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Ōtautahi (Māori)
—  Metropolitan Area  —
Christchurch viewed from the Port Hills.
Nickname(s): The Garden City
Coordinates: 43°31′48″S 172°37′13″E / 43.53°S 172.62028°E / -43.53; 172.62028
Country  New Zealand
Island South Island
Region Canterbury
Territorial authority Christchurch City
Settled by the UK 1848
 - Mayor Bob Parker
 - Territorial 1,426 km2 (550.6 sq mi)
 - Urban 452 km2 (174.5 sq mi)
Highest elevation 920 m (3,018 ft)
Lowest elevation 0 m (0 ft)
Population (June 2009 estimate)[1]
 - Territorial 372,600
 Density 261.3/km2 (676.7/sq mi)
 Urban 386,100
 - Urban Density 854.2/km2 (2,212.4/sq mi)
Time zone NZST (UTC+12)
 - Summer (DST) NZDT (UTC+13)
Area code(s) 03
Local iwi Ngāi Tahu, Ngāti Mamoe
Space view of Christchurch and surrounding areas.

Christchurch (Māori: Ōtautahi) is the largest city in the South Island of New Zealand, and the country's second-largest urban area. It is three sevenths the way down the South Island's east coast, just north of Banks Peninsula which itself, since 2006, lies within the formal limits of Christchurch.

The city was named by the Canterbury Association, which settled the surrounding province of Canterbury. The name of Christchurch was agreed on at the first meeting of the association on 27 March 1848. It was suggested by John Robert Godley, who had attended Christ Church, Oxford. Some early writers called the town Christ Church, but it was recorded as Christchurch in the minutes of the management committee of the association.[2] Christchurch became a city by Royal Charter on 31 July 1856, making it officially the oldest established city in New Zealand.

The river which flows through the centre of the city (its banks now largely forming an urban park) was named Avon at the request of the pioneering Deans brothers to commemorate the Scottish Avon, which rises in the Ayrshire hills near what was their grandfathers' farm and flows into the Clyde.[2]

The usual Māori name for Christchurch is Ōtautahi ("the place of Tautahi"). This was originally the name of a specific site by the Avon River near present-day Kilmore Street and the Christchurch Central Fire Station. The site was a seasonal dwelling of Ngāi Tahu chief Te Potiki Tautahi, whose main home was Port Levy on Banks Peninsula. The Ōtautahi name was adopted in the 1930s. Prior to that the Ngāi Tahu generally referred to the Christchurch area as Karaitiana,[3] a transliteration of the English name.



Christchurch lies in Canterbury, near the centre of the east coast of the South Island, east of the Canterbury Plains. It is located near the southern end of Pegasus Bay, and is bounded to the east by the Pacific Ocean coast and the estuary of the Avon and Heathcote Rivers. To the south and south-east the urban portion of the city is limited by the volcanic slopes of the Port Hills separating it from Banks Peninsula. In 2006, Banks Peninsula was incorporated into the city, in effect tripling the city's land area [4] while adding only about 8,000 people to the city's population. To the north the city is bounded by the braided Waimakariri River.

Christchurch is one of only eight pairs of cities in the world that has a near-exact antipodal city. Half of these antipodal pairs are in New Zealand and Spain/Morocco – with A Coruña, Spain as Christchurch's antipode.

Christchurch has one of the highest-quality water supplies in the world, rated one of the purest and cleanest water in the world.[5] The water is sourced via more than 50 pumping stations from aquifers which conduct it from the foothills of the Southern Alps and provide natural filtering.[6]

Central city

At the centre of the city is Cathedral Square, surrounding the Anglican cathedral, Christ Church. The area around this square and within the "four avenues" of Christchurch (Bealey Avenue, Fitzgerald Avenue, Moorhouse Avenue and Deans Avenue[7]) 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 & Victoria.

Cathedral Square is a popular destination and hosts attractions such as the speakers' corner made famous by the Wizard of New Zealand, Ian Brackenbury Channell, and evangelist Ray Comfort. 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 [3] 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 Arts Centre, the Canterbury Museum and the Art Gallery are located in the Cultural Precinct. The majority of the activities are free and a printable map is provided.

Inner suburbs

(clockwise, starting north of the city centre)

Mairehau; Shirley; Dallington; Richmond; Avonside; Linwood; Woolston; Opawa; Waltham; St Martins; Beckenham; Sydenham; Somerfield; Spreydon; Addington; Riccarton; Ilam; Burnside; Fendalton; Bryndwr; Strowan; Merivale; Papanui; St Albans.

Outer suburbs

(clockwise, starting north of the city centre)

Marshland; Burwood; Parklands; Waimairi Beach; Avondale; New Brighton; Bexley; Aranui; South Brighton; Southshore; Bromley; Mt Pleasant; Redcliffs; Sumner; Ferrymead; Heathcote Valley; Hillsborough; Murray Aynsley; Huntsbury; Cashmere; Westmorland; Hillmorton; Hoon Hay; Halswell; Oaklands; Wigram; Middleton; Sockburn; Hornby; Islington; Templeton; Yaldhurst; Russley; Avonhead; Harewood; Bishopdale; Casebrook; Redwood; Regents Park; Northwood; Belfast; Spencerville; Brooklands;

Satellite towns


Geographically isolated



Christchurch has a dry, temperate climate, with mean daily maximum air temperatures of 22.5 °C (72.5 °F) in January, 11.3 °C (52.3 °F) in July.[8]. Under Koppen's climate classification, Christchurch has an Oceanic climate. The summer climate is often moderated by a sea breeze from the Northeast, but a record temperature of 41.6 °C (107 °F) was reached in February 1973. A notable feature of the weather is the nor'wester, a hot föhn wind that occasionally reaches storm force, causing widespread minor damage to property.[9]

In winter it is common for the temperature to fall below 0 °C (32 °F) at night. There are on average 70 days of ground frost per year.[10] Snow falls occur on average once or twice a year in the hill suburbs and about once or twice every two years on the plain.

On cold winter nights, the surrounding hills, clear skies, and frosty calm conditions often combine to form a stable inversion layer above the city that traps vehicle exhausts and smoke from domestic fires to cause smog. While not as bad as smog in Los Angeles or Mexico City, Christchurch smog has often exceeded World Health Organisation recommendations for air pollution.[11] The city has funding available to upgrade domestic home heating systems, and in order to limit air pollution has banned the use of open fires as of 1 January 2006. As of 2008, woodburners more than 15 years old are prohibited.[12]


Climate data for Christchurch
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 22.5
Average low °C (°F) 12.2
Precipitation mm (inches) 42
Source: NIWA Science climate data[13]


Boatsheds on the Avon River


The area administered by the Christchurch City Council has a population of 372,600 (June 2009 estimate),[1] making it the second-largest in New Zealand, and the largest city in the South Island. The Christchurch urban area is the second-largest in the country by population, after Auckland.


