Mount John Summit Experience reopening welcome news for Takapō

From today, New Zealanders will have another reason to visit Takapō, with the reopening of Dark Sky Project’s popular Mount John Summit Experience.

The experience was one of the attractions to be paused in March due to the significant impacts of Covid-19, including the closure of international borders.

Ngāi Tahu Holdings Chief Executive Mike Pohio says Ngāi Tahu Tourism has been working with its joint venture partners at Dark Sky Project (formerly Earth and Sky) to reopen the experience as quickly as possible.

“We have said all along we are committed to tourism in Aotearoa and this reopening is another step in the right direction for the industry. I want to acknowledge our kaimahi and the Takapō community for their understanding as we have worked to reach this point.”

The Mount John Summit Experience, at the University of Canterbury Mount John Observatory, will be operating in a slightly reduced capacity of five nights a week, with three tours operating a night.

Earth and Sky Founding Director Graeme Murray says this will be welcome news.

“Many businesses in Takapō are reliant on tourism, so it’s been a tough time for the region these past six months. We hope kiwis will jump at the chance to come and enjoy this unique stargazing experience in this stunning part of the country.”

Dark Sky Project’s Mount John Summit Experience reopens from Thursday, 29 October. Tours will initially be running three times a night from Thursday to Monday at a reopening special rate of $125 per person through until 10 December. The tours will only be operating in English for the time being.

For more information and to book, visit