I had originally intended to put my Christchurch post in with my Mt Cook one, but they are such different places that it felt better to keep them separate.
On the way to Christchurch, the bus stopped for a while at lake Tekapo, where we saw a famous church – it is always booked up for weddings!
I only had two days in Christchurch, but I found it a fascinating place, especially with all the earthquake damage and rebuilding. I mostly just walked around the city, exploring.
I found the Cathedral pretty quickly (of course there is just one, but “Cathedrals” sounded better for the title)! It was badly damaged during the 2011 earthquake – the tower it had on it is not even there anymore!
Christchurch is still a very lively and busy city, with beautiful stone buildings and lovely parks. There is a beautiful street with old, pastel coloured buildings and cute little artisan shops along it.
There is also a wealth of street art in Christchurch – massive, beautiful murals on the walls of old buildings. I took photos of quite a few of them because they were so cool!
Christchurch also has a beautiful and free botanical gardens. There is an amazing rose garden there where I spent a lot of time.
Christchurch also has some pretty epic coffee shops. I went to one called C4, where they roast their own beans and you can buy beans, coffee making equipment and store branded items. The coffee was very good.
One of the coolest places in the city, which needs a mention, is the re:start mall – which is a big shopping centre made from shipping containers!
Neat the re:start mall is the earthquake memorial which has all the names of the people who died in the 2011 earthquake written on it – including their nicknames and translations into their own languages.
On my final night in Christchurch I decided to go out at around 8pm and play on the massive, amazing playground around the corner from my hostel. Apparently it cost $2M. Money. Well. Spent.
I had SO MUCH FUN. I went on the zip line, the swings, the trampolines, went down all the slides (including the big spiral tunnel slide). And it wasn’t just me, the park was full of adults!
I think we need more playgrounds like this in the world – adults like to play as much as children do!