Accommodation in Christchurch
Christchurch with its more than 330,000 inhabitants is the largest city on the South Island and is located in the province of Canterbury. The city was founded in 1848 by English settlers as the capital of the Canterbury Settlement, at the mouth of the Avon River. The town exudes a real English atmosphere, partly because of the Victorian and Gothic Revival architectural style and is therefore known as the most English city outside of England. Another name that Christchurch has been given is the ‘garden city of New Zealand, through the many parks and the Botanic Gardens.
The city is easy to explore on foot or bicycle or alternatively ride free yellow buses that take you to all the attractions and sights.
Where else in the world within two hours of an international airport, you can ski at a world-class alpine resort, play golf, bungy jump, raft, mountain bike, hot-air balloon, wind surf, whale watch and visit internationally-acclaimed wineries and gardens.
Christchurch International Airport
The Christchurch Airport is located 12 kilometers northwest of the city center in the district of Harewood. The airport handles 6 million passengers per year. The airport is mainly used for domestic flights but also for a number of international and intercontinental flights. In addition, the airport is used for transport to Antarctica. From Christchurch by the following airlines operated flights:
• Air New Zealand (to Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney and Nadi)
• Qantas (to Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne [Australia])
• Singapore Airlines (Singapore)
Directors Choice – Top Hotels for all Budgets
“This is an award winning 5 star luxury boutique hotel. It also has onsite one of the best restaurants in Christchurch. “
“Nice hotel located conveniently in the city center. They also have a fantastic restaurant serving delicious contemporary cuisine. “
“This is a great reasonably priced hotel located centrally in Christchurch. The distinctive charming Tudor style architecture reflects Christchurch’s image as the most English city of England. “
“This charming B&B offers 6 lovely individually decorated B^&B rooms and 8 self-contained motel style units. For a relaxing stay in a preserved historic homestead this is the place to be. “
More information about Christchurch
1. Wine and Dine
There are many great eateries in the Garden City. From family restaurants and local cafes to fine dining establishments there is something for all taste buds. Find Out More >
2. Avon River
The Avon River is as it were the lifeblood of Christchurch and meanders through the city. Along the river is the biggest piece of nature from Christchurch; green banks with ancient oaks and weeping willows, swans and ducks and Victorian bridges. The Avon River flows past the Botanic Gardens. The gardens are laid out in 1863, and have a great collection of both exotic and native plants. Punting is a popular year round activity. Find Out More >
3. Botanic Gardens
The Botanic Gardens, which were built in 1863 are a large contributor to Christchurch’s reputation as the Garden City of New Zealand . The gardens are a wonderful place to relax between the rock and water gardens, lawns, rose gardens, flower fields and woods. The gardens are largely enclosed by the Avon River. Between August and April tours are given through the garden in fine weather. Find Out More >
4. Canterbury Museum
Next to the entrance of the Botanic Gardens is one of the best museums in New Zealand; the Canterbury Museum. In a Gothic building from 1870, you will find collections of oriental art, furniture and fashion of all times and one of the finest exhibits of stuffed birds in the southern hemisphere. Another highlight is the Hall of Antarctic Discovery. Here you can experience a simulation of the expedition of the first Antarctic Explorers. Find Out More >
5. Christchurch Tramway
Take a journey on the historic Christchurch Tramway to explore Christchurch attractions in a relaxed manner. These 1905 trams have been restored and since 1995 they are again in use. The route is about 2.5 km and takes you past all the attractions of the city. Find Out More >
6. Hagley Park
Nearly a third of Christchurch consists of parks, gardens or recreation grounds. The best known park is Hagley Park which consists of 180 acres, making it the largest park in the city. There are bike paths, ponds and even a golf course! Find Out More >
7. International Antarctic Centre
About 20 minutes’ drive to the airport in Christchurch is the International Antarctic Centre. Here you will find interactive exhibits on the research underway in the South Pole. There is plenty of things to experience from a snow storm to a ride on an Antarctic vehicle (Haglunds). To this day exhibitions to Antarctic leave from Christchurch International Airport, the centre also serves as a briefing centre for these flights. Find Out More >
8. The Four Winds National Marae
If you want to know more about Maori culture a visit to a Marae is one of the nicest ways to learn about their history, customs and traditions. A Marae is a group of traditional Maori buildings. The Nga Hau e Wha – that means four winds – is one of the larger Marae in New Zealand and is located approximately 6 miles northeast of Christchurch. You also get to see traditional dance and music performances and enjoy one traditional meal. Find Out More >
9. Snowsports at Mount Hutt
Only one hour from Christchurch International Airport you will find a world class ski field and terrain park. Heli skiing is also a popular option here. Find Out More >
10. Day trip to Lyttelton
The small historic town of Lyttelton is a short scenic drive from Christchurch has a lot to offer. A highlight is to hire a kayak and explore Quail Island in Lyttelton Harbor or just catch a ferry and spend the day freedom walking. The Antarctica explores Scott and Shackleton trained their sled dogs here. Find Out More >
On Tuesday February 22, 2011, there was another earthquake in and around Christchurch. The quake had a magnitude of 6.3 on the Richter scale. Although the effect was less than the earthquake of 2010, there were many deaths and this time the damage was much greater than in September 2010. Over 800 historic buildings have been destroyed and there are about 200 deaths. The famous Gothic Christchurch Cathedral partially collapsed.
Nearly two-thirds of the 160,000 homes in and around the city have been damaged. At the end of 2011, a major Recovery Plan was presented, in which it was decided to move the city center to a new location in a more stable surface.
It is expected to take several years before the recovery is completed. Until that time, the center of the city is restricted. The Christchurch Cathedral, Canterbury Museum, the Arts Centre and several other prominent buildings in the center will be fully restored, but for the time being there is no access. Also a large number of hotels in Christchurch have been restored and rebuilt, which are available during the recovery period, but with limited hotel capacity.
Outside the center a new shopping and entertainment center has been built. The airport was outside the worst affected area, and is therefore fully operational. Also, the International Antarctic Centre is open as usual.