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Canterbury

Welcome to Canterbury! A place where coastal and mountain experiences combine to make a place where there's something hair-raisingly thrilling, day-dreamingly relaxing and breath-takingly beautiful for every traveller. In Canterbury you'll find many worlds within one region. Popular tourism destinations in Canterbury include Christchurch City, Hanmer Springs, Timaru, Lake Tekapo and Mt Hutt. more

Canterbury is the South Island’s largest region, it is the region of stark contrasts. The region is home to both New Zealand’s largest plains – the Canterbury plains with intensive pastoral farming and New Zealand’s highest mountains – Mount Cook. It is home to the South Island’s largest city of Christchurch and some of the country’s most remote wildernesses. It is a land of dramatic mountain ranges, cascading rivers, unbelievably glacial-flour-coloured lakes, rolling hills, flat plains, dramatic coastlines, glaciers, wineries and much more.

Enlarge your itinerary with Canterbury’s huge range of activities including numerous ski resorts, skydiving, bungy jumping, hot air ballooning, trout and salmon fish, chartered sea fishing, whale, dolphin and seal watching, hot-water springs, hiking, Lord of the Rings tours, farm tours, jetboating, wine tasting, glacier climbing, mountaineering, mountain biking to name only a few activities. Canterbury has a selection of activities for everyone including thrill-seekers, families, backpackers, honeymoon makers, groups and elderly.

The mid coastal region of Canterbury is dominated by the large pastoral Canterbury plains, Christchurch and numerous towns. The Canterbury plains are intensively farmed with dairy, sheep, beef and deer faming and is the economic and population centre of the South Island. The town Methven (located on the Canterbury plains at the foot of the towering mountains as they ascend dramatically out of the plain) is the gateway for the popular Mt Hutt ski resort – a thirty minute drive away.

The north is mountainous and dry, boasting most of the region’s wineries – especially in the Waipara region. Secluded in its own valley is the South Island’s most popular hot-springs resort as well as popular ski resort – Hanmer Springs. And to the far north is the popular coastal town of Kiakoura – a prime base for a host of wildlife encounters and famous for its whales, fur seals and dolphins who live permanently on this coast. Kiakoura is scenic mountainous region with a dramatic coastline showcasing many mountains descending down into the sea. Take a drive long the Kiakoura coastal highway you are sure to see many fur seals resting on the rocks.

The western inland regions (also known as “McKenzie Country”) are dry and mountainous. This region includes many of New Zealand’s alpine lakes including famous lakes of Tekapo and Pukaki – these lakes are unique in New Zealand for their distinctive glacial hue. This region is dominated by towering snow-capped mountain ranges, deep glacier cut valleys, tussock grasslands and wild gushing rivers. Mount Cook, New Zealand’s tallest mountain, is found here and from it tumbles New Zealand’s longest glacier – the Tasman Glacier – measuring 27 kilometres long. Mt. Hutt is a popular ski resort found close to the Canterbury plains region. Two of the three mountain passes crossing east-west across the Southern Alps are found here namely, Arthurs Pass and Lewis Pass – these are two of the most spectacular alpine drives in the country.

Canterbury’s south is dominated by scenic rolling hills and pastoral farming. The largest town is Timaru.

Canterbury has a massive range of accommodation options encompassing five-star accommodation, budget motor lodges and motels, luxury alpine lodges and retreats, cheap backpacker accommodation, camping grounds, self-catering apartments, villas, among other options. Regardless of your needs – be it conferencing or assessable accommodation – Canterbury has the right accommodation options for you.

Take a moment to send a Canterbury related E-Postcard to your friends.

 

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New Zealand Wide

Image for event: Blowout Comedy

Blowout Comedy

Thu 21st Feb 2019

A rad night of comedy hosted by Dan Brader and headlined by Simon Kingsley Holmes. Full line-up announced soon. "Simon Kingsley-Holmes, takes to the stage and it's not long before he wins my pick for favourite ...

Where: Arcadia Retro Arcade and Pinball Emporia, Christchurch
Address: 206 Barbadoes St, Christchurch

From: 8:00pm on Thursday 21st February 2019
To: 10:00pm on Thursday 21st February 2019

Guided Walks With Doc Ranger

From: Mon 12th Nov 2018

To book please contact the Arthur's Pass National Park Visitors Centre on +64 3 318 9211 or arthurspassvc@doc.govt.nz Treasure from afar, the grand limestone pillars in the Waimakariri basin led early European ...

