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Your Canterbury Anniversary weekend inspiration to exploring central Christchurch.
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10 things to do on Canterbury Anniversary Day

Listen up Christchurch, it’s Canterbury Anniversary Day on November 16, so we’ve put together a list of our 10 favourite things to do in the CBD to celebrate our region’s founding day.

  1. Grab breakfast and a coffee fix at Caffeine Laboratory – one of the most iconic Christchurch places to enjoy your morning brew. New Regent Street is also a great backdrop for some seriously good food and coffee.
  2. From here, take a stroll down to Margaret Mahy Family Playground with the kids or unleash your inner child while exploring the slides, spider web, flying fox and water play areas.
  3. Shop for knick knacks and Christmas presents from locally owned retailers. Make your way up High Street and pop into some of the independent clothing stores that call it home. For some fine streetwear, check out Stencil and Hunters & Collectors, then from here walk through to the The Crossing precinct to Ruby, a luxe spot to treat yourself to some signature New Zealand designed pieces. Pop into Infinite Definite back on High Street and browse their selection of curated items from local and international fashion brands then Head Over Heels for the latest in European footwear styles.
  4. Make your way back to Cathedral Square, and since it’s Friday, you’ll find the square filled with food trucks for the Friday Street Food Market, which kicks off at 11am each week. Sample some delicious wares in the sunshine and soak up the vibrancy of Cathedral Square, the heart of our city. Check out Chalice, the steel sculpture installed to celebrate the new millennium and the 150th anniversary of the founding of Christchurch and Canterbury by the Canterbury Association.
  5. Next step, another iconic Christchurch favourite. Glide along the Avon River/Ōtākaro on an authentic Edwardian punt for a real throwback in time. These handcrafted flat-bottomed boats, poled along by a punter, are the perfect way to explore our Garden City!
  6. And while we’re talking about gardens, once you’ve got your land legs back, wander down to the Christchurch Botanic Garden to explore another much-loved jewel of our city, featuring one of the finest collections of exotic and native New Zealand plants in the country. Sprawl on the sunny lawns, admire the brilliantly colourful flower gardens or take a wee nap under a tall tree while soaking up the beauty and tranquillity of these gardens.
  7. It wouldn’t be a real celebration without great ice cream! Luckily, you can get your sweet cravings sorted quickly with a stroll down to visit the Rollickin' Gelato team in the Boys High Building, Arts Centre. The team takes pride in making real Kiwi ice cream with local, organic ingredients and seasonal unique flavours like Anne's Ambrosia, Lemon Lime and Bitters, Fejioa, or Ginger Crunch. For all of those who like it a bit classier, the dark chocolate gelato is irresistible.
  8. Drift over the road to the Christchurch Art Gallery – Te Puna o Waiwhetu and enjoy a cheeky wine at before checking out the best of arts and culture on display. Get in touch with your inner artist, explore new experiences and challenge your tastes with the wide range of art on display, from classics and modern art displays.
  9. Once you’ve got your art fix, keep going down Worcester Boulevard and across the Avon River to Christchurch’s newest riverside hospitality hot spots. Described as stylish, sophisticated, edgy, The Terrace is also home to delicious cocktails, craft beers and live music.
  10. Dinner time and you’re spoiled for choice in the CBD. Our city's rich cultural make-up is well-represented in its many and varied eateries which include casual neighbourhood eateries, family restaurants, fine dining establishments and those places just perfect for dinner with a group of friends or business colleagues. Or if you’re already settled in, why not explore the wide range of tantalising dining options at Botanic, Original Sin, the Terrace Tavern, Fat Eddies or Craft Embassy and make a night of it at The Terrace!

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