Weather :

Timings : Monday to Friday: 2 PM, Sundays: 11 AM
2 PM

Time Required : 1-2 Hours

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

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Riccarton House, Christchurch Overview

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. 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.

Widely known for its utility as a venue for hosting multiple private events, the Riccarton House offers services for bookings and also a full guided tour of the site. It also has a restaurant styled in the same manner as the rest of the house for the visitors and also those who book the place for various events.

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Entry Fees

Adult- NZD 18
Senior (above 65 years of age) - NZD 15
Student (with ID) - NZD 12 for students with ID
School children - NZD 5
Children below 5 years of age - Free
Family ticket (2 adults + 2 children) - NZD 40

Tours and Exhibits

Guided heritage tours in the house take place for an hour each, at 2:00 PM. from Monday to Friday and at 11:00 AM. and 2:00 PM on Sundays. The tour includes an entire narration of the Deans familial and personal history right from their immigration from Scotland to New Zealand to the building of the house, while the visitors are taken through the 20 plus rooms in the house, including Jane Deans’ 1856 bedroom. A lot of objects and showpieces on display are the Deans’ family items, still kept and maintained in the house for the visitors to see.

Apart from these, there are also educational and private tours that are conducted in the house. For private tours, the groups are pre-booked and the timings are set according to them. The house hosts organizations, clubs, societies, etc. for such tours. Arrangements for candlelit tours are also made along with food and beverage services, on special request.

History

The Riccarton House is known to be home to the first European settlers in the Canterbury plains, the Deans family. John and William Deans had come to New Zealand from all the way from Scotland way back in 1842 and 1840 respectively. Their settlement in the plains in 1843 also brought about the change in the names of the locality and the greenery found around. They were the ones to rename the area Putaringamotu as Riccarton, and the River Otakaro become the River Avon. Both these names have their origins lying in the Deans’ familial relations and history.

Their first home, although, was not the Riccarton House itself. It was the Deans Cottage, which was a humble abode built by the Deans and Samuel Manson. John and William Deans lived in the cottage till their respective deaths. This very cottage was shifted from its original location and was also restored in 1947 by the Christchurch Rotary Club. It was John Deans’ wife, Jane, who took up the building of the various stages of the Riccarton House.

Architecture

The Riccarton House is a two-storeyed building that has Western Red Cedar shingles on the roof and is built upon a timber frame with lapping weatherboards and a concrete foundation to support the establishment. It is surrounded by native forests that harbor Kahikatea trees that are up to almost 600 years old. What’s interesting is that this Victorian and Edwardian style house was built from the very timber growing in the Riccarton Bush, as was the Deans Cottage.

How To Reach Riccarton House

  • The Riccarton House & Bush can be reached both by public and private transportation.
  • There are two highly convenient bus stops near the place which are frequently used by the visitors, one is the Kahu Rd. near Titoki St. which is at a three-minute walk from the house, and the other is Kilmarnock St. near Kahu Rd. which takes about five minutes on foot.
  • There are various bus lines that directly go to these stations. It can be reached in five minutes by walking from the Riccarton Mall on the Riccarton Road.

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