The following table shows the ethnic profile of Christchurch's population, as recorded in the 2001 and 2006 New Zealand Census. The percentages add up to more than 100%, as some people counted themselves as belonging to more than one ethnic group. Figures for 2006 refer to just Christchurch City, not the whole urban area. The substantial percentage drop in the numbers of 'Europeans' was mainly caused by the increasing numbers of people from this group choosing to define themselves as 'New Zealanders' – even though this was not one of the groups listed on the census form.

Ethnic Group 2001 census 2006 census
Percentage People[14] National average Percent People[15] National average
European 89.8 291,594 75.4 255,366 67.6
'New Zealander' n/a n/a 12.9 43,671 11.1
Asian 5.5 17,703 7.9 26,631 9.2
Māori 7.2 23,421 7.6 25,725 14.7
Pacific Island 2.4 7,713 2.8 9,465 6.9
Middle East/Latin America/Africa n/a n/a 0.8 2,862 0.9
Others 0.6 2,073 <0.1 114 <0.1
Total giving their ethnicity 324,666 (individuals) 338,748 (individuals)

The 2006 Census also provides information about the multilinguality of the region. Accordingly, 283,986 people in Christchurch City spoke one language only, while 37,947 spoke two, and 7,881 could converse in three or more languages.[15]


The agricultural industry has always been the economic core of Christchurch. The city has long had industry based on the surrounding farming country. PGG Wrightson, New Zealand's leading agribusiness, is based in Christchurch. Its local roots go back to Pyne Gould Guinness an old stock and station agency serving the South Island. That firm helped take deer farming techniques abroad. PGG Wrightson's overseas diversification includes dairy farming in Uruguay.

Other agribusinesses in Christchurch have included malting, seed development and dressing, wool and meat processing, and small biotechnology operations using by-products from meat works.

Dairying has grown strongly in the surrounding areas with high world prices for milk products and the use of irrigation to lift grass growth on dry land. With its higher labour use this has helped stop declines in rural population. Many cropping and sheep farms have been converted to dairying. Conversions have been by agribusiness companies as well as by farmers, many of whom have moved south from North Island dairying strongholds such as Taranaki and the Waikato.

Cropping has always been important in the surrounding countryside. Wheat and barley and various strains of clover and other grasses for seed exporting have been the main crops. These have all created processing businesses in Christchurch.

In recent years, regional agriculture has diversified, with a thriving wine industry springing up at Waipara, and beginnings of new horticulture industries such as olive production and processing. Deer farming has led to new processing using antlers for Asian medicine and aphrodisiacs. The high quality local wine in particular has increased the appeal of Canterbury and Christchurch to tourists.

In earlier years, Christchurch was one of the two heavy-engineering centres of New Zealand, with firms such as Anderson's making steel work for bridges, tunnels, and hydro-electric dams in the early days of infrastructure work. Now manufacturing is mainly of light products and the key market is Australia, with firms such as those pioneered by the Stewart family among the larger employers.

Before clothing manufacture largely moved to Asia, Christchurch was the centre of the New Zealand clothing industry, with firms such as LWR Industries. The firms that remain mostly design and market, and manufacture in Asia. The city also had five footwear manufacturers, but these have been replaced by imports.

In the last few decades, technology-based industries have sprung up in Christchurch. Angus Tait founded Tait Electronics, a mobile-radio manufacturer, and other firms spun off from this, such as Dennis Chapman's Swichtec. Tait proteges include Chapman. In software, Gil Simpson founded LINC, which became Jade. Neither Angus nor Gil completed high school education.

However, there have been spin-offs from the electrical department of the University of Canterbury engineering school. These included Pulse Data, which became Human Ware ( making reading devices and computers for blind people and those with limited vision) and CES Communications (encryption). The Pulse Data founders had moved from the Canterbury University engineering school to work for Wormald when they set up Pulse Data through a management buyout of their division.

Nowadays, the University of Canterbury engineering school and computer science department play an important role in supplying staff and research for the technology industries, and the Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology provides a flow of trained technicians and engineers. Similarly, nearby Lincoln University has played an important role in Christchurch agribusiness.

Tourism is also a significant factor of the local economy. The closeness of the ski-fields and other attractions of the Southern Alps, and hotels, a casino, and an airport that meet international standards make Christchurch a stopover destination for many tourists. The city is popular with Japanese tourists,[16] with signage around Cathedral Square in Japanese.


Christchurch's local government is a democracy with various elements including:

  • Christchurch City Council, comprising the Mayor of Christchurch, and 13 councillors elected in seven wards.
  • Community boards (six in the pre-amalgamation city area), each covering one ward, with five members each plus the two ward councillors. The Banks Peninsula ward has two community boards with five members each, plus the ward councillor, who is also a member of each board.
  • District councils in surrounding areas: Selwyn, and Waimakariri. The Banks Peninsula district council was amalgamated into Christchurch City in March 2006 after a vote by the Banks Peninsula residents to disestablish in November 2005.
  • Canterbury Regional Council, known as 'Environment Canterbury', including four Christchurch constituencies with two members from each constituency.[17]
  • District Health Board (Canterbury), with five members for Christchurch.[18]

In 1993, Christchurch was selected as the "Best Run City in the World", also known as the 'Carl Bertelsmann Prize: Local Government', by the Bertelsmann Foundation of Germany. Especially noted was the increased efficiency of communal services in competition with private enterprises. Christchurch shared the award honour with Phoenix, Arizona, USA.[19]


Secondary schools

Christchurch is the location of Burnside High School, the second largest school in New Zealand with 2,650 pupils. Cashmere High School at Rose Street is another large co-educational secondary school. In recent years, Papanui High School has undergone rapid growth to reach a similar size. Riccarton High School was one of the first state schools in the country to adopt a strong values base - the Riccarton Way. Christchurch is also well-known for several very traditional schools of the English public school type, such as St Margaret's College, Christ's College, St Andrew's and Rangi Ruru Girls' School, but also has several less conventional schools such as Unlimited Paenga Tawhiti and Hagley Community College.

Tertiary institutions

The University of Canterbury is a tertiary education provider for Christchurch

A number of tertiary education institutions have campuses in Christchurch, or in the surrounding areas.


Christchurch is served by Christchurch International Airport and by buses (local and long-distance) and trains. The local bus service, known as Metro, is provided by Environment Canterbury. The car, however, remains the dominant form of transport. The central city has very flat terrain and the Christchurch City Council is establishing a network of cycle lanes and paths.

There is a functioning tram service in Christchurch, but as a tourist attraction, its loop is restricted to a circuit of the central city. The trams were originally introduced in 1905, ceased operating in 1954[20], but returned to the inner city (as a tourist attraction) in 1995. In addition to normal bus services, Christchurch also has a pioneering zero-fare hybrid bus service, the Shuttle, in the inner city.

Christchurch Brill Tram No 178 on the heritage tramway

The Main North Line railway travels northwards via Kaikoura to Picton and is served by the famous TranzCoastal passenger train, while the Main South Line heads to Invercargill via Dunedin and was used by the Southerner until its cancellation in 2002. The most famous train to depart Christchurch is the TranzAlpine, which travels along the Main South Line to Rolleston and then turns onto the Midland Line, passes through the Southern Alps via the Otira Tunnel, and terminates in Greymouth on the West Coast. This trip is often regarded to be one of the ten great train journeys in the world for the amazing scenery through which it passes. The TranzAlpine service is primarily a tourist service and carries no significant commuter traffic. Commuter trains used to operate in Christchurch but were progressively cancelled in the 1960s and 1970s. The last such service, between Christchurch and Rangiora, ceased in 1976.