Where: Kura Tawhiti Castle Hill, Castle Hill, Selwyn
Address: 8557 W Coast Rd, Castle Hill, Selwyn

From: 10:30am on Monday 12th November 2018
To: 3:00pm on Tuesday 30th April 2019

Doc Ranger Guided Walks to Devils Punchbowl

From: Mon 12th Nov 2018

To book please contact the Arthur's Pass National Park Visitors Centre on +64 3 318 9211 or arthurspassvc@doc.govt.nz Feel the full force and sound of fresh mountain water falling 131m down one of New Zealand’s ...

Where: Arthur's Pass Visitor Centre, Arthur's Pass, Selwyn
Address: 80 W Coast Rd, Arthur's Pass, Selwyn

From: 1:30pm on Monday 12th November 2018
To: 3:00pm on Tuesday 30th April 2019

Cate Le Bon

Thu 21st Feb 2019

Cate Le Bon celebrates summer (and an amazing list of stuff she did in 2018) with a New Zealand tour! Jeff Tweedy, on why he chose Cate Le Bon as his most important influence of the past five years: "Cate Le Bon is ...

Where: Blue Smoke, Christchurch
Address: 3 Garlands Road, Woolston, Christchurch

From: 8:00pm on Thursday 21st February 2019
To: 11:00pm on Thursday 21st February 2019

Big Laughs with Sullivans

Thu 21st Feb 2019

Every second Thursday Sullivans Irish Pub is bringing you some big laughs! Post quake Christchurch has seen the growth of our now massive comedy scene, and Big Laughs will be at the forefront of that with spots for ...

Where: Sullivan's Irish Pub, Christchurch
Address: 291 Lincoln Rd, Christchurch

From: 6:30pm on Thursday 21st February 2019
To: 9:30pm on Thursday 21st February 2019

Image for event: Titanic

Titanic

From: Thu 3rd Jan 2019

Top musicians that play in other well-known bands that come together and rock the night away.

Where: Embankment Tavern, Christchurch
Address: 181 Ferry Road, Christchurch

From: 8:30pm on Thursday 3rd January 2019
To: 1:00am on Friday 8th March 2019

Shared Lines: Kaikoura Festival and Street Party

From: Tue 19th Feb 2019

Shared Lines Collaborative, Kaikōura Museum, The Mayfair Arts and Culture, Te Ahi Wairua O Kaikōura and Kaikōura District Council are excited to present the Shared Lines: Kaikōura, an arts festival from 16-24 ...

Where: Kaikoura Memorial Hall, Kaikoura, Canterbury
Address: 32 Esplanade, Kaikoura, Canterbury

From: 10:00am on Tuesday 19th February 2019
To: 10:00pm on Saturday 23rd February 2019

Image for event: The Night Market

The Night Market

From: Thu 17th Jan 2019

Come on down to Christchurch's weekly The Night Market for live music, excellent local food vendors, and a urban industrial chic space to enjoy it all in. Bring your mates, grab some dinner, and relax.

Where: The Night Market, Christchurch
Address: Cnr Moorhouse Ave and Fitzgerald Ave

From: 5:00pm on Thursday 17th January 2019
To: 9:00pm on Thursday 28th March 2019

Agents of Discovery: Summer

From: Wed 9th Jan 2019

This summer, discover the world at the Christchurch Botanic Gardens! Join Agents of Discovery, the not so secret, secret agency dedicated to learning outdoors and solving challenges. Download the free app to your ...

Where: Christchurch Botanic Gardens, Christchurch
Address: Rolleston Ave, Christchurch

From: 9:00am on Wednesday 9th January 2019
To: 5:00pm on Thursday 28th February 2019

Thursday Takeaway

From: Thu 21st Feb 2019

Where: The Pierogi Joint, Christchurch
Address: 456 Colombo Street, Christchurch

From: 5:00pm on Thursday 21st February 2019
To: 7:30pm on Thursday 11th April 2019

What Do You Want To Know?

Discover Canterbury

Read key information and facts about the Canterbury region...

Discover Canterbury

Canterbury Scenic Highlights

Discover the major natural attractions and scenic wonders of the Canterbury region...

Canterbury Scenic Highlights

Canterbury Activity Highlights

Read about the major activities and attractions in the Canterbury region...

Canterbury Activity Highlights

Canterbury History

Read about the rich history of the Canterbury region...

Canterbury History

Featured
 
Mainstay New Zealand Hotels

Mainstay NZ Hotels

Large collection of independent hotels.

Choice Hotels

Choice Hotels

Holiday packages for any occasion.

Distinction Hotels

Distinction Hotels

Great hotels in great NZ wide locations.