10 Things to Do in Canterbury Region That You Shouldn't Miss

July 27, 2017 Christa Meece

Christchurch, the Garden City, and the Canterbury region are the perfect destination for daredevils. From northern Kaikoura to Waimate in the south, Canterbury is an adventure sports paradise. Hangliding, helibiking, bungee jumping, snowboarding, jetboating, rafting and skydiving get the adrenaline going. Golfing, flightseeing, swimming with dolphins and soaking in thermal pools are more laid-back temptations. Christchurch, a city of parks and gardens, is the country’s third largest urban area.
Restaurants in Canterbury Region

22 Macdonald Street, Geraldine 7930, New Zealand +64 3-693 7337
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5 based on 106 reviews

Geraldine Observatory

Geraldine Observatory is one of New Zealands best private observatories. Operated by Peter and Wyn Aldous, the Observatory has a 14 inch, six inch refractor, four inch triplit refractor, all mounted on a Paramont ME mount in a large roll on roll off Observatory, a 11 inch HD Edge telescope in a domed Observatory as well as others. Peters main interest is super nova hunting (exploding stars)and sharing the joys of the night sky with members of the public. Peter has over 40 years experience as a amateur astronomer.Donations go to promoting outreach astronomy in South Canterbury.

Reviewed By chrissynz - Auckland

Thank you to previous travellers we found this amazing treasure of an attraction! Despite it being a cloudy evening, Peter had an amazing show available. Really enjoyed the evening, informative, interesting, mind blowing! Some amazing equipment! Entry by donation. Glad we opted for this Observatory rather than being ripped off at Tekapo!

2. Lake Pukaki

New Zealand
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5 based on 580 reviews

Lake Pukaki

Reviewed By Sourajyoti D

Lake Pukaki is flowing in the Canterbury region in New Zealand. On our way we come across this beautiful lake , which has many wonderful view points and you will love to witness the place again and again.. A nice journey along lake Pukaki

3. Hooker Valley Track

Hooker Valley Road, Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu), New Zealand +64 3-435 1186
Excellent
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5 based on 736 reviews

Hooker Valley Track

Always check the website for changes that might affect your trip.

Reviewed By KetanforTravel - Mumbai, India

This is a must do if you are at the Mt. Cook!! Irrespective of the weather this part of the trail has to be done. You can keep short targets - 1st bridge, 2nd bridge and if possible then complete it. BTW dont stop after reaching 2nd bridge, theres another 15-20 mins to go. The views from the start till the end are fabulous. They save the best for the last. It is a very easy walk. There is a nice Seating arrangement at the end of the trail where you can sip on tea/coffee and cherish the view. It is just too good!!

4. Margaret Mahy Family Playground

Cnr Manchester & Armagh Streets, Christchurch, New Zealand +64 3-941 8999
Excellent
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5 based on 744 reviews

Margaret Mahy Family Playground

Reviewed By F T - London

A massive well-designed outdoor playground with a multitude of climbing activities as well as water activities which are super popular in the summer. Long flying fox and there is stuff to do for those who have pre-schoolers as well as primary school aged children. I think it's not as appealing to those 11 and above. Adults supervising are well catered for, plenty of Seating, although if going on a really sunny day bring a hat ... it gets hot there. There are food / coffee / ice cream trucks and toilets all on site. Parking is pretty easy too.

5. Banks Peninsula

Christchurch-Akaroa Road, Christchurch 7581, New Zealand +64 3-304 7641
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4.5 based on 1 reviews

Banks Peninsula

Banks Peninsula near Christchurch, New Zealand is a must see for its stunning views, beautiful bays and quirky campgrounds. Little River is the gateway to the peninsula. The township has a hotel/pub, 2 cafes, a petrol station, art gallery, craft store and small museum. There are B&Bs, plus the Little River Campground in Okuti Valley Road. They have affordable campervan parks with power, cabins and tentsites set beside a river. The southern bays have some of the best surf, if you know the secret spots as well as good, safe swimming Beaches, walking tracks and the Little River Rail Trail. It is a a place that is often over looked as tourists head to Akaroa. If you want to experience more than the usual, to get off the beaten track and really explore, ask at the craft station, which has an info centre.