High, Manchester and Lichfield Streets in Christchurch, 1923

Archeological evidence found in a cave at Redcliffs in 1876 has indicated that the Christchurch area was first settled by moa-hunting tribes about 1250. Māori oral history relates that humans occupied the area around the year 1000. These first inhabitants were thought to have been followed by the Waitaha tribe, who are said to have migrated from the East coast of the North Island in the 16th century. Following tribal warfare, the Waitaha (made of three peoples) were dispossessed by the Ngati Mamoe tribe. They were in turn subjugated by the Ngāi Tahu tribe, who remained in control until the arrival of European settlers.

Following the purchase of land at Putaringamotu (modern Riccarton) by the Weller brothers whalers of Otago and Sydney a party of European settlers led by Herriott and McGillivray established themselves in what is now Christchurch, early in 1840. Their abandoned holdings were taken over by the Deans brothers in 1843 who stayed. The First Four Ships were chartered by the Canterbury Association and brought the first 792 of the Canterbury Pilgrims to Lyttelton Harbour. These sailing vessels were the Randolph, Charlotte-Jane, Sir George Seymour, and Cressy. The Charlotte-Jane was the first to arrive on 16 December 1850. The Canterbury Pilgrims had aspirations of building a city around a cathedral and college, on the model of Christ Church in Oxford.[21] The name "Christ Church" was decided prior to the ships' arrival, at the Association's first meeting, on 27 March 1848.

Captain Joseph Thomas, the Canterbury Association's Chief Surveyor, surveyed the surrounding area. By December 1849 he had commissioned the construction of a road from Port Cooper, later Lyttelton, to Christchurch via Sumner.[22] However this proved more difficult than expected and road construction was stopped while a steep foot and pack horse track was constructed over the hill between the port and the Heathcote valley, where access to the site of the proposed settlement could be gained. This track became known as the Bridle Path, because the path was so steep that pack horses needed to be led by the bridle.[23]

The Anglican cathedral was completed in 1904 and has since been the focal point of the city

Goods that were too heavy or bulky to be transported by pack horse over the Bridle Path were shipped by small sailing vessels some eight miles (13 km) by water around the coast and up the estuary to Ferrymead. New Zealand's first public railway line, the Ferrymead railway, opened from Ferrymead to Christchurch in 1863. Due to the difficulties in travelling over the Port Hills and the dangers associated with shipping navigating the Sumner bar, a railway tunnel was bored through the Port Hills to Lyttelton, opening in 1867.[24]

Christchurch became a city by Royal Charter on 31 July 1856, the first in New Zealand. Many of the city's Gothic buildings by architect Benjamin Mountfort date from this period.

Christchurch was the seat of provincial administration for the Province of Canterbury, which was abolished in 1876.

In 1947, New Zealand's worst fire disaster occurred at Ballantyne's Department Store in the inner city, with 41 people killed in a blaze which razed the rambling collection of buildings.[25]

The Lyttelton road tunnel between Lyttelton and Christchurch was opened in 1964.[26]

Christchurch was host to the 1974 British Commonwealth Games.

Gateway to the Antarctic

Christchurch has a history of involvement in Antarctic exploration – both Robert Falcon Scott and Ernest Shackleton used the port of Lyttelton as a departure point for expeditions, and there is a statue of Scott, sculpted by his widow, Kathleen Scott, in the central city.

Within the city the Canterbury Museum preserves and exhibits many historic artifacts and stories of Antarctic exploration.

Christchurch International Airport serves as the major base for the Italian and United States Antarctic programs as well as the New Zealand Antarctic programme. The International Antarctic Centre provides both base facilities and a museum and visitor centre focused upon current Antarctic activities. The United States Navy and latterly the United States Air National Guard, augmented by the New Zealand and Australian air forces, use Christchurch Airport as take-off for the main supply route to McMurdo and Scott Bases in Antarctica. The Clothing Distribution Center (CDC) in Christchurch, has more than 140,000 pieces of extreme cold weather (ECW) gear for issue to nearly 2,000 U.S. Antarctic Program (USAP) participants in the 2007-08 season.[27]

Visitor attractions

The Christchurch Art Gallery
Water fountain at Christchurch Botanical Gardens.


Parks and nature

The large number of public parks and well-developed residential gardens with many trees has given Christchurch the name of The Garden City.[28] Hagley Park and the 30-hectare (75 acre) Christchurch Botanic Gardens, founded in 1863, are in the central city, with Hagley Park being a site for sports such as golf, cricket, netball, and rugby, and for open air concerts by local bands and orchestras. To the north of the city is the Willowbank wildlife park. Travis Wetland, an ecological restoration programme to create a wetland, is to the east of the city centre in the suburb of Burwood.


While historically most cinemas were grouped around Cathedral Square,[29] only two cinemas remain there. The Regent complex was rebuilt as 'Regent on Worcester' in 1996. In 2009 Metro Cinemas opened in Worcester Street with three screens.

Only one of the first generation of suburban cinemas, the Hollywood in Sumner, remains open.[30] The largest multiplexes are the Hoyts 8 in the old railway station on Moorhouse Avenue and Reading Cinemas (also eight screens) in the Palms shopping centre in Shirley. Hoyts in Riccarton opened in 2005[31] with one of its screens for a time holding the record for the largest in New Zealand.

The Rialto Cinemas on Moorhouse avenue specialise in international films and art house productions. The Rialto also hosts the majority of the city's various film festivals and is home to the local film society.

The Christchurch Arts Centre includes two art house cinemas, Cloisters and The Academy, screening a wide selection of contemporary, classic and foreign language films.

The Canterbury Film Society is active in the city.[32]


Christchurch has one full-time professional theatre, the Court Theatre,[33] which is based in the Christchurch Arts Centre. There is also an active recreational theatre scene with community based theatre companies, such as the Riccarton Players[34], Elmwood Players[35], and Canterbury Children's Theatre[36], producing many quality shows.


The city is known for its many live acts,[37][38] has a professional symphony orchestra,[39] and is the base of professional opera company, Southern Opera.[40]

There are usually buskers around the town square, and Christchurch also hosts the World Buskers Festival in January each year.

In recent movements, hip hop has effectively landed in Christchurch. In 2000, First Aotearoa Hip Hop Summit was held there. And in 2003, Christchurch’s own Scribe, released his debut album in New Zealand and has received five times platinum in that country, in addition to achieving two number one singles.[41][42]


Christchurch has its own regional television station Canterbury Television. CTV was first formed in 1991 and still today reflects the Canterbury community through locally made programmes.


Christchurch Casino with its playful hybrid of old and new architectural forms

The Westpac Arena is New Zealand's second largest permanent multipurpose arena, seating between 5000 and 8000, depending on configuration. It is home of the Canterbury Tactix netball side. It was the venue for the 1999 World Netball championships and has been host to many concerts in recent years.

