|The map on the left shows the main railway lines still operational in New Zealand. Like the UK in the 60s with the "Beeching Axe", the NZ rail system was gutted in the 60s and 70s.
It seems unbelievable that it is not possible to travel by rail through the main population centres.
Apart from major commuter networks in Auckland and Wellington, most passenger rail travel is now tourist based.
Fares indicated are return, and will vary according to season and promotions.
The Overlander, between Wellington and Auckland. ($230)
The TranzAlpine, between Christchurch and Greymouth, through the Southern Alps. ($114)
The TranzCoastal, between Picton and Christchurch ($99)
|Due to the
difficulties caused by the mountainous geography of New Zealand, air
travel is a logical approach to providing a fast and reasonably
efficient transport system between most major population concentrations.
The map on the left shows only the main airports, both domestic and international.
In addition, most small towns will have a basic landing strip close by.
A proliferation of small heliports and airstrips has been caused by the huge growth in tourism in recent years.
Semi-deregulation of the airlines, plus the addition of cut-rate competition has pushed down the cost of air travel.
Lowest available prices are (April 2008, AirNZ):
Wellington - Auckland: $140
Wellington - Christchurch: $140
Auckland - Christchurch: $204
Auckland - Sydney: $580