Visitors come to the free-to-enter Mona Vale to walk along the Avon River, visit the rose garden, or check out the beautiful fernery. Unless you’re getting married on the Iris Lawn, the other main draw is a relaxed bite at the Pantry, which serves brunch and high tea. From mini scones to club sandwiches, it’s a classic menu. Mona Vale is also an included stop on some tours of Christchurch, often combined with other area gardens or attractions.
Things to Know Before You Go
- This is a great destination for bird watchers. It’s often possible to spot ducks on the shores of the Avon River here.
- If you’re hoping to attend high tea, it’s a good idea to book in advance, as popular times can fill quickly.
- The grounds are wheelchair and stroller accessible.
How to Get There
Mona Vale Homestead is located at 40 Mona Vale Avenue, northwest of the Christchurch city center. The closest bus stop is located on Straven Road near Rockdale Street, with service from the 100 Wigwam—The Palms. It’s also an included stop on some hop-on, hop-off tours of Christchurch. Free parking is available by the Mona Vale Avenue entrance.
When to Get There
Open daily, the Mona Vale gardens are attractive to visit throughout the year. The café has hours that vary with the season: It’s open Wednesday through Sunday during daylight savings hours, and on the weekends during the winter. If you’re hoping to see roses, they’re generally in full bloom by December.
Top Gardens in Christchurch
Mona Vale isn’t the only place to spot blossoms in town. From the first spring daffodils to autumn foliage, Christchurch Botanical Gardens are a highlight, with grounds that are free to enter. Less well known is the Sanitorium Factory Garden, whose rhododendrons and roses draw buzzing pollinators.
- Christchurch Botanic Gardens
- Hagley Park
- Canterbury Museum
- Avon River
- Christchurch Arts Centre
- TranzAlpine Train
- Christchurch Tram
- The Court Theatre
- Canterbury Earthquake National Memorial
- New Regent Street
- Bridge of Remembrance
- Transitional Cathedral (Cardboard Cathedral)
- Cashel Street
- Air Force Museum of New Zealand
- International Antarctic Centre