TripAdvisor review: ReSTART, Christchurch NZ

I loved the ReSTART  mall in Christchurch. A collection of local designers, neat homewares,  cafes and clothing shops- all housed in shipping containers. In an effort to rebuild after the Christchurch earthquakes, it seems this temporary solution has been a massive success in revitalizing the local community and boosting morale. It’s a physical testament to Christchurch’s resilience and ingenuity. 

It was a shame to learn that the mall may be pulled down soon to make way for a “trendy shopping center”. 
Bah, humbug. This mall has character and quirk and you should go see it while it still stands. 

TripAdvisor review: Ibis Christchurch, NZ

The Ibis is a hotel chain where you can pretty much expect what the facilities are like as well as the standard of accommodation.
 What makes Ibis Christchurch really special is the warmth of service from the staff. Their attentive hospitality was very much appreciated when we had a late night check-in, and we had various transfers and activities to confirm. They chose to go above the call of duty to help us. 
The hotel is right at the heart of Christchurch CBD which makes is a central location to anything you’d need- it’s all within walking distance.

 The buffet breakfast at this hotel is great value (considering the lack of reasonably priced brunch spots in the immediate area).
On a side note, The local community has shown such great resilience and strength of spirit to continue on after tragic natural disasters. It was humbling to see the rebuild effort. I recommend going to Christchurch to see and support the city, even though a lot of it is still under construction. 
We had a relaxing time and we were satisfied with the facilities.

Gap Cache Log Book

If you walk down the lane, you find a small park. The park that is filled with subversive art installations. There are murals on the wall, planted natives for the future, a giant kaleidoscope… Christchurch is has hidden quirks. 
There is a tree-stump about shin height. I looled down and found this small door. 

I opened it.

Inside I discovered a Gap Cache Log Book. It recorded entries from people who chanced upon the logbook, as I did. 

Christchurch after the quakes is a place full of human strength and resilience. There are signs of life, if you choose to pay attention.

TripAdvisor review: Avon River, Christchurch NZ

The Avon River in Christchurch is an autumnal masterpiece. The weeping willows dance across the surface of the river, gently tousled by the breeze. This taste of England runs through the city, ducking under bridges in the CBD and skirting around parkland. It’s refreshing to have such a beautiful element of nature trickle through a city so badly effected by earthquakes. 

There’s punting on the Avon, a popular tourist attraction. However I was content to just follow it- from the Canterbury Museum around even to the restart mall. The council has made a lovely feature of it, providing spaces to sit with quotes and memorials. Peppered with yellow confetti-like autumn leaves, this river is not to be missed in Christchurch. 

TripAdvisor review: New Regent Street, Christchurch NZ

New Regent Street is funky and a great taste of the local community.  Quaint terraces line the street which is mainly used for tram thoroughfare and pedestrian access. The terraces are pastels and are a mirror image on either side of the street. 

There are enough cafes to satisfy your brunch needs, some souvenir shops and hobby shops. 
What’s most exciting to me are the hidden touches of humanity and resilience in the aftermath of the Christchurch quakes. This strip is a testament to their rebuilding effort. The street art here is quirky, stimulating and surprising. 

I really recommend a stroll down here for lunch. 

TripAdvisor review: 185 Empty White Chairs, Christchurch NZ

This art installation, thought temporary, is incredibly moving and a must see for all tourists. Each chair represents someone who lost their life in the Christchurch earthquakes. Each chair has unique personality which truly humanises the experience. 
Only a short walk from the Cardboard Cathedral, this installation is easily accessible. There are poems and other testaments gathered there, and a statement from the artist. 

It’s just a very moving reminder of human loss.