Christchurch on $10 or more
An A - Z of Christchurch on $10 or more ..... the Christchurch community will be grateful to visitors who dig deep to help get the city back on its financial feet. (Updated April 2013)
Check out the Christchurch City Council map that will help you find accommodation, markets, eating and drinking options etc in the city. The i-SITE Visitor Centre has relocated to the Botanic Gardens, Rolleston Avenue (next to Canterbury Museum), it's open 7 days, 8.30am - 5pm.
Bookme has come to Christchurch, Canterbury and Kaikoura. Check for discounts to activities and attractions like Punting on the Avon, Orana Wildlife Park, The Horsepower Experience and Willowbank Wildlife Reserve.
Situated on the banks of the Avon River and within walking distance of the central city the Botanic Gardens include more than 21 hectares of colour to wander. (Curator's House Restaurant & Cafe in the garden reopened at the end of 2012).
Pick up a map from the i-SITE in the gardens to help you find your way around or take a Caterpillar Garden Tour (reduced hours in winter, on Facebook). The gardens are open from 7am daily, free.
Drexels Breakfast Restaurant, Westfield Mall, Riccarton
Early risers can have breakfast at Drexels from 6.30am during the week and 7am weekends. The signature hash brown is served with most dishes, and filter coffee and tea are bottomless. (Drexel's in Hereford Street remains closed but Drexel's in Westfield Mall, Riccarton is open - Dine Out reviews).
Copenhagen Bakery, 409 Harewood Road, Bishopdale
The Danish Copenhagen Bakery reopened January 2012 in a new location in Bishopdale, eat in or takeaway. Open Monday - Friday from 7am, Saturday from 8am. (Dine Out reviews).
Accommodation to suit all budgets - visit wotif.com, we can personally recommend Amore Motor Lodge (Trip Advisor reviews), Kauri Motel on Riccarton (Trip Advisor reviews) and Annabelle Court Motel (Trip Advisor reviews), all in Riccarton. The three motels are modern, clean and well equipped, they're close to Drexels Breakfast Restaurant and Westfield Riccarton.
Tip: Pre book accommodation, rooms can be scarce, likewise tables in restaurants.
Unique accommodation outside the city - Wagonstays Luxury Escape, a pioneer wagon with modern conveniences. A B&B farm stay option is Huntingdon Grange, 20 minutes drive from the city (Trip Advisor reviews). We've stayed at Pomeroy's on Kilmore, a guest house in the city next to Pomeroy's Old Brewery Inn, B&B from $145. We enjoyed our stay - Trip Advisor reviews.
Canterbury Cheesemongers sell hand made cheese and baked goods, there's a couple of tables outside to enjoy coffee and treats in the sun. Open Tuesday - Friday 10am-5pm; Saturday 10am - 4pm, located in the Old Registry Building at the Arts Centre, 301 Montreal Street. (Canterbury Cheesemongers also sell cheese at the Farmers Market at Riccarton House every Saturday).
||Canterbury Museum, Rolleston Avenue (entrance opposite Worcester Boulevard)
See a recreation of a Victorian Christchurch street, Antarctic artefacts, a hall of NZ birds and a costume gallery. Curious Kiwiana - visit the recreation of Fred and Myrtle Flutey's paua shell lounge, and watch a short film about the hospitable couple who welcomed over one million visitors into their home in Bluff. The museum is open from 9am daily (except Christmas day), free guided tours. Entry is free, donations appreciated. The Museum Cafe on the 4th floor has good views over the Botanic Gardens.
Christchurch Art Gallery, corner Worcester Boulevard and Montreal Street
The Art Gallery remains closed, the Art Gallery shop has relocated to 40 Lichfield Street (opposite the temporary bus station). As the gallery is closed, art has moved from the walls to Outer Spaces.
||Create your own carving at The Bone Dude's Bone Carving Studio, 153 Marshland Road, Shirley (previously located in the city). Choose from a range of designs or create your own, in three hours or less you will have a finished product. (Trip Advisor reviews).
Design your own jewellery at Beadz Unlimited, 7 New Regent Street in the city or corner Innes Road and Cranford Street, St Albans. Create your own unique piece of jewellery, purchase a ready made creation or join a workshop. (More information about New Regent Street, the colourful little strip that reopened in April 2013).
