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ITM New Zealand Sail Grand Prix | Christchurch

Full Day Canterbury Itinerary

Need Inspiration?

Spend The Perfect Day In Canterbury

So, you’re in Christchurch and have a day up your sleeve?  With a little planning, you can fit oh so much into just one day, and we’ve designed this itinerary to inspire you. For couples or a group of friends, these ideas cover something for everyone, with wining and dining, adventure and of course relaxation. Mix and match activities to suit your schedule and preferences and remember there may be travel time between locations you need to factor in.  

A Morning In The Clouds  

Start your day early and escape to a world of ultimate tranquillity. A bucket list item for so many, hot air ballooning is an experience you can have right here in Canterbury. Ballooning Canterbury are the local experts in hot air balloon rides, and the family-owned business love showing people Canterbury from a completely different view.  

Experience a sunrise like never before, as you set out first thing. The mornings are best as it is usually when the weather is calmest, and the morning light is most beautiful. Capture incredible photos and have a truly breath-taking experience… there aren’t many better ways to start your day! 

Or... Settle In For A Soak 

If you prefer to start your morning with less adventure and more zen... then a morning soak at Ōpuke Thermal Pools & Spa is just what you need. The hot pools offer stunning Southern alpine views, that really enhance the peaceful environment.

If you want to up the relaxation, book in a treatment at the spa. From hot stone massages to ultra-hydrating facials, you will be floating out of the tranquil space. Once you are feeling pampered and refreshed, grab a bite to eat and a coffee at the delicious café onsite.

Time For A Wine Tour  

It’s time to get up close and personal with some of New Zealand’s most diverse and unique wine. Located in the heart of North Canterbury, the Waipara wine region is home to over 90 vineyards, most of them independently owned by a close-knit community of local families. Wine lovers are spoilt for choice in this small but mighty region and what better way to experience it than with a wine trail tour?  

Most tours also include options for a beautiful lunch at one of the cellar doors, and multiple winery stops with tastings along the way. 

Let's Get Arty

Once you have wrapped up your wining and dining, it’s time to travel back into the city for your afternoon and evening. First is a visit to the Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu, for a relaxed meander of the impressive building and displays. The gallery is a fantastic way to immerse yourself in some of Christchurch’s history, as well as its rich creativity, whether you are an art buff or not. The amazing collection in the gallery is the city’s ‘treasury of art’ and is a must see for all. 

Once you are finished at the gallery, pop across the road to the The Arts Centre Te Matatiki Toi Ora . The beautiful centre has a rich history and is now a hub for the arts in Ōtautahi. There are a few galleries and museums in the centre you can check out, including The Central Art Gallery, Rutherford's Den and The Teece Museum of Classical Antiquities. Note that these spaces each have their own opening hours, so be sure to check them first. The centre is also home to a few unique shops, boutique retailers and artisan eateries.  

Discover Delicious Gin  

Next up is the perfect pre-dinner activity to start winding down your evening. The Juniper Collective is a one of its kind gin boutique in the heart of Cashel Mall, and a special place to visit for all gin lovers. The boutique is open to the public during the day, where you can peruse the hundreds of New Zealand gins, while picking the brains of expert staff. In the evenings, you can book a private tasting for your group. The Gin Tasting Experience includes tastings of five New Zealand gins, pairings with a variety of local and international tonics, a grazing platter and 10% discounts on all purchases. A must-do for all gin lovers or those who aren’t familiar with gin and want to learn more.

Finally To Finish, Dinner 

It is time to sit back, relax, and indulge. After a wonderful day of exploring, nothing beats a delicious meal, a few drinks and great company. Christchurch has an exquisite culinary scene, and the evening dining options range from sophisticated restaurants to cosy pubs, rooftop bars to casual dining alfresco style. You can’t go wrong with one of the fabulous restaurants along The Terrace, cosy spots on Victoria Street or one of the delicious options just on the skirts of town for a quieter, more intimate atmosphere.  

For something fun and unique to Christchurch, the tramway restaurant is an amazing way to enjoy your evening meal. The Tramway Restaurant is exactly what it sounds like - a luxury dining experience on the tramcar as it winds its way through the city. The carefully curated, seasonal menu features premium local produce, and the wonderful and attentive service will ensure that you have a very memorable evening.