Christchurch – A City Being Rebuilt and Redefined
The Cardboard Cathedral
Once the head-turning focal point of Cathedral Square, the over 150-year-old Christchurch Cathedral was damaged in the 2011 earthquake. With the rebuild up in the air, the Anglican Church created the ‘Transitional Cathedral’, a temporary building made mostly out of cardboard in Latimer Square. You need to see it to believe it.
Christchurch Botanical Gardens
At the heart of Christchurch are the 165 lush hectares of Hagley Park. Inside the park are the Christchurch Botanical Gardens – a free attraction featuring grand water fountains, fauna, and flora for every season. Visit the information centre, take a guided tour during the warmer months or go at it alone to see what you can see. The nearby Christchurch Art Gallery can be incorporated for an art fix.
New Brighton Pier
A coastal town, Christchurch has beautiful beaches in droves. New Brighton Pier is an ideal place to lap up views of the coastline as it borders the city. Walk right to the end of the pier and watch the waves and surfers do their thing from a bird’s-eye view.
Quake City and Quake Tour
Located on the corner of Armagh Street and Durham Street North, Quake City details the effect the earthquakes have had on Christchurch through ‘stories of heroism, hope and loss’. Tips of the hat go to the science behind the quakes, the people involved in the emergency response, and where the rebuild process is up to. This is a must-see, not only for international tourists seeing the city for the first time, but also for Kiwis from outside of Christchurch.
Championing Street Art
Rather than fighting graffiti artists head on, Christchurch has encouraged the art form by showcasing professionally produced murals as part of the rebuild. Do your own self-guided walking tour amongst the inner-city streets to experience the art installations in their urban environment. On a smaller scale is the Brockworth Street Art Gallery, a stretch of path with walls adorning some smaller works.
Christchurch is a re-emerging dynamic and modern city on the rise. The notable sights we’ve listed here are bolstered by a vibrant and lively café, restaurant and bar scene.