Car Hire in Greymouth, New Zealand

The mineral-rich kingdom of Moria may be the product of JRR Tolkien's unfettered imagination, but mining for precious metals and stones in New Zealand is a fact; gold, jade and coal were once abundant at the foot of the Southern Alps. At the centre of it all is Greymouth, in this age better known as the western terminus of State Highway 7 and the TranzAlpine Express, a rail service ferrying passengers from Christchurch on the Pacific coast to Greymouth on the Tasman Sea.

Greymouth’s location in this mineral-rich stretch of New Zealand makes it a transport hub for all types of passengers. Travellers who want to explore the region by car rental in Greymouth can book online with global car rental companies Avis, Budget, Hertz, Europcar and Thrifty hire cars; and compare rates to obtain the best Greymouth car hire deal. They can then drive to southern routes not covered by the rail on a one-way car rental.

The Shanty Town and the Mines by Car Hire

Drive your Greymouth car rental to Shanty Town to get a more up close and personal look at its glittered past replicated with all the trappings of the mining trade. You can watch the dwarves of Moria at work in The Hobbit to see how mining is done, or you can hike up to the labyrinthine gold mines reconstructed at Charleston one hour north. Close by, the historic Brunner Coal Mine Site is just 10 minutes to the east on your car rental in Greymouth.

But to really scratch the surface, you have to literally taste the drinking culture attendant to such a physically rigorous trade. The newly refurbished Monteith Brewery offers a cheap drinking tour bubbling with history and newly crafted ales.

After a hard day’s work, stroll on the ocean-facing walkway at Point Elizabeth and catch a serene sunset. Then plan for an action-packed pub crawl starting at Mackay Street.

The TranzAlpine Express and One-Way Car Rental in Greymouth

The TranzAlpine Train has earned a reputation as one of legendary train rides in the world because it brings you to an unfolding sequence of beech forests and tussock lands, the snow-capped peaks of Southern Alps, river gorges and valleys, and the lush Canterbury Plains. The return journey from Greymouth to Christchurch is 223 kilometres long and usually completed in under six hours.

A one-way Greymouth car hire to Christchurch roughly parallels the train route and brings you to Arthur’s Pass National Park and the stunning Waimakariri River gorge. Before you reach the rolling open space of Canterbury Plains, you are first left with mouth open at the sight of Mount Cook’s – and the Southern Alps – prodigious heights.

If you wish to linger in the winter wonderland of the west coast, drive a one-way car rental in Greymouth, New Zealand to Queenstown via Fox Glacier in the shadow of the formidable peak. Fox Glacier is about two and a half hours out of Greymouth and the traditional stop for motorists on the way to Queenstown, the adventure capital of the world. In between is Lake Wanaka of the Mission Impossible fame, a gem of a lake with an unmodified shoreline the color of deep sapphire.