Christchurch Events

Christchurch was founded in 1850 and has since grown to be the largest city on New Zealand’s South Island. It boasts a population of over 350,000 and is usually the first port of call for those tourists who want to explore the South Island. Christchurch also caters to large student market, and many events and attractions in the city have been developed with students in mind.

People visiting Christchurch for the first time will, no doubt, want to see the major attractions, which include the Christchurch Cathedral, which dates from 1904, and the Air Force Museum with its full-size fighter ‘plane replicas. Also popular are the Botanic Gardens, as nourished by the tranquil Avon River, and the ultra-modern Art Gallery that was opened in 2003. There is also much to do in Christchurch, and visitors will also enjoy buying fresh produce at the Lyttelton Farmers Market and getting on their bikes to take the City Bike Tour. For those who have already traveled The Garden City, however, there are numerous seasonal events that shouldn’t be missed. Visitors should therefore plan their trips with some degree of foresight in order to attend their favorite festivals.

Summer in the South Island wouldn’t be the same without the city’s annual Summertimes, which consist of free musical and other live entertainment events in the city’s 160ha. Hagley Park. Each individual event can attract up to 100,000 people and the program also includes major art exhibitions and sporting events. Summertimes take place regularly from December through late February every year, and tourists should make time to attend as many as possible.

Winters are also a time for celebration in The Garden City and this is when The Christchurch Arts Festival comes to town. Mid-winter of every second year will see this magnificent event entertaining both locals and tourists alike and it usually runs from late July to early August. The World Buskers Festival is another event that should be marked on the calendar, and this is an international festival that attracts comedians, circus troupes and street performers from a host of overseas countries. The Buskers Festival usually takes place every January and lasts for about two weeks.

February in Christchurch wouldn’t be the same without The Festival of Romance that celebrates love and laughter throughout the city and culminates on St. Valentines Day. The Burst! Festival of Flowers – also known as The Garden Festival – is up and running almost before The Festival of Romance has wound down and usually gets underway in mid-February. Highlights of this festival will include a tree-climbing competition, a summer poetry competition as well as the 11-piece topiary menagerie that will liven up Victoria Square until the close of the festival. Christchurch is also home to Carnival Week, which features a gigantic Guy Fawkes fireworks display at New Brighton Pier as well as The Canterbury Agricultural and Pastoral Show.

With Kidsfest and Carols by Candlelight also on the list, something exciting should be happening in Christchurch whenever you visit.

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