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The Godley Head WWII coastal defence battery sits atop sheer 120 metre-high cliffs. Built in 1939, it is ranked in the top ten New Zealand coastal defence heritage sites.


The Tunnel Track, some buildings and the gun emplacements are closed due to damage from the earthquakes in 2010 and 2011.

Place overview


  • Walking and tramping

In this section

Find things to do Godley Head

About track difficulties

    About this place

    Nature and conservation

    Godley Head is a fantastic place to be for scenery alone. This exposed headland on top of sheer 120 metre-high cliffs can, on a clear day, provide views across the harbour to Banks Peninsula and far down the coastline.

    The vegetation is largely modified grasslands.

    White-flippered penguin/korora are being returned to a small bay just beyond the baches at Boulder Bay.

    The easy graded tracks, great views and fascinating history makes the Godley Head area suitable for small children and family groups.

    Getting there

    From the centre of town, drive to the coastal suburb of Sumner, then head up the Port Hills via Evans Pass Road. Turn left onto the Summit Road to reach Godley Head car park. The Godley Head car park is about a 50 minute drive from Cathedral Square.

    Public transport is available as far as Sumner. There is no access from Lyttelton.

    Know before you go

    • There are toilets and parking at Godley Head and Taylors Mistake.
    • There are steep, unfenced cliffs - keep children under close supervision at all times.
    • Dogs are allowed on a lead. But they can’t go on Taylors Mistake beach in summer months.
    • The area is very exposed. Take appropriate clothing for all weathers. 


    Ōtautahi / Christchurch Visitor Centre
    Phone:   +64 3 379 4082
    Address:   9 Rolleston Ave
    Botanic Gardens
    Christchurch 8013
    Full office details
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