The Christchurch Town Hall auditorium (2500 seats, opened 1972) was the first major auditorium design by architects Warren and Mahoney and acousticians Marshall Day. It is still recognised as a model example of concert-hall design. It has an excellent modern pipe organ.

Christchurch also has a casino,[43] and there are also a wide range of live music venues[44][45] – some short-lived, others with decades of history. Classical music concerts are held at the Christchurch Music Centre.



  • The Crusaders, formerly the 'Canterbury Crusaders' are a rugby union team based in Christchurch that compete in the Super 14 competition and are made up of players from the Buller, Canterbury, Mid-Canterbury, South Canterbury, Tasman, and West Coast provincial rugby unions.
  • The Christchurch Football Club was founded in 1863, believed to be the oldest club of any code in New Zealand.[46]



Winter afternoon on the Christchurch coast.

Sister cities

Christchurch has seven sister cities around the world. They are:[47]

See also


  1. ^ a b "Subnational Population Estimates: At 30 June 2009". Statistics New Zealand. 23 October 2009. Retrieved 2009-10-23. 
  2. ^ a b A History of Canterbury, Vol. 1 - Sir James Hight & Straubel, C.R.; Canterbury Centennial Association and Whitcombe and Tombs, Christchurch 1957, Page 121
  3. ^ Ōtautahi (from the Christchurch City Library website)
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ Community Outcomes Baseline Report: Chch City Council
  6. ^ Water: Statistical summary - Chch City Council
  7. ^ Christchurch City Council definition
  8. ^ "Mean Daily Maximum Temperatures 1971-2000". National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research. Retrieved 2009-01-25. 
  9. ^ Canterbury's damaging nor'wester (from the Metservice NZ website)
  10. ^ Mean Number Of Days Of Ground Frost (from the NIWA website)
  11. ^ Air Pollution Today (from the Environment Canterbury website)
  12. ^ [2] (from the Environment Canterbury website)
  13. ^ "Niwa Science climate data". 
  14. ^ 2001 Regional Summary, Statistics New Zealand
  15. ^ a b Quickstats about Christchurch City
  16. ^ The Sister City link with Christchurch (from, a Christchurch City Council website)
  17. ^ Environment Canterbury (official regional council website)
  18. ^ Canterbury District Health Board (official district health board website)
  19. ^ Carl Bertelsmann-Preis 1993: Kommunalverwaltung (from the Bertelsmann Foundation website, in German)
  20. ^ A Wheel on Each Corner, The History of the IPENZ Transportation Group 1956-2006 - Douglass, Malcolm; IPENZ Transportation Group, 2006, Page 12
  21. ^ Cathedral History (from the official Christ Church cathedral website)
  22. ^ "Captain Thomas and the Streets of Christchurch". Christchurch City Libraries. 
  23. ^ Rescue, the Sumner community and its lifeboat service - Amodeo, Colin (editor), Christchurch: Sumner Lifeboat Institution Incorporated, 1998
  24. ^ Chch City Libraries
  25. ^ Ballantyne's fire
  26. ^ Te Ara
  27. ^ "Looking good in the Antarctic" (web). Clothing Distribution Center in Christchurch, New Zealand, outfits USAP participants for the trip south. The Antarctic Sun. 2008-01-10. Retrieved 2008-01-13. 
  28. ^ Christchurch, the Garden City (from the Christchurch City Council website)
  29. ^ Regent Theatre [1930-1976] (from the Canterbury Film Society website)
  30. ^ Christchurch Cinemas :: Hollywood Theatre
  31. ^ "Hoyts Riccarton [2005 - "]. Canterbury Film Society. 
  32. ^ Canterbury Film Society (from the official Canterbury Film Society website)
  33. ^ Court Theatre (from the official Court Theatre website)
  34. ^ Riccarton Players
  35. ^ Elmwood Players
  36. ^ Canterbury Children's Theatre
  37. ^ "The Official Launch of NZ Music Month 2007!". New Zealand Music Commission. 
  38. ^ "Celebrating Christchurch Music in NZ Music Month". Scoop. 
  39. ^ Christchurch Symphony (from the official Christchurch Symphony Orchestra website)
  40. ^ "Southern Opera - About Us". Retrieved 2008-09-23. 
  41. ^ Henderson, April K. “Dancing Between Islands: Hip Hop and the Samoan Diaspora.” In The Vinyl Ain’t Final: Hip Hop and the Globalization of Black Popular Culture, ed. by Dipannita Basu and Sidney J. Lemelle, 180-199. London; Ann Arbor, MI: Pluto Press, 2000
  42. ^ "Aotearoa hiphop timeline". 
  43. ^ Christchurch Casino (official Christchurch Casino website)
  44. ^ "Christchurch's music scene today". Christchurch City Libraries. 
  45. ^ "Christchurch Live Music Venues". Christchurch Music Industry Trust. 
  46. ^ "Christchurch Park History". Christchurch Park. 
  47. ^ Sister Cities of Christchurch (from the Christchurch City Council website)


  • Reed, A.W. (2002) The Reed dictionary of New Zealand place names. Auckland: Reed Books. ISBN 0-790-00761-4.
  • Rice, Geoffrey (with assistance from Jean Sharfe)(1999) Christchurch changing: an illustrated history Christchurch: Canterbury University Press. ISBN 0-908812-53-1 (pbk.)

External links

Coordinates: 43°31′58″S 172°37′58″E / 43.53278°S 172.63278°E / -43.53278; 172.63278

Official Organisations:

Culture & Information:

Tourism & Maps:

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Christchurch cathedral
Christchurch cathedral

Christchurch [1] is the largest city in the South Island of New Zealand with a 2006 population of over 350,000. It is on the edge of the Canterbury plains and is a major stepping off point for touring the South Island.


Christchurch was established in 1850 by English settlers. Its English heritage shows in the older buildings, especially the Anglican Cathedral in the Square in the very center of the city. The River Avon flows through the central city and disrupts the regular rectangular layout of the city streets.

Christchurch is known as the Garden City, a well-deserved name. Looking from a few floors up, one is struck by the number of trees that grow like a forest throughout the suburbs.

International tourism, especially foreign-student education for the Asian market, is a growing sector of the Christchurch economy, as is electronics and software development. Because of this there is a high concentration of cyber-cafes here, particularly in the Asian tourist-friendly areas around the Square. English-as-a-second-language schools are also in abundance.

The Christchurch & Canterbury Visitor Information centre is in in the Old Chief Post Office, Cathedral Square. For online visitor information, see the official Christchurch & Canterbury Tourism site

Get in

By plane

Christchurch International Airport [2] is a major transit airport for international and domestic travellers. There are international services to and from Australia, Japan and Singapore and frequent daily flights to and from most New Zealand airports, with direct flights to and from Auckland, Rotorua, Wellington, Dunedin, Invercargill, Queenstown and Nelson

Flights to and from McMurdo Station in Antarctica also use the airport. This is one of the few international airports in the world where military and civilian aircraft regularly share the same runways.

