Welcome to Christchurch

Christchurch is a vibrant, energetic city where urban regeneration and creativity thrive. Picture amazing street art, innovative projects, award-winning gardens and state-of-the-art architecture that is changing the way the city looks, feels and functions – all the while staying true to its heritage
and traditional English feel.

Take time to explore the city by double-decker bus, vintage bicycle, gondola, tram or classic Edwardian punt – or grab your walking shoes and discover a booming hospitality scene and an eclectic mix of boutique shops by foot. You’ll also find the sparkling Pacific Ocean, the majestic Southern Alps and an ancient volcanic peninsula all within driving distance.

Christchurch is the basecamp for southern exploration, the likes of Akaroa, Kaikōura, Hanmer Springs, and the epic Southern Alps, all within reach of Aotearoa’s newest city.

christchurch map

Passports, Visas & Electronic Travel Authority (ETA)

We enjoy welcoming visitors to New Zealand. To ensure you have an experience to remember, make sure you’ve done your homework and have everything sorted before you leave.

When you arrive, your passport must be valid for at least three months beyond your intended departure date, and if required, have a valid New Zealand visa.

From 1 October 2019, visitors from visa-waiver countries must request an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) prior to coming to New Zealand. You may also have to pay an International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL). For more information on the ETA and IVL, visit Immigration New Zealand.

Before travelling to New Zealand, you need to make sure your passport is valid for at least three months longer than your expected departure date. If you come from a country that needs a New Zealand visa to enter, please be sure to apply in advance.

If you have a biometric ordinary passport (or electronic passport) and are over 12 years old, you may be able to use New Zealand Customs eGate service. This allows you to complete your Customs and Immigration checks faster so you can get on with enjoying your visit to New Zealand.

Getting to Christchurch


Christchurch Airport is New Zealand’s second largest airport and boasts all new terminals as of mid-2013.

As the gateway to the South Island, the airport services 12 different airlines connecting Christchurch with domestic centres and international airports.


Christchurch city centre is a short 20 minutes’ drive from the airport and several transport options are available from the terminal including:

Getting around Christchurch


Uber, Zoomy and Ola are popular ride sharing services in Christchurch, and you’ll also be glad to note that Christchurch Airport is a ride sharing friendly airport.


A good supply of buses and shuttles connect South Island towns and cities. Smaller destinations generally offer more of a specialised service where as larger multi-destination services travel to a wide range of towns, cities and communities.


Blue Star – P: +64 3 379 9799 | bluestartaxis.org.nz
Corporate Cabs – P: +64 3 379 5888 | corporatecabs.co.nz
First Direct – P: +64 3 377 5555 | firstdirect.net.nz
Gold Band Taxis – +64 3 3795 795 | goldbandtaxis.co.nz
Green Cabs – P: 0508 447 336 | greencabs.co.nz

GO Rentals offer all delegates to the ISANA 2020 Christchurch Conference a 10% discount on car hire

Local Attractions


Explore your new surroundings by joining a guided bike tour, or do it on your own in style with a vintage bike. If you’re not a fan of two wheels, hop on a Hassle-free double-decker bus for great views and informative commentary. For the ultimate and literal overview of the city, Garden City Helicopters will take you to the skies.

Images courtesy of christchurchnz.com


There’s wildlife to witness around these parts too. Feed giraffes and lemur, ride into a lion enclosure or get up close with a rhino at Orana Wildlife Park – New Zealand’s only open range zoo. For a New Zealand wildlife encounter, Willowbank is the place – you might even come face to face with the elusive national bird – the Kiwi.

Images courtesy of christchurchnz.com


Discover the passion and talent of local thespians at The Court Theatre. Delve into Māori culture at Ko Tāne, and experience the passion of the haka, and the deliciousness of a hangi.

If you fancy dressing up for a show, the Isaac Theatre Royal is a spectacular sight both inside and out. With a variety of shows on offer, it would be well worth checking what’s on during your stay in the city.

Images courtesy of christchurchnz.com


Long referred to as “The Garden City” Christchurch’s parks and gardens are ripe for exploration. Take a run or stroll around the vast green space of Hagley Park, or wander around New Zealand’s largest inner-city park, Christchurch Botanic Gardens. Enjoy the beauty and the tranquillity of this green sanctum with a punt down the Avon. For some fresh seaside air and stunning views take a stroll down the Sumner Promenade or New Brighton Pier.

Images courtesy of christchurchnz.com


If you’re a history buff, take a fascinating journey through New Zealand’s military aviation history at the Air Force Museum of New Zealand. Discover the history of Christchurch and the surrounding regions at the Canterbury Museum and to learn more about the 2010 and 2011 earthquakes and their aftermath, Quake City is well worth a visit.

Christchurch is known as the Gateway to Antarctica and there’s no better place to learn more about this connection than at the International Antarctic Centre where you can explore an icy way of living, and cold-loving wildlife.

Images courtesy of christchurchnz.com


For two-wheeled adventures, head to McLeans Island Track or Bottle Lake Forest. Natural High hires bikes for days at a time for those who really want to explore. Relax over nine holes at Clearwater Golf Club or Pegasus Golf and Sports Club – great shots might not be guaranteed for you, but beautiful fairways and vistas are. Waimak River Horse Trekking offers horse and pony treks to suit all ages and experiences and jet boating on the Waimakariri River is fun for all the family. For something a bit different, tackle an aerial obstacle course at Adrenalin Forest or harness the power of Canterbury’s winds on a blokart or driftkart at Velocity Karts.

Images courtesy of christchurchnz.com


Christchurch’s hospitality industry is going from strength to strength, with new establishments opening their doors every month. Standards are high, putting the city’s new dining culture up there with the best in the world. Hospitality hotspots are all within easy walking distance of city hotels, and there is something for everyone – from cool cafes to slick inner-city eateries and suburban restaurants.

For more information and recommendations CLICK HERE 


Images courtesy of christchurchnz.com


ISANA International Education Association is the representative body for professionals in Australia and New Zealand who work in international student services, advocacy, teaching and policy development in international education. For more information, please visit the ISANA website.

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