The Glentui loop track nature trail takes about an hour. Beginning at the Glentui picnic area you walk through native tawhai/beech forest, up over a ridge and back to the picnic area.
A short detour takes you to the Gentui waterfall, a stunning tall waterfall which cascades into a clear pool, then down into the river.You can take a short walk from the picnic area (heading left) to view the waterfall without doing the full loop track.
We spotted a fantail nesting in a tree near the waterfall which was a highlight.To reach the Glentui picnic area and beginning of the loop track and waterfall track you take the Glentui Bush Road, the last 2.5 kilometres are gravel, before arriving at the grass picnic area.
Swimming in the Ashley River is perfect on a hot Canterbury day. Over half of the riverbed is shallow, ideal for little ones to splash and play in, but there are some deep waterholes providing fun for the older kids (and kids at heart) to swim and jump into. You can wander up the river and find your own spot to picnic and swim.Ashley Gorge Holiday Park camping ground and picnic reserve is set beside the Ashley River.We sat in the shade of trees at the river’s edge while our kids played in the river with tall stands of native beech trees in the forest behind.It is an easy 45 minutes drive from Christchurch.