Events - BeThere.co.nz is run by the Christchurch City Council Events Team. Cityscape is a good little seasonal guide to what's happening, pick up a copy from the i-SITE or visit the website.
||Every cute car admirer will like sweet little Myrtle, a 1929 replica body Austin 7. Myrtle and her driver can putter you around the perimeter of the red zone for $15, you'll usually see Myrtle at Re:START Thursday - Saturday. Myrtle's also available for special occasions, events and photo shoots. Visit Happy Tours for further details about Myrtle and her mate Happy.
Ferrymead Heritage Park, 50 Ferrymead Park Drive, Ferrymead (15 minutes drive from the city)
The Edwardian township at Ferrymead includes a Museum of Flame - firemen will appreciate the display of old fire engines from around the country. Aeroplane enthusiasts can chat to the friendly plane restorer and find out which two planes were used as chicken coops on an Otago farm.
Tram rides are usually available weekends and school holidays, the steam train runs on some Sundays.
Open daily from 10am, admission costs. (Note: If you visit during the week you might have the place to yourself (and not all attractions operate), you may appreciate visiting on weekends when the atmosphere will be more lively).
Gap Filler - a creative approach to using empty spaces. The aim is to fill spaces with creative projects until they're required for re-building - see current gap fillers or download The Gap Map. The Think Differently Book Exchange is still open on the corner of Kilmore and Barbadoes Streets, the Dance-O-Mat has been packed up for winter 2013 but will return in spring. (More information thecuriouskiwiblog - Air Guitaring at the Dance-O-Mat).
||Groynes Recreation Reserve, 160 Johns Road, Belfast (12km from inner city)
Take a bush walk and spot the bird life, you can also fish for trout (you need to purchase a licence first). Boats can be hired on sunny weekends, coin operated BBQs are available if you want to make a day of it. Groynes is a rubbish free park so you will need to take your rubbish away with you. Gates open 7am. Chardonnay Motor Lodge is next to Groynes (Trip Advisor reviews).
Haunted tram ride and zombie attack? That's what you'll get at the Murder Mystery Dinner Theatre held at Ferrymead Heritage Park. Murder Mystery is on Facebook, as is Horror Maze (returns 2014).
||Head over the hill to Taylor's Mistake, a popular surf spot and home to some classic Kiwi baches. To get there you will need your own transport, look for Taylor's Mistake Road south of the village of Sumner and drive the winding road to its end. See the surf conditions on the webcam, Taylors Surf is also on Facebook.
Hire a retro ride from Vintage Peddler at 16 Bealey Avenue. Bike hire from $15 per hour to $30 a day.
||Heading for a career in the military and want a practice run? Visit Tanks for Everything - a military tank experience. Get a guided tour of military vehicles, put on camouflage clothing and take control of a tank on the purpose built track. Located at 985 McLeans Island Road (1km from Orana Wildlife Park, 10 minutes from the airport), bookings essential. Check out Trip Advisor reviews.
Horsepower gives you the chance to get out on the race track and ride on a sulkie behind a champion pacer. Horsepower is located at 59 Russley Road, Avonhead (2km from the airport).
Indulge your chocolate craving at She Chocolat, 79 Main Road, Governors Bay and enjoy the stunning view.
Try a Chocolate Lovers Platter or book a half day Chocolate Culinary Tour.
She Chocolat is open 7 days. (Dine Out and Trip Advisor reviews).
The Fudge Cottage is now in Bishopdale Shopping Centre on Harewood Road (you can also order online). The Fudge Cottage left its old time feel in The Arts Centre and the new store is bright and modern. One hour kitchen tours are offered, visit the website for updates. The shopping centre is 5 minutes drive from the airport and 10 minutes drive from the central city. Open 9am - 5.30pm Monday - Friday and 10am - 3pm on Saturday.
||International Antarctic Centre, 38 Orchard Road, Christchurch Airport
Trip Advisor reviewers recommend allowing plenty of time for your visit and covering up your cell phones and cameras before the movie starts so they don't get wet. Penguins are a favourite and The Antarctic Storm might be the closest you can get to experiencing Antarctica outside the real thing. Tickets are $65 per adult (book online and save $5). A free shuttle departs from near the i-SITE in the city on the hour. Canterbury Residents Deal - 50% off. Open 365 days.
i-SITE Visitor Centre has relocated to the Botanic Gardens, Rolleston Avenue (next to Canterbury Museum). The i-SITE's your one stop shop for visitor information and booking services. Open 7 days, 8.30am - 5pm. Visit the Pop Up City Christchurch blog.
||It often snows in Christchurch over winter, you can ski and snow board a couple of hours down the road at the Hanmer Springs Ski Area. Shuttles travel the 17km trip during the season from Hanmer Springs village to the ski area. There are three lifts and one groomer, I've read it's perfect for intermediate to advanced skiers and boarders. (Trip Advisor reviews). You can ice skate year round at Alpine Ice.