There is a regular public bus service to the city center. The 20-30 minute trip costs NZ$7 and the buses operate half-hourly during the week and at least hourly on weekends. There is also a privately-run 8-passenger "7 dollar bus" which runs between the Square and airport about every 15-20 minutes during the day. A door to door shuttle bus service to all parts of Christchurch is available from NZ$20 for the first person, $5 per subsequent person. Taxi stands (about NZ$45 to the city centre) and rental car parks are also close to the terminal building.

By car

State Highway One passes around the western edge of the city, past the airport. This is the main north/south arterial road in New Zealand. State Highway 73 goes to the west, over Arthur's Pass and on to the west coast. From SH73 you can also access Mount Hutt and other regional skifields.

By bus

There are daily bus services north to and from Picton , south to and from Dunedin and west to and from the West Coast ( Greymouth, Hokitika).

  • 'Newmans Coach Lines' [3] operates a premium sightseeing tours to and from Christchurch.
  • 'InterCity Coachlines' [4] is New Zealand's national coach company and operates over 150 services to more than 600 destinations nationwide. There are regular departures in and out of Chirstchurch to all parts of the South Island.
  • '' [5], a budget bus operator which also has daily bus services all over the south island.
  • 'Atomic Shuttles' [6] Christchruch to Greymouth via Arthur's Pass
  • 'West Coast Shuttle' [7] to Greymouth via Arthur's pass (pick up at Ch-ch airport on demand)

By train

There is a daily train service to and from Picton timed to meet ferry sailings to and from Wellington. Southbound passengers can spend the morning sailing on the Picton ferry and the afternoon on the train, while northbound passengers can do the opposite.

This is also the terminus of the scenic TranzAlpine train service to Greymouth. This can be done as a day trip. The train departs from Christchurch daily at 8:15AM, returning at 6:05PM.

Canterbury Shuttles provides a FREE transfer from all central city accomadation to the Christchurch train station. Pickups for the TranzCoastal are between 6:00am to 6:30am. Pickups for the TranzAlpine are between 7:00am to 7:45am.

The railway station is in Addington adjacent to the large Tower Junction shopping centre and has limited facilities.

By boat

The port town of Lyttelton is separated from Christchurch by the Port Hills. The early settlers had to walk over the Bridle Path - so named because the path was so steep that horses had to be lead by the bridle as they could not be ridden. Today there is a road tunnel that links the port to the city.

Get around

Christchurch is mostly flat, so many people get around on bicycles. Special-purpose bicycle lanes have been recently added to many streets to help promote cycling.

Navigation by car or bicycle is generally simple due to the grid layout, but watch out for one-way streets and bus-and-taxi-only intersections in the central city. Parking in the city uses a pay and display system and costs $2.60/ hour. You can pay with coins, credit card (Visa, MasterCard or Amex) or with a mobile phone text message (the latter two attract a 50c surcharge) then display the ticket with the expiry time visible on the curbside dash.

Renting a car is recommended for those who don't want to be confined to the centre of the city where a viable public transport network exists.

The bus service [8] has been greatly improved in recent years. Buses interconnect through the enclosed airport-style Bus Exchange on the corner of Colombo and Lichfield Streets. A standard bus fare is $2.80 cash or $2.10 ($4.20 maximum charge per day, $10 minimum initial purchase) with a MetroCard smart card. There is also a free diesel-electric yellow Shuttle that orbits the inner-city area every ten minutes, but often it can be quicker to walk such short distances. It passes two malls and three supermarkets.

The restored Christchurch Tramway [9] (ticket $12.50, valid for two days) also runs in a smaller loop around the inner city, 9AM-9PM summer, 9AM-6PM winter.