Reviewed By Albywon - Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Drive from Chch to Akaroa shows some of the dine features of this Peninsula. Great views available from so many stops on this road. 2243

6. Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park DOC Visitor Centre

Mount Cook Village State Highway 80, Mt. Cook Village, Aoraki Mount Cook National Park (Te Wahipounamu) 7946, New Zealand +64 3-435 1186
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4.5 based on 525 reviews

Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park DOC Visitor Centre

Reviewed By stephanie_sandiego1 - Melbourne, Australia

The weather conditions at Mount Cook vary greatly from day to day and this place is the best resource for deciding what tracks are safe and what gear is needed. There are log books with information from recent hikers and the staff there are fully aware of what's happening on the mountain. No matter how experienced you are, a stop in here for a quick discussion of the conditions is a must for any major hiking in the area!
Additionally, there are amazing interactive exhibits and displays for you to learn more about the area and a lovely little gift shop.

7. The Giant's House

68 Rue Balguerie, Akaroa 7520, New Zealand +64 3-304 7501
Excellent
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4.5 based on 887 reviews

The Giant's House

The Happiest Garden on Earth..! Garden of National Significance.. A Josie Martin creation.. Colourful, beautiful balance between garden and art. Don’t miss the fun DVD playing in the contemporary art gallery. Terraced Gardens with sculptures and incredible mosaics. Very Unique. A creative feast and a wonderful experience. Only a few minutes walk from the centre of Akaroa.terraced Gardens are full of surprises -expect the unexpected at The Giant's House!

Reviewed By Ann-Marie N

The Giant’s House is a gorgeous mosaic wonderland of a garden. While the entry fee of $NZ20 initially feels steep, it’s well worth it to view the remarkable creations on display. I’ve never seen anything like it. I can’t recommend this enough. Worth every cent.

8. Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway

40 Fyffe Quay | West End, Kaikoura 7300, New Zealand +64 3-319 5641
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5 based on 841 reviews

Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway

Always check the website for changes that might affect your trip.

Reviewed By babypoppop - Melbourne, Australia

The walk is worthwhile. Although it’s a 3h return trip, you can take your time along the way because you’ll be distracted by nature, the views and the seals. The paths on the rocks and the steepness on the hills can be a bit challenging for some. If you need to cut your walk short, there are a few paths to loop back towards your starting point.

9. Christchurch Botanic Gardens

6 Rolleston Ave, Christchurch, New Zealand +64 3-941 7590
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4.5 based on 5 reviews

Christchurch Botanic Gardens

At the heart of Christchurch's reputation as the Garden City, the Gardens are a place of ever-changing beauty. Showcasing flora and fauna of New Zealand and other parts of the world, the Gardens feature one of the finest collections of exotic and local plants in New Zealand. With more than 1.1 Million visitors each year the Botanic Gardens are one of the Christchurch's most popular and well-loved attractions.

Reviewed By EnglishCanadian - Brit in Canada

We took the Caterpillar tour and the guide was marvellous. His knowledge of the Gardens and its history was top notch. The Gardens were started soon after Christchurch’s settlement and the majority of the trees planted at that time, being brought in as seedlings from other parts of the world. The trees are brilliant specimens as the have an almost whole year growth cycle. The plants from far and wide are equally brilliant. There are glasshouses and a huge rose garden to wander around.

10. Lake Tekapo

Lake Tekapo, New Zealand 080023538283
Excellent
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4.5 based on 2 reviews

Lake Tekapo

Reviewed By jdfranco - Glen Ridge, New Jersey

Beautiful beyond words. Breath taking. We stopped at the view and then at the church. As we could not get lodging near by we did not get to take full advantage of the area.
Make sure to book lodging in advance. We were being a bit too spontaneous and two weeks prior everything was booked. We stayed on Mt Cooke so driving back was just too long.

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