“If you are seeking a complete break from your normal routine; want somewhere private, affordable, easy to get to with beautiful sea views plus being quiet and restful then Waterway Cottage is the place for you! " Janna -Waterway Cottage Owner
My ten favourite things to do are:
1. HOT CHOCOLATE WITH STUNNING HARBOUR VIEWS
We travel from Christchurch via Governors Bay; this makes a perfect stop for the most indulgent hot chocolate ever-now we know we are on holiday! Look out for She Restaurant. www.shechocolat.com
2. FOOD AND WINE
Arriving at the cottage with our holiday food supplies makes unpacking fun! I do not want to be stuck in the kitchen so we bring steak and salad; special delicatessen goodies (for making lunch platters) plus a few quality bottles of wine-bliss!
3. TIME TO SLOW DOWN
I love just stopping and taking it all in; if the sun is shining-fling open the french doors and eat lunch on the deck! Or there is the option of lighting the fire; curling up with a good book; putting on a DVD; or a favourite CD. Suddenly we are on Port Levy time! Let’s open a bottle of wine….
It is almost too easy to take NZ beauty for granted; Port Levy is a coastal idyll framed by hills with stunning sea views. An easy walk from the cottage is to follow the shingle road around to the left towards the old wharf. Listen to the bird song and experience the uniqueness of Banks Peninsula. Another option is to simply head for the hills; step over the garden stile and 20 minutes later, we are viewing the entire Bay!
The sun is shining and we are tempted to have a swim! It takes 5 minutes by car to reach the main (tiny) settlement; here can be found the Port Levy Wharf (as featured in “Heavenly Creatures”) We have brought a picnic and go about setting up camp on the pristine small beach.
6. STARRY STARRY NIGHTS AND MORNING SUN RISE
I often feel I need to pinch myself when looking up in to a clear night sky at Port Levy; the shining stars are breathtakingly beautiful. Grab a rug and a deck chair; it really is the moment you feel you are only a small speck on the planet! Come morning; the magnificent sunrise and bird song means the day starts with magic. This is the time to linger with coffee and savor the peace and quiet.
7. THE RED AND CREAM CHURCH
Seen across the fields from the cottage; St Paul’s Anglican Church is a beautiful old building to wander around. It was consecrated on the 26th April 1888 and is a place of history. This is an easy 15 minute stroll from the cottage.
8. TIME FOR TENNIS
The tennis court can be found next to the old Port Levy School House; quite rough and ready but a nice way to let off a bit of steam.
9. A DAY AT THE MARKET
This is an option for those who like to cram a lot in! On Saturday morning head back to Diamond Harbour; catch the Diamond Harbour Ferry (timetable on fridge) and head for the Lyttelton Saturday Farmers Market (10am-1 pm) www.lyttelton.net.nz This does mean a rather early start because if you want to gather supplies; things do tend to sell out early. The trip on the ferry across Lyttelton Harbour is fun and offers some great views from the sea.
10. SPECIAL MEMORIES
You will see from our cottage visitor’s book that we often have the same people returning time and time again. I am sure this is testament to what a special place Port Levy is. I trust you also will be able to create your own fond memories from staying at Waterway Cottage!
Charteris Bay (25 minutes drive from cottage) Tee off at the golf course hcharterisbay.co.nzttp://www./ or visit Orton Bradley Park http://www.ortonbradley.co.nz/ which offers horse trekking. farm museum, rhododendron gardens and hiking tracks leading to Mount Herbert-the highest point on Banks Peninsula.
www.diamondharbour.info offers some great walks, wonderful (huge!)ice cream cones from the dairy plus Godley House, Stoddart’s Cottage and Stoddart Point reserve with picnic areas and harbour views.
shingle rd access to secluded Camp Bay; park in the car park and head to the cove on the left; delightful swimming and rolling waves! Take the cottage body boards with you for a real beach treat!
Allow a full day to explore Akaroa with its distinctive French influence. http://www.akaroa.com/