(Māori: Ōtautahi) (Population 341,460)
is the largest city in the
South Island of New Zealand, and the
second-largest urban area. It is one third the way down the South Island's
east coast, just north of Banks Peninsula.
Surrounded by the Cashmere Hills, Christchurch is the gateway to the dynamic
Dubbed the Garden City, Christchurch enjoys a reputation as the most English
of New Zealand's cities thanks to its many gracious parks and buildings, and
the tree-lined Avon River.
At the centre of the city is Cathedral Square, where the Anglican
cathedral, Christ Church is located and surround the square is the "four
avenues" of Christchurch (Bealey Avenue, Fitzgerald Avenue, Moorhouse Avenue
and Deans Avenue is considered the central business district of the city.
The central city also has a number of residential areas, including Inner
City East, Inner City West, Avon Loop, Moa Neighbourhood and Victoria.
Square is a popular destination and hosts attractions such as the speakers'
corner made famous by the Wizard of New Zealand. The central city includes
the pedestrianised Cashel Street as Christchurch's urban mall.
At one end of the mall stands the Bridge Of Remembrance; at the other end
the old location of the amphitheatre known as the Hack Circle.
The Cultural Precinct
provides a backdrop to a vibrant scene of ever-changing arts, cultural, and
heritage attractions within an area of less than one square kilometre. The
majority of the activities are free and a printable map is provided.
Punting on the river is a favourite pastime during summer, with punts for
hire at the old Antigua boatshed and in the central city. The city has a
lively café and cultural scene and is home to the country's largest
community arts centre.
The city's many festivals include the Summer Times Festival, which
incorporates the Festival of Romance and the International Buskers Festival,
the Christchurch Winter Festival in August and Showtime Canterbury in
Christchurch has extensive
beaches within a short drive from the city centre.
Christchurch is the beautiful French influenced town of
on Banks Peninsula. The port town of Lyttleton can be reach either by
the Lyttleton tunnel or over the scenic port Hills.
1.5 hours drive from Christchurch is the
Mt Hutt skifield and the beautiful Southern Alps.
Christchurch is a major hub for
bus, coach and scenic coach services to
Methven (Mt Hutt Skifield),
Queenstown and passenger train services to Picton, Blenheim, Kaikoura, Arthurs Pass and
There are combined bus and ferry travel options from Christchurch to
Paihia (Bay of Islands) and
There is also combined train and bus travel options from Christchurch to
You can a
scenic train and bus travel pass
that allows you to travel by scenic train and bus, coach and scenic coach travel
services, to the Fox or Franz Josef glaciers, Geymouth, Aoraki/Mt Cook
national park, Milford Sound and Queenstown, at you own pace, at any time in any direction.
You can choose your own route, stop when you like, and travel as
many times as you wish within the validity of this flexible pass - hop on
and off where and when you wish.
There are no passenger train or rail services from Christchurch to Mt Cook,
Queenstown, Timaru, Oamaru, Dunedin or Invercargill.
Christchurch is New Zealand's second largest airport catering for
and domestic flights.