The port of Lyttelton is situated on the north shore of Lyttelton Harbour and close to the Banks Peninsula. It's a popular spot for cruise ships and cargo vessels, but it's also the starting point for many smaller cruising tours such as the Black Cat Cruises day trip to Quail Island.
Used as a leper colony by early European settlers, the island is now a recreational reserve and home to many native birds. Take your swimming costume and play on the beach or, pack your walking shoes and take a hike around the island to spot the birds.
From Lyttelton you can also catch the ferry to another popular coastal spot at Diamond Harbour. A short drive from here, Orton Bradley Park will keep you busy all day with walking tracks, a working farm, golf course, and a rhododendron garden, while the beaches are safe for swimming.
Nestled between Lyttelton and Diamond Harbour, is the more genteel Governors Bay.Here, you can sip a quiet drink in the Otoromiro Hotel, first established in 1870 or, if you want to take a break you can book one of the seven guest rooms which boast all the modern amenities. The restaurant is open from 11.00am seven days a week.
Governors Bay has a sandy secluded beach, which is safe for swimming, and away from the water the very pretty Taunton Gardens and Ohinetahi Gardens are open to visitors during the summer.