Location and

Getting here

We want to share an experience.

  • Have debit and credit cards with your money rather than bringing cash.
  • American dollars are worthless in New Zealand, so get it changed at the airport. 

Destination is New Zealand

Check flights on kayak.com

Recently a guest searched for flights from Canada and had a quote for Return Toronto – Christchurch CAD$4,000, – USD $2900

I suggest he check Kayak.com  

Kayak.com. Return Toronto – CHC  CAD$2133 – USD$1567. 

He chose VHR to CHC for $1817 – US$1334

We will pick him up from christchurch

You will fly into Auckland or Christchurch, New Zealand, the final destination is Hokitika. Or to save you some money, Father Graham can pick you up in Christchurch for a fuel surcharge, only if Father Graham offers this option.
Then you might spend your first night in Christchurch with a spectacular drive to the  Retreat over two mountain ranges.
Father Graham will be a the airport to pick you up

 Air New Zealand now have 5 classes and are soon to have 7 flight classes. 
*only Air New Zealand have the lie flat bed in economy/coach

Airport transfer

Our shuttle bus will collect you from the airport. And your experience starts as soon as you board the shuttle chariot to go to the retreat. The Retreat is 110 kilometors away so finding you’re own way is difficult, because of its remote location and only one bus daily .
Father Graham will greet you at the airport and travel with you in the back of the bus, to get to know him before you get to the Retreat, with a 70 minute drive over a small mountain range. This is a personal service so we get to know we get to know each other. 



You can stay up to three months on a tourist visa, but if you decide to stay longer, you can apply for an extension for another three months and up to twelve months. 

*Only Air New Zealand offers a lie flat bed or Bunk beds in economy (Coach). 



Flight options

We suggest that you only fly Air New Zealand*, We know from experience that Air New Zealand offers the best service in all classes of travel. I have flown the Pacific route at least 30 times, and as this is an experience, you need to arrive refreshed by having a good sleep on the aircraft on that 10- 29  hours of flying and layovers.  

Also Air New Zealand have direct flights from many ports around the world that saves time and energy. Most North American major airports including New York City . Also they have several options for classes that other airlines dont. 

Mike and I have flown this route at least 30 times and we suggest selecting Premium Economy for comfort space and food and attention, or economy sky couch and have lie flat bed. 

There is Business and Premium Economy and Economy sky couch or Basic economy . We have enjoyed all these classes, but the more money you pay, the better sleep and service you will get.

Air New Zealand also fly from New York City direct to Auckland. On this flight you really need that sky couch. To have a lie flat bed in economy for an estimated 17 hour direct flight, you need a bed to yourself because an 18 hour flight is exhausting, and by the time you get here you will miss out on the first two days because you want to sleep.

In September 2024 there is another option with Air new Zealand and thats a bunk bed in economy


Below I have explained the various options. As it’s not as simple as getting the cheapest airfare and regretting it when your on the aircraft on a long haul flight.

They have Economy. Economy sky couch, Premium economy and Business class and Business plus.

Then if you really want to have some fun before the flight and on layovers, join their Koru club. Who doesn’t want to be away from thousands of people in a small quiet lounge with load of fabulous food and bathrooms with showers. 

Below I dont show you economy (Coach) as that don’t need any explanation. 

If you cant afford to upgrade,  get an Exit row seat and come a day earlier and join the Koru club for lounge access.




Bunk beds in economy

Air New Zealand From September 2024

Premium Economy check-in

Experience a check in counter separate to the usual check-in counters, with an exclusive  experience.  



There is Business class for those that want a lie flat bed { better than a sky couch} and super service

Premium Economy

Forward of economy with a cabin of about 30 people and two attendants. Ample room in front of you to stretch out with more recline. Also better food like they have in business class.  Start with hot towels and a drink before aircraft departs the gate.  And you wont have to que up for the bathroom. Or wait for a flight attendant for a free drinks . 

Our first guest at the retreat has booked in this class.

Economy Sky couch

This is designed for two people. However, it can be also for one person.

If one person purchases two and a half seats and you get 3 seats. You also get the added bonus of the sky couch.

The  3 seats convert to a lie flat bed. You will get a mattress and two pillows and a quilt. . Its worth every dollar to have that lie flat bed and sleep on a long distance flight. 

It is not a full length bed but its a bed.