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Last reviewed: Wed, 26 Feb 2014

Parks and walkways

Christchurch City is recognised as New Zealand’s Garden City with over 740 parks and an extensive system of rivers, streams and wetlands.

Parks Week: 3-9 March 2014

Parks week logo

The third annual Parks Week takes place across New Zealand and Australia, from 3 to 9 March to celebrate the important role our parks play in contributing to the health of our communities.

Why we need our parks. Feel a whole lot better - getting out into our environment can help us deal with stress, injury, illness, increase productivity and concentration, and generally feel revitalised. Connect with Nature - visit a park today

Do you want to help look after it? Connect with Nature – click here to get involved

Want to improve your fitness? Walking is an easy way to get fit and improve your health whatever your age. What better place to walk than in one of our city’s beautiful parks. Connect with Nature – take a walk in a park today

Do you love your park? Meet other like-minded people from your community. Connect with Nature – click here to get involved

In marking Parks Week 2014 we have selected six parks to illustrate the diversity of the City's parks.  Some may be familar to you and others completely new.

These vary in style from rugged to English garden, and in function from walking, hiking and cycling to parks for families and specific parks for dogs

Broad Park

Containing sheltered areas of lawn and a large playground this two hectare park is adjacent to the beach for walks and swimming. It has changing and toilet facilities. There is a café across the road. Car parks are located at both ends of the park.

Location: adjacent to New Brighton beach on corner of Beach Rd and Marine Parade.

Click on image to access larger view

Ferrymead Sports Park

Set at the bottom of St Andrews Hill, this 76 hectare park has large open areas suitable for kicking around a ball and walking a dog. Dogs do not need to be on a leash but must respond to the owner’s commands.  There is shelter and toilet facilities at the pavilion which is located beside the car park by the sports fields. Adjacent is the Ferrymead Heritage Park which features an early 1900s (Edwardian) town and down the road is the Gondala for a bird’s eye view of Canterbury.

Location: Heathcote Valley Heritage Park, Bridle Path Rd off the Ferrymead end of Ferrymead Park Drive.

Click on image to access larger view

Misty Peaks

Covering 500 hectares, Misty Peaks Reserve is located behind Akaroa between Long Bay and Lighthouse Roads.

A track to Newton’s waterfall has recently been created: from Akaroa walk up Aylmers Valley Rd to Misty Parks Reserve car park sign (a 30-45 minute gradual slope). From the car park follow marked track to the waterfall (about 10 minutes one way) through farm land and bush. 

This is an easy walk but not suitable for wheelchairs and prams.

Click on image to access larger view

Port Hills Dog Park

This park has some of the best views over the city and out to Pegasus Bay. Dogs will love the open tussock grasslands (any other info re the dogs ie respond to owner’s commands etc)

Location: Victoria Park Road, off Dyes Pass Road.

Click on image to access larger view

Woodham Park

This two hectare English park style garden consists of three large lawn areas and a sheltered children’s playground (the paddling pool is currently closed). There are toilet facilities. A car park is located on Woodham Road.

Location: Woodham Road, Linwood. 

Click on image to access larger view

The Edmonds Factory Garden and factory park

Built in 1923 the three storeyed factory has featured on the cover of the best-selling Edmonds Cookery Book.  The factory garden has won many awards in civic beautifying competitions.

The factory building has since been demolished and the park now features lawns, colourful plantings, a lily pond, stream, an oval garden and a rose garden.  There are toilet facilities. A playground is in the adjacent park.

Location: Ferry Road, Waltham. 

Click on image to access larger view

Earthquake update:

There are plenty of walking tracks now open in Christchurch so you can get out and about in the city.

While some walking and mountain biking tracks remain closed due to safety reasons following the February earthquake, the Christchurch City Council’s parks team is working hard to reopen popular recreation areas as soon as it is safe to do so.

The Port Hills tracks  that are now open include the H. G. Ell track and Latters Spur track. As well as these tracks, residents can access all of Halswell Quarry and Kennedys Bush Reserve areas. Some mountain bike tracks can be accessed off Mt Pleasant Road – please comply with all signage. Walkways are open at Travis Wetland and Charlesworth Wetland while recreation areas at Spencer Park, The Groynes and Styx Conservation area are also open.

The Bridle Path has recently reopened, along with many other Eastern tracks such as Scarborough Bluffs and the Capt Thomas Tracks. Coastal Area Parks closed include Bexley Wetland, Horseshoe Lake and Whitewash Head/Scarborough Walkway also closed due to instability. Signage is in place indicating areas that are closed due to rock fall hazard, as areas are further assessed these signs will change.

. Coastal Area Parks closed include Bexley Wetland, Horseshoe Lake and Whitewash Head/Scarborough Walkway also closed due to instability. Signage is in place indicating areas that are closed due to rock fall hazard, as areas are further assessed these signs will change.

Bottle Lake Forest Park and Seafield Park have reopened for all users but with some new track alignments to allow for the safe management of the earthquake resource recovery operation within the central area of the forest. Please follow all public safety instructions.

For regular updates on the status of Christchurch’s mountain biking tracks, visit


Hagley Park.

Christchurch's parks and walkways

Christchurch is fortunate to have such a diversity of parks and waterways, from neighbourhood playgrounds, sports grounds and heritage gardens, to large wilderness areas, coastal parks, wetlands and rivers.

Within half an hour's drive from Cathedral Square in the central city, you can discover beaches, wetlands, forests, or grasslands. You can be swimming in the sea, fishing off the New Brighton Pier, kayaking in the estuary, peering from a bird hide, mountain biking through a pine plantation, or tramping and enjoying the stunning views from the Port Hills.


Contact us

Transport and Greenspace
Phone: (03) 941 8999

Authorising Unit: Transport and Greenspace

Last reviewed: Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Next review: Thursday, 26 February 2015

Keywords: parks, walkways