Taieri Gorge Train Trip & Dunedin Grand House Tour
Dunedin, New Zealand
- Combination ticket: Combine a scenic train ride through the countryside along the with a tour of a grand home in the "Edinburgh of New Zealand."
- Taieri Gorge Railway: Ride the rails through 10 tunnels and countless viaducts and bridges, across the Taieri Plains, into the ancient river gorge to Pukerangi.
- Olveston historic home: Tour a Dunedin manse that showcases the turn-of-the-century life of a wealthy merchant family in authentic, well-preserved detail.
About This Dunedin Tour
Ever dream of time travel? Go back to the splendor of a bygone era as you spend the day in Dunedin circa 1910. (Bowlers and hobble skirts optional.) Muster your best Lord and Lady demeanor as you start the day at Dunedin Railway Station, one of New Zealand's most photographed buildings. To see why, just look down at the striking mosaic floor fashioned from 750,000 Minton tiles.
Once aboard the Taieri Gorge train, get ready for one gasp-worthy sight after another. It's hard to decide what's more impressive: the spectacular scenery or the feats of railway engineering. You'll pass hillsides where early settlers raised sheep and miners struck gold. Hear nuggets of their stories as the locomotive chugs along to Pukerangi, Maori for "Hills of Heaven." There you'll have the chance to stretch your legs and take photos before returning to Dunedin for a tour of Olveston, an authentic time capsule of Edwardian life.
Former home of David Theomin and his family, this stately 35-room home, brimming with fine art, furniture, and artifacts from around the world, is a setting straight out of Upstairs, Downstairs. If you're more of a car enthusiast than history buff, check out the 1921 Fiat 510 Tourer on display. The family car was found axle-deep in water in an old shed outside Dunedin, where it hadn't been moved in over 33 years. Now buffed and tuned to its original six-cylinder glory, it exemplifies Mr. Theomin's appreciation of the finer things in life.
Here comes the gingerbread man
Of all the buildings in Dunedin, none better represents the city's wealthy heritage than the Dunedin Train Station. A bit ostentatious or an architectural masterpiece? Whatever you think, you can't deny its grandeur. Architect George Troup got a little carried away with the Flemish Renaissance style – and threw in some Classical and Neo-Gothic elements. With an Italianate clock tower and Gothic spire, plus a lavish use of over-the-top decoration, the station earned the nickname "Gingerbread George."
Please exit the gangway area or go to the end of the tender pier drop-off to meet your guide. Look for our displayed logo sign. Staying at a hotel? Be sure to advise the GoBe Crew so we can meet you in the lobby.
Larger vehicles (ie: motor coaches) are not air-conditioned. The train is not air-conditioned. There are four steep steps up into carriages. There is no elevator access to Olveston House's upper stories. Travelers in wheelchairs may view a DVD-tour of those floors. Photography is not permitted inside Olveston.
Must be able to walk approximately 0.25 mile over varying terrain with inclines, 25 narrow steps at the Olveston House and other undulating surfaces. Due to nature of this tour, not recommended for travelers with walkers and wheelchairs.
Cultural, Family Friendly, Full Day, Scenic
Tour Participation Requirements
This experience is rated moderate. Full participation may require extended periods of walking over even and uneven surfaces, steep terrain and/or water activity in a slight current. There may be steps, inclines, cobblestone surfaces, and extended periods of standing. Participants with physical limitations should take this into account.
Suitable for all ages.
Full refunds issued for cancellations made 7 full days prior to the date and time of requested services. Cancellations made within the 7-day and 72-hour window will receive a 50% refund of purchase total. Purchases are non-refundable inside of 72 hours.
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