery and catch some great photos.
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