  • Christchurch Cathedral, Cathedral Square, +64 3 366 0046, [10]. Open daily for viewing with regular services during the week. Completed in 1904, the Cathedral is Christchurch's most prominent landmark and the Square to which it gives its name brings colour and life to the heart of downtown. Check out the excellent i-Site visitors' center in the old Post Office building, and keep an eye out for concerts, protesters, eccentric street preachers or Wizard of New Zealand [11] haranguing the lunchtime crowds. During the day food and craft stalls are available. You can climb the bell tower for a fee.
  • Arts Centre, Worcester Boulevard, +64 3 366 0989, [12]. Information center open daily 9:30AM-5PM. Gothic stonework of former University campus converted into complex of over 40 specialty art and craft businesses and performance venues. Recommendations include the weekend craft & produce market 10AM-4PM with live bands noon-2PM, and the improv show Scared Scriptless [13] on Friday nights at 10PM. Ernest Rutherford's den is also well worth a visit (gold coin donation).
Christchurch Art Gallery
Christchurch Art Gallery
  • Art Gallery, Worcester Boulevard and Montreal Street (one block east of Botanic Gardens). +64 3 941 7300, [14]. Daily 10AM-5PM, W 10AM-9PM. Spectacular new $47 million facility opened in 2003, the largest in the South Island, with over 5000 items and visiting exhibitions. Usually free.
  • Air Force Museum, former Wigram Airfield, Main South Road, +64 3 343 9542, [15]. Daily 10AM-5PM. Opened in 1987 before the closure of the Christchurch RNZAF base, this museum has full-size replicas of fighting planes and dramatizes the history of New Zealand's Air Force from World War I to Vietnam and beyond. $15 adult, $5 child.
  • Botanic Gardens, Rolleston Avenue, car park entrance Armagh Street, +64 3 941 7590, [16]. Gates open daily 7AM-5:30PM winter, 7AM-9PM summer, check exact posted times on gates or website. Information center open daily 10:15AM-4PM summer, 11AM-3PM winter. 30 hectares of exotic and indigenous plants and trees wrapped in a loop of the picturesque Avon River and linking to the 160-hectare Hagley Park. These put the "Garden" in the "Garden City".
  • Canterbury Museum, Rolleston Avenue at end of Worcester Boulevard (adjoining Botanic Gardens), +64 3 366 5000, [17]. Daily 9AM-5:30PM summer, 9AM-5PM winter. Includes colonial, Maori and natural history sections, Antarctic exploration display, and visiting exhibitions. Admission free to main exhibits (but donation appreciated), $2 for Discovery children's section.
  • Ferrymead Heritage Park, Ferrymead Park Drive (Ferry Road east from city, or take the 30 Sumner bus from the Bus Exchange and to the Heathcote River Bridge, then first right down Bridle Path Road), +64 3 384 1970, [18]. Daily 10AM-4:30PM. A recreated Edwardian township and museum with horse and carriage (daily), tram (weekends and school/public holidays) and train (first and third Sunday) rides. Due to the voluntary nature of the historical societies managing Ferrymead, not all attractions may be running at all times. Special events are often held and the park has been used to film the TV One reality show 'Colonial House'. Admission price is based on whether trams/trains are operating or not, and include unlimited rides if available. $10 adult, $5 child with trams/trains, $6 adult, $3 child without.
  • International Antarctic Centre, Christchurch Airport, +64 3 353 7798 (toll free 0508 736 4846 within NZ), [19]. Daily 9AM-8PM summer, 9AM-5:30PM winter. A world-class Antarctic experience with simulated polar weather, Hagglund All-Terrain Vehicle ride, penguins, extensive exhibits about Antarctic science missions, cafe and gift shop. $48 adult, $36 child.
  • Orana Wildlife Park, McLeans Island Road (10 minutes' drive west of airport), +64 3 359 7109, [20]. Daily 10AM-5PM, last entrance 4:30PM. New Zealand's largest wildlife sanctuary and conservation project featuring endangered animals from around the world. The park's design minimises fences and cages in favor of natural boundaries and habitats. $14 adult ($12 for 2:30PM), $6 child. Lion Encounter (limited 20 tickets per day, participants must be above 1.4 metres in height).
  • Science Alive, 394 Moorhouse Road (former Railway Station building, shares lobby with Hoyts 8 cinema), +64 3 365 5199, [21]. Daily 10AM-5PM. An interactive science education center with gift shop. Themed exhibitions are on display and change three times a year. $10 adult, $7 child 5-16yrs, $4 child 2-4yrs.
  • Southern Encounter Aquarium & Kiwi House (formerly Aquarium of Discovery), Cathedral Square (adjoins the i-Site visitors' center), +64 3 359 0581, [22]. Daily 9AM-4:30PM. Walk-through aquarium showcasing native fish and sea creatures. There is an interactive rock-pool for kids and viewing of nocturnal brown kiwis. $11 adult, $5 child.
  • Willowbank Wildlife Reserve, 60 Hussey Road (off Gardiners Road), +64 3 359 6226, [23]. A smaller park than Orana, with a focus on New Zealand species including kiwi in a natural environment. Daily 10AM-10PM, kiwi viewing from 11AM. $16 adult, $8 child.
Riccarton Bush
Riccarton Bush
  • Yaldhurst Museum, Main West Road (near the airport, first right past Yaldhurst Hotel), +64 3 342 7914, [24]. Daily 10AM-5PM (5PM-9PM by arrangement for groups of 10 or more). Mostly interesting for its collection of over 150 classic and vintage vehicles. $15 adult, $5 child.
  • Riccarton Bush. The last remaining forest remnant on the Canterbury plains is in Christchurch city. If your time is limited in NZ, this is a great way to experience an example of the country's native forests. The circular track passes under tall kahikatea trees, and there is a diversity of small trees, shrubs, climbers and ferns. Christchurch's oldest house, Dean's Cottage (built 1843) is adjacent. Five minutes drive from central city and easily accessible by bus.
  • The Summit Road, drive it or bike it or take a bus then walk it. The road (and the Crater Rim Walkway) traverses the crest of the Port Hills, which separate Christchurch from Lyttelton Harbour. Breathtaking views over Christchurch, the Southern Alps, Pegasus Bay, Lyttelton Harbour and Banks Peninsula - often all from the same vantage point. Lots of sheep on the walkways, some of which traverse working farms.
  • Lyttelton,the port over the hill from the city, is accessible by car/bus through the tunnel, or by the scenic port hills route via the seaside suburb of Sumner. Although only about 15km from the central city, Lyttelton feels like another world entirely, with its cafes bars shops and locals, its ever-busy port, its stunning hilly backdrop and beautiful harbour.
  • Lyttelton Farmers Market is an authentic farmers market in the Lyttelton School grounds every Saturday morning, 10AM-1PM. Not necessarily the cheapest food in town, but always fresh, local, and seasonal. Food available ranges from fruit & veggies to bread, coffee, home-baking, farm eggs, local honey and cheeses, preserves and relishes, etc. There is usually some live music and always a lively collection of marketgoers, great people-watching.
  • Christchurch City Bike Tour, make bookings at the i-Site visitors' center in Cathedral Square, +64 3 379 9629. Stretch your legs on New Zealand's ONLY guided City bike tour. Visit Mona Vale, Hagley Park, Riccarton Bush, Antigua Boat Sheds, Deans Cottage, The Arts Centre and Cathedral Square. (
Punting on the Avon
Punting on the Avon
  • Punting on the Avon, punts depart from corner of Worcester Street and Oxford Tce, make bookings at the i-Site visitors' center in Cathedral Square, +64 3 379 9629. Glide down the river in Cambridge University style with a uniformed boatsman.
  • Antigua Boatsheds, 2 Cambridge Terrace, +64 3 366 5885, [25]. Boat hire from historic British boatsheds for a hands-on water experience. Daily 9:30AM-5:30PM summer, 9:30AM-4PM winter. $7/hr canoe, $12/half-hr rowboat, $14/half-hr paddle boat.
  • Christchurch Casino, 30 Victoria Street, +64 3 365 9999, [26]. Open 24 hours except Christmas, Good Friday, ANZAC Day. Dress code (jeans now allowed). You get a free meal (breakfast, lunch or dinner) if it is your birthday (booking essential, e.g. by phone).
  • Christchurch Gondola, base station 10 Bridle Path Road (take Best Attractions Express Shuttle from Cathedral Square, $5 adult, $3 child, or 28 Lyttelton Bus from the Bus Exchange), +64 3 384 0700 (+64 3 384 0707 for restaurant reservations), [27]. Daily 10AM-late. $18 adult, $8 child (summer), $17 adult, $8 child (winter). Ride in the enclosed gondola car up to the summit of the Port Hills then view the Heritage Time Tunnel, take an outdoor nature walk, or dine at the restaurant. Three-course meal $60 including ride.
  • Creative Workshops, [28]. Spend a day with a local artist or craftsman and share his skills and passion.
  • Adventure Ride (Guided off-road motorcycle tours), +64 274 510 584, [29]. -10days All tours include an experienced guide, transport from Christchurch, motorcycle or ATV rental, fuel, insurance, riding gear, lunch and support vehicle.Overnight tours also include twin share accommodation and all meals. 5-10 day tours require a minimum of two riders  edit


Christchurch has the busiest program of annual festivals of any New Zealand city.

