M) Antarctic Port Sled Dog Statue
If you cross the road diagonally you will come to the bronze sled dog statue that celebrates 250 years of Lyttelton's association with the Antarctic.
Seafaring in Lyttelton spans centuries since Maori first arrived. Later, Captain James Cook voyaged to Antarctica in 1770 after naming Banks’ ‘Island’ (Peninsula) after his biologist Sir Joseph Banks. Whaler Benjamin Morell is the first recorded Antarctican to visit Lyttelton in 1830. Several whaling ships followed and by the 1840s many had stayed.
Lyttelton became a haven for Antarctic exploration in the heroic era, which continued through International Geophysical Year (IGY) in the 1950s.
Modern ships visiting Port are low key. Keep an eye out for Araon (Korea), Italica (Italy), Nathaniel B Palmer (USA), Spirit of Enderby (NZ) or Sir Hubert Wilkes (Australia). Sometimes as you stand beside the port on the West side, you can see some of the heavy snow equipment waiting to be loaded on board the research ships
If you look out beyond the harbour, you can see the island (Quail Island/ Ōtamahua) where the animals used during Antarctic expeditions were kept and quarantined.
Download Lyttelton Harbour Antarctic Port Brochure for more information.