- population over 380,000
- largest city in the South Island
- important educational centre, with two universities and many other educational institutions
- spacious, green city, with lots of parks and gardens
- Christchurch’s central city is currently being renewed following the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011. The people of Christchurch have an exciting plan to build an environmentally friendly 21st century city.
- situated between the ski fields of the Southern Alps and the beaches of the South Pacific
- gateway to the South Island
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Things to do in Christchurch
Christchurch offers you
- an evolving city scene
- activities to suit all tastes from beaches to bowling, farmers’ markets to festivals and shopping to surfing
- a busy suburban nightlife close to student homestays
- festivals, shows and concerts
- homestay families ready to give students an unforgettable South Island welcome.
- International Antarctic Centre
- Adrenalin Forest
- Canterbury Museum
- a range of sports facilities including swimming pools, ice-skating and climbing
- Willowbank and Orana Wildlife Parks
- the funky “container mall” ReStart City Retail Centre
For more ideas on what to do in Christchurch including where to eat and nightlife options:
- see Lonely Planet’s Christchurch tips
- download the (PDF) of the upcoming edition of their New Zealand guidebook. It’s free and up-to-date. It was researched in December 2011.
- visit the Pop Up City Christchurch website. Pop Up City features and reviews Christchurch’s new restaurants, cafés, bars and nightclubs as they open. They also have a useful map showing where some of these new attractions are located.
What’s on in Christchurch?
Find out here.
Explore the South Island….
We can help you organize trips around the South Island. We offer great day and weekend tours with our local guides. Christchurch is the gateway to the South Island and the ideal starting point for trips to….
Canterbury favourites (day trips)
- Hanmer hot pools
- the French settlement of Akaroa, home to the rare Hector’s dolphin
- trekking at Banks Peninsula
- wine tours
South island favourites (weekend trips or longer)
- Kaikoura for whale watching, seal encounters and scenic coastal walks
- Queenstown – the adventure capital of New Zealand
- Lake Tekapo
- Dunedin, home to the little blue and yellow-eyed penguins, the mighty albatross and a lively music scene. (Try to see some live music while you are there.)
- skiing and snowboarding trips
- the trans-alpine trip to the West Coast
- stunning national parks such as Abel Tasman, Milford Sound, Fjiordland, Fox and Frans Josef Glaciers and the Caitlins
- Malborough Wine Region