UPDATE: Services returned for the summer!

We are pleased to announce that the Northern Explorer, Coastal Pacific and TranzAlpine trains have returned to the tracks for spring and summer. Face masks are now mandatory on The Northern Explorer including all sectors on the journey, except when consuming food or drink.

Cook Strait ferry bookings and some daytours and bus routes are also open for sale. Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any queries on 0800 143 669 or info@newzealandtravelteam.com

 

We understand that Covid-19 continues to add uncertainty in planning, and indeed all the train services rely on the country being at Covid - 19 Alert Level 1. Should there be cancellation of services due to Covid 19 restrictions, we will offer affected customers a transfer to an alternative date, a credit for 12 months, or a refund, regardless of the fare purchased less a $30 processing fee for the entire reservation.

 

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The Coastal Pacific

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About the journey

The Coastal Pacific train operates between the delightful port of Picton - the gateway to the beautiful Marlborough Sounds - to Kaikoura - the home of whale watching and onto Christchurch - the South Island's largest city.

Your journey takes you through the wine growing region of Blenheim to the rugged Kaikoura mountain ranges on one side of your train, the Pacific Ocean coastline on the other with views of marine wildlife such as seals and penguins to some of New Zealand's finest horticultural and farmland areas of the Canterbury Plains, all from the comfort of your carriage.

Along the way you pass though the town of Kaikoura, where you can break your journey to take in whale watching or get up and close by swimming with the dolphins.

The Carriages

The Coastal Pacific train's carriages have advanced air bag suspension for quieter and smoother travel, un-tinted, non-reflective, panoramic side and roof windows to capture the dramatic coastal and mountain views of the magnificent South Island, GPS triggered journey commentary in five languages at your seat via passenger headphones, plus information displays and overhead HD video.

All carriages are centrally heated, air conditioned with on board washroom/toilet facilities, forward facing or 'Table' (4 people around a table) seating allowing you to share experiences through large panoramic windows.

There is an open air viewing carriage where all your senses are awakened with the clean, fresh sea air and a Café Carriage offering a selection of alcoholic and non alcoholic hot/cold drinks, snacks and light meals.

The Coastal Pacific train is a non-smoking, reserved seating service.

NEW Premium service. Upgrade to Scenic Plus, a new option at a higher ticket price than the familiar Scenic Class, offering regional delicacies, and local commentary, delivered straight to your seat as you sit back and enjoy the spectacular views. Food from local producers will be on offer, including Marlborough salmon and Kaikoura crayfish. Scenic Plus is now available to book. Initially one carriage will be dedicated to Scenic Plus on each service.

The familiar Scenic Class experience is also still available with a range of fresh food and beverages available from the café car. Seating is comfortable '2 Seat-Aisle-2 Seat' reclining seats with head rests or 'Table Group' (4 people around a table) seating - great for families, small groups or meeting new friends.

Disabilities?

For mobility-impaired passengers, there are spaces for wheel chairs and a disabled public toilet. Wheelchair hoists provide access to the café carriage from track level. For hearing-impaired passengers - a hearing loop covers all of the café carriage saloon and serving area.

Operating Hours

The Coastal Pacific is running on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Stops along the route include Blenheim, Kaikoura, and Rangiora.

More Details

The Coastal Pacific train connects at Picton with various Cook Strait ferry sailings to and from Wellington in the North Island.

This train connects at Blenheim with bus and coach services to Nelson and services from Nelson to Blenheim.

You can take a day excursion from Christchurch to Kaikoura travelling on the Coastal Pacific train.

So, sit back and enjoy a genuine kiwi rail experience through the South Island's north eastern rugged coastline.