Sign of the Takahe

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The Sign of the Takahe is an historic building, planned by Harry H.G. Ell in 1918.

Walking around in side the castle is like steeping back in time to King Arthur and the round table, watch out for his knights. If you are looking for the best view of Christchurch the sign of the Takahe is the place to be.

Quick Facts about this walk

  • Location: South Island NZ
  • Distance: 0.20 kms
  • Time needed: 1 Hour
  • Difficulty: Very Easy
  • Wheelchair Access: No
  • Route: Round Trip
  • Elevation: 197m
  • Wet Feet: No
  • Toilets: Yes
  • Dogs: No
  • Mobile Coverage: Yes
  • Last Updated: November, 2019

We’ve partnered with Macpac outdoor walking & hiking gear to bring you the very best products designed exclusively for our New Zealand climate. They’ll ship for FREE within NZ on orders over $100 (if under $100 it’s only $5). Worldwide international shipping is available except to the USA. Bulky orders will be $20.

Summary points about this walk

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Points of interest along the walk​

Point 1: Takahe

Situated on Cracroft Reserve, the Sign of the Takahe is an historic building, planned by Harry H.G. Ell in 1918. The buildings, envisaged as a series of staging points along an unbroken route to the Akaroa Summit, include the Victoria Park stone rotunda, the Sign of the Kiwi, the Sign of the Bellbird 1914 and the Sign of the Packhorse 1916, a stone hut lying on Crown land to the south of Mt. Bradley.
Harry Ell started his battle to create a unique hillside chain of buildings and reserves in 1908, but it was not until the first stone was laid in what was to become known as The Sign of the Takahe.
Originally intended to be a Dickensian inn, Ell eventually settled on a Gothic/Tudor baronial style after extensive research in the UK.
The building was not completed to its present state until 1948.
A masterpiece of improvisation and economic necessity, materials and tools were salvaged and scrounged from all over Canterbury, the stone was quarried from various sites along the Summit Road, some of the wood came from local sources of kauri and totara, and perhaps the best example, the huge kauri beams which span the lounge were salvaged from a former bridge across the Hurunui River

Point 2: Takahe Look Out

Take a walk out to the point, as you can see the view of Christchurch is fantastic.
On a clear day there is no better place to sit in the warm sun and enjoy the view, take a flat white with you.
You could try the restaurant for lunch or take a pick nick lunch with you and walk out to the point.
After visiting Takahe we drove up the road another five minutes to Victoria Park for another good walk up to the summit.

What sort of walking and hiking gear will you need

We’ve partnered with Macpac outdoor walking & hiking gear to bring you the very best products designed exclusively for our New Zealand climate. They’ll ship for FREE within NZ on orders over $100 (if under $100 it’s only $5). Worldwide international shipping is available except to the USA. Bulky orders will be $20.

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