Council Heritage brochures can guide you on historic walking tours with easy walking distances, as well as on longer historic trails requiring the use of public transport.

An interpretation project on the heritage of the city is currently underway. This project is a partnership with Ngāi Tūāhuriri Rūnanga and will be rolled out across the city from 2021. In the meantime the following guides are available.

Christchurch before 1850: Inner-city and coastal heritage trails

Two trails – the Inner-City Heritage Trail and the Coastal Heritage Trail – still hold traces of the first Māori peoples on the Christchurch landscape about 700 years ago.

For the Inner-City Heritage Trail, allow about 30 minutes to walk from the inner-city to the last site at Barbadoes Street.

For the Coastal Heritage Trail, once you’ve caught the No. 3 (Purple Line) Metro bus(external link) from the inner-city to Redcliffs, allow about 30 minutes to walk from Moncks Cave (in Redcliffs) to Cave Rock, in Sumner.

Christchurch before 1850 pamphlet [PDF, 5.7 MB] (first published c.2000)


cover of heritage guide

Discover central Christchurch heritage

 While the Canterbury Earthquakes of 2010- 2011 had a significant impact on Christchurch’s built heritage, much remains in central Christchurch that is perfect for exploring. Our heritage places are unique treasures for present and future generations of residents and visitors to enjoy.

Discover our special places and their fascinating stories in this walking guide.  As this brochure was last updated in 2013 a number of the earthquake-damaged buildings identified in this brochure have now been repaired and strengthened. Some places are still undergoing repairs or have temporary protection measures in place. For your safety, please observe security fencing and other safety measures.

Christchurch has a rich Māori and European cultural heritage and many of these sites are part of this walk. Take your time to experience the heritage places of central Christchurch using the map of sites provided.

Central City Heritage Guide [PDF, 11 MB]  (2013)