Air Force Museum Christchurch Review

Christchurch New Zealand
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The Air Force Museum in Christchurch is located on the Old Wigram Air Force Base in Sockburn. Its a short drive from the CBD, there are regular buses going past the entrance from town. So if you are in Christchurch for a few days there is no excuse for not checking it out.

The museum is Open daily from 10.00 am to 5.00 pm (except Christmas Day) & you should put aside a couple of hours to really enjoy it.

There are regular tours by experienced guides guides three times a day at 11.00am, 1.30pm and 3.00pm. These are a must do because you get to see some behind the scenes displays that there currently isn’t space for public display & there is also a tour of the restoration hanger.

When I visited the History Gallery was closed for a major renovation due to be completed in September 2008. I have been to the museum before & the History Gallery was one of the many highlights so it will be worth it once completed.

( I visited again in March 2011 & the new exhibit is a great addition to the museum – there are displays of many things I had not seen before & the history of the RNZAF. Also there are some short video’s on continuous play to watch )

The tour of the restoration hanger was awesome to see the quality of the work being done.

The Airspeed Oxford is a plane built mainly of wood but not just any wood. The wood has to come from Canada because the New Zealand species grows to fast & is not strong enough. Although this plane is only for display & not flight the team are still being this accurate in their work.

For the P40 Curtiss Kittyhawk they have got copies of the original design plans from the USA & are rebuilding the wings by hand.

It is different for the Vickers Vildebeest which is being restored using old parts as there are no plans to work from.

It the storage hanger there is a large collection of aircraft, some of which you can wander through. There are also a couple of Navy choppers & a patrol boat – ask your guide what they are doing in an Air Force Museum.

The Main hanger behind the History Gallery is an old airbase hanger & has 11 displays of restored aircraft from Biplanes to Jet bombers. My favorite is the Spitfire, followed closely by the Mustang. Many of the displays include static displays of the ground crew working on the aircraft.

Country New Zealand
distance: 15,119 Kilometers
Address Christchurch New Zealand
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