New Zealand High Commission Canberra, Australia

Christchurch makes Lonely Planet Guide’s Top 10

Christchurch: Cashel Street's Container Mall

Christchurch makes Lonely Planet Guide’s Top 10. Discovery Stream launches to celebrate the ever-evolving city.

(Sydney, Australia)  Lonely Planet has announced placement of Christchurch at number six on its list of ‘Top 10 Cities for 2013’.  This recognition is being hailed as game-changing news for the city’s tourism industry.

“To have such a respected world-wide publication single out Christchurch as an exciting, vibrant place to visit is an incredible boost for our city and has the potential to make a huge difference to the speed at which our tourism industry recovers” says Christchurch & Canterbury Tourism chief executive Tim Hunter.

Christchurch is the only New Zealand city to make it into Lonely Planet’s annual Best in Travel publication – a collection of the world's best trends, destinations, journeys and experiences for the upcoming year.

The city was singled out by Lonely Planet for the way it was “bouncing back with a new energy and inventiveness’’.  “New Zealand’s second largest city is rising from the rubble … with a breath-taking mix of spirit, determination and flair,” Lonely Planet writers say. “The recovery effort is well under way and 2013 will be an intriguing year to join the rebirth of this proud southern city.’’

 “We believe 2013 will be a great year to visit to Christchurch and experience the amazing energy of the city in its rebuilding phase,” says Lonely Planet’s Asia Pacific Sales & Marketing Director Chris Zeiher.  

While the city is in planning mode with a new vision recently laid out, there are plenty of things to do and see in Christchurch now.  Many of the activities re-opened in a very short time after the quake last year and new businesses have sprung up through the resilience of the local Cantabrians.  Project Re: START – the brightly coloured shipping container mall - provides a great afternoon of shopping and new bars and restaurants such as Smash Palace, built in an old bus, sit alongside existing attractions such as punting on the Avon River or the Antarctic Visitors Centre.  And with the re-opening of the Ibis and several other hotels to follow soon after there are now more places for visitors to stay.

Capitalising on the increase in new activities in the city, Christchurch and Canterbury Tourism has also launched their “Discovery Stream” creative campaign which can be found at reimagined.christchurchnz.com. 

The Discovery Stream is a micro-site that will incorporate real-time content from visitors and residents documenting what they are seeing in the city.

The Stream pulls from Twitter and Instagram to uncover what people are doing and saying, in and around Christchurch at any hour of the day whether that is sitting in one of the new pop up bars, attending an event in the city or shopping.   People are encouraged to take photos of Christchurch, tag it with #chch, and share it on Twitter and Instagram, in addition to uploading images on Facebook.

A grassroots campaign has been launched simultaneously in the city through tourism operators to encourage visitors to share their images.

This campaign sets out to address Australia's misconceptions of Christchurch as a tourist destination, by replacing the images of the earthquake that visitors have previously held onto. The Discovery Stream provides Christchurch with a world first, a platform that crowd-sources and broadcasts the visitor experience in real-time, showing all the big things happening in and around the city. 

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