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Canterbury Museum

Canterbury Museum is the most visited indoor attraction in Te Wai Pounamu, the South Island, attracting 800,000 annual visitors. The Antarctic collection is one of the best in the world, showing off the city’s links to the ice and the exploration that launched here.

During the heroic age of Antarctic exploration, people flocked to Lyttelton Port to see off south-bound expeditions and welcome them back as heroes. The Museum was the grateful recipient of numerous samples and souvenirs brought back from the ice. Canterbury Museum’s Antarctic collection has continued to develop.

Since these early years of exploration, Canterbury Museum’s Antarctic collection now numbers more than 7,000 objects and the Antarctic Gallery showcases highlights of this collection.

Antarctica is a critical part of Christchurch and Canterbury’s stories and Canterbury Museum is proud to care for the artefacts that help tell these stories.