Burkes Pass

Burkes Pass

Information Centre
  • St Patricks Church

Travel Information (approximate times)

Tekapo: 20m
Queenstown: 4h 20m
Christchurch: 2h
Geraldine: 50m
Timaru: 1h 5m

Discover South Canterbury

Burkes Pass

The historic village of Burkes Pass is located on SH8 between Fairlie and Lake Tekapo, on the ‘pass’ or route discovered by Europeans in 1855 leading to vast inland plains to graze their sheep.

Surrounded by farmland and rolling hill country, you can still feel and experience the history today, at St Patrick’s Church, built by the early pioneers in 1872 and thought to be the oldest union church in New Zealand on its original site. Open daily to visitors, The Burkes Pass Heritage Trust owns this treasure of a building also available for small weddings. 

Wander the many heritage walks and musterer’s (shepherd) huts, visit Burkes Pass cemetery steeped in history of long departed settlers, mountaineers and travelers in this magnificent alpine setting in the Mackenzie Country of South Canterbury.

A totally unexpected experience described in Lonely Planet as a ‘must see’ is Three Creeks, where retro collectables, artwork, furniture, great coffee and conversation can be found in a general store surrounded by classic cars, a 1950’s service station and memorabilia.

Discover Burkes Pass

Pause on your journey here, glimpse the rich history that helped shape the region. Enjoy the many short walks amidst spectacular alpine scenery, and the wonderful weirdness of Three Creeks.

Burkes Pass Heritage Trust St. Patrick’s Church

Established in 2000, a charitable trust dedicated to promote the history and environment of Burkes Pass township and surrounding area. A Category 1 Heritage New Zealand building. the oldest union church in New Zealand on its original site. Available for weddings and other occasions. Open most days – look for the open sign. Maintained by Burkes Pass Heritage Trust.

Find out more
Three Creeks

Housed in a General Store, 1950s Service Station, Blacksmith Shop and Trading Store, the shops at Three Creeks provide a wealth of art works, crafts, giftware, retro collectibles, wooden furniture, and much more.

Find out more

Burkes Pass Businesses

A rural community of farming and support businesses thrive here alongside the many tourism activities in the Mackenzie District.

Featured Events

So much to see and do here. Find out What’s On or add your own South Canterbury event.