Where you can take your dog

Areas where you can take your dog, where it needs to be leashed and where no dogs are allowed.

The below map shows areas where you can and can’t take your dog, and where dogs must be on a leash. 

These areas are regulated in the Council’s Dog Control Policy and are enforceable under the Council’s Dog Control Bylaw. To avoid a fine and look after your dog and others, make sure you follow these rules. 

Some general requirements aren’t shown on the map. These include:

  • Dogs must be kept under effective control in all public places and at all times. This means the owner or person in charge of the dog is aware of where the dog is and what it is doing, that the dog is responsive to commands, and that is not creating a nuisance to other dogs, people or wildlife.
  • Dogs must be:
    • leashed on all roads, footpaths and car parks
    • leashed on all boat ramps, slipways and parking areas
    • leashed in all cemeteries and memorial areas
  • Dogs are prohibited from all Council playgrounds, skateparks and paddling pools.

Dog parks and exercise areas

Dog parks are fenced areas specially designed for dog and owner security.

Dog exercise areas are open spaces where your dog can be off-leash but under effective control.

Bexley Reserve dog park

dog playing in parkAccess of Pages Road, Bexley.

The dog park area at Bexley Reserve is a small, fenced area.  

The park is in the process of being expanded to include planting, climbing obstacles and drinking fountains for dogs.


  • doggy doo disposal bins
  • fenced enclosure

The Groynes dog park

Dog on play equipmentAccess is off Johns Road.

The Groynes Dog Park consists of large open spaces with plenty of trees and two spring-fed streams for your dog to swim in.

Opening hours:

  • 8am daily until half an hour before sunset.


  • Eight fenced areas with three agility/obstacle courses, including one for small dogs.
  • Picnic and BBQ area.
  • Fresh drinking water.
  • Wash down area for dogs.
  • Doggy doo dispensers and rubbish bins.

Please note that dogs are prohibited elsewhere in the Groynes and must be kept on a leash if passing through the Groynes while on the Otukaikino walking track.

Horseshoe Lake dog park

Access off Broomfield Terrace, Burwood.

While most of the reserve has been closed since the earthquakes, the dog park off Broomfield Terrace is open and you can still walk your dog on a leash around the outskirts of the reserve. 

Opening hours:

  • Open 24 hours a day.


  • Limited seating and parking for owners.
  • Securely fenced park with agility course, trees and open spaces.

Rawhiti Reserve dog park

dog jumping over play equipmentAccess off Shaw Ave, New Brighton.

Open all day, this large dog park has plenty of trees and space for dogs to spring around as well as some course structures for exercising dogs.


  • securely fenced area
  • agility course
  • all-day parking


Styx Mill Reserve dog park

dog jumping in pondAccess of Hussey Road, Styx Mill.

The water quality in the dog pond is variable due to algae. A permanent fence has been installed around the dog pond with gated access for those who choose to use it.

The location of the dog park is under review as part of the development of the Styx Mill Conservation Reserve.

Opening hours:

  • 7.30am daily, closing at 5.30pm in winter or a half-hour before sunset in summer.


  • two lake areas
  • toilets and car parking

Victoria Park dog park

people walking dogs on hillAccess off Victoria Park Road, Port Hills.

This huge dog park offers grasslands, steep ridges and natural rocky outcrops for your dog to explore.

Opening hours:

  • 7.30am daily, with closing times of 6pm in winter and 9pm in summer.


  • securely fenced area
  • fresh drinking water
  • doggy doo disposal bins

Radley Park dog exercise areas

Dog play equipmentAccess off Cumnor Terrace and Riley Crescent, Woolston.

Your dog can scale the A-frame, run through the tunnel, weave its magic through the weaving poles and walk the dog plank.

Opening hours:

  • open daily, 24 hours


  • six medium height agility obstacles

Halswell Quarry Park dog exercise areas

Access of Kennedys Bush Road, Halswell.

Halswell Quarry has a dog exercise area where dogs may be off their leash.

This area is not a designated dog park however and is not fenced. Dog owners should be aware of other park users and keep their dogs under control at all times.

Dogs may be taken on most tracks through Halswell Quarry provided they are kept on a leash but are prohibited from the Wetlands Conservation Area.

Bottle Lake Forest Park dog exercise area

Access of Waitikiri Drive, Burwood.

Dogs are permitted off leash in Bottle Lake Forest as long as they are kept under effective control.

Please be aware of other recreational users and dog owners.

Take a look at some of the walks available for you and your dog at Bottle Lake.


Reserves and walking tracks

You can let your dog run free on any reserve or park within Christchurch that is not a leashed or prohibited area but your dog must be under effective control at all times.

There are also walking tracks that allow you to take your dog with you.


To protect swimming and recreation activities, dogs are prohibited from these Christchurch and Banks Peninsula beaches from 1 November to 31 March between 9am and 7pm, known as Summer Beach Prohibition Areas:

  • Spencer Park, Waimairi, North and South New Brighton Beaches: For 100 metres in northerly and southerly directions from the Surf Life Saving Club’s pavilions.
  • New Brighton Beach: For 100 metres in a northerly direction of the Surf Life Saving Club’s pavilion and 100 metres southward of the Christchurch Pier.
  • Sumner Beach: For 100 metres in a northerly direction of the Sumner Surf Life Saving Club’s pavilion and to Cave Rock in the south.
  • Taylor's Mistake Beach: For 50 metres in a general northerly and southerly direction from the Taylor's Mistake Surf Life Saving Club’s pavilion.
  • All of Lyttelton Harbour Beach and foreshore areas, Cass Bay Beach, Corsair Bay Beach, Sandy Bay Beach, Paradise Bay Beach, Hays Bay Beach, Diamond Harbour Beach and Purau Beach.
  • All of Akaroa Beach, French Farm Beach, Le Bon’s Bay Beach, Little Akaloa Beach, Okain's Bay Beach, Port Levy Beach and Tikao Bay Beach.

If you are walking your dog along a beach and enter a Summer Beach Prohibition Area, you do not have to exit the beach, travel along the road or inland, and then return to the beach after the prohibited area. You can walk through the prohibited area, as long as you have your dog on a short leash and under good control, and you are passing directly through the area.

Dogs can cause issues on beaches that are commonly used for swimming and recreation activities, ranging from hygiene (fouling or urinating on sand or belongings) to causing a nuisance to or endangering, other people at the beach, especially children.

Outside of these dates and times, beaches with Summer Beach Prohibitions in place revert back to ‘under effective control’ areas.

Other than beaches specified as Summer Beach Prohibition Areas, dogs are generally permitted in many beach and coastal areas, unless there are restrictions in place to protect wildlife or for other reasons.

Check individual entries in the Council’s Dog Control Policy or view the dog control map.