Coastal Pacific returns
by Mike Isle
KiwiRail’s iconic Coastal Pacific scenic journey will roll again between Picton and Christchurch from December 1. The service will run every day, except Christmas Day, until late April 1919.
The service has been on hold for two years, following the Kaikoura earthquake.
KiwiRail’s group general manager sales and commercial, Alan Piper, said the announcement would be welcome news to the people of Kaikoura because the Coastal Pacific plays a crucial role by bringing thousands of tourists into the area.
“Before the earthquake, the Coastal Pacific carried about 43,000 passengers into the Marlborough/Kaikoura regions during its summer season. These passengers are estimated to spend almost $35m in the two regions, supporting 300 local jobs,” Mr Piper said.
“KiwiRail is one of New Zealand’s largest tourism operators, delivering a million tourists around the country each year on its Great Journeys of New Zealand ferry and train services.
“We are delighted to confirm this well-loved service will be running again this summer, allowing thousands of travellers from around the world to once again enjoy this spectacular coastline by train.”
The Coastal Pacific service departs from Christchurch each morning and returns from Picton each afternoon.