Coastal Pacific back for the summer
The Coastal Pacific train between Christchurch and Picton has resumed for the start of its extended summer season of operation.
"Earlier this year it was decided that the Coastal Pacific train would shift to a seasonal timetable, running an extended summer season in the seven months between October and April," says KiwiRail’s General Manager, Passenger, Deborah Hume.
"The Canterbury and Marlborough regions will leave you spoilt for choice in the summer months, and the change has allowed KiwiRail to make the best of both domestic and international tourism markets in New Zealand.
"We recognise that the Coastal Pacific trainis a fantastic addition to the tourism portfolioin the Canterbury region. With new carriages, a new menu, and our Scenic Escape travel packages including Whale Watch and wine tasting, the Coastal Pacific train is a summer must-do," Ms Hume says.
"We are looking forward to a busy summer tourist season for the Coastal Pacific and we remain very open to working with travel and tourism operators to identify further opportunities to increase tourism in the Canterbury and South Island region," says Ms Hume.
The Coastal Pacific service will run from 27SEP13 until MAY14. Services will resume again at the end of SEP14. Return services to Picton operate daily departing Addington Station in Christchurch at 7am and returning at 6.30pm. Through fares with Sounds Air or the Interislander Ferry can be booked for those booking to travel between the North and South Islands, and Scenic Escape packages including Kaikoura whale watch, Blenheim wine tasting and Marlborough Sounds cruising can be all be booked at www.kiwirailscenic.co.nz.
In other news, KiwiRail Scenic’s effortstowards environmental sustainability have been rewarded, with the long-distance train operator winning a Silver Enviro endorsement from Qualmark this week.
KiwiRail Scenic is a Qualmark accredited tourism operator, and Ms Hume said thecompany applied for an Enviro endorsement to the general Qualmark certification to formally recognise the business’ sustainability efforts. These include monitoring the carbon footprint of all Scenic services, trials of biofuels, using recyclable or compostable pre-packaging onboard, and providing free travel to community charitable and cultural organisations.