Christchurch is the largest city in the South Island of New Zealand with a 2006 population of over 345,000. It is located on the edge of the Canterbury plains and is a major stepping off point for touring the South Island.
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Christchurch is known as the Garden City, a well-deserved name. One is struck by the number of trees that grow like a forest throughout the suburbs.
Christchurch International Airport is a major transit airport for international and domestic travellers.
Christchurch a busy program of annual festivals - check out the i-site for more information.
* Akaroa is beautiful, quaint and packed with good eateries. Try out the "Swim with the Dolphins in the sea" trip.
* Arthurs Pass for a bush getaway.
* Banks Peninsula is literally on the edge of the city, and offers a quieter a beauty than the Alps, but quite lovely.
* Hanmer Springs to soak in the hot pools.
* Hokitika to catch the Wild Foods Festival.
* Kaikoura for crayfish and whale watching.
* Nelson for sun, wine and art.
* Picton to take the ferry to Wellington.
* Queenstown for high-octane prepackaged adventure tourism.