Top 5 Cheap Things To Do In Christchurch

1. Check out the Markets

If you are lucky you can find just about anything at one of the Christchurch markets. From flea markets to farmers markets there is something to suit everyone. The best part? You can enjoy all these markets without spending a dime!

Sometimes browsing alone can be great fun. However, if you do decide to buy something, you are hardly going to break the bank buying odds and ends at a market! 

So what are some markets in Christchurch? Well if you have a foodie inclination, then you can’t go past the Christchurch Farmers’ Market. From bacon butties to gluten-free macaroons, you’ll find it all at the Christchurch Farmers’ Market!

Held every week at the Riccarton House and Bush, this market is a great way to whittle away a Saturday morning. You can’t beat this place on a fine day as the historic house and grounds are beautiful!

So maybe fancy foods don’t spin your wheels? Another great option is The Riccarton Market. Held at the Riccarton Racecourse each Sunday, you can buy almost anything at this market!

Even if you don’t want to part with your hard earned cash, there is free live entertainment and more than enough to look at. From fresh fruit to antiques, to greenstone jewelry, the Riccarton Market has got you covered!


2. Take a leisurely stroll around the City’s many parks and gardens

Perhaps you enjoy the finer thing in life? Perhaps you like to stop and smell the flowers? Perhaps you don’t want to spend money on ‘odds and ends’ at a market? Well, you’re in luck because Christchurch ain’t called the garden city for nothing!

Take the Christchurch Botanic Gardens for example. They are simply beautiful. And it won’t cost you anything to wander these gardens! There are rose gardens, a lily pond complete with ducks and swans, beautiful old trees and even Victorian glasshouses. What more could you want?


3. Go for a hike or bike ride

If the city gardens seem a bit tame for you then you can always go for a hike or bike ride. Some of the best scenery in Christchurch is just a short hike away. And as an added bonus, you can get some exercise too!

To start with you could head on out to the Godley Head Walking track to soak up the sights and sun. Not just any old walking track, the Godley Head can entertain for hours. From penguin colonies to dolphin pods, to World War II-era defense batteries, there is more than enough out here to keep you interested. If you still aren’t convinced, then let me add that all this is totally one hundred percent FREE!

Maybe you are more into biking? Well, Christchurch still has plenty to offer! A great option is the Bottle Lake Forest Track. Complete with forests and sand dunes, this track is great for leisurely bike rides as well as hard-core workouts.  And yes – it won’t cost you a dime!


4. Hit the beach!

Like any self-respecting coastal city, Christchurch has some spectacular beaches! Thinking of having a nice day sunbathing at the beach? Well, head on over to the beach at Sumner. While you’re at it feel free to grab an ice cream and have a paddle in the clear waters.

If you are more into your surfing you then Taylors Mistake is probably a better fit. As an added this bonus this beach is right next to the Godley Heads Reserve mentioned above. What could be better? A rousing hike around the Heads followed by a refreshing dip!

Now there is no way I can discuss beaches in Christchurch without talking about New Brighton. As well as swimming and lounging on the beach, you can stroll out onto the Pier or take in the sights from the pier side café and restaurant. There’s even a seaside library if you are so inclined!


5. Head along to a Festival

Christchurch has a massive range of annual festivals throughout the year. Tickets for most of them are pretty cheap, if not free! So really it’s only a matter of picking which ones you go to!

There are food festivals, music festivals, and art festivals. You name it, and chances are there is a festival for it! If you fancy yourself a hearty beer drinker then try out the Great Kiwi Beer Festival at Hagley Park. Or if you are looking for more entertainment hit up the World Buskers Festival.

Maybe what you really want is to enjoy some fine art? Well, the Christchurch Arts Festival has got you covered there too!

So no matter what your interests are, Christchurch has something to offer! And it won’t even cost you much! It just goes to show – there is a lot more Christchurch than earthquakes!

 Written by Catlin Ward