Best Places to Visit in Christchurch

Here is the list of 20 Best Places to Visit in Christchurch

1. Air Force Museum of New Zealand

Air Force Museum of New Zealand

What represents a country’s military aviation better than an Air Force Museum? The Air Force Museum of New Zealand, also known as The Royal New Zealand Air Force Museum (RNZAF), is the former curator of the national artefacts involved in the history of military aviation in New Zealand. It not only displays the collection of antiques but also treasures the different stories of men and women who try to shape the country’s aviation journey.

Timings : 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Entry Fee : Free

2. Christchurch Art Gallery

Christchurch Art Gallery

Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna O Waiwhetu, also called Christchurch Art Gallery, is a public art gallery located in Christchurch. It boasts a vast art collection of local and international artwork. In the language of the Maoris, Te Puna refers to Waipuna, a spring beneath the gallery. Waiwhetu refers to the tiny tributaries that flow in the area to join the Avon River. Waiwhetu also means water in which stars are reflected.

Timings : 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Entry Fee : Free

3. New Regent Street

New Regent Street

Go back in time by taking a short stroll down the pedestrian-only New Regent Street, Christchurch. This quaint old-timey street, lined with colourful shops and cafes, will take you back by at least a few decades. The Spanish Mission style of architecture, with tiled shop fronts, makes it an ideal place for an afternoon coffee or a few drinks in the evening. Adding to the charm of the street is the tram, which slowly trudges past the pastel-coloured stores. Unlike the fast-paced city, New Regent Street is the historical slice of Christchurch.

4. Mona Vale Park

Mona Vale Park

Mona Vale is a public park located in Fendalton, New Zealand. Fendalton lies on the outskirts of Christchurch. Therefore, Mona Vale is often visited by people of Christchurch who want a quick getaway. The park expands over an area of 4 hectares and, along with its homestead, was once recognized as Karewa. At present, the place is perfect for those who want to get closer to nature. So, those looking for a great place to go on a picnic with the family, on a date, or just to catch up with friends away from the city buzz can head to Mona Vale.

Timings : 7 AM - 9 PM; November to February
Entry Fee : Free

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5. Riccarton House

Riccarton House

The Riccarton House is an elegant homestead built back in the Victorian days, surrounded by lush greenery with well-kept lawns and bushes and the River Avon flowing nearby. It also has a restaurant styled in the same manner as the rest of the house for the visitors and those who book the place for various events. A picturesque abode, the Riccarton House is furnished with objects and showpieces from the long-gone era of the nineteenth century, giving the visitors a highly authentic experience to take back home.

Timings : Monday to Friday: 2 PM, Sundays: 11 AM 2 PM
Entry Fee : Adults: NZD 18, Senior (Over 65): NZD 15, Student with ID: NZD 12, School Children: NZD 5, Children under 5: Free, Family (2 Adults + 2 or more children): NZD 40

6. Pegasus Bay Winery

Pegasus Bay Winery

Pegasus winery is a pleasing family-owned and operated Vineyard located in Waipara, New Zealand. It is one of the largest wineries in Canterbury that uniquely practices viticulture. The Vineyard was established in 1985 by the Donaldson family, pioneers of the Canterbury wine industry. It is one of the best places in Canterbury to have boutique winery experiences and indulge in the beauty of nature.

7. Orana Wildlife Park

Orana Wildlife Park

Orana Wildlife Park is New Zealand's only open-range zoo spanning 80 hectares of land. It is located on the outskirts of Christchurch. It opened in 1976 and is owned and operated by the Orana Wildlife Trust, a registered charity. The Trust aims to provide quality recreational opportunities for local people and visitors to Christchurch, conserve endangered native and exotic wildlife, educate visitors (especially children) about environmental and conservation issues, and support research on endangered animals.

Timings : 10:00 AM- 5:00 PM
Entry Fee : 36.50 NZD per adult

8. Port Hills

Port Hills

Port Hills are a superb range of Hills located somewhere in Canterbury, New Zealand. These hills originated from the eroded remnant of the Lyttelton Volcano, which erupted millions of years ago. It is one of the most popular attractions of New Zealand, which not only serves you with scenic beauty but also offers thrilling experiences for trekking and riding through the trails of the Hills. It provides incredible panoramic views while riding and a wonderful path for short walks and little adventures. Port Hills is a splendid natural establishment that runs through Godly Head and ends up dividing the city from the harbour.

9. Sumner Beach

Sumner Beach

A visit to the city of Christchurch would be incomplete without soaking up a little sun and working on that beautiful tan at the gorgeous Sumner Beach, away from the hustle and bustle of Christchurch city. It is the perfect getaway for both – the solo traveller and the family on vacation. It offers a brilliant view of the area and is only 12 kilometres away from central Christchurch. An ideal day trip from the city – one can spend the day having a few drinks with friends and relaxing next to the ocean. Sports enthusiasts can also rent a bicycle and ride along the coast to the beach.

