Flickr: Alan Light

The Avon River runs through the heart of Christchurch, and is increasingly becoming a focal point of recreational opportunities. It is possible to run east from downtown for nearly 12 km, through several suburbs, to where the river merges with the estuary in New Brighton. There are some sections of dedicated path, some shared use trails, and some road sections. But nearly all of it is pleasant and green, with water views in most sections. Oxford Terrace is now a full pedestrian way for 1.8 km from the Christchurch Hospital to Mahy Playground. Note: parts of the area are being developed — and repaired from the destructive 2011 earthquake.

Our route follows a recommended walking path, anchored by Oxford Terrace/Avonside Dr. (south bank) and Cambridge Terrace (north bank) — although either side is possible in most sections. Starting at Victoria Square downtown, head east, mainly on the north bank, for 3 km, then crossing over to Avonside Dr. at Swans Rd. The remaining 8+ km are mainly on the south bank, following Avonside Rd./Hulverstone Dr., with some sections of dedicated path. Our route ends at Pages Rd. in New Brighton. Note: Can do a one-way using the bus (yellow line).

Add-On: Can also follow the river path for 1.6 miles west to Hagley Park, and enjoy our route there.

Essentials
  • 11.7 km (7.3 miles) one-way from Victoria Sq. east to New Brighton. Can do one-way and take bus back! It's 1.6 km from Victoria Sq. west to Hagley Park
  • Generally flat
  • Victoria Square downtown, or anywhere along the path
  • Bus: Yellow Line from New Brigton to Christchurch