An array of thermal pools set among lawned gardens. Some of the pools are in natural rock form and range in temperature from warm to extremely hot and sulphuric. The effect is instant relaxation. Also in the complex are several large free form swimming pools catering for all ages from fun themed with flumes for children to graduated depths for stronger swimmers. All pools are heated via natural springs and are useable even in snow. There is a glass fronted cafe serving wonderfully healthy food all reasonably priced. There is a backdrop of mountains and a wild west feel to the small town where you will find a range of cheap (such as hostel) to luxury accommodation. This was my favourite place in New Zealand and an ideal way to recouperate after many days on the road.
In among the hive of sushi and Japanese eateries that litter the area, there is a little gem that stands out from the rest. The food here is probably of the cheapest and most generous in Christchurch - that alone is enough to make it a joy for any traveler, but in our eyes only acts as a bonus, as the quality and authentic taste of it is truly wonderful. Miss this delight at your peril and don't forget to pick up a portion of their legendary goyza!!
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