With a wealth to offer families, Christchurch is an excellent location to spend a family holiday. It’s also the perfect base for exploring the greater Canterbury district, where many smaller communities also feature family activities, neighbourhoods and shops to explore, and stunning scenery too. Here’s 20 things to do in Christchurch with kids.
We’ve categorised some of the best family attractions in Christchurch by the following headings. This way you can choose what suits your family and budget:
- Swimming — let the kids burn off some energy
- Adventure Activities — for the speed & adventure freaks
- Family Attractions
- Guided Tours and Day Trips
- On a Budget — free and very low cost activities
- Jellie Park Recreation Reserve – hydroslides, indoor pools and outdoor pools, gym and saunas – this is a great facility for families.
- One of New Zealand’s top indoor climbing centres, The Roxx offers fun for the whole family. Part theme park, part climbing wall, The Roxx is ideal for all ages and stages.
- Go karting enthusiasts will love The Motordrome.
- Adrenaline Forest is a high wire adventure that will challenge every family member.
- See the Canterbury region from up high by daring to take the family sky diving.
- Just a short drive from Christchurch you’ll find three great ski fields – Mt Hutt, Porter Heights and Mt Dobson.
- Set in 80 hectares of tranquil grounds, within 15 minutes drive of Christchurch Airport, Orana Wildlife Park is New Zealand’s only open range zoo. Orana specialises in providing unique animal encounters in an open range setting. We get you up close and personal with our wonderful animals!
- Ferrymead Park features an early 1900s (Edwardian) township, with exhibits such as houses, picture theatre, school classroom, church, jail, railway station, lodge hall, post office, printers, tobacconist, general store, lawyer’s office and more. While you’re there, check out the Ferrymead volcano and zombie miniputt!
- Willowbank Wildlife Reserve and restaurant offer a guaranteed kiwi viewing experience.
- The Air Force Museum of New Zealand features 28 fully restored aircraft and interactive family entertainment.
- Families travelling in and out of the airport will pass by the popular International Antarctic Centre.
Guided Tours & Day Trips
- Enjoy a journey in style through Christchurch city on board a beautifully restored heritage Tram, one of Christchurch’s leading attractions
- Take a drive to Akaroa and swim with dolphins on a Black Cat Cruise .
- Lyttelton is where Christchurch’s port is.
- Catch the Red Bus for a rebuild tour of the city.
- Wine tours, Hanmer Thermal Springs tours and more are available from Christchurch City Tours.
- Hassle Free Tours take you on board a double decker bus.
- Celebrate being in the Garden City by visiting the Christchurch Botanic Gardens.
- Grab a coffee at one of these child-friendly cafes.
- Of particular interest to those who have known the pre-earthquake Christchurch is a trip around the CBD. See here for cordon information.
- The Canterbury Museum is a wonderful place, full of life and culture. Be sure to check out Quake City.