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Christchurch is one of the most picturesque cities of New Zealand.  It is a place where you feel at home and welcome at first sight.  It is also a great travel destination for city lovers as well as outdoor enthusiasts.  Let’s explore and start your trip to Christchurch, New Zealand:

Google describes the city as follows:  “Christchurch, known for its English heritage, is located on the east coast of New Zealand’s South Island. Flat-bottomed punts glide on the Avon River, which meanders through the city center. On its banks are cycling paths, the green expanse of Hagley Park and Christchurch Botanic Gardens.” – Google

Exploring the City

Exploring the City Centre of Christchurch is easy, as you have the option to do a tour on the beautiful tram which runs through the city.  Or rent a scooter and explore the city in a fun way.

15 Places to visit in Christchurch New Zealand

When walking around the city center you’ll find easy notice boards, so you can’t get lost.  Here are a few must-see destinations according to the city:

  1. The Botanical Gardens
  2. Canterbury Museum
  3. Christchurch Art Gallery
  4. Quake City
  5. Turanga Central Library
  6. New Regent Street
  7. Margaret Mahy Family Playground
  8. Cardboard Transitional Cathedral
  9. The Terraces
  10. Salt District
  11. Riverside Market
  12. Canterbury Earthquake National Memorial – ‘The memorial is a place to reflect on the 2010/2011 earthquakes that changed Greater Christchurch forever.’
  13. DOC Visitor Information Centre
  14. The Arts Centre
Things to do in Christchurch New Zealand

Now when you’re in Christchurch New Zealand you just have to hire a car and get out there to drive somewhere beautiful.  We definitely recommend that you drive out to Pukaki Lake.  It is simply one of the most beautiful lakes in New Zealand …well maybe one of the most beautiful lakes in the world.  So here we go with number 15:

  1. Pukaki Lake

Must-See destination

Excellent idea for your trip:

While driving out to this beautiful lake you don’t want to be in a hurry.  Add this to your itinerary and make time for some, maybe well needed, “alone-time” or this can be the perfect outdoor picnic time for the family.

Map and Directions to Lake Pukaki

Can you swim in Lake Pukaki? 

Yes, but it is definitely not advisable as the water comes directly from a glacier.  It is icy. 

What is the reason for the lakes’ color?

At the right time of day, you’ll have the opportunity to take the most stunning photos ever.  This is a spectacular stop for any keen photographer.  The exceptional blue (turquoise) color is due to fine silt particles, or “glacial flour” (as they call it) in the water:  A result of glacial erosion.

Overnight near the lake

Mount Cook

From Lake Pukaki you can see Aoraki / Mount Cook (Almost always covered in snow).  This is the highest mountain in New Zealand and a popular tourist destination for mountain climbers loving a challenge.

  • Elevation: 3 724 m
  • First ascent: 25 December 1894
  • First ascenders: Tom Fyfe, George Graham, Jack Clarke

From Christchurch it is approx. a 3 hr 27 min (288,7 km) drive via State Hwy 1 and State Hwy 8, but this drive ends in the most scenic and spectacular location.

Maybe it is worth your while to overnight nearby:

Where to stay

Best time to go

The best time to visit Christchurch is during summertime, which is from December to February.  You’ll have plenty of fabulous summer days with limited rainfall:  Perfect for exploring and enjoying a great holiday.

Interesting fact

Christchurch became a city by Royal Charter on 31 July 1856, making it officially the oldest established city in New Zealand.

Our Experience

The city is beautiful and clean.  It is the perfect basecamp for exploring the Canterbury and West Coast region.

Book your flights and car

Booking your flights:  You’ll be flying to Christchurch International Airport (CHC).  Remember to book your vehicle online while booking your flights.

More things to do in Christchurch

Where to stay in Christchurch