Jump start your day with a flat white at Crafted Coffee Company, 121 Blenheim Road, Riccarton or the cafe in Cashel Mall Re:START. Hide Kono from Crafted Coffee was the 2011 Huhtamaki NZ Barista Championship winner, and Carl Sara, owner of Crafted Coffee Company, is a 4x NZ Barista winner, obviously these guys know their coffee.
Luciano Marcolino is another Christchurch based barista champion and Luciano Espresso Bar has reopened at 76 Moorhouse Avenue (next to Lighting Direct).
Kai can be gathered at
Christchurch Farmers Market, Riccarton House, 16 Kahu Road every Saturday from 9am - 12 noon. Lyttelton Farmers Market is held every Saturday from 10am - 1pm in the lower grounds of Lyttelton Main School, Oxford Street.
Kayaks are for hire at the picturesque Antigua Boat Sheds, 2 Cambridge Terrace from $10 per hour. Alternatively, go punting on the Avon in an authentic Edwardian punt. Punting and boat hire available 7 days. The Boat Shed Cafe next door is open for breakfast and can provide you with a picnic basket of snacks to take on the water. Cafe open 7 days.
Lincoln Road in Addington is home to Addington Coffee Co-op at number 297. Service and food at Addington Coffee are worth visiting for and WiFi is free with purchase. They support the work of Freeset in India by selling clothing and bags. There's also a laundromat - 3 washing machines and 2 dryers, washing powder is provided free. Open 7 days
(Dine Out reviews). Jailhouse Accommodation is nearby if you want a budget bed for the night.
||Live acts and craft beer are back on the menu at Dux Live on Lincoln Road (look out for New York Deli at 363 Lincoln Road, Dux Live is behind the deli). If live theatre is something you enjoy see what's on at the new Court Theatre, Bernard Street in Addington. Other eating options in the area include The Pedal Pusher at 284 - 286 Lincoln Road, and Bean Scene Cafe at 359 Lincoln Road.
If craft beer is something you're interested in see our Christchurch brew pub information. If whisky is your preferred drop visit Whisky Galore at 66 Victoria Street in the city.
Lyttelton's London Street has lost some of its colourful buildings but a petanque pitch and community space has been built on a vacant section, and Tommy Chang's cafe is next door at number 48.
Other cafe options are Samo Coffee Lounge, 3 Canterbury Street - location temporary, and Coffee Culture, 18 London Street.
Wunderbar reopened for the third time on 30 March 2012 - see thecuriouskiwiblog Curious or Creepy? Port Hole bar at 42 London Street is a new addition to the village, it sits on the former site of Volcano Cafe.
Lyttelton has a Farmers Market every Saturday, 10am-1pm at the Lyttelton Main School on Oxford Street. Harbour Co-op (formerly Lyttel Piko) at 12 London Street sells organic and whole foods. The Lyttelton Harbour Information Centre is operating from temporary premises at 65 London Street.
||Mona Vale, 63 Fendalton Road, Fendalton
Mona Vale homestead operated as a cafe/restaurant. It is situated next to the Avon river, has a country style garden, ornate fern house and gazebo. (Mona Vale is closed until further notice due to significant damage, however the gardens are still open to the public - visit Facebook for updates).
Movies - If you like Arthouse films check out Academy Gold Cinema at The Colombo. Alice in Videoland are on the corner of High and Tuam Streets and they also have a 38 seat arthouse cinema. C1 espresso have opened next door and the cafe is as popular as ever, there's some quirky features like the Singer sewing machine water dispenser, and bookshelf door.
||Music - To find out about Christchurch musicians see CHART, there's a gig guide on Mukuna. On the third Sunday of the month see live music courtesy of New Music Collective and Chambers241. Community pianos often pop up on the streets of Christchurch, the one pictured may still be at the Pallet Pavillion.
New Brighton Library, Pier Building, 213 Marine Parade
The architects who designed the seaside library thoughtfully provided large windows overlooking Brighton beach. On the ground floor are comfy chairs where you can relax and read, or plan your next move as you gaze out to sea. Salt on the Pier cafe next to the library provides sea views with coffee and is open 7 days from 8.30am. (Salt on the Pier restaurant is located upstairs).
