Photo taken by: Julian Apse (Flying Kiwi Traveller)

Tours in Christchurch

Christchurch - Tour Highlights

Many of our trips pass through the Christchurch region and enjoy this classic piece of NZ that reminds many of old England with punting, great gardens and lovely shops. For those joining a tour passing through Christchurch here's a taste of what you will be up to.

Named ‘The Garden City’ Christchurch is the newly rejuvenated heart of architectural design in New Zealand after the destruction caused by the 2010 and 2011 Earthquakes.

Located midway down the east coast of the South Island, just north of Banks Peninsula, Christchurch is the South Island's largest city and is a vibrant cosmopolitan with exciting festivals, theatre, modern art galleries, great shopping and a host of activities. The newly built ‘container mall’ was built as a temporary hub for the city providing superb shopping and cafes that celebrate a fresh New Zealand taste and is definitely worth a visit for those staying in Christchurch either side of their tour. The central business district is still being rebuilt and a short walk from the beautiful gardens of Hagley park and the container mall - be sure to take a visit to the Cathedral to get an eye-opening view of the effects of the earthquakes on the city’s infrastructure and learn more about the exciting rebuild. Taking a tour on the historic tram that loops the city centre is another great way to soak up the sites.

It has all the amenities of a modern city, but is still very much a regional centre serving the rich rural hinterland, with a laid-back pace to life. Its grey-stone nineteenth century buildings, tree-lined avenues and extensive leafy parks sustain the grace and charm of an earlier era and are being well preserved in the rebuild of the city. Christchurch values its culture and heritage, but offers a year round range of fresh and exciting adventures and activities, only a couple of hours from world class skiing, golf resorts and wineries.

Top tip; Take a tour on the historic tram that loops the centre city to learn more about the rebuild project and glide along the tranquil Avon river on a traditional Edwardian Punt boat to soak up the historical culture of this graceful city.

Time spent here while on a Flying Kiwi tour:

During our Summer (Oct-Apr) we spend the morning and Winter (July-Aug) tours we spend an afternoon here. Christchurch is also a popular place to join many of our South Island tours so why not consider spending a few extra days exploring the region before starting your Flying Kiwi tour. 

Tours that take you here:

Ultimate Explorer - 27 or 28 days      Summer Blast - 16, 17 or 19 days      Alpine Explorer - 9 days 
Total Aotearoa - 24 days Southern Light - 9 or 10 days Ski & Snow Explorer - 6 days 
Grand Traverse - 15 days    Best of the West - 4 days

Where we stay: 

We don’t overnight in Christchurch but as a place that many people join their New Zealand adventure tour please see below for accommodation options pre-tour.

Jucy Snooze - is located minutes from the international airport, making it ideal for resting before or after a long journey, Christchurch city is also only a 20 minute drive away.  The hostel offer's modern accommodation in either private ensuite rooms or Pods. Spitfire Square shopping area is just a short stroll away and has restaurants, cafes and a supermarket so you won't go hungry!

Breakfree on Cashel - Bright and innovative with a prime central city position with rooms priced from just $69.00, BreakFree on Cashel is your ideal central city Christchurch hotel.  

YMCA Christchurch - Affordable accommodation while still maintaining a high standard of quality. Located in the central city and close to our pick up point. 

 Things not to miss:

Visiting the Botanical Garden is definitely a must in this city. Big, impressive, rich, they are a gorgeous place! Not many like this in the world.

Things to do:

Get around the 185 Empty White Chairs at Cashel Street. Each different chairs remembers the people who lost their lives in the earthquakes.


Container Mall

Free Things to Do:

Explore New Zealand’s rich cultural and natural heritage in the Canterbury Museum.

Visit the Container Mall, a colourful shipping containers home of retail shops and premium street food. 

Insiders Tip:

Take a tour on the historic tram that loops the centre city to learn more about the rebuild project and glide along the tranquil Avon river on a traditional Edwardian Punt boat to soak up the historical culture of this graceful city.

Cycle Options:

There are no cycle options during our short stopover in Christchurch city.

Our pick of Canterbury's Top Activities:

Rangitata Rafts New Zealand White Water Rafting optimized 

Rafting the Spectacular Rangitata Gorge 

2.5hrs on the river. Feel your adrenalin and confidence grow as the rapids naturally build to the thrilling grade 5. All rafting clothing and equipment included

with our guides holly

 Peel Forest Horse Trekking

1.5hrs. Suitable for all riders and abilities.They have some top horses for experienced riders….take your pick, saddle up and ride along (or even through!) the beautiful Rangitata River into the Podacarp Forest. Full instructions given to beginners.