Akaroa Harbor is Located around one hour from Christchurch cbd, you can go through past lyttelton harbor and cross over to the southern coast through the Gebbies pass by lake Ellesmere, or follow the road through the low lying farmland which is the way we took, the road takes you past the eastern end of Lake Ellesmere, there are a few places to stop here right beside the Little River rail trail and look at the lake.
From here the road takes you out close to the coastline at Birdlings flat, you need to turn off the main road to access the coast and is only a short drive to the beach, Birdlings flat is at the southern end of Lake Forsyth and the lake empties into the ocean here this area is well worth stopping for.
Back out on the road to Akaroa you follow the lake and the rail trail to the little river community there is a backpackers, shop and fuel here, the road then starts to wind up the hill side to the summit and the hilltop tavern from here you can head down to Akaroa or carry on over the summit to the other side of the peninsula.
The view down into the harbor is stunning from the summit and you wind your way down the other side to the harbor, there are little communities all along the shoreline here right around to the other side of the harbor and finally the Akaroa community here you will find cafes and a few shops.
From Akaroa there are a few more access roads to the rest of the banks peninsula you need a few days to explore the entire peninsula as the is alot to see here and the area is large, Akaroa is the largest harbor but there is a few smaller ones on the northern side of the peninsula the whole area is stunning and some fantastic views to be seen from the high ridge lines that are all through the peninsula.