Like markets? Check out the New Brighton Community Market held on the first and third Saturday of the month (except over winter) - visit Facebook to keep up-to-date. Like sand castles? NZ SandCastle Competition is held on Brighton beach in February.
NZ Cup & Show week in November is a week long celebration of horse racing, fashion and entertainment. The Canterbury A&P Show is a highlight - calendar of events for Cup & Show week.
Only 90 minutes from Christchurch are two of our favourite small villages in New Zealand - Hanmer Springs (north of Christchurch) and French flavoured Akaroa (south east of Christchurch). Relax in one of the country's best hot pool complexes - Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa.
If you're interested in mosaic art I highly recommend a visit to the magical mosaic garden at Giant's House B&B in Akaroa. Black Cat Cruises take you out on Akaroa harbour where you may spot some of the world's smallest and rarest dolphins, Black Cat Cruises are rated highly on Trip Advisor.
Orana Wildlife Park is an open range zoo and utilises moats and banks where possible to keep animals enclosed rather than cages and high fences. If you'd like to get up close and terrified by lions drive through the African Lion Habitat on the back of a modified truck - Lion Encounter. Lunch for the lions ensures your experience will be remembered - short video of the encounter. Orana Wildlife Park is open 7 days (except Christmas Day), 10am - 5pm (Rankers and Trip Advisor reviews).
Tip: There are 20 tickets for the Lion Encounter each day at a cost of $30 pp (on top of park admission - $25). Tickets are first come first served but you can phone ahead to reserve and pay for your place. It's a tight fit in the back of the truck and weekends are especially busy, if you visit during the week you might strike it lucky and have less people in the truck giving you more opportunity for an extra close encounter.
Pomeroy's Old Brewery Inn, 292 Kilmore Street
We like the atmosphere at Pomeroy's - old English pub meets historical Canterbury. Craft beers are on tap and there are regular beer tasting events. Victoria's Kitchen dished us out Three Mushroom Risotto ($22.50) and Chicken Rigatoni ($21) on our last visit, good portion sizes, great taste and reasonable prices - no complaints here - DineOut reviews. Closed Monday. You can make a night of it and stay next door at Pomeroy's on Kilmore, guests receive a voucher for a beverage of their choice, cheers.
Public bus transport is run by Metro, the temporary central station is at 46-50 Lichfield Street (behind Cashel Mall Re:START). A $3.20 ticket gives you one free transfer within two hours - head to Lyttelton for lunch or Sumner for a walk down the beach, return to the city within two hours and it's a cheap trip. Metrocard may be better value for long term visitors. An airport bus service is run by Red Bus.
Queen Elizabeth II Park Sport & Leisure Centre, 171 Travis Road, New Brighton
QEII is currently closed, it has been relocated to the Parklands Community Centre. Alternatively Pioneer Recreation & Sport Centre at 75 Lyttelton Street in Spreydon is open and has an indoor pool, spa, sauna, steam room and fitness centre.
Riccarton Rotary Sunday Market, Riccarton Park Racecourse, Racecourse Road (10 - 15 minutes drive from the city)
There are rows of stalls to browse at the Riccarton Sunday market, 9am - 2pm, rain or shine. Other markets include the Boulevard Arts Market and Re:START Markets on Oxford Terrace (Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 9am-4pm - weather dependent).
||Riccarton dining recommendations - Ground Floor Cafe at 47 Riccarton Road is across the road from a few motels, it's a good option for breakfast or lunch and intriguing art work makes the visit more interesting.
Buddha Stix at 74 Riccarton Road is a modern Asian restaurant, service is friendly and fast. Meals are super tasty and reasonably priced - we had the Massuman Curry ($19) and Sweet & Sour Vegetables ($19). Open 7 days for lunch & dinner (Dine Out reviews). We highly recommend booking at Buddha Stix and other restaurants in the city, finding a spare table without a booking is difficult.
Shopping – If you like shopping in malls you'll like shopping in Christchurch - Riccarton mall, Northlands mall and The Palms are three of the city’s best. The Orbiter will take you to the shopping malls if you don't have transport. You can also shop at Cashel Mall Re:START, a container shopping centre in the heart of the city - it's well worth visiting. (Re:START is now expected to remain until at least January 2014 - for additional information see thecuriouskiwiblog - Cashel Mall Re:START, Christchurch). The Colombo at 363 Colombo Street is a new shopping hub.
||Stock up on organic produce at Piko Wholefoods, 248 Stanmore Road, they sell certified organic fruit and vegetables, a range of whole foods and gluten free products. Harbour Co-op (formerly Lyttel Piko) at 12 London Street, Lyttelton is now a community owned cooperative.
