Akaroa Activities

Things To Do in Akaroa

The French village of Akaroa on Banks Peninsula, New Zealand, is renowned for its fascinating mix of Maori, French and English history, as well as its marine wildlife and recreational walks. Located in the main street of Akaroa, close to the waterfront and to popular walks and attractions, La Rochelle Motel is the ideal base for experiencing Akaroa’s diverse activities.

Exploring Akaroa village, with its boutiques, galleries, cafés and cottage gardens, is a popular pastime. La Rochelle Motel is 5 minutes from the beach at Jubilee Park and is just a 15 minute walk along the waterfront to the “other end of town”.

La Rochelle Motel also offers a free petanque set, fishing rods and tackle, and tennis gear for guests.

Other activities to enjoy in and around Akaroa include:

Swimming with dolphins

Akaroa Harbour is home to the rare and beautiful Hector’s Dolphin and you can either watch their antics from the comfort of a boat or get into the water and encounter them up close. Try Black Cat Cruises, or for smaller more intimate tours try Ecoseaker.

Boat cruises on Akaroa Harbour

Stunningly scenic, Akaroa Harbour is home to dolphins, penguins and seals. Coast Up Close offers the opportunity of seeing the wildlife viewing. Fishing charters also available.


A popular pastime in Akaroa, fishing is a relaxing way to enjoy the harbour.

Fishermans Bay Garden

Visit these stunning gardens, only a 25 minute picturesque drive from Akaroa. Fishermans Bay Garden is rated a 5 star garden by the New Zealand Gardens Trust and is open by appointment.

Penguin colony encounters

Visit Akaroa’s resident colony of Australasian Little Penguins – the largest on mainland New Zealand – on a 4WD tour with Pohatu Penguins.

Kayaking, canoeing and paddle boating

Explore the wonders of the Akaroa Harbour and with the expert and knowledgeable team from Akaroa Guided Kayak Safaris. Otherwise hire from the Akaroa adventure centre and create your own exciting adventure on the water.

Walking and hiking on Banks Peninsula

There are numerous popular walks in the area, from the world-famous multi-day Banks Peninsula Track to day walks such as Woodills Track or Childrens Bay walk. Otherwise go for a scenic drive and explore one of the Banks Peninsula’s outer bays.

Other Akaroa attractions

In and around Akaroa you can visit the Akaroa Museum or the renowned Okains Bay Maori & Colonial Museum, take an historic lighthouse tour, explore the unique ‘Giant’s House’ at Linton of Akaroa, sample local cheeses at Barry’s Bay Cheese factory, have a round of golf at Akaroa’s scenic 18-hole golf course, or simply exploring the many art and craft galleries and boutiques of this lovely village.