  • Summertimes runs from December through to late February and includes a number of major free events in Hagley Park, which attract audiences of up to 100,000. It consists of music, arts, culture and sporting events.
  • The World Buskers Festival, Runs for two weeks in January and usually features about 30 comedy, street, and circus acts from around the globe.
  • The Festival of Romance lasts for 10 days leading up to Valentines day and includes a range of romantic activities.
  • The Christchurch Garden Festival takes place in March.
  • Kidsfest is on during the midwinter school holiday.
  • The Christchurch Arts Festival is the largest arts festival on South Island and takes place every second year in mid winter (23 July - 9 August 2009).
  • Carnival Week is centered around a number of events taking place in November - Guy Fawkes' night (a major public firework display at New Brighton Pier), the two New Zealand Cup (trotting and galloping) horse racing meetings, and the Canterbury Agricultural and Pastoral show, which is the largest in the country.
  • Carols by Candlelight is a longstanding tradition on Christmas Eve, now held in Victoria Square.
  • Ballantynes, corner of Colombo and Cashel, Tel: +64 3 379 7400, [30]. The major upmarket department store. Adjacent to it is Cashel Mall with a mixture of boutiques cafes and bars. Closer to Cathedral Square you will mostly find duty-free and tourist shopping.
High Street
High Street
  • High Street is probably the most interesting in the central city, with an intoxicating mixture of historical buildings and spaces inhabited by young cutting edge local designers - clothes, art galleries, cafes & cake shops, furniture and architects.
  • Manchester Street (which is the nearest Christchurch gets to a red-light district) has an interesting collection of antique shops including the three floors of Smith's Bookshop.
  • Locals tend to shop at the many suburban malls, the largest of which are Westfield Riccarton, Northlands and The Palms in Shirley (continual expansions see them leapfrogging in the rankings of the country's largest malls).
  • The Warehouse. Common throughout New Zealand, and with several stores in Christchurch, these big red stores contain a variety of bottom-end products including clothing, tools, camping equipment, toys, music, etc. Their motto is "where everyone gets a bargain" and most things are made in China. While you might not find the top quality brands here, prices are cheap.
  • Riccarton Rotary Market. (9AM-1PM) Sundays, selling all sorts of things from plants, fruit and vegetables to kiwi souvenirs and cheap Asian wares. Has performances, bouncy castles and food.
  • Buy from a local supermarket, the yellow colored Pak'n'Save is probably cheapest if you are prepared to go for whatever brand they have a special on at the time.
  • Fish'n'chips are still the cheapest meal out.
  • Fruit and vegetable shops offer locally grown high quality fresh produce for prices often much cheaper than supermarkets. The Funky Pumpkin[31] is one such example.
  • In Cathedral Square there are vendors selling meals such as fish and chips, kebabs and Chinese food.
  • On Sundays, near the market which is in the car park near the Arts Centre there is a good stall selling hot and cold drinks as well as things such as a ham, lettuce and mustard baguette ($5) and a turkey, brie and cranberry sauce panini ($7).
  • Gingko, Allan Pyatt House, 153 - 157 Hereford St, tel: +64 3 374 2523. Chinese cuisine from the Szcheuan province.
  • Perry's Cafe, 145 Madras Street (opposite Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology). M-F 8AM-5PM. Surprisingly good cafeteria-style food with touches of cafe class, gets crowded around lunchtime. $5-$7.
  • Shinsengumi - The Sushi Revolution, 169c Wairakei Rd, Bryndwr. Generous "lunch boxes". Does lovely fresh salmon / avo sushi.
  • Osaka inside The Gloucester arcade (Gloucester Street) is a Japanese diner. Most menu items are $9, come with miso soup and rice, and can be upgraded to a large serving.
  • East on High Street. Asian food court, lots of options from $6-$10 for lunch/dinner.
  • Queebler's Cafe. Affordable in the middle of the city centre. $3-6
  • Samurai Bowl, 140 Gloucester Street (Between Colombo & Manchester Streets), +64 3 379 6752. This restaurant serves authentic Japanese food.  edit
  • Dux de Lux, 41 Hereford Street, corner Hereford & Montreal Sts, +64 3 366 6919, [32]. Restaurant, bar and boutique brewery with vegetarian options and live bands four nights a week. Can get a bit crowded and noisy. $15-$20.
  • The Bodhi Tree, 808 Colombo St. +64 3 377 6808. [33] NZ's only Burmese restaurant. $8-$12. Dishes are all entree sized for sharing.
  • Strawberry Fare, 114 Peterborough Street, +64 3 365 4897 [34] In the heart of Christchurch, Strawberry Fare carries an extensive menu of modern interpreted New Zealand dishes. It is open 7 days a week. Reservations are required.
  • MegaWatt Kitchen, 218 Manchester Street, +64 3 363 9680. Lunch only with German food, salads and desserts. $8-$14.
  • Under the Red Verandah, 502 Worcester Street, +64 3 381 1109. Under the Red Verandah offers a range of food incorporating fair trade coffee, free range eggs and gluten free baked goods. This restaurant is closed on Mondays.
  • The Red Square, 133 Worcester St 64 3 3744127 Authenic Russian restuarant great food, desert and coffee
  • The Santorini, corner Gloucester Street & Cambridge Terrace, +64 3 379 6975, [35]. T-Sa 6PM-late. A Greek restaurant with live music and dancing. $24.
  • Sign of the Takahe, 200 Hackthorne Road, (top of the Port Hills), +64 3 332 4052. Daily 10AM-late. Formal dining in a big Gothic stone castle set on a hilltop. Hosted President Clinton's Christchurch visit for the APEC summit in 1999 and some scenes from Peter Jackson's film 'Heavenly Creatures' were shot here. Reservation essential. $35.
  • Rotherhams of Riccarton, 42 Rotherham Street (next to Riccarton Mall), +64 3 341 5142, [36]. Tu-Sa. Bookings highly recommended, especially Thursday to Saturday.
  • Aiki in the city, 599 Colombo St. +64 3 3661178. Japanese cuisine at a reasonable price. Lunch $10-15, Dinner $25+. If you are not too short of money, their set banquets (kaiseki) are well worth the money at the starting price of about $50.
  • At Tony's, 85 Riccarton Road, +64 3 341 6608. Good Teppanyaki with special all you can eat deals Tuesday-Thursday.
  • The main nightspot for locals are a congregation of bars and clubs on the Oxford Tce by the river, nicknamed "The Strip".
  • The recently developed South of Lichfield (SOL) lane has also become a popular and exciting spot, and is more fasionable than the strip. The lane is dotted with excellent bars, cafes and clothing boutiques, and leads to a small square which becomes very lively at night.
  • The Dux de Lux is a real Christchurch classic drinking spot. The Dux brews their own award winning beer including the Nor'West ale and Ginger Tom (alcoholic ginger beer). Enjoy a beer in the sun or stay late for frequent (and mostly free) gigs from local bands and beyond.
  • George's Swiss Cafe [37] in New Regent St
  • Hummingbird Coffee of Victoria Street roasts own coffee daily.
  • C1 Cafe on High Street has a cult following, with excellent coffee (roasted at the back of the shop), bites and skiddies - aka chocolate milk!
  • Bog Irish Pub. Right in the end of the big walking street that goes near the arch. Tables outside, great Fries, Guinness and a very cool Irish Music Jam Session on Tuesdays.
  • Fancy cheering like a local rugby fan? The Holy Grail Sports bar [38], near the Cathedral.
  • The Grumpy Mole Saloon is possibly the only wild west-themed bar in New Zealand.
  • If you fancy a short drive or bus ride (approx. 15 minutes from city centre), go to The Wunderbar in Lyttelton. It has a small room for gigs and is popular with with artists,


Backpackers are safe, cheap and cheerful. The cheapest option is a share/dorm room usually costing around $25 per night. Most offer single rooms, double rooms and group rooms.

