The turquoise-colored lake set among a mountain backdrop will wow you by day, but when the sun sets, the stars come out and give you another reason to love Lake Tekapo.
Lake Tekapo is part of a UNESCO Dark Sky Reserve, making it a fabulous spot for stargazing, so be sure to save time to visit the Mount John Observatory. Residents work to reduce light pollution and the astronomical rewards are clear. The high-powered telescopes can provide a view of the sky like you’ve never seen before. If the timing is right, Mount John Observatory is also a great place to see the Southern Lights, the southern hemisphere’s version of the Northern Lights, which is best seen from April through September.
Tekapo Springs can warm you up after a chilly night of stargazing. With hot pools and spas, it’s all about relaxing, unless you are traveling with kids. Then it’s about the water slide, skating rink, tube park or a combination of them all. The Church of the Good Shepard is also a popular stopping point for visitors and photography buffs.
Christchurch International Airport is about a three-hour drive away. Mt Cook is only a short distance from Lake Tekapo, making combining the two into your busy itinerary an easier possibility. With just more than 300 residents, Lake Tekapo’s population can double overnight due to guest arrivals.