Thursday, 6 October 2011 4:42 PM
Christchurch has a lot to offer tourists heading to New Zealand, but if you really want to see the city come to life, visit during its festival season.
Situated on the South Island, many people stay in Christchurch hostels in order to learn more about New Zealand's history, take in beautiful ocean views and get involved with a variety of outdoor activities.
There are so many things to do and see when visiting the Garden City, as it is so-called due to its variety of public parks and outdoor spaces. You might like to head to its famous attractions to find out about the Maori origins, walk around its quaint streets or opt for something a little more daring, in the form of wind surfing or mountain biking.
While you'll find plenty to keep you entertained throughout the year, Christchurch is best visited when you can combine your stay in budget accommodation with some of its festivals.
If you're into horse racing, you might want to head to the city during New Zealand Cup and Show Week. This annual event sees more than 150,000 people attend to watch the races.
The week brings together a range of different events in Christchurch at the beginning of November, allowing visitors to make the most of their stay here. As well as enjoying the racing experience, you'll get the opportunity to sample local food, listen to live music and embrace New Zealand's culture.
Among the things to see is the Canterbury A&P Show, which involves locals coming together to celebrate the country's agricultural sector by putting on a variety of activities and events.
Hear the sounds of more than 3,000 animals as you stroll around Canterbury Agricultural Park, taking a look at the different competitions being held - including wood chopping and sheep shearing - and watching live entertainment.
You might also want to head to the New Zealand International Jazz & Blues Festival if you enjoy listening to music, as this will be a great opportunity to see some of the country's best talent perform.
Blues quartets, jazz groups and orchestras will play in the open air at this event, allowing you to enjoy a relaxing atmosphere with fantastic music playing in the background.
These events will really see the city spring to life, with locals showing skills and cultural traditions that you can't find anywhere else. So, for a unique insight into the Garden City, make sure you time your visit when its festivals are scheduled to take place.