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Canterbury inland scenic route: Christchurch to Lake Tekapo

Peel Forest

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Acland Falls in the Peel Forest Park Scenic Reserve near Geraldine Acland Falls in the Peel Forest Park Scenic Reserve near Geraldine

Discover an ancient native bush named after the colonial premier, Sir Robert Peel (who incidentally established the modern police force in England). Peel Forest Park Scenic Reserve: Places to go in Canterbury are managed by the Department of Conservation. There are several excellent walks for kids and families, a camping ground and waterfall. For serious trampers consider climbing the summit of Little Mt Peel (1311 metres) towering above the scenic reserve.

@Peel Forest Horse Trekking


Big Tree Walk is a family favourite walk

There are large mataī, kahikatea and lowland tōtara along the track, some of which are thought to be 1000 years old. The largest tree, a huge lowland tōtara, is almost three metres across. Look out for the remains of a bush tramway route running alongside this track. At the top of the embankment you can see the original width of the tramway, marked by wooden edging.

  • Length: 870 m
  • Grade: Easy
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