State Highway 1 is open north of Kaikoura and we are pleased to announce bus service will return to this route from 18 December onwards. Services will operate daily morning and afternoon's in both directions between Picton and Christchurch, both of which will have Gold seat upgrades available.
The Coastal Pacific will be back to service as early as possible for the 2018/2019 season and it is hoped the season will be extended if possible. This could mean an earlier start date than September 2018. We will continue to keep you updated as a return to service date becomes clearer. In the meantime we can book coach transportation for you between Picton and Christchurch.
TranzAlpine Service Information: Due to work in the Otira Tunnel and other track maintenance, this train service will run between Christchurch and Arthurs Pass only and will be replaced by bus between Arthurs Pass and Greymouth on the following dates 07 May, 18 June, 30 July, 10 September, 15 October & 26 November 2018.
Northern Explorer: Auckland-Wellington-Auckland train service
A scenic rail journey through the heart of New Zealand's beautiful North Island. The Northern Explorer train service connects Auckland, New Zealand's largest city and home of the Sky Tower; to Wellington, New Zealand's arts and culture capital. You‘ll travel through rugged native bush, up the world famous Raurimu Spiral to the alpine desert Central Plateau. Enjoy views of its majestic volcanoes, then descend through stunning river gorges to the rocky seascapes of the lower North Island. See it all from the comfort of your carriage through panoramic windows. Read more
Coastal Pacific: Christchurch–Picton–Christchurch train service
A scenic rail journey from Christchurch to Kaikoura, Blenheim and Picton — the gateway to the beautiful Marlborough Sounds. Your journey takes you through picturesque countryside, with the Kaikoura mountain ranges on one side of your train and the rugged Pacific Ocean coastline on the other. Travel through some of New Zealand's finest farmland and wine growing regions, and see marine birds, seals and penguins from the comfort of your carriage. Panoramic windows ensure your stunning views are uninterrupted. Read more
Tranz Alpine: Christchurch–Greymouth–Christchurch train service
A scenic rail journey from one coast of the beautiful South Island to the other through the famed Arthurs Pass. You'll see the rich farmlands of the Canterbury Plains, then ascend the Southern Alps through the spectacular river gorges and valleys of the Waimakariri River to Arthurs Pass. Enjoy a stunning descent through the Otira Tunnel and lush beech alpine rain forests to Greymouth — the gateway to the South Island's West Coast and glaciers. Read more
Regional passenger train services in New Zealand
Alongside the three long distance passenger train services in New Zealand there are also two regional passenger train services.
There are no overnight regional or long distance passenger train services in New Zealand.
Travel to other major tourist destinations in New Zealand is by scenic bus and coach services from either Auckland, Hamilton, Christchurch or Greymouth.