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TOURISM

A Classic Ride Honda Goldwing & Sidecar Tours above Akaroa Harbour A Classic Ride Honda Goldwing & Sidecar Tours above Akaroa Harbour CREDIT: A Classic Ride & Matua Gardens Retreat

New Business Ventures in Akaroa

Thursday 3 November 2011, 11:12PM
By A Classic Ride & Matua Gardens Retreat
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<p>A chance comment overheard in the street has led to a new tour based near Akaroa. A Classic Ride Honda Goldwing &amp; Sidecar Tours owner operator Richard Lovett overheard a visitor commenting on how many great water based acitivities there are around Akaroa Harbour and wondering what land lubbers like him could do. Richard got to thinking. The extraordinary geological features of the extinct volcanic crater lend themselves to sightseeing in an extraordinary way and as chance would have it he found the Goldwing for sale.&nbsp;</p> <p>After checking all the paperwork, getting it fully certified with a selection of helmets &amp; biker gear on board it was good to go just in time for the beginning of the cruise ship season in Akaroa. </p> <p>The two most popular tours so far are the <strong>half hour</strong> photo stop overlooking Akaroa from Lighthouse Rd, down to Onuku Marae, a quick jaunt down the main street &amp; a drop off back at the wharf and the <strong>1 hour</strong> Summit Rd adventure taking the steep &amp; wonderfully scenic Long Bay Rd up the side of Takamatua Valley to a lookout over Hinewai Reserve around the Summit Rd past Le Bons Bay on the Pacific Ocean side &amp; Takamatua on the Akaroa Harbour side. The road winds between the rocky out crops of the summit with views of farmland, bush and sea. On a good day the Southern Alps &amp; the Kaikoura Ranges can be seen with their snowy caps piercing the distant skies. The sense of space with no roof over one&#39;s head or windows framing the view is a sensation that is quite awe inspiring. With Okains Bay on one side &amp; Robinsons Bay on the other the cattle &amp; sheep at the top show great interest in the mode of transport &amp; its occupants.&nbsp;A thrilling ride down Okains Bay Rd back to SH75 on the shores of Akaroa Harbour leads back to the village via the rollercoaster of Takamatua Hill.&nbsp;Passengers can alight anywhere in town.&nbsp;</p> <p>Longer tours taking in North Canterbury winery lunches, The Little River Gallery, The Hilltop Cafe, Barrys Bay Cheese Factory, Birdlings Flat &amp; the Outer Banks Peninsula Bays and more can be arranged by pre booking. Head off fo some sensational Canterbury food or ask Richard to arrange for a picnic.&nbsp;</p> <p>Passengers not from a visiting cruise ship can be picked up &amp; dropped off at their accommodation or link up with one of the amazing water based tours to complete the Banks Peninsula experience with the best the sea and land has to offer. </p> <p>If its small numbers or even an exclusive charter with an easy pace&nbsp;local character&nbsp;Tony of <a href="http://www.coastupclose.co.nz">Coast up Close</a> with his beautifully refurbished launch Wairiri is an ideal choice for a 2 1/2 hr cruise. He takes people to those special places not every boat can go. </p> <p>Currently the 5*&nbsp;<a href="http://www.matuagardens.co.nz">Matua Gardens Retreat</a> &amp; <a href="http://www.matuagardens.co.nz/a-classic-ride/">A Classic Ride</a>&nbsp;are&nbsp;running a special offer with&nbsp;<a href="http://www.coastupclose.co.nz">Coast up Close</a>. With 3 nights accommodation, 1 hr A Classic Ride tour &amp; &nbsp;2 1/2 hr Coast up Close tour for 2 people with over 33% discount it is a great opportunity for those looking for some special time out to take advantage of the best of Banks Peninsula. Photography &amp; bird watching are two of the most popular passtimes on the tours. From tiny tomtits to great wandering albatross the contrasts are stunning.&nbsp;</p> <p>On arriving back in Akaroa the lavender lined pathway of <a href="https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Stables-Bar-Cafe-Akaroa/226969090701106">The Stables Cafe &amp; Bar</a>&nbsp;leads to another new business in an old location. Kick back with a local brew &amp; some fab food.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p>