Ōtākaro/Avon River

Running through the heart of Christchurch, the Ōtākaro/Avon River is a great source of recreation for walkers and boaters.

Botanic Gardens Avon River punting 1000501resize

COVID-19 update on parks and tracks

The Government is asking for everyone to stay at home. Their advice is that you can go for a walk or exercise outdoors for a short time, but to stick to simple walks or exercise spots close to home. 

If using one of our parks, always stay two metres away from anyone not in your household. If you take your dog, please keep it on a leash at all times to help avoid contact with other dogs. Take your dog poo home and dispose of it in your red bin.

Where there are gates and latches in parks, please avoid using your hands to open and close them. If gates are off their hinges or left open, please leave them as you find them.

Cemeteries are open for pedestrian access only. 

The following are closed:

  • Public toilets.
  • Playgrounds, play equipment or exercise equipment in parks.
  • The Botanic Gardens.
  • Car parks within parks.
  • Visitor and information centres.
  • The Spencer Park animal area and fenced dog parks.
  • All Council-owned sports facilities

Unite Against Covid-19, visit covid19.govt.nz

The Ōtākaro/Avon River begins at a spring source in Avonhead and filters out to sea via the Estuary of the Heathcote and Avon Rivers/Ihutai. 

A popular recreational waterway for residents and tourists, the river runs through the city centre. Commercial punting is popular in a number of locations, kayaks and peddle boats can be hired from the Antigua Boat Sheds(external link) and there are many pathways running alongside the river to walk, run and cycle on. 

Meandering through Hagley Park, the Botanic Gardens River Walk, Hagley River Walk, Little Hagley Walk and Millbrook Reserve Walk all follow alongside the Otakaro/Avon and offer stunning scenery in all seasons. 

The river also passes through many areas of significance such as Riccarton Bush, Mona Vale and Victoria Square. The Avon-Ōtākaro Network(external link) is working on a number of projects to revitalise the banks of the Ōtākaro/Avon and create a city-to-sea river park for all to enjoy.