Christchurch became New Zealand's first city by Royal Charter in July 1856, and its Cultural Precinct is the finest in the Southern Hemisphere. Over 150 years ago, the city's visionary founders planned a unique cultural heart for the province of Canterbury.
Education, art, science, government, religion, history and recreation were provided for within an area of less than one square kilometre, all entwined by the gently-flowing Avon river.
This cityscape of unrivalled natural and architectural beauty - 19th century buildings, majestic trees, extensive gardens, interesting bridges and meandering paths - now provides a striking backdrop for a vibrant scene of ever-changing arts, cultural and heritage activities.
The Cultural Precinct is easy to walk around, or you can travel by tram and hear stories about the area's history and personalities from a friendly tram driver.
The Cultural Precinct is made up of twelve partners and nineteen associate members, all within easy walking distance of the Christchurch CBD.
Iconic Christchurch institutions such as the ChristChurch Cathedral, Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu and the Canterbury Museum form the backbone of the Precinct. A stroll through the Precinct offers shops, small galleries, fabulous coffe, inspiring artworks and gardens.
It’s easy to spend an hour or a day here in the heart of Christchurch.