Christchurch, known as 'The Garden City', is the largest city on the South Island and is known for its English heritage. In Christchurch you will experience the fresh air and stunning natural scenery, including botanic gardens, large urban spaces like Hagley Park, the iconic Avon River, and historical buildings. Bordered by Port Hills and the Pacific Ocean, Christchurch sits on the edge of the Canterbury Plains and stretches to the Southern Alps.

Plenty of adventurous activities await - from skiing and windsurfing to mountain biking and rafting. You won’t find many cities where you can surf and snowboard on the same day! Come explore the many attractions, restaurants, cafes and unique things to do in the Christchurch area.

The second-largest manufacturing centre in NZ behind Auckland, Christchurch is a basecamp for education and careers. Students have access to world-class schools and tertiary institutions. Professionals will find a plethora of jobs in the construction and civil industry, IT sector, meat processing, agriculture-based biotech and more.

Buying & Renting

The Christchurch housing market is continually evolving. For the latest rates on buying and renting homes, take a look at the latest market reports by Barfoot & Thompson.

Mortgage rates are competitive, with many options available if you’re planning to buy in the Christchurch city centre and surrounding area. Local banks and financial institutions offer flexibility in terms and rates. If you’re unfamiliar with the NZ banking environment, look into mortgage brokers. See the latest interest rates offered by major lenders here.

The NZ Tenancy Services website is a good starting point if you’re looking to rent. Take a look at Getting Ready To Rent and Market Rent by suburb to start, and go from there. You can also visit Trade Me Property or Real Estate NZ.

Regarding property trends and values, go to QV Valuations or QV House Price Index.


Christchurch’s central city offers accommodation to suit a wide range of tastes, styles and budgets.


Driver licences from certain countries are valid in New Zealand for 12 months or until their expiry date, whichever comes first. For licences from countries not covered, an international driving permit is required. After 12 months, either must be replaced with a New Zealand driving licence. Visit the New Zealand Transport Agency website for more information.

Public transport is a common way of getting around the inner city and beyond. The extensive bus network provides frequent trips connecting many suburbs and areas of Christchurch. You can find detailed information on timetables and services at The Metro Network’s website.

Ferries travel between Lyttelton and Diamond Harbour daily. Check out the latest timetable information here.

Food, Entertainment & Shopping

Central Christchurch is still being shaped - but with its comfortable climate, there is much to explore, see and do year-round. For example, you’ll find lots of fantastic places to visit within an easy drive, like Hanmer Springs. On Friday nights, Cathedral Square fills with food trucks serving international cuisine. And the Arts Centre is home to an assortment of galleries, museums, boutique retailers, cinemas, artisan eateries and bars, and more. Visit for all the latest events.

Further Information

Cost of Living in New Zealand

New Zealand Immigration

New Zealand Inland Revenue