With a population of over 350,000, Christchurch is the second-largest city in New Zealand and the international gateway to the beautiful South Island. Christchurch is internationally famed as the “Garden City”, with its many well-established expansive parks and public gardens owing much to the planning and foresight of the city's founding fathers.
The area surrounding Christchurch is a playground, full with endless options for exploring. The varied landscape includes rugged ocean beaches, wide braided rivers, spectacular gorges, fertile plains, and beyond, the majestic Southern Alps.
Centrally located, Hagley Park covers 161 hectares and includes the renowned Christchurch Botanic Gardens. The botanic gardens are home to an impressive array of exotic and local flora and fauna, and provide an every-changing seasonal display, making it a great place to visit any time of year. Hagley Park has running, walking and biking tracks, and is the regular site for outdoor entertainment.
Beautiful Mona Vale is 5.5 hectares of gardens, including roses, camellia, rhododendrons, irises, a restored fernery, and landscaped lawns set beside the gentle Avon river.
Punting on the Avon river provides the chance to sit back and enjoy the beautiful Christchurch Botanic Gardens. You will be expertly punted along the river at a relaxed pace by gentlemen dressed in authentic Edwardian costume
Christchurch Art Gallery is home to an extensive collection of local, national and international art and host to regular national and touring exhibitions
Canterbury Museum is centrally located on the edge of Hagley Park. With displays documenting NZ and Canterbury’s history, Canterbury Museum also hosts regular touring museums and lots of interactive displays for children.
The national museum for the Royal NZ Air Force, the Air Force Museum in Wigram offers a unique insight into the history of aviation in NZ. Entry if free to the displays, flight simulator, and over 30 historic aircraft
NZ’s first casino, the Christchurch casino is open seven days a week for gaming, has a choice of restaurants, cafes and bars, regular live entertainment, and hosts special events.
With real snow and ice, real little blue penguins, Hugglund rides, and interactive displays, the Antarctic Centre is designed to be informative while providing fun for all the family.
NZ’s only open range zoo, Orana Wildlife Park is set in 80 hectares, and is 15 minutes drive from central Christchurch. With more than 400 animals across 70 species the park is both animal and human friendly, with lots of opportunities for up close experiences.
Willowbank provides closeup opportunities to view native NZ animals, including the kiwi, in a natural habitat. A wildlife conservation park, Willowbank also has rare breeds, and places where animals can be petted and fed.
Experience 360º views over the city, Canterbury Plains, Banks Peninsula and the Southern Alps from the Christchurch Gondola. At the top visit the Time Tunnel ride, a dramatic reconstruction of the region’s history, and enjoy a meal in the café.
Take a leisurely trip round the town centre in a restored heritage tram. The friendly and knowledgeable drivers provide commentary on local landmarks and sights, and your day-long ticket enables you to get on and off as often as you please.
If you want any information on any of the above attractions, or anything else in Christchurch or the surrounding area please don’t hesitate to ask the friendly staff at Colombo in the City.