Running in Christchurch, New Zealand
Christchurch offers some great locations for running, here are just a few ideas. There are plenty of other options, but just to give you an idea:
1. Hagley Park – The heart of Christchurch since the 1850s, Hagley Park is a great spot utilised by runners, walkers and cyclists alike. Various paths circle and weave across both North Hagley (4.75km perimeter) and South Hagley (3.7km perimeter) allowing you to mix up your route and take in the various sites such as the Christchurch Botanic Gardens, Christ’s College and the Canterbury Museum. North Hagley also boasts a fitness circuit for those looking to add an extra element to their training.
Location: Central city, start your run from anywhere around the perimeter of the park.
2. Bottle Lake Forest Park – A picturesque 1000-hectare pine forest on the east coast nestled between Spencer Park to the north and Parklands to the south. This largely flat track will see you winding around a ten kilometre track, and if you’re after adding an extra degree of difficulty then you can trek up and down sand dunes. Be sure to take some sunscreen and a drink bottle as there is no drinking water in the park (apart from my the information centre), Dogs are allowed.
Location: The main Bottle Lake Forest entrance is off Waitikiri Drive, off Burwood Road.
3. Boulder Bay/Godley Heads – If you’re after spectacular coastal views, this is the run for you. Drive to Taylor’s Mistake – the bay on from Sumner. At the eastern (right hand) end of the beach there is a cliff edge track that will see you winding around the coastline past Boulder Bay and further on to Godley Heads. The path is wide, however you may want to avoid this track after heavy rains, unless you don’t mind getting a bit muddy.
Location: The track starts at from the Taylor’s Mistake car park. Taylor’s Mistake is the next bay on from Sumner
4. Victoria Park – There are many fantastic tracks up in the Port Hills. One of the favourites is Victoria Park, this will have you running up hills and down dales, and allowing you to choose your own adventure so to speak, with different tracks crisscrossing the hills. And if you’re a bit of a cyclist, or a triathlete then have a go at that too – you’ll blend in with all the other locals exploring the hills on their bikes.
Location: South of the central city located in the Cashmere hills.
6. Along the Avon – The Christchurch rebuild focuses heavily on highlighting the beauty of the Avon. Many new buildings are being constructed on its edges, so what better way to see the progress the city is making. A good starting point is Victoria Square, from here you will wind through the suburbs of Avonside, Wainoni, Avondale, Aranui and Bexley where the river merges with the estuary and incoming tide.
Location: Starting from the central city and heading out to the wetlands of Bexley.
5. Halswell Quarry Park – With fantastic views of the Southern Alps, running around Halswell Quarry will allow you to trek around a park which has played a major role in the development of Christchurch. The stone mined at the quarry was used in various buildings around Christchurch from 1850 to 1990 such as the Canterbury Museum. The park also features six Sister City Gardens which are filled with native plants from their respective regions. The park is ideal for a short run, and if you want to lengthen your run then you can always link up with Kennedy’s Bush Track found to the east of Halswell Quarry Park
Location: Southwest of the city on Kennedy’s Bush Road