Christchurch “The Garden City”
Christchurch is known for its beautiful parks, old stone buildings and the tranquil Avon River. Its surrounding landscape offers a wide array of action packed activities including surfing, snow sports, tramping and sky diving.
Top attractions in Christchurch
The Christchurch Gondola
Soar up the Port Hills in a Gondola and step into the time travel tunnel, which takes you back to the days where the Port Hills were explosive and alive with molten magma. Through the use of life size dioramas you can encounter what life was like for the early Polynesian and European voyagers when they took their first steps onto New Zealand soil.
Take a trip to the Botanic Gardens and experience for yourself why Christchurch is called the “The Garden City”. You can take a guided tour of the Gardens or ride in a punt boat down the Avon River.
One of the unique features of the city after the earthquakes, is the creation of a shopping centre using shipping containers. Christchurch’s Re: START is a must see and has become a bustling shopping area with a creative funky vibe.
Fine dining can be found on Christchurch’s Victoria Street. The best Asian cuisine is found at Victoria Street’s King Snake and for European food make a visit to Saggio Di Vino. Victoria Street also offers many other delicious dining options. After a day trip to the Ferrymead Heritage Park, settle in for dinner at Christchurch’s renowned Tony’s Teppanyaki restaurant. Christchurch is also known for its buzzing café culture. While visiting, take a coffee break at Under the Red Verandah. The 100 year old original site of this quirky café has been revamped after it was demolished in the 2011 earthquake. It’s original red verandah and windows were rescued and are used in the new design of this café.
Arts & Culture
Experience what the harrowing 2011 earthquake felt like at The Canterbury Museum. Just a stroll from the Botanic Gardens, The Canterbury Museum tells stories of Canterbury’s heritage, and offers many other exciting and interactive exhibitions. With its glistening glass architecture the Christchurch Art Gallery is one of the finest in New Zealand with over 6000 works of art collected since its foundation in 1932.
Christchurch has a vibrant clubbing scene. Mashina lounge boasts cutting edge lighting and is a bar that even well- seasoned clubbers will be highly satisfied with. If you are conscious about the environment, visit Revival bar. It is constructed out of shipping containers with recycled materials used for interior décor, design and furniture. Some other good bars to visit are Tequila Mockingbird and Smash Palace.
When you arrive at the airport, head over the road to Christchurch’s Antarctic Centre for an exhilarating experience. Feel the icy cold temperatures of an Antarctic storm or board a fun filled ride in a Hagglund. Want to take some time out to relax? Make a trip to Hamner Springs Hot Pools and stay the night, kick starting your morning with some adrenalin pumping activities. You can take a thrill seeking ride on a jet boat or Bungee jump off the historic 135 year old bridge plummeting 35 metres towards the rushing river below.
By Maria Wojtowicz