Christchurch is a vibrant, young city and the largest in New Zealand. It was established in 1848 and named after the famous Oxford College attended by one of its founders, John Robert Godley.
Today, in spite of the devastating earthquakes of 2010 and 2011, Christchurch boasts an attractive quality due to the creative architecture and surrounding landscape. The many well kept parklands have afforded the city an International Garden Award, giving it a clean, green status and making the city ideal for young families wishing to settle here.
Education in Christchurch
Schooling in Christchurch is generally excellent and there are two rated universities, Lincoln and Canterbury. Education is subsidised by the government and in particular the same sex schools tend to do remarkably well but all of the schools, state or private, have an excellent reputation.
Recently the government have announced a one billion dollar recovery package aimed at education in Christchurch which promises to revolutionise the way students are taught and lift Christchurch's reputation for excellence even higher. The Ministry of Education has more information on schooling in Christchurch.
Places to Live in Christchurch
The city is still re-building those areas affected by the earthquake and there is a shortage of rentals at the moment. The northwest of the city was less affected so that would be a good place to start. If you can afford top end rent then there are still properties out there; areas including Fendalton, Merivale, Scarborough and Cashmere are all considered exclusive areas and the rental prices do reflect this. If you can move further out of the city then properties become more available and rent/prices are cheaper.
Employment in Christchurch
Predictably, since the earthquake unemployment has risen sharply. The Central Business District still remains largely inaccessible so many have moved to areas such as Riccarton and Papanui. There were various appeals for Brits to help with the construction of the city after the earthquakes and it is still possible to get work in areas such as construction and civil engineering.
Leisure in Christchurch
As Christchurch is located on the South Island, you won't be short of things to do. Tourists are well catered for and as you will be living in Christchurch it would be a shame to miss out on all that it has to offer! Head for Akaroa where you can swim with dolphins or take up a nature cruise or why not tour some of the famous wine regions?
For shopping, head to the RE:Start development on the outskirts of the CBD which has turned shipping containers into quirky little cafes, boutiques and bars - it's an experience like no other!
The Christchurch farmers market is still being held every Saturday morning and is a great place to get fresh, local food.
If you want to hang out somewhere groovy then Lonely Planet recommends SoMo, an area south of Moorhouse Ave that is positively ripping! It's worth checking out the Lonely Planet Christchurch for updated information on where to go and what to do in Christchurch post-earthquake.