New Zealand Day Two : Exploring The Streets And Museums of Christchurch
I was considering taking a nap after my four mile hike through the beautiful botanical gardens of Christchurch. I had traveled for over twenty-four hours and was very tired. The long flight also affected my sinuses and I could not breathe through my nose. A nap would be good I thought. However, it was sunny and warm and I decided to continue my exploration of the city.
So I returned to my room, quickly changed camera batteries, unpacked my luggage and electronics and was following the tram tracks toward downtown Christchurch.
As with most cities in New Zealand the area was first settled by the Maori, who hunted the now extinct moa bird in the region in the 13th century. I hope to write more about the Maori people and their culture and history in future blog posts.
English colonists arrived in the 19th century. And they brought a part of England with them, creating a very English city in this remote area of the world.
Unfortunately, the city was devastated by two massive earthquakes in 2010 and 2011. The second that occurred in February of 2011 killed 186 people and leveled many of the historic buildings as well as large parts of the modern city. This is what is left of one of Christchurch’s most famous landmarks, the Christchurch Cathedral. Reconstruction of the cathedral is now underway.
The debris from the destruction caused by the earthquakes is gone but there are still construction projects everywhere in the city.
And entire blocks are now empty, awaiting more reconstruction in the future.
The city now has a more modern look to it, with new buildings appearing along its center city streets.
But the city still maintains some of its historic look with old buildings un-damaged by the earthquake,
and in parks along the scenic Avon River that flows through the center of the city.
I walked to the end of the tram tracks that run through the center of the city and was making my way back to my hotel. I say the Christchurch Art Gallery and decided to stop in for a short visit before it closed at 5 p.m.
I learn so much about a city by walking its streets and also by visiting its art galleries, museums and churches. I enjoyed the exhibits and learned much about both the Maori.
and English culture and history of the city.
I wish I had more time to enjoy the exhibits but 5 p.m. came to quickly and the museum was closing. Here is a link to some more photographs from my visit to the museum. Art Gallery New Zealand Day Two February 7 2019
I was more tired now than hungry but knew I should eat something before I fell asleep. I decided to try one of Christchurch’s better know restaurants, Fiddlesticks. First, I saw that the City Council building was still open so I had to take a quick peek inside.
I then made my way to Fiddlesticks and enjoyed my first meal in New Zealand. It was delicious but I was now exhausted.
I made my way back to the hotel and was ready for sleep. My concerns about my neck, hip and back problems were not realized. I was sore from my travels but nothing serious. My sinuses were a different story. They caused me considerable discomfort. So, as tired as I was, I had a hard time sleeping. But, as painful as my sinuses were, it was well worth the flight to be able to see this beautiful island Nation on the other side of this small planet we share. Here is a link to some more photographs from my walk through Christchurch. New Zealand Day Two city walk February 7 2019.
“There’s something about arriving in new cities, wandering empty streets with no destination. I will never lose the love for the arriving, but I’m born to leave.”