Christchurch and Canterbury: Places to Explore

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Lyttelton

Lyttelton, a sleepy port town, was the arrival point for many of the early Canterbury settlers. The Canterbury Pilgrims' landing place is marked by a rock near the road entrance to the port. A mix of renovated wooden villas and contemporary homes now rises halfway up what was once a volcanic crater. Today, because of its relative isolation from Christchurch, Lyttelton has developed its own distinctive quality, attracting creative types who like the small-town character. Lyttelton was very badly hit by the earthquakes. The biggest loss, historically, was the Timeball Station where, in the days before GPS and atomic clocks, ships would make sure their chronometers were accurate by checking them when the large ball at the Timeball Station was lowered. By mid-2012 Lyttelton town should be open for visitors, but in the meantime Governors Bay and farther round to Diamond Harbour makes a nice half-day drive from the city. You can also catch a boat for a harbor cruise from the port.

Lyttelton at a Glance

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