Which Christchurch Gardens and Parks to Visit
Christchurch is not only the largest city on the South Island, but it’s also known for its wealth of beautiful gardens. The city’s array of picture-perfect gardens and parks helped lead it to win an International Garden City Award and give it the nickname of the “Garden City“. While we don’t all have time to visit all of Christchurch’s 800 parks, we can give you a list of some of the best ones in this list of beautiful gardens and parks in Christchurch!
While you’re here, you might also be interested in the 45 Best Things to Do in Christchurch.
1. Hagley Park
Located in the heart of Christchurch, Hagley Park is one of the most famous parks of the Garden City. Not only does it host many sporting events, concerts and community events in the city, but the park offers a few year-round attractions of its own, including the Botanic Gardens (see below) and the Canterbury Museum – some of the 30 Free or Cheap Things to Do in Christchurch.
Location: Rolleston Avenue and Deans Avenue, Christchurch city centre.
2. Botanic Gardens
There’s plenty to explore in Christchurch’s 30 hectares of Botanic Gardens. There are several distinct sections to the gardens, including a pinetum, rose garden, water and rock gardens, riverside woodland, herbaceous borders and native trees and plants. Check out the Cuningham House Conservatory with some amazing displays of tropical plants.
Location: Rolleston Avenue, Christchurch city centre.
3. Mona Vale
A picturesque English-style garden, Mona Vale is an easy walk or bus trip from the city centre and well worth the visit. The garden once belonged to Annie Townend, who was thought to be the richest woman in New Zealand during her time. See plantings of English and European trees and flowers surrounding a conservatory and homestead.
Location: 40 Mona Vale Avenue, Riccarton.
4. Riccarton Bush
See some of the last remaining native forest in Christchurch at Riccarton Bush. Enjoy a forest walk among 400 to 500-year-old kahikatea (white pine) and cabbage trees in this 6.4 ha forest. Riccarton Bush is also the setting for the Saturday Farmers’ Market.
Location: 16 Kahu Road, Fendalton.
5. Edmonds Factory Gardens
What was once the base of one of New Zealand’s largest bakery brands, is now home to a lush garden with lily ponds, streams, archways and rose gardens. There are plenty of photo opportunities at Edmonds Factory Gardens. There is also a children’s playground in the park adjacent, should you have little ones to entertain. Speaking of which, also check out the 10 Things to Do in Christchurch with Kids.
Location: Ferry Road, Phillipstown.
6. The Groynes
A picturesque part of northern Christchurch, The Groynes is a park stretching alongside Otukaikino Creek. The creek provides an important habitat for wildlife, so keep an eye out. Plus, there are dog park facilities.
Location: Groynes Drive, Northwood.
7. Avebury Park
At the centre of this grand park is a grander homestead, Avebury House, built in 1885. The garden was once private to the homestead but is now open to the public. As for Avebury Park, it is an English-style garden with an expansive lawn and broadleaf trees. There’s also a children’s playground, paddling pool and seating area, as well as a community garden.
Location: Evelyn Couzins Avenue, Richmond.
8. Spencer Park
Spencer Park is a coastal bush area beside the beach. It’s a popular place for families with picnic areas, walks, an animal park, a playground, and a paddling pool. It’s a good place for mountain bikers too, with a few bike trails, as well as for surfers with a beach break right out front. Check out 7 Top Surf Breaks in Christchurch for more information on the latter.
Location: Heyders Road, Spencerville.
9. Styx Mill Conservation Reserve
More stunning bush walks and river walks await at the Styx Mill Conservation Reserve. It provides a dose of nature in the northern suburbs of Christchurch. One for the locals; there’s also a dog exercise park.
Location: 100 Styx Mill Road, Casebrook.
10. Bottle Lake Forest Park
Enjoy the mountain bike trails, walking trails and horse riding trails through the forest of the Bottle Lake Forest Park. The park provides a peaceful pine forest and coastal setting.
Location: Rothesay Road and Waitikiri Drive, Bottle Lake.
More About Christchurch Gardens and Parks
That’s it for our list of the best gardens and parks in Christchurch. For more ways to enjoy the “Garden City”, check out the following guides:
- 45 Best Things to Do in Christchurch
- 10 Romantic Things to Do in Christchurch
- The Food Guide to Christchurch: Places to Eat & Food Tours
Finally, if there’s anything we’ve missed, you’re likely to find it in The Complete Travel Guide to Christchurch.