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Christchurch is the largest city in the South Island of New Zealand. It is on the edge of the Canterbury plains and is a major stepping off point for touring the South Island. Christchurch is known as the Garden City, a well-deserved name. Looking from a few floors up, one is struck by the number of trees that grow like a forest throughout the suburbs.

Botanic Garden is 30 hectares of exotic and indigenous plants and trees wrapped in a loop of the picturesque Avon River and linking to the 160hectare Hagley Park. These put the "Garden" in the "Garden City" and the combined total with Hagley Park makes them the second largest inner city park in the world after New York's Central Park. International Antarctic Centre is a world-class Antarctic experience with simulated polar weather, Hagglund All-Terrain Vehicle ride, penguins, extensive exhibits about Antarctic science missions, cafe and gift shop. Orana Wildlife Park is New Zealand's largest wildlife sanctuary and conservation project featuring endangered animals from around the world. The park's design minimises fences and cages in favor of natural boundaries and habitats.

Re:START is a mall that replaces part of City Mall which was quite badly destroyed in the 2011 earthquake. The shops are made out of shipping containers. Many local and internationally-renowned brands are operating within Re:START. Another shoppers’ heaven is The Warehouse. Common throughout New Zealand and with several stores in Christchurch, these big red stores contain a variety of bottom-end products including clothing, tools, camping equipment, toys, music and many more. Their motto is “where everyone gets a bargain” and most things are made in China. While you might not find the top quality brands here, prices are cheap.

Christchurch's Asian district is mainly in the Riccarton/Upper Riccarton area. Church Corner is often considered Christchurch's unofficial “Chinatown” with plenty of Chinese and Korean restaurants.


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