New Zealand's ‘Garden City’ is a place of quiet streets, leafy parks and beautiful tree-lined boulevards. Christchurch has an unmistakable English flavour to it, and serves as the gateway to southern New Zealand’s natural wonders. The rebuild of the country's oldest city continues apace - following the earthquakes that devastated it in 2011 - and the South Island's biggest city is now blossoming, having evolved into a confident and cultural powerhouse.
Colourful street art adds an edge to the city, while shiny new bars and restaurants contribute to the sense of revitalisation and renewal. Visit museums, and take tours to learn more of the reconstruction, which has made incredible progress in recent years. The old-time charm of a punt on the River Avon is still a quintessential Christchurch experience. Sail amid weeping willows drooping to the water, as you drift through a blur of colours in the botanical gardens.
Surrounded by extinct volcanoes, soaring lakes, and the rolling farmlands of the Canterbury Plains, spectacular scenery sprawls around the city. Pay a visit to the Southern Alps’ snow-covered peaks, the stunning hot pools and rushing streams of Hanmer Springs, or the Hector’s dolphins who swim at Akaroa. A city that has faced immense challenges - both natural and manmade - over the last decade, it's hard not to feel inspired by Christchurch's defiant character and friendly people, who share an open and welcoming outlook that shines stronger than ever.