Lake Ellesmere
Lake Ellesmere
3.5
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Top ways to experience Lake Ellesmere and nearby attractions

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.


3.5
3.5 of 5 bubbles8 reviews
Excellent
2
Very good
3
Average
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LaBohemeNZ
Christchurch, New Zealand14 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Lake Ellesmere/Te Waihora is an internationally recognised and important bidwatching area, and here a bird hide has been built over wetlands on the margin of the lake. There are many species of water fowl, sea birds and birds of the open country, and it's a major breeding area for the mute swan. You will see native shags, pukeko, bitterns, cattle egrets, black swans, harrier hawks, skylarks, blackbirds. But it's not easy to get to unless you have a car. Drive to Leeston via Lincoln. Turn left at the Lakeside turnoff, drive 10 km down Lake Road to the intersection with Harts Rd, then follow Harts Rd to the intersection with Timber Yard Rd and Lower Lake Rd. The reserve is signposted on the left. There's a car park down a short road. Waterproof footwear is essential for the 20 minute walk along well formed pathway through tall grasses, marshy plants, trees and low shrubs to the hide. Part of it is a boardwalk over shallow water.
There's no charge. This part of central Canterbury is off the track for most tourists. You drive through small townships and established, productive and profitable farmland to get to the reserve.
Written March 27, 2008
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Naina-Damani
London, UK999 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
Lake Ellesmere is a shallow coastal lagoon which is Canterbury's largest lake and it has no natural outlet to the sea.
Written January 3, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

travelsafer
7,044 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2015 • Couples
Our driver stopped here on the way back to Christchurch to show us this area. We saw a beautiful beach with pebbles. No swimming is allowed. The road that leads to the beach has cows and sheep. I've read about the pollution and environmental problem, but, to us on the bus, this place seemed very beautiful.
Written November 26, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mariezi82
New Zealand6 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2013 • Family
Such a shame it really taints Aotearoa & it's clean green image - the water is heavily polluted and there is no enticement to this place. No path to walk/bike/scooter along let alone skate. No tourism business to hire a boat or kayak or jetskii. Not safe to swim. hope the Dept of Conservation or Council are working to clean it up as the birdlife deserve a decent wetland environment that isn't a Farmer's dumpground
Written August 6, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kathy G
Christchurch, New Zealand18 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nothing prepares you for the wilderness and feeling of remoteness but only a couple of minutes by kayak from Lincoln. Only the locals know about this secret private place
Written February 8, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Pete M
Chicago Southland, IL145 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2017 • Couples
If you have a couple of hours spare this is a very enjoyable way to fill them in. A 40 min drive from Christchurch the walk goes along the banks of Harts creek - a very clear spring fed stream - look for trout as you go along it - we saw four. While most of the walk is on grass, well mowed so you can do it in any footwear, the last section through willows is boardwalked over the mud and through the raupo. This leads to a well positioned bird hide- close enough to see things but no so close as to disturb the birds. Unlike many so called "bird hides" this one is actually set up to view the birds. There is a colony of shags not far out so there is always something going on and this is supplemented by a variety of water fowl - we saw 8 species while we were there, as well as a range of other species. There were families of white swan and scaup in the creek itself. Whether you are a keen bird watcher or just out for the walk you'll enjoy it but put in a pair of binoculars to make the most of it. Allow about 20min each way. Its sign posted off the road to Timberyard Point (Lake Ellesmere) but note it is a wildlife Refuge and no dogs are allowed. As always remember to shut the gate.
Written December 23, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Bevan H
Sydney, Australia208 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2015
The drive to Akaroa from Christchurch follows the Southern side of the Port Hills. On the right of the roadway one passes Lake Ellesmere - with occasional glimpses. It is a pleasant drive, but the Lake is seen in passing and is not an attraction in itself.
Written October 26, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

patrick d
Christchurch, New Zealand68 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2011
From that side of the lake you view Banks Peninsula across water. It's unlike any perspective of the peninsula you will ever see. Find the marae, Ngati Moki, and follow the road from the corner down to the sea. Just a short walk over to look south.
Written April 23, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Lake Ellesmere - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

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