Temuka, South Canterbury New Zealand

Temuka is situated in South Canterbury on the main coastal road between Christchurch and Dunedin.

Our Motel Complex is situated:

  • 209km North of Dunedin
  • 152km South of Christchurch
  • 203km East of Aoraki/Mt Cook
  • 104km to Lake Tekapo
  • 96km North of Oamaru
  • 12km North of Timaru
  • Temuka is the central point between Christchurch and Dunedin, and offers a selection of attractions near Temuka and sporting venues, including a popular 18-hole golf course, local swimming pool, Levels International Motor Raceway and great rivers for Salmon and Trout Fishing.
  • Temuka is only 20 minutes from Timaru and Caroline Bay and only 1 hour from the lakes and ski fields.
  • Temuka township is a popular relaxation stop with visitors and South Canterbury locals alike, with its close proximity to several rivers providing plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation and keen salmon and trout fisherman. Every Monday the town itself is host to the colourful “wild west” spectacle of one of New Zealand’s biggest and most historic livestock sales.

Holidaymakers flock to Temuka each summer as it is within easy distance to a host of attractions – from one of New Zealand’s best and prettiest golf courses to some of the finest trout and salmon fishing in the world. Temuka has a strong Maori heritage. It is centred around the historic Arowhenua Marae just south of the town.

Travelling Times: New Zealand is not as small as you think. Click here to check out NZ travelling distances and you will get an idea of how long it takes to get from place to place.

Clare is a enthusiastic Photographer and only too willing and helpful to give advise on where to go and what to see. Check out our Facebook Page – Phoenix Motels for some spectacular photography of our region and destinations to visit.

Phoenix Motel

215 King St, Temuka,
New Zealand

Phone: +64 3 615 9680
Fax: +64 3 615 9685
Email: info@phoenixmotels.co.nz
Website: www.phoenixmotels.co.nz
Reservation: 0800 000 787


Attractions Near Temuka


Timaru is the largest urban area in South Canterbury. The city’s most popular holiday spot is Caroline Bay. There are plenty of recreational facilities catering for tennis, golf, bowls, yachting. Swimming at the new Aquatic Centre. Enjoy one of the many scenic walks including the Botanic Gardens, or take a stroll around the Trevor Griffiths Rose Garden on Caroline Bay. If it is culture you are after, visit the Aigantighe Art Gallery or the South Canterbury Museum and go back in time in the southern hemisphere’s last remaining Landing Service Building.

The Richard Pearse Legend

The Temuka and inland Waitohi areas were once home to pioneer aviator and inventor Richard Pearse, who locals know as the man who flew before the Wright Brothers early in 1903.

As debate about this fascinating piece of local history continues, make up your own mind with a stop at the monument and replica marking the location of the self-powered flight of Pearse’s plane (only a few minutes drive from Temuka township).

Iconic Temuka Pottery and cafe

While not all New Zealanders have visited Temuka, most will have a little piece of the town in their kitchens! The township of Temuka has been home to the famous Temuka Pottery since 1930. In fact Temuka derives its name from the Maori “Te umu kaha”, translated as “the fierce oven”, an apt description for the heart of a pottery kiln! Why not stop at the Temuka Pottery Shop situated on theSH 1 bypass, open 7 days, grab yourself a coffee and have a look around.

The shop is operated by 100% Homemade Café. www.temukapottery.co.nz

Pleasant point museum and railway

Only 10 minutes from Temuka. The world’s only Model T Ford railcar runs daily during the summer. Steam Train AB 699 is fully operational and runs along the two kilometres of railway track. “Yesterdays history preserved for tomorrow.” Well worth a visit. And while in Pleasant Point go across the road to Legends Café, the original home of the famous delicious Denheath Custard Square.

Ski Areas

The town is a convenient base for winter skiers, and there are several ski areas within 2 hour’s drive including Mt Dobson, Fox Peak, Mt Hutt, Ohau and Tekapo.

Other nearby attractions

Peel Forest – A heritage, sub-tropical rainforest; rich and diverse. Covering an area of 700 hectares. Totora and matai grow strong in the forest and the song of the bellbird/korimako and grey warbler/riroriro light up woods to make Peel Forest a symbolic and significant place. Bush walks for all levels of fitness, from 10 minutes to whatever you desire! www.peelforest.co.nz

Kakahu Bush – A 365-hectare protected area, which has a diverse range of geological, botanical and historical features.

Barkers – 10-minute drive to Geraldine – world class jams, chutneys, syrups and condiments.


Take a drive through the picturesque town of Geraldine to Mesopotamia – “ the land between two rivers” – true middle earth. Breathtaking. Surrounded by the majestic Two Thumbs mountain range of the Southern Alps and the huge braided Rangitata River. The surrounding area provided the backdrop to many scenes from ‘ The Lord of the Rings.’