Christchurch, the entrance to New Zealand’s South Island, is located on the edge of the Canterbury Plains, which reach to the Southern Alps, and is surrounded by hills and the Pacific Ocean. After the devastating earthquakes of 2010 and 2011, the city has bounced back with a plethora of new attractions, as well as some old favourites.
With its 150-year history and impressive collection of exotic and native plants, Christchurch’s Botanic Gardens are a must-see attraction for visitors. Hagley Park, the city’s largest green space, is awash in cherry blossoms and daffodils in the spring, and its mature introduced trees put on an impressive show in the autumn.
The Avon River flows gently through the city centre, and punting on the river is a must-do experience in Christchurch. Admire the Botanic Gardens or the changing landscape of the city centre on a genuine Edwardian punt as you are carefully led softly along the Avon River.
Visit the Re Start container mall, the transitional Cardboard Cathedral, and some of Christchurch’s numerous pop-up restaurants and bars, art galleries, boutique stores, and open-air markets, all of which contribute to the city’s creative energy.
Take a trip on the Historic Tram for a one-of-a-kind experience that combines history with sightseeing, or go on a cycling tour to learn about Christchurch’s past.
Other popular activities include visiting the International Antarctic Centre, visiting the Orana Wildlife Park, and walking, mountain biking, or driving through the Port Hills for breathtaking views of the city and coast.
Within two hours of Christchurch, you can ski, bungy jump, walk, mountain bike, raft, surf, swim, golf, view whales, dolphins, and seals, visit vineyards and gardens, shop, be amused and impressed, and so much more.