Enjoy a bird’s-eye view from more than 1,640 feet (500 meters) above sea level on the Christchurch Gondola. Take in 360-degree views of the Christchurch cityscape set against a scenic backdrop of the Canterbury Plains, Southern Alps, and Banks Peninsula. It’s a not-to-be-missed experience for visitors of all ages.
Board an aerial cable car for a comfortable ride to the summit of Mt. Cavendish and the crater rim above Christchurch. The Time Tunnel experience at the top gives visitors an understanding of Port Hills’ natural and cultural history, while the café at the Summit Station offers panoramic vistas along with light meals accompanied by wine or beer. There are also walking and biking trails nearby, so come prepared to spend time outside.
Things to Know Before You Go
- There is no age minimum, but children must be accompanied by an adult.
- Wheelchairs up to a maximum of 2 feet (60 centimeters) in width can be accommodated, with assistance available.
- The souvenir shop and café offer free Wi-Fi.
- Wear comfortable walking shoes if you plan to explore the trails.
- Plan to spend at least one hour for the entire visit, and don’t forget a camera.
How to Get There
It’s just a 15-minute drive from central Christchurch, with parking available at the Gondola base, located on Bridle Path Road in the Heathcote Valley. For travelers without a car, a shuttle makes multiple round-trip rides per day, leaving from the Canterbury Museum on Rolleston Avenue (purchase tickets from the driver). Passengers can also head to the City Exchange on Lichfield Street and take bus No. 28.
When to Get There
The Christchurch Gondola is open from 10am to 5pm every day but Christmas Day. The trip takes about 10 minutes each way, from the Gondola Base Station to the Summit Station at the top of Mt. Cavendish. Visit in warmer months to enjoy outdoor activities, or go in fall and winter to see snow-dusted mountain peaks.
Christchurch Sightseeing Combo
Tourists can maximize sightseeing in the so-called Garden City by combining the Christchurch Gondola with one or more top attractions, such as riding the electric caterpillar shuttle, strolling through the Christchurch Botanic Gardens, or punting on the tranquil Avon River in a flat-bottomed boat. Take the Christchurch Tram and hop off at any of its 17 stops.