International Exhibition (1906)

The New Zealand International Exhibition (the biggest in the country to that time) opened on 1 November 1906 in Hagley Park, Christchurch, New Zealand. Nearly two million people visited the exhibition during the next few months.[1] A 90 chains (1,800 m) branch railway line was built in late 1905 across North Hagley Park starting at the Riccarton station to service the exhibition (goods traffic only)[2] and a temporary tram line was built in Peterborough Street, Park Terrace and Salisbury Street to connect with the Victoria Street tram. The attractions included New Zealand's first professional symphony orchestra (conducted by Alfred Hill), and the first Dominion pipe band contest, which was won by the Dunedin Highland Pipe Band.

New Zealand International Exhibition
International Exhibition in Christchurch, main building.jpg
Main building
BIE-classUnrecognized exposition
NameNew Zealand International Exhibition
Area164 hectares (410 acres)
CountryNew Zealand
VenueHagley Park
Coordinates43°31′48″S 172°37′12″E / 43.53000°S 172.62000°E / -43.53000; 172.62000
Opening1 November 1906 (1906-11-01)
Closure15 April 1907 (1907-04-15)
Universal expositions
PreviousLiège International (1905) in Liège
NextBrussels International (1910) in Brussels
OtherMilan International (1906)

Amusements included a water chute on Victoria Lake, a dragon train, a toboggan course, a helter-skelter and a gondola. The Pike featured penny in the slot machines, a maze, and Professor Renno and his Palace of Illusions. Visitors were also able to view a 360 degree panoramic painting of the Battle of Gettysburg, accompanied by a history of the battle, at the Cyclorama.[3]

The exhibition closed on 15 April 1907 and the remaining buildings had been removed by the end of August 1907.

The architect for the buildings was Joseph Maddison. He also designed the Carlton Hotel, which was commissioned by the Wards's Brewery to be built in time for the International Exhibition.[4]

Chromolithograph of the Exhibition Buildings in Hagley Park by Philip Robert Presants
Plan of the Exhibition Buildings in Hagley Park


  1. ^ "New Zealand International Exhibition 1906". Christchurch City Libraries. Retrieved 9 April 2011.
  2. ^ "The International Exhibition". The Press. Vol. LXII, no. 12369. 7 December 1905. p. 10. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  3. ^ Christchurch City Libraries (2016). "110 years ago: The 1906 New Zealand International Exhibition". Christchurch City Libraries. Christchurch. Retrieved 8 December 2017.
  4. ^ "Carlton Hotel". Register of Historic Places. Heritage New Zealand. Retrieved 10 April 2011.

Coordinates: 43°31′37″S 172°37′34″E / 43.527°S 172.626°E / -43.527; 172.626