Wine lovers visiting Christchurch have several wine regions within day-trip distance to choose from. One of New Zealand’s fastest-growing wine regions, the Waipara Valley alone has more than 75 wineries. Here are the varietals to try and experiences to have during your stay.
Just an hour north of Christchurch, the Waipara wine region is most famous for its spicy and rich pinot noir and riesling. Continue north along the coast of the South Island and you’ll come to Marlborough, the nation’s largest wine region, where sauvignon blanc reigns supreme. Surrounding the city of Christchurch, the relatively new Canterbury region is quickly gaining a reputation for its excellent chardonnay, as well as pinot noir and riesling. Those with time for an overnight trip can explore Central Otago, New Zealand’s most picturesque (and the world’s southernmost) wine region, where some of the best pinot noir wines are made.
- Tour the Waipara wine trail with visits to four boutique wineries.
- Explore the