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Family fun that is easy on the pocket

Keen for some quality time with your family without breaking the bank? Christchurch has many fantastic free activities to enjoy, be sure to check them out!

Get artsy

The Christchurch Art Gallery is perfect place for the whole family with regular family and children's events and ever-changing exhibitions. They even offer pram friendly "Oh Baby its Art" tours on the first Thursday of every month, so you can learn more about their fantastic collection.

Head to the playground

There are so many reserves and playgrounds to explore in the city. The Margaret Mahy Playground is brimming with lots of big experiences for little imaginations. The slides, spider web, flying fox and water play will keep little and big kids entertained for hours. For the adrenaline junkies, the flying fox at the South Brighton Domain, Heathcote Domain, Broad Park and Thomson Park are a must try!

Explore the bays

Head through the tunnel (an experience in itself for the littlies) and explore the bays around Lyttelton. Corsair Bay is a great spot for a picnic with a sheltered, swimming friendly beach. Cass Bay is another must visit with sandy coves and a great walking tracks. Make a day of it and catch the ferry to Quail Island. The Island is rich in Antarctic history with great swimming areas and walks. Be sure to keep an eye out for the ship wrecks.

Let your imagination run wild

Watch the children's eyes light up at the sight of a room full of Lego and Duplo. The Imagination Station is a charitable enterprise specialising in creative play for all ages. They offer classes in stop motion animation, robotics and digital Lego design, a great place to while away a few hours.

Discover the inner city

There's something new to explore around every corner of the central city. Be sure to keep an eye out for Gap Filler urban regeneration projects. From the ever-popular Dance-o-mat to the Super Street Arcade, you'll be sure to find something to keep the kids entertained. Discovering cool street art around the city will be sure to gain some smiles and extra steps on the Fitbit!

Take time to smell the roses

The Christchurch Botanic Gardens are full of colour and fun all year round! Check out the rose garden, the conservatory or spend hours climbing the most amazing trees or have a splash in the large size paddling pool.

Dream of flying

Park up and watch the planes land and leave from Christchurch Airport. The top spot to watch is from Aviation Drive! In the summer months, you might even spot the US Air Force aircraft for Operation Deep Freeze leaving for the ice.

Soar to new heights

The Air Force Museum is home to the most incredible display of planes and memorabilia. If you're keen to learn more, the free behind the scenes tours are well worth it. They even have museum hunts, run school holiday programmes and host birthday parties, perfect for the plane enthusiast.

Head to the hills

With so many walking tracks around the hills, why not "climb a mountain" or become an explorer in the outdoors? Retrace the footsteps of the early European explorers on the Bridle Path or explore historic sites and botanical collections at Halswell Quarry Park. Victoria Park is always a winner with a great range of tracks and a cool playground complete with city views.

Go back in time

Do a time warp and explore the hustle and bustle of a typical nineteenth century Christchurch street at the Canterbury Museum - view the old stores or ride a penny farthing. A must visit is the Discovery Room. For a $2 entry, kids will be delighted and amazed at the range of bugs, fossils and creepy crawlies including a live tarantula. 

Fly a kite

Make a kite and head down to New Brighton or Sumner to watch it dance in the wind. On windy days, there are generally lots of large scale kites flying at New Brighton. For the ultimate kite day out, head to the SummerTime's Kite Day held annually in January, where New Brighton beach turns into a blaze of colour.

After more family activities - check out our suggestions!