World-class heritage and adventures abound in Christchurch and Canterbury. It is a region of beaches and bluffs, rivers and lakes, forests and mountains.
Visit Christ Church at your own pace on a multimedia guide tour. Tickets are available online and onsite. Online ticket holders can reschedule their timeslots online for free.
The Cathedral’s Precincts occupy a large area in the heart of the city and are one of its greatest treasures. They are designated as a World Heritage Site in their own right. For centuries local residents have been able to enjoy their beauty and tranquillity and to walk through them on their way across town.
In the last few years this has become even more of a pleasure as the Precincts have been extensively restored and the cathedral itself has undergone major repair work. It is also an excellent setting for an increasing number of events.
A new visitor centre has been opened at the west end of the cathedral. Plans for a cafe and other improvements are in hand. The Cathedral’s Pipe Organ is undergoing major repair and restoration work and the Choir House will be refurbished. The appeal will also provide funding for other essential maintenance works.
However, since the beginning of this year all visitors to the Precincts are required to pay a fee of PS6. This is because the passes which allowed free entry to those who live in the city, work there or are members of certain groups were scrapped.
Christ Church Cathedral
The cathedral was devastated by the 2011 earthquake, losing its western porch and much of its spire. As a sacred place of heritage and civic gathering, its demise signaled a broken city. Now, as engineers and architects begin to rebuild it, digital collaboration is joining traditional craftsmanship to restore this historic symbol of Christchurch’s identity.
The building is the centre of the city’s Anglican community. It’s also a major venue for concerts and other events.
In addition to its religious significance, the cathedral is home to an extensive collection of art and heritage items. Among its most treasured possessions are the cathedral’s bells, which range in size from a quarter of a ton to 2.5 tons.
During the 16th and 17th centuries, the cathedral’s crypt was used as a market, trading post, and even a pub. Afterwards, it became a meeting place for business and public gatherings, and in the early 20th century, it hosted musical and liturgical events to celebrate the Christian millennium.
Today, the cathedral is a cultural hub that’s open to all. It’s also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, along with the Taj Mahal and the Giza Pyramids. You can visit the cathedral on your own or with a guided tour. Tours depart onsite at regular intervals throughout the day.
The Picture Gallery
Located right next to Christchurch International Airport, Peppers Clearwater Resort is the perfect place for travellers looking for a blend of designer chic and expressive local art. The hotel offers 179 elegantly decorated and fully air-conditioned guest rooms and suites, each one designed to accommodate the needs of every type of traveller. Its stylish Gumption Restaurant & Bar is the ideal venue to enjoy lunch, High Tea or dinner with family and friends while staying at the hotel.
The International Antarctic Centre is an award-winning visitor destination that transforms the icy continent into an exciting, interactive and educational experience for the whole family. Visitors will discover what it takes to survive in the Antarctic storm room, be thrilled on an all-terrain vehicle tour, learn about life at Scott Base and meet penguins up close. There is also a 4D theatre, Husky Zone and the Hagglunds Field Trip that will entertain the kids and adults alike.
Join a guided tour led by the museum’s Custodians to gain a deeper understanding of the paintings on display. You can book your tour online up to a week in advance or in the Visitor Centre on the day. Alternatively, you can self-guide your tour using the state-of-the-art multimedia guide. If you choose to go with this option, be sure to purchase your tickets online as there are limited timeslots available each day.
St Mary’s Church
As the Cathedral Church of the Catholic Diocese of Christchurch, St Mary’s is an active church and a major part of the Cathedral precinct. Its beautiful carved wooden doorway and pews made with heart kauri (a New Zealand native timber) have been dated to 1843.
The church was the first to hold services after the earthquakes and is now used more than ever before for weddings, funerals and community events. It was also the venue for the CBS Choir’s first European tour in 1990-1991.
It is home to the world-famous International Antarctic Centre, an award-winning visitor attraction that is a huge asset for Christchurch and the entire nation. The centre is open every day of the year and offers a number of different experiences for all ages.
These include the Hagglunds Field Trip, Storm Dome, Husky Zone, 4D Theatre and Penguin Rescue. The centre is free for children and senior citizens, while adults can join for a small fee.
On the side of the church is a brass eagle lectern, gifted in memory of Alfred Morrisby in 1902. The eagle was a symbol in the early Church of bringing the Gospel to all corners of the earth. The women’s windows that can be seen from the back of the church were commissioned by Berenice Luke and designed by Claudia Pond-Eyley. They depict various aspects of the life of Mary. They also commemorate many of the resourceful and determined women who shaped and fought for the social justices that New Zealand enjoys today. 3D tour Christchurch