  • Charlie B's, 268 Madras Street, Christchurch., +64 3 379-8429 (), [39]. has been a staple hostel for many years, and is reasonably central. Online bookings available.  edit
  • Dorset House Backpackers, 1 Dorset Street, Christchurch City. (in the northern end of the central city, right next to Hagley Park.), +64 3 366 8268 (), [40]. Located in a lovely 1871 historic character house. Warm, quiet and comfortable, free WiFi access. Secure On-line booking available. $25 - $74..  edit

Motels are a notch up. Low end around NZ$79 per night. There are also many good quality B&Bs in Christchurch and surrounding district.

Cathederal Square
Cathederal Square
  • AAA Northlands Motel, 232 Main North Road, Northcote (On SH 74), +64 3 352 8478 (toll free: Reservations 0800 24 01 22, , fax: +64 3 352 8451), [41]. Close to Northlands Mall and QE2 Park. A Host Accommodation Group member. $95 - $130.  edit
  • Addington Court Motel, Cnr Lincoln Road and Twigger Street, Addington, +64 3 339 4211 (toll free: Reservations 0800 782 978, , fax: +64 3 339 4233), [42]. Close to Addington Raceway, A&P Showgrounds and Westpac Trust Stadium. A Host Accommodation Group member. $135 - $270.  edit
  • Airport Christchurch Motel, 55 Roydvale Ave, Burnside. (Just off SH1 at the Airport Roundabout. Take the first left on Memorial Ave going towards the city.), +64 3 977 4970 (toll free: Reservations 0800 800 631, , fax: +64 3 977 4974), [43]. 4 minutes drive to the airport, but not on any flight path. A Host Accommodation Group member. $135 - $225.  edit
  • All Seasons Christchurch, 72 Papanui Road, +64 3 3131979 (). checkin: 2PM; checkout: 11AM. has 74 rooms, all with ensuite bathrooms, air conditioning, and satellite television. There is an on site restaurant and bar, and 24 hour front desk services. NZ $79-109.  edit
  • City Central Motel Apartments, 252 Barbadoes Street, Christchurch Central, +64 3 379 0540 (toll free: Reservations 0508 800 888, , fax: +64 3 366 4700), [44]. 5 minutes walk to Litchfield St restaurants and 7 minutes walk to Cathederal Square. A Host Accommodation Group member. $115 - $235.  edit
  • Classique Lodge Motel, 290 Blenheim Road, Riccarton, +64 3 348 4977 (toll free: Reservations 0800 45 40 45, , fax: +64 3 348 4977), [45]. 5 minutes to Westfield Riccarton Shopping Mall. A Host Accommodation Group member. $90 - $150 (2 people).  edit
  • Eliza's Manor on Bealey Bed & Breakfast, 82 Bealey Avenue, Christchurch Central, +64 3 366 8584 (, fax: +64 3 366 4946), [46]. checkin: 1PM; checkout: 10:30AM. This boutique hotel is comprised of 8 ensuite rooms and is a smoke-free environment. Eliza's Manor is also located close to the airport and public transportation. NZ$185-295 Double including breakfast.  edit
  • Hotel Off The Square, Cathedral Junction, 115 Worcester Street, PO Box 13196, Christchurch, +64 3 374 9980 (, fax: +64 3 374 9987), [48]. checkin: 2PM; checkout: 11AM. This 38-room hotel offers its guests free broadband internet and minibars in each room. Hotel Off the Square is in the lively Inner City district. NZ $140-350.  edit
  • Hotel SO, 165 Cashel Street, +64 3 968 5050 (toll free: in NZ call 0508 165 165, , fax: +64 3 968 5051), [49]. $69 Single to $169 Family.  edit
  • Milano Motor Lodge, 87 Papanui Road, Papanui, +64 3 355 2800 (toll free: Reservations 0800 878 766, , fax: +64 3 355 2800), [50]. 5 minutes walk to Hagley Park or Merivale Shopping Mall, 2-3 minutes walk to restaurants. A Host Accommodation Group member. $125 - $240.  edit
  • Orpington House Bed and Breakfast, 3 Marion Place, Lincoln, Canterbury, +64 3 325-7790, [51]. This B&B only has one bedroom and is located 20 minutes drive outside of Christchurch city.  edit
  • Quest Christchurch, Cathedral Junction, 113 Worcester Street, PO Box 204, Christchurch, +64 3 964 6200 (, fax: +64 3 964 6204), [52]. checkin: 2PM; checkout: 11AM. 1 or 2 bedroom apartments NZ$140-400.  edit
  • Windsor Bed & Breakfast Hotel, 52 Armagh Street Christchurch Central, +64 3 366 1503 (, fax: +64 3 366 9796), [54]. Rates include an English-style breakfast. It is located 5 minutes away from the city centre. NZ$140.  edit

For travelers who want to stay a month or longer, there are a number of furnished flats for rent advertised in the papers. A local company called "Urban Rooms" [55] has a number of furnished rentals specifically for travelers, ranging from rooms in a shared house to self-contained flats with garages.

Stay safe

Christchurch has a problem with smog during the winter. Take care venturing out on calm frosty evenings if you have a breathing-related medical condition.

While violent crime is relatively rare, some people do have a tendency towards aggression when drunk, as with most cities. As in any city, take care late at night, especially on Friday and Saturdays as levels of intoxication can lead to unwanted attention or unprovoked violence. Avoid dark alleyways and confrontations, and if in doubt, make haste to a populated area and call the police (dial 111).

Get out

Christchurch is often the starting or finishing point for touring the whole South Island.


You might want to visit:

  • Akaroa is beautiful, quaint and packed with good eateries. Try out the "Swim with the Dolphins in the sea" trip.
  • Arthur's Pass National Park for a bush getaway or a fantastic train jounrey.
  • Banks Peninsula is literally on the edge of the city, and offers a quieter a beauty than the Alps, but quite lovely.
  • Dunedin to cheer the Otago rugby team at Carisbrook, the House of Pain
  • Hanmer Springs to soak in the hot pools
  • Hokitika to catch the Wild Foods Festival
  • Invercargill for Bluff oysters
  • Kaikoura for crayfish and whale watching
  • Blenheim for wine and sun
  • Nelson for sun, wine and art
  • Picton to take the ferry to Wellington
  • Queenstown for high-octane prepackaged adventure tourism
  • Waipara The newest wine region, specializing in some of New Zealand's finest wines
  • The West Coast Gateway to Glacier Rigion, punakaiki (pancake Rocks) Shanty town, Greymouth and Hokitika
This is a guide article. It has a variety of good, quality information including hotels, restaurants, attractions, arrival and departure info. Plunge forward and help us make it a star!

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
(Redirected to Database error article)

From LoveToKnow 1911

(There is currently no text in this page)

Simple English

Borough of Christchurch

Borough of Christchurch shown within Dorset
Population 45,000 [1]
Shire county Dorset
Region South West
Constituent country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Dialling code 01202/01425
Police Dorset
Fire Dorset
Ambulance South Western
European Parliament South West England
List of places: UKEngland • Dorset
Coordinates: 50°44′00″N 1°47′00″W / 50.7333°N 1.7833°W / 50.7333; -1.7833

Christchurch is a town in Dorset, England. It is next to Bournemouth.


  1. 2006 est

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