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Transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru

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Transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru

Hello,

I am planning a trip to the South Island of New Zealand in February. This trip will consist of starting off in Picton and making my way around the South Pacific island back up to Wellington.

I wanted to know if anyone has any information on transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru. I'm not finding any hits and wondered if anyone knew some inside or local information on transportaton between these cities.

Any help or information will be appreciated.

16 replies to this topic
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1. Re: Transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru

You would need to bus Kaikoura to Christchurch, then the following day bus to Oamaru - take a look at buses running Chch to Dunedin.

You might be interested to know Dunedin lies at 45 latitude - half way between the Equator and the South Pole. Storms and cold weather can blow in from Antarctica - best not expect tropical island weather ;)

Edited: 22 May 2014, 21:53
Fort Lauderdale...
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2. Re: Transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru

Thank you for the advice and interesting tid bit on Duderin! I look forward to that South pole and equator experience!

Fort Lauderdale...
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3. Re: Transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru

Thank you for the advice and interesting tid bit on Duderin! I look forward to that South pole and equator experience!

Dunedin, New Zealand
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4. Re: Transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru

WLnz correctly warned you of Dunedin's erratic summer weather. We'll get stormy days, but also the warmest of days when hundred flock to the beach (though this year I had to wait until autumn before I could wear shorts). If you come prepared for awful Dunedin weather, you might be pleasantly surprised by the sun. Though even on sunny days, the winds can be fierce.

Oamaru's weather is not much better. I was wondering, why Oamaru? People with their own transport often go the more scenic route from Christchurch to Lake Tekapo/Mt. Cook then to Oamaru and Dunedin. But no public transit covers this route. The bus travels to Wanaka or Queenstown after Tekapo/Mt. Cook. It is not difficult to catch a bus from Wanaka, Te Anau, or Queenstown to Dunedin.

I like Oamaru, but if you are mainly there to see the Little Blue Penguins these can be seen on the Otago Peninsula as well, though I am not sure how you would get to Taiaroa Head at night without a car. In Oamaru, you can easily walk to see the penguins. In Dunedin, Little Blue Penguins can often be seen on tours that include Yellow Eyed Penguins, as they nest in the same areas (but keep different schedules). But wildlife sightings are not guaranteed. Elm Wildlife offers a great tour of the Otago Peninsula. The Monarch Cruise with an option to Penguin Place can also be great (depending on ocean conditions). You are coming at the best time for wildlife sightings. Curio Bay in the Catlins is also a fantastic place to see penguins and with luck Hectors Dolphins, but I am not sure of public transit options. Not sure if Catlins Coaster is still operating. Bottom Bus may cover this route in summer.

If you're coming from Fort Lauderdale, I think you'll enjoy these wild, rocky beaches with their rough surf, the tall basalt columns by the sea, the huge kelp thrashing about with the waves. My husband is from Fort Lauderdale, too, and we both love it here.

Here are some transport options:

http://www.intercity.co.nz/

http://www.atomictravel.co.nz/

travelheadfirst.com/local-legends/bottom-bus/

http://nakedbus.com/nz/bus/

www.kiwirailscenic.co.nz/coastal-pacific/…

Dunedin to Oamaru Shuttle:

http://www.coastline-tours.co.nz/oamdun.htm

These more localized transport operators might also be of interest to you:

http://www.cookconnect.co.nz/default.aspx

https://www.westcoastshuttle.co.nz/

http://alpineconnexions.co.nz/

http://www.tracknet.net/

Dunedin, New Zealand
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5. Re: Transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru

This bus also covers the Christchurch-Oamaru-Dunedin route but the times are impractical:

http://www.knightrider.co.nz/

Another Dunedin-Invercargill/Bluff bus, useful if going to Stewart Island

http://www.catchabussouth.co.nz/

Dunedin, New Zealand
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6. Re: Transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru

I should have mentioned, if you are stopping Dunedin it would probably be best to avoid these February dates:

dunedin.govt.nz/events/icc-cricket-world-cup

Fort Lauderdale...
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7. Re: Transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru

Thank your for so much information (that I am excited to divulge into). I chose oamaru for two reasons, one you mentioned the blue penguins and two I like to explore my photo options on off the beaten paths. My plan is to trek around the South Island starting in Picton(which I wil pass through until my way back) and go all the way the island. I do plan on getting to Mt. Cook as I have seen the pictures and would love to spend some time there too!

Fort Lauderdale...
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8. Re: Transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru

Good to know, It looks like I have managed to avoid these areas on the dates listed.

Dunedin, New Zealand
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9. Re: Transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru

I see. Oamaru is a nice town. The Victorian Precinct is beautifully preserved. In addition to the Little Blue Penguin Colony, there's a small Yellow Eyed Penguin colony at Bushy Beach, but it's a bit of a hike from the center. If you are interested in the road less traveled, the backroad from Weston to Duntroon travels through a lovely rural landscape of strange geological formations, rolling hills, and distant mountains. It's part of the newly created Alps2Ocean Bike Trail. There's no public transit through this area and it's probably not worth going out of your way for, given all your other options, but I thought I should let you know all the same.

http://www.alps2ocean.com/

There are places to visit between Oamaru and Dunedin, but most are hard to get to without a car. Plus, I wouldn't put them into the road less traveled category as they are popular.

Dunedin is a university town. On sunny days, I've noticed some of the students will rent from Rent A Dent to get to the beaches or other areas for the day. So this might be an option for you, if you'd just like a car for a day or two. It's very easy to find a beach or track in Dunedin/Otago Peninsula where you will be all alone and can feel like you're off the beaten track.

Bring lots of SD disks. They are much more expensive here.

Fort Lauderdale...
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10. Re: Transportation from Kaikoura to Oamaru

Wow! So much to look forward to and this is just one of the towns I will be visiting on my trek along the island. I will look into the bike ride and possibly renting a car for the day. I will look forward to checking out all this town has to offer! As far as SD cards go, hopefully five will do; maybe eight, lol. If you know of anymore off the beaten path around the island, pleae let me know.

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