Hanmer Springs is a popular alpine resort town north-west of Christchurch. Hot springs were discovered here in the 1800s. The Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools is a popular destination for both tourists and locals all year round. The complex houses a number of different heated pools, including sulphur pools whose water is as hot as 42 degrees. There is a large pool for families with water-slides and fountains.
There are also private indoor pools, saunas and massage and spa facilities.
Hanmer offers more high-adrenaline activities such as bungy jumping and white-water rafting. For those with kids, there’s an Indiana Jones-themed mini-golf course.
Or children may enjoy the Wai ariki farm, where they can pet and feed deer, goats, alpacas, yaks, and many other animals.
The rough but dramatic landscape is ideal for mountain-bikers and horse trekkers. Both activities run through Hanmer Forest, which is particularly beautiful in Autumn.
The climb up Conical Hill is slightly strenuous, but the view is well worth the effort.