Kennedy's Bush

Take in the views, listen to the birdsong or explore the remains of historic resthouse, Sign of the Bellbird.

Kennedys Bush

COVID-19 update on parks and tracks

The Government is asking for everyone to stay at home. Their advice is that you can go for a walk or exercise outdoors for a short time, but to stick to simple walks or exercise spots close to home. 

If using one of our parks, always stay two metres away from anyone not in your household. If you take your dog, please keep it on a leash at all times to help avoid contact with other dogs. Take your dog poo home and dispose of it in your red bin.

Where there are gates and latches in parks, please avoid using your hands to open and close them. If gates are off their hinges or left open, please leave them as you find them.

Cemeteries are open for pedestrian access only. 

The following are closed:

  • Public toilets.
  • Playgrounds, play equipment or exercise equipment in parks.
  • The Botanic Gardens.
  • Car parks within parks.
  • Visitor and information centres.
  • The Spencer Park animal area and fenced dog parks.
  • All Council-owned sports facilities

Unite Against Covid-19, visit



Access the short walks around Kennedys Bush from Sign of the Bellbird on Summit Rd or from Kennedys Bush Access Track in Halswell. 


Dogs are prohibited in Kennedys Bush.


Facilities available at the Sign of the Bellbird and Halswell Quarry Park.


Volunteer in the Port Hills and make a positive difference in Christchurch's most popular adventure playground.

Keep an eye out for regular working bees and planting days held by Christchurch City Council or one of the many active community organisations involved in Port Hills restoration and care.



Kennedys Bush was purchased in 1906 through the initiative of Harry Ell, a conservationist and campaigner for the preservation of scenery and protection of native birds. 

Ell urged the public to donate to a project that would see the Kennedys Bush purchased as a public reserve and promoted the idea of a network of scenic reserves on the Port Hills.

Ell envisioned a Summit Road that would link the scenic reserves and walking tracks in the Port Hills with rest houses along the route. Read more about the first of these, Sign of the Bellbird.

Walks and rides

Mountain biking

Test your stamina on the longest ascent in the Port Hills - Kennedys Bush Track, or take it one step further and continue from the end of this track along the more challenging Kennedys Bush to Worsleys Track.

Be aware that Kennedys Track sometimes closes during lambing season (August to September).


Kennedys Bush Reserve has a network of tracks making a number of circuits possible.

Find a new favourite below: