Wellington to Christchurch via Picton and Kaikoura

We got up at the crack of dawn to catch the 8:25 Interislander ferry from Welington across to Picton. The views from the ferry were often spectacular, and that part of the journey was certainly not a disappointment. We had also booked a Tranzscenic train from Picton to Christchurch. However, much to our dismay, almost half the journey, the Picton-Kaikoura leg, was converted into a (not very comfortable) coach trip because of track maintenance. Had we known long enough in advance we would almost certainly have driven rather than booking the train tickets. To add insult to injury, nobody even apologised, at least until we got on the train at Kaikoura; indeed, the staff at the Picton terminal were quite brusque and almost hostile. I would certainly be very wary about booking such a trip again, and I would recommend anyone else to think twice - the whole point of using the train was to be off the road. The scenery was interesting enough, though, alhough we would have seen much the same scenery from a hire car. Had we driven we would also have had the means to stop whenever we liked, as well as saving ourselves quite a bit of money.

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