This is the largest city on the South Island, and has plenty of choice when it comes to eating, drinking and sleeping. Some of the best places to stay in Christchurch are the wonderful old country houses just outside the city proper, most offer wonderful tranquility in beautiful grounds, but just a short drive from all the action.
Christchurch has always been the most English of New Zealand’s cities, somewhere you can punt on the River Avon or take tea in the Botanical Gardens, but these days many of us are most familiar with the look of the city post earthquake. Christchurch suffered three major quakes, in 2010 and 2011, so the city is still rebuilding. There are empty lots, but interesting art installations fill many voids and there’s plenty of positivity about each new re-opening.
Christchurch is often called ‘the Garden City’, and it’s quickly obvious to visitors why. As well as plenty of beautifully planned and maintained public spaces, Christchurch has numerous tree lined streets and green parks. Don't miss the Botanical Gardens, but the Mona Vale and Sanitarium Gardens are also very special.
Unfortunately Christchurch’s historic centre was largely felled by the recent earthquakes, and the cathedral is a ruin - or possibly a building site. But the Canterbury Museum, with its wonderful Māori galleries and colonial street, has survived intact, as has the Christchurch Art Gallery and the International Antarctic Centre. Beyond the city itself you’ll find several wildlife reserves and wildlife parks.
Christchurch is a great place to rent a bike, but you might need to rent a car if you want to get out and explore the local vineyards and the scenic Canterbury plains.
Our pick of the best places to stay in Christchurch range from chic city pads to luxury lodges just out of town.
Still not sure which to book? Browse through our list of all the best places to stay in Christchurch, or contact one of our friendly Gurus for advice. Or you can extend your search and take a look at all our South Island recommendations.
A charming and colourful family run boutique B&B run with two ensuite rooms. A lovely outdoor patio in the rose garden, generous breakfasts and nice touches like chocolates in rooms. Ten minute drive to Christchurch city centre.
A range of rooms and studios available in a family owned and run establishment. B&B section in 1874 heritage grade-II listed Victorian mansion, Motel in newer building. Rooms are large, spacious and tasteful. Close to centre of Christchurch and sights such as Botanic Gardens.
Christchurch Arts Centre
Boutique B&B in bright pink Italian style villa in Canterbury. Rooms with top amenities and nice views. Delicious Mediterranean style breakfast with fresh tropical fruits and local produce. Eco-friendly and close to sights such as Botanic Gardens.
Two suites in a luxury lodge set in 20 acres of landscaped grounds with three lakes and a working alpaca farm. Rooms, large and light with modern amenities. Use of an indoor heated pool during winter, and close to wineries, skiing and whale spotting destination. Ideal for an action packed holiday.
Luxury lodge with three tasteful and spacious suites just 15 minutes from Christchurch city centre. Set on 10 acres of vines, olive groves and orchards in a peaceful setting. Array of wild birds in garden and glorious outdoor seating area by pool.
Small luxury boutique hotel in centre of Christchurch. Local art on walls, top amenities and great views from rooms out to Hagley Park or River Avon. Two award winning restaurants, access to a gym and free use of mountain bikes. City style done well.
Christchurch (Tai Tapu)
Luxury lodge with 118 year old stunning gardens nationally recognised for their beauty. Rooms are light and spacious, with open fireplaces and antique furniture. Cooking classes available with onsite chef. Perfect for a relaxing romantic getaway.