Fodor's Expert Review Christ Church
One of the donors to the construction of New Zealand's oldest church was Charles Darwin, who at that time in 1835 was making his way around the globe on board the HMS Beagle. Behind the white picket fence that borders the churchyard, gravestones tell a fascinating and brutal story of life in the colony's early days. Several graves belong to sailors from the HMS Hazard who were killed in this churchyard by Hone Heke's warriors in 1845. Another headstone marks the grave of a Nantucket sailor from the whaler Mohawk. As you walk around the church, look for the musket holes made when Hone Heke besieged the church. The interior is simple and charming—embroidered cushions on the pews are examples of a still-vibrant folk-art tradition.