10. Avon River

Avon River

Gently winding past the Botanic Gardens and Hagley Park, the Avon River serves up beautiful views of Christchurch and is an iconic part of the city’s heritage before draining into the sea. Much of Christchurch’s early development occurred on the banks of the Avon, as were many of its first residential areas, and became synonymous with the Kiwi Dream. Unfortunately, the devastation of the earthquakes laid ruin to many of these buildings.

11. Christchurch Botanic Gardens

Christchurch Botanic Gardens

Located at the heart of Christchurch and cementing its reputation as the ‘Garden City’, the Christchurch Botanic Gardens extends over 21 hectares. The Botanic Gardens has many plants endemic to New Zealand and exotic flora. In addition, the Botanic Gardens are home to many gardens, such as the Heritage Rose Garden and the Herb Garden, which contain specific species of flora.

Timings : 7 AM - 9 PM
Entry Fee : Free

12. The International Antarctic Centre

The International Antarctic Centre

Established in 1922, the International Antarctic Centre is one of the unique tourist attractions in New Zealand. Tucked away a quick 15-minute drive from central Christchurch, the International Antarctic Centre is located right across from Christchurch International Airport. The International Antarctic Centre is also vital for awareness and information about the continent.

Timings : 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Entry Fee : Adult - NZD 59; Child - NZD 29

13. Cardboard Cathedral

Cardboard Cathedral

Cardboard Cathedral, also known as the transitional Cathedral, is located in Christchurch, New Zealand. It is one of the most famous cathedrals in New Zealand, known for its spectacular architecture. Cardboard Cathedral was designed by Shigeru Ban of Japan and was opened in 2013 as the replacement for Christchurch Cathedral after the 2011 earthquake.

Timings : 9 AM - 5 PM

14. Hagley Park

Hagley Park

Nestled in the middle of Christchurch, Hagley Park is a perfect place for a relaxing afternoon stroll or a midday picnic with family and friends. It is a sprawling 165-hectare green space - the largest in the city - and is divided into two parts – north and south Hagley. It also houses the beautiful Rose Garden, the Christchurch Botanical gardens and the Lakes Victoria and Albert. Locals frequent this place to relax during the weekend or for sports activities such as walking, running and cycling.

15. Canterbury Earthquake National Memorial

Canterbury Earthquake National Memorial

The Canterbury Earthquake National Memorial is located on Montreal Street, Christchurch. It is a tribute to the victims of the 2011 earthquakes that rocked the city. Even before the actual National Memorial was built, 185 empty white chairs were released as an unofficial memorial service by a local artist called Peter Majendie in February 2012, on the day of the earthquake’s first memorial.

Entry Fee : Free

16. Quake City

Quake City

Quake City is a museum in Christchurch, New Zealand, that tells stories of the Canterbury earthquakes through the medium of photography and videography. It primarily focuses on the events and aftermath of the September 2010 and February 2011 Canterbury earthquakes, emphasizing the combined efforts of the rescue teams, volunteers, emergency services and the Canterbury communities.

Timings : 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Entry Fee : NZD 20

17. Christchurch Gondola

Christchurch Gondola

Opened in 1992, the Christchurch Gondola is a 15 minutes ride that starts at the base at Heathcote Valley and carries passengers to the summit of Mount Cavendish over a kilometre. The cable car allows passengers to take in the sweeping panoramic views of Christchurch, the Southern Alps, and the Canterbury Plains in the distance.

Timings : 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Entry Fee : NZD 30 - Adult; NZD 15 - Child

18. Willowbank Wildlife Reserve

Willowbank Wildlife Reserve

Located right outside central Christchurch, the Willowbank Wildlife Reserve is a conservation and wildlife park that hosts exotic animal species and animals endemic to New Zealand. The Willowbank Wildlife Reserve is known for its kiwi, New Zealand’s famous endangered national bird breeding program. It is also the only facility outside a government-operated conservatory to have a pair of the rare takahe bird on display.

Timings : 9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Entry Fee : Adult - NZD 32.50

19. Canterbury Museum

Canterbury Museum

The Canterbury Museum is the go-to place for anybody who wants to experience the cultural, human and natural history of New Zealand. It is a striking Gothic Revival that opened in 1870 as a single-storeyed building. It now stands as a beautiful foundation after the various additions made to its architecture over the years. With its 2.3 million more artefacts, the museum offers not only historically fascinating exhibits but also multiple galleries, each with a unique timeline, place, and history to show.

Timings : April to September: 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM; October to March: 9:30 AM to 7:00 PM
Entry Fee : Free

20. TranzAlpine Train

TranzAlpine Train

The TranzAlpine train is an inter-city rail service that runs across New Zealand from the East coast to the West coast. This passenger train is known to be one of the world's most scenic and iconic train journeys. The journey starts from Christchurch and ends at Greymouth, across the South Island in New Zealand. It is operated by the Great Journeys of New Zealand, a project under Kiwirail, and covers around 223 kilometres. The TranzAlpine train is one journey visitors should take if they have several places on their list and not enough time.

Timings : 8:00 AM to 2:00 PM
Entry Fee : NZD 119

This post was published by Shalaka Sen

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