International Studies Abroad ®est. 1987

Culture Corner

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Tiny Travel Story: New Zealand

What's Christchurch Like?

Christchurch is located on the Canterbury Plains beside the Pacific Ocean, bordered by the Port Hills and a short distance from the Southern Alps. Known for its neo-gothic architecture, intertwining rivers, and beautiful gardens. Christchurch is the perfect city to leisurely explore by foot or the perfect place from which to enjoy the many outdoor adventures in the Canterbury region.

Along with beautiful natural scenery, the city also offers an exciting urban environment of varied restaurants, nightspots, and shopping venues. Christchurch has many art galleries, music venues, theatres, and open-air craft markets, as well as numerous festivals that take place at various times during the year, including the World Buskers (street performs) Festival, the New Zealand Jazz and Blues Festival, and the New Zealand Icefest, a festival celebrating the beauty and mystery of Antarctica.

Region and Population

Christchurch is home to approximately 346,000 people. It is New Zealand's third most populous city, after Auckland and Wellington, and the second largest by area. Christchurch is the largest city in the Canterbury region, which is New Zealand's largest region by area.


Christchurch's climate tends to be fairly mild, with summer (December, January, and February) temperatures remaining around 72 degrees Fahrenheit (22.5 degrees Celsius) and winter (June, July, and August) temperatures dropping to 52 degrees Fahrenheit (11.3 degrees Celsius). The city receives around 25.5 inches (648 mm) of rainfall per year, mixed in with more than 2,000 hours of sunshine each year.
Avg. Rainfall1.5081.6651.7641.8192.5082.3982.6932.5351.6182.0791.8031.949

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