Central to the identity of Christchurch, the Avon River originates in the suburb of Avonhead and snakes its way through Christchurch’s CBD. The Otakaru, the river’s original Maori name, eventually flows out into the Pacific Ocean. Skirting Christchurch, the Avon river is popular amongst locals and tourists for its many fishing and punting opportunities. The earthquakes in February and June of 2011 rocked Christchurch and the areas surrounding the river were adversely affected and has been part of an extensive restoration project since.
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 out 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. The devastation of the earthquakes laid ruin to many of these buildings.
The Avon River Trail is an 11 km shared-use trail that travels the length of the Avon River. A great option for people looking to see the river and Christchurch during a jog or a walk. A mix of gravel trails, shingle, and tarred asphalt road, this 11 km track begins at Cambridge Village Green and finishes on Pages Road.