(Māori: Ōtautahi) (Population 362,600)
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 & 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 the beautiful French influenced town of Akaroa located
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 and coach services to
Kaikoura, Arthurs Pass,
Methven (Mt Hutt Skifield),
Queenstown and passenger
services to Picton, Blenheim, Kaikoura, Arthurs Pass and
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 international
and domestic flights.