Due to Level 4 lockdown restrictions all Omega branches will be closed for 4 weeks from 26th March. If you need advice re returning a car over the next 4 weeks please email us at rent-car@omegarentals.com or call us on 0800 52 52 10. Due to high call volumes there may be a delay in answering, but we will reply to all emails received.

Willowbank Wildlife Reserve and Ko Tane Maori Experience

Willowbank Wildlife Reserve is a wildlife sanctuary in Christchurch, founded by the Willis family over 4 decades ago.

keys on Omega keytag smlKeytag Bonus:  Receive a 10% discount off entry to Willowbank Wildlife Reserve OR a 10% discount off Guided Kiwi Tour, Ko Tāne Māori Experience and HāngĪ Dinner. Available for direct bookings only (not online) on presentation of your Omega Keytag and cannot be used in conjunction with any other discounts or special offers. Advance booking for Ko Tāne Māori Experience is essential.

Willowbank Wildlife Reserve

A healthy tuatara rests on a rock, surrounded by greenery - Image Source: Willowbank Wildlife Reserve

Willowbank aims to conserve endangered species and to educate customers about New Zealand wildlife. The reserve also strives to provide entertainment for customers by offering various activities. A visit to Willowbank Reserve is a fun way to learn all about NZ native history, culture and wildlife. The reserve offers a combination of natural and cultural attractions that the whole family can enjoy.

Ko Tane is only place in the South Island where you can experience Maori culture in a natural setting.

Experience NZ at Willowbank

A NZ wood pigeon sits atop a Willowbank Wildlife welcome sign - Image Source: Willowbank Wildlife Reserve

 

Natural and Cultural Attractions at Willowbank:

Willowbank is one of the best places to see wildlife in Christchurch. The reserve is home to a wide array of rare and endangered species, from native New Zealand birds to exotic zoo creatures. If you’ve ever wanted to see a Kiwi – New Zealand’s adorable, feathered national icon – up close, you can visit the Willowbank Christchurch nocturnal house. From 10:30 a.m each day, you’ll be 100% guaranteed to spot this beautiful native bird, and there’ll be no glass to hinder your view! 

Kiwi at Willowbank Christchurch

A kiwi, one of New Zealand’s iconic native birds, forages for food - Image Source: Willowbank Wildlife Reserve

You can learn more about the New Zealand native wildlife on a guided tour at 4.30pm daily. As the one of the top animal reserves Christchurch has to offer, Willowbank’s fun and informative tours are sure to be a highlight of your visit. As you walk through the natural setting, your tour guide will offer insight about New Zealand’s unique wildlife.

Willowbank is the perfect place for kids and families. In fact, Willowbank Wildlife Reserve regularly hosts children’s birthday parties (for groups of 5 or more). When you visit the Willowbank animal reserve in Christchurch, you can choose from a range of fun encounters to add to your experience.

 Kea at Wildlife Reserve Christchurch

A young girl meets a friendly kea at the Willowbank Reserve - Image Source: Willowbank Wildlife Reserve    

The Lemur Encounter is a popular attraction amongst kids and adults alike. It’s your chance to get up close to these amazing animals as you enter their enclosure and help the keeper feed the lemurs their lunch. You will learn lots about the lemurs natural habitat and behaviour whilst interacting and taking photos with these special primates. 

Lemur encounter Willowbank

A child participating in the Junior Keeper program helps to care for a lemur - Image Source: Willowbank Wildlife Reserve

If you have kids between the ages of 10-14, you’ll want to check out the Junior Keeper program. This unique program offers a behind the scenes look into the life of a keeper. Kids get the chance to work alongside a keeper by helping with feeding and cleaning duties. The kids are sure to love this hands-on experience. Bookings are essential for Junior Keeper as it only operates during school holdays. Donkey rides are also available for young children on weekends and school holidays, from 11.am to 3 p.m. 

To complete the Willowbank wildlife experience, don’t forget to visit the cafe and bar. Surrounded by  wildlife, you’ll enjoy excellent service and indulge in delicious NZ food and wine. The restaurant is also available for group functions in the evenings.

 

Ko Tane Maori Experience

Willowbank has your opportunity to have a Hangi in Christchurch with the Ko Tane experience. Ko Tane gives visitors an authentic look into New Zealand’s Maori heritage. This interactive cultural experience begins with a traditional Māori pōwhiri or welcome. 

 Ko Tane Maori Experience

An authentic, traditional poi dance at the Ko Tane Maori Village experience - Image Source: Willowbank Wildlife Reserve

Then you’ll continue into the Maori village where you’ll learn all about the traditions of the Maori hunter. This is followed by a 45-minute Kapahaka performance, where you’ll get the opportunity to go on stage to learn a poi dance or the Haka. At the end of your Ko Tane experience, you will be enjoy a four-course dinner with hangi dinner cooked mains. A visit to Ko Tane is simply must do for anyone interested in Maori culture and the only experience of this kind in the South Island! 

Maori Experience Christchurch

Kapa Haka at Ko Tane Maori Village - Image Source: Willowbank Wildlife Reserve

Willowbank Wildlife Reserve is open every day from 9:30am-5:00pm (except Christmas Day). For those in need of transport, the reserve is only 10 minutes away from Omega Rentals in Christchurch. Hire a car and book a trip to Willowbank for an unforgettable New Zealand Wildlife experience.


keys on Omega keytag smlKeytag Bonus:  Receive a 10% discount off entry to Willowbank Wildlife Reserve OR a 10% discount off Guided Kiwi Tour, Ko Tāne Māori Experience and HāngĪ Dinner. Available for direct bookings only (not online) on presentation of your Omega Keytag and cannot be used in conjunction with any other discounts or special offers. Advance booking for Ko Tāne Māori Experience is essential.