About Christchurch and the Canterbury District of
lies in Canterbury New Zealand, near the centre of the east coast
of the South Island, east of the Canterbury Plains.
It is located near the southern end of Pegasus Bay,
and is bounded to the east by the Pacific Ocean coast
and the estuary of the Avon as well as the Heathcote
River. To the south and south-east the urban portion
of the city is limited by the volcanic slopes of the
Port Hills separating it from the Banks Peninsula.
As of 2006, the Banks Peninsula was incorporated into
the city, in effect tripling the city's land area
 while adding only about 8,000 people to the city's
population. To the north the city is bounded by the
braided Waimakariri River..
Christchurch, the second largest
city in New Zealand, is situated in the Canterbury region. With
a population of over 300,000 people, Christchurch is the largest
city in the South Island, and the gateway for visitors touching
down at Christchurch International Airport to explore not only
the city, but also the surrounding region of Canterbury, from
Kaikoura in the north to Waimate in the south, and the rest
of the South Island of New Zealand.
city was named by the Canterbury Association, which settled
the surrounding province of Canterbury. The name of Christchurch
was agreed on at the first meeting of the association on 27
March 1848. It was suggested by John Robert Godley, who had
attended Christ Church, Oxford. Some early writers called the
town Christ Church, but it was recorded as Christchurch in the
minutes of the management committee of the association.
The river which flows through the centre of the city
(its banks now largely forming an urban park) was
named Avon at the request of the pioneering Deans
brothers to commemorate the Scottish Avon, which rises
in the Ayrshire hills near what was their grandfathers'
farm and flows into the Clyde.The usual Maori name
for Christchurch is Otautahi ("the place of Tautahi").
This was originally the name of a specific site by
the Avon River near present-day Kilmore Street and
the Christchurch Central Fire Station. The site was
a seasonal dwelling of Ngai Tahu chief Te Potiki Tautahi,
whose main home was Port Levy on Banks Peninsula.
The Otautahi name was adopted in the 1930s. Prior
to that the Ngai Tahu generally referred to the Christchurch
area as Karaitiana
The mountains are only an hour and a half away, Canterbury
boasts more than ten snow fields. Skiers and snowboarders
travel here from all over the world to enjoy the reliable
snow, wide range of runs and excellent equipment.
The ski season ranges from June to September.
The beaches are beautiful, sandy, clean and almost
empty. New Brighton is the longest, miles of sand
with pine trees growing beside the sand dunes. Sumner
beach has the picturesque Shag Rock at one end .If
the tide is out you can walk down to Cave Rock, and
along the Esplanade. Taylors Mistake Beach is over
the next hill. This is a sheltered cove with baches
(small houses used for weekend retreats) along the
shore .The walk along the cliffs has some dramatic
views. All of the beaches are great for swimming,
surfing and sailing with lifeguards on duty.
Beyond the city, Canterbury has so many exciting features.
Discover the rich marine environment at Kaikoura,
or the action-attractions, wineries and thermal pools
in Hurunui. Step back in Maori, French and British
history in Akaroa, Canterbury’s oldest village, or
explore the magnificent Southern Alps by road, rail
or on foot. Further afield, sample the relaxed provincial
New Zealand lifestyle at Ashburton or Timaru, or make
Methven your base for skiing, golf and enjoying the
region’s verdant countryside. And also within easy
reach is the stunning Mount Cook/Mackenzie area, renowned
for its scenery, wilderness and hospitality.
History Maori oral history suggests that people first
inhabited the Canterbury area about a thousand years
first inhabitants were moa-hunting tribes and these
were followed by the Waitaha who are thought to
have migrated from the east coast of the North Island
in the 16th century. This migration was joined by
the Ngati Mamoe and Ngai Tahu and continued until
first European landed in Canterbury in 1815, 45
years after Captain James Cook sighted what he named
"Banks Island", later found to be a peninsula. In
1840 the first Europeans settled on the plains and
whaling ships were operating out of Lyttelton by
1850-1851 the first organised groups of English
settlers, the founders of Christchurch, arrived
on the 'first four ships' into Lyttelton Harbour. Christchurch
became a city by Royal Charter on July 31, 1856,
making it officially the oldest established city
in New Zealand.
