As per the recent Lonely Planet rankings, Christchurch has been ranked at # 6 among the “top ten cities for 2013”. This must come as a shot in the arm and a huge morale boost for the countless souls working behind the scenes, trying to bring Christchurch back on to the tourism map of the world. It can safely said that when chief executive Tim Hunter of the Christchurch & Canterbury Tourism said that this will have huge repercussions and should expedite the recovery process for Christchurch’s tourism industry, he meant every single word.
Incidentally, Christchurch is the lone New Zealand destination that has made it to the prestigious annual “Best in Travel publication” from Lonely Planet which lists the world’s best destinations, journey’s and experiences across several parameters.
Christchurch has been lavishly praised by the writers at Lonely Planet, for the manner in which this southern city in New Zealand is slowly rising like a phoenix from the rubbles of one of the worst natural disasters to hit this nation. They went on to write that 2013 should be a new beginning in the tourism history of the city and encouraged tourists to come back and be a part of this historic attempt by a city that simply does not know how to quit. Chris Zeiher, Lonely Planet’s Asia Pacific Sales & Marketing Director adds that this should be a great time to experience the energy that is now revolving around the city and the amazing recovery work that is being done.
The city has been working double time and slowly toiling away at the recovery process. Having said that there are plenty of places and activities that a user can experience. Thanks to the spirit and enterprise of the local Cantabrians, many of the places that were damaged during the earthquake re-opened soon after. There have been a number of new attractions as well, such as the Project Re: START; a giant shipping container mall that offers travelers an incredible shopping experience. New bars and restaurants such as the Smash Palace, which is actually a renovated old bus, offer customers a great chance to have some time off. Old attractions such as the punting on the Avon River or the Antarctic Visitors Centre are also there and open to tourists. Add to that several new destinations and Christchurch suddenly becomes an interesting mix of itinerary to enjoy.
To further the efforts of the city and to boost its tourism several other programs have been undertaken. Discovery Stream is a part of the Christchurch re-imagined program that was launched a while back. It encourages users to contribute to social networks with tweets, posts and shares of what they are doing using a special share tag. These are collated and then posted on the reimagined.christchurchnz.com website giving potential tourists a real time update of what the travelers are enjoying currently. The idea is to increase the level of interest among the tourists and promoting Christchurch as a destination.