Christchurch: Christchurch Botanical Gardens, Wandering Around

We flew from Queenstown to Christchurch today and, boy, our arms tired. Sorry. Because of my dramatically curtailed writing time when not travelling alone, I don’t have time to come up with much of my usual dry, wretched wit. You’ll have to settle for an unoriginal, wretched old joke.

Air New Zealand assigned me a window seat. I normally prefer aisle seats so the flight attendants can jostle my shoulder and arm with their carts, thereby giving me something to grumble about. (Grumbling is my life. Without it, I’d have nothing.) However, the window seat afforded me the benefit of seeing great views out the window.

View outside the Air New Zealand plane window shortly after taking off from Queenstown heading to Christchurch.
View outside the Air New Zealand plane window shortly after taking off from Queenstown heading to Christchurch.

Yes. I know. “Out the window” is superflous because, when travelling in a commercial jet, the great views, if there are any at all, are almost always out the window. But, you know what I mean.

I took the photo to the right shortly after we took off from Queenstown.

Beyond the flight, today’s activities included wandering around the central area of Christchurch a bit, including the Christchurch Botanic Gardens. We also had a nice meal and too many glasses of wine, but you don’t want to hear about that.

As I’ve stated a couple of times already in this trip, because I don’t have a lot of time for writing, there aren’t many words below. You get what you get. Sorry about that.

Christchurch Botanic Gardens

The Avon River as it passes through the Christchurch Botanic Gardens
The Avon River as it passes through the Christchurch Botanic Gardens

The Christchurch Botanic Garden is a large park with a few different plant zones. Flower beds, especially the rose gardens, burst with profuse, vibrant colours. A near-rain forest area is lush. Greenhouses hold plants that wouldn’t survive the cooler weather in Christchurch’s winters.

And a river runs through the gardens. The same river, the Avon River, runs through the city.

A “peacock fountain” adorns one of the entrances to the gardens. Or possibly one of the exits, depending, of course, on which way you’re headed.

Wandering Around

Christchurch Cathedral, sans a large part of the front wall
Christchurch Cathedral, sans a large part of the front wall

Christchurch hasn’t completely rebuilt after its devastating earthquake of 2011. There’s still a lot of reconstruction going on.

And reconstruction doesn’t seem to have started at all at the Christchurch Cathedral, which is immediately beside our hotel. The upper half of the front wall of the cathedral still isn’t there at all. I read somewhere that part of the reason it hasn’t been restored yet is there is considerable debate as to whether to restore it to its pre-earthquake state or build something new.

Our brief wandering around today also took us by the Christchurch Bridge of Remembrance, which is not so much a bridge as an arch. Hey, I didn’t name it. Don’t blame me. It commemorates war dead, primarily, but not exclusively, from World War I.

And we saw a lively retail and restaurant area.

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