Liberty Market on the corner of Moorhouse and Fitzgerald Avenue is another option, they are a certified organic retailer.
Sumner is a seaside suburb of Christchurch and you can hire surf boards and wet suits from aumoana, 9 Wakefield Avenue. I visited Coffee Culture at 28 Marriner Street for morning tea, another cafe option is Underground Coffee at 25 Marriner Street. The Hollywood Cinema in Sumner opened in 1938 and it's still standing strong.
at The Cup Cake Collection, Sweethearts at Berryfields & Rose Cafe
The Cup Cake Collection is a gorgeous wee store in a small, suburban mall at 140 Colombo Street, Beckenham. Decorated in pastel colours with pretty tea cups, plates and tea pots it's the perfect place for tea and sweet cakes with friends. Open Monday - Friday, 9.30am-5pm and Saturday 9.30am-4pm. The Cup Cake Collection also has a stall (no seating or beverages sold) on Level 2, Westfield Riccarton.
Sweethearts at Berryfields, 161 Gardiners Road, Harewood
Sweethearts have been serving Victorian High Tea for almost 20 years ($27.50 per person). Other morning and afternoon tea options include Devonshire Tea ($17.50) and Queens Tea Sandwiches ($15.90). Breakfast, brunch and lunch are also served and fresh berries can be purchased (seasonal) -
Dine Out reviews. Open
7 days, reservations recommended.
||Rose Cafe, 466 Papanui Road is another cute place for a cuppa. Part antique shop / part cafe there are plenty of pretty things to browse. The all day menu is eclectic - waffles, pancakes, pumpkin soup, toasties and an $18 breakfast. Open Monday - Saturday.
Trash to treasure - EcoShop (formerly Supershed & Retroshed) is located at 191 Blenheim Road, Riccarton. If it's recyclable it will be here.
Unique coffee stops, cafes and bars are popping up, and in the case of The Town Ball - blowing up, all around Christchurch. The Town Ball on Manchester Street is an inflatable rugby ball shaped restaurant and bar serving Crusader cocktails and beer expensive enough to make us see red. Revival Container Bar on Victoria Street has a reuse and recycle vibe - take a seat in a supermarket trolley or car seat. (More information - Unusual Christchurch bars)
Vegetarians or vegans - visit the Christchurch Vegetarian Centre website. The Lotus Heart Vegetarian Restaurant at 363 St Asaph Street is a calm and relaxing haven in the central city, in the same building is the Gandharva Loka world music store.
Water Drop Vegetarian Cafe (closed temporarily) is part of the Fo Guang Shan Buddhist Temple, the cafe is another haven of calm on the very busy Riccarton Road. There's a set lunch for $12.50, sweet snacks in the cabinet and free fruit on the tables. (Closed Monday).
||Walk the Writers' Trail - Many of the plaques are in the red zone and unable to be viewed at the moment, however if you're interested in writers with a Canterbury connection check out the Writers' Trail brochure.
Whodunnit? Dame Ngaio Marsh (1895 - 1982) is New Zealand's Queen of Crime fiction writing, and a world renowned fiction writer. Tours of her home at 37 Valley Road, Cashmere can be arranged by appointment, $10 (2-10 people), $15 (individual person). Tours are run by volunteers so pre-booking is essential.
Writers Festival & NZ Book Month
See The Press Christchurch Writers Festival for updates, the festival is usually held in September. NZ Book Month is celebrated every year in March, visit the events section on the website to see what's happening in the Christchurch area.
||X marks the spot at Map World, 35 Moorhouse Avenue. Buy maps, travel books, local guide books for cyclists, GPS devices, compasses and travel accessories. Closed Sunday.
You will be entertained at the World Buskers Festival in January each year. Garden City Summer Times concerts and events are held 31 December - March, and the Festival of Flowers is held February - March. The biennial Christchurch Arts Festival runs 22 August - 22 September 2013. (List of festivals around the country).
Zero charge for WiFi - at some Christchurch libraries. Free WiFi with purchase is available at McDonalds and Addington Coffee Co-op. Telecom has been providing free WiFi hotspots throughout the city since the February 2011 earthquake. Free WiFi is also available at Cashel Mall Re:START.
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