New Zealand’s second largest city, Christchurch, is often compared to the medieval towns of England and just like its European counterpart, is prone to a little bit of rain. This shouldn’t stop you exploring the best sites of Christchurch as many of them are indoors or are rain-friendly. Grab your umbrella and check out our top 5 ways to spend a rainy day with kids in Christchurch.
International Antarctic Centre
Situated next to Christchurch Airport is the spectacular International Antarctic Centre. Your kids will love the interactive displays and New Zealand’s first indoor and outdoor penguin encounter – but wrap up warm because to complete the experience they’ve included a real Antarctic wind chill.
Slide down a snow slope in the Snow & Ice Experience before relaxing in the cafe with a hot drink or take a walk round the extensive gift store.
The International Antarctic Centre is just a 5 minute walk from the airport and opening times vary throughout the year – so always check this before you leave.
Why take home souvenirs that someone else has made when you can make your own! You’ll find a range of craft-making classes around Christchurch and some of the most popular include jewellery, cheese, basket-weaving and bone-carving workshops.
During these workshops you and your kids will learn how to use traditional Maori techniques to make your own authentic and unique gifts.
Although it’s original home, the iconic Christchurch Arts Centre is still closed after significant earthquake damage, the mouth-watering Fudge Cottage has now reopened for business at a new location.
Watch as fudge is handcrafted using traditional techniques on a kitchen tour, then try some of their famous fudge in the gift store. Staff are dressed in period-costumes and are renowned for being friendly and welcoming.
Kitchen tours are available on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 3.30pm and more often during school holidays.
Hanmer Springs Thermal Spa and Pool
A 90 minute drive from Christchurch is the alpine village of Hanmer Springs – home to the best place to stay warm on a cold, rainy day.
Children are catered for with a family activity area, complete with waterslides and water toys. If you get a chance to spend some time alone – enjoy a massage or treatment at the award-winning spa.
These beautiful natural hot springs have been open to the public for over 125 years and are one of the regions leading tourism destinations.
Refuel and relax at Sprig Bar (Peppers Clearwater Resort)
After an eventful afternoon out and about everyone’s tummy is sure to be rumbling! If you are looking for casual elegance in a child friendly setting why not try Spring Bar at Peppers Clearwater Resort. Enjoy light meals prepared by the award winning team of chefs while overlooking the golf course and stunning scenery – a fabulous place to unwind and relax.
Article by Jennifer Kellet who a keen travel writer and explorer of the world. Having done New Zealand once as a backpacker a few years ago, Jennifer was pleased to return without a backpack and enjoy luxury accommodation in Christchurch and Queenstown while staying in Peppers resorts.