1893 New Zealand women achieved a first in the world
when they won the right to vote. This significant
event was honoured in 1993 when the Kate Sheppard
memorial, a commemoration to Women's Suffrage was
unveiled on 19th September 1993. Canterbury's
economy was built on primary products and Canterbury
has long been recognised as living "off the
sheep's back". Although its economic beginnings
were in refrigerated sheep and dairy meats and in
other dairy products, Canterbury now has a diversified
regional economy with growth across a range of "new
Christchurch has a temperate climate, with
maximum temperatures in January ranging from 15 °C
to 25 °C (59–77 °F) (often reaching
30 °C/86 °F or higher), and maximum temperatures
in July ranging from 5 °C to 15 °C (41–59
°F). The summer climate is often moderated by
a sea breeze from the Northeast, but a record temperature
of 41.6 °C (107 °F) was reached in February
1973. A notable feature of the weather is the nor'wester,
a hot wind that occasionally reaches storm
force, causing widespread minor damage to property. In
winter it is common for the temperature to fall below
0 °C (32 °F) at night. There are on average
70 days of ground frost per year. Snow falls occur
on average once or twice a year in the hill suburbs
and about once or twice every two years on the plain.
The area administered by the Christchurch City Council
has a population of 368,900 (June 2008 estimate),
making it the second-largest in New Zealand, and the
largest city in the South Island. The Christchurch
urban area is the second-largest in the country by
population, after Auckland.
The agricultural industry has always been the economic
core of Christchurch. The city has long had industry
based on the surrounding farming country.
Other agribusineses in Christchurch have included
malting, seed development and dressing, wool and meat
processing, and small biotechnology operations using
byproducts from meat works.
Dairying has grown strongly in the surrounding areas
with high world prices for milk products and the use
of irrigation to lift grass growth on dry land. With
its higher labour use this has helped stop declines
in rural population. Many cropping and sheep farms
have been converted to dairying. Conversions have
been by agribusiness companies as well as by farmers,
many of whom have moved south from North Island.
Cropping has always been important in the surrounding
countryside. Wheat and barley and various strains
of clover and other grasses for seed exporting have
been the main crops. These have all created processing
businesses in Christchurch. Deer farming has
led to new processing using antlers for Asian medicine
In recent years, regional agriculture has diversified,
with a thriving wine industry springing up at Waipara,
and beginnings of new horticulture industries such
as olive production and processing The high quality local wine in particular
has increased the appeal of Canterbury and Christchurch
Before clothing manufacture largely moved to Asia,
Christchurch was the centre of the New Zealand clothing
industry, with firms such as LWR Industries. The firms
that remain mostly design and market, and manufacture
in Asia. The city also had five footwear manufacturers,
but these have been replaced by imports
Tourism is also a significant factor of the local
economy. The closeness of the ski-fields and other
attractions of the Southern Alps, and hotels, a casino,
and an airport that meet international standards make
Christchurch a stopover destination for many tourists.
The city is popular with Japanese tourists, with signage
around Cathedral Square in Japanese.
Christchurch International Airport is located about
12 kilometres northwest of the city centre. It is
the South Islands largest and busiest airport.
International flights operate to and from four Australian
destinations - Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sydney and Melbourne
- as well as Seoul, Singapore, Fiji (June to October)
and Rarotonga. Domestic flights are operated by Air
New Zealand and Qantas.
$7 adult one way - about 30 minutes There are two
public bus routes from the airport to the city centre.
The Airport Flyer offers the most direct bus service
with fewer stops along the way. It departs every 30
minutes Monday to Friday. On Saturday and Sunday it
departs hourly from 7.30am to 10.30am then every 30
minutes from 11am to 4.30pm and hourly again from
5pm. Tickets are available from the driver.
The second route is the number 10, Harewood - Cashmere,
which stops at more places along the way. This service
takes 30 to 40 minutes to reach the city centre.
Approximately $15 for one person $19 for two - about
30 minutes, A shuttle is a cost effective way to travel
into the city. Discounts apply if two or more people
are travelling together - $4 for each additional person.
Shuttles are normally shared with other passenger
groups. The journey can take up to 40 minutes at peak
traffic times or when there are several drop-offs
along the way. Allow plenty of time to reach the airport
for departing flights.
Approximately $25 to $40 - about 15 to 20 minutes.
There are several taxi companies available and prices
may vary. Taxis licensed to operate from the airport
are required to meet the airport companys service
standards. If youre travelling to the airport
by taxi, make sure you allow plenty of time.
Major rental car companies operate from the terminal
building. Bookings are strongly recommended.
Toilets, showers; large range of duty/tax-free shopping
and souvenirs; more than 20 retail outlets offering
books and magazines, wine, clothing, pharmaceuticals,
digital equipment, mobile phone rental, music and
gifts; cafes, restaurants, bars and fast food; banking,
currency exchange, ATM; internet; telephones; wheelchair
access; baggage storage; baby change and parenting
room, childrens play equipment and electronic