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Halswell Quarry, Christchurch

Halswell Quarry, Christchurch

Whether you’re looking for a place to walk your dog or stroll with your kid or just want somewhere nice to wander without heading for the Port Hills, a trip to Halswell Quarry could be for you. Keep reading for all the details!

Getting to Halswell Quarry

Halswell Quarry is located around 12 km from downtown Christchurch. There are buses there but if you’re a tourist with limited time or no car I’d advise you to do some of the more interesting walks in the Port Hills (Sugarloaf / Tracks around Sumner + Godley Head). Halswell Quarry is more of a local exercise / family spot and is a cool place for what it is.

The Quarry Rim Track

This loop track takes you up a short hill and then around the quarry. There are some nice views over the quarry, with suburbs of Christchurch stretching off into the distance. The views were much better than I expected!

It should take around 45 minutes to walk the loop track. Along the way there are some panels explaining the history of the quarry. It ran from the 1860s ’til 1990 — one of the longest running quarries in Australasia.  There’s also a track heading up to Kennedys Bush on Summit Road — let us know what the walk is like if you’ve done it!


There are some nice garden areas to wander around at Halswell Quarry. Our favourite was the Japanese Garden. We visited a week or so after the cherry blossom peak, it would have been awesome otherwise.  If you’re looking for places to see blossoms in Christchurch this should be at the top of your list (along with North Hagley Park). There’s also a Korean Garden, a big grove of cabbage trees and other garden areas to wander around.


You’ll see the wetlands while walking the loop track. It’s close to the car park so is easy to have a quick look after the walk. We struggled to find an opening though — we walked around pretty much the whole thing before the trees cleared and we got a good view. 

The Details

There’s a coffee cart at Halswell Quarry but nothing else in terms of food and drink. I can see a proper café or restaurant opening up in the future though. There’s also a cool old building by the main car park by the main car park. Halswell Quarry is open from 7.30 am — 9.30 pm during daylight saving / 7.30 am — 7 pm in the colder months. Entry is free.

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Jon Algie

I'm a South Island local -- born in Timaru and raised in Dunedin. I left the island in 2006 and returned 10 years later. Having seen a good chunk of the world I realised how special this place is -- the most beautiful island in the world! Seven years (and almost 400 posts) later I'm still helping locals and tourists alike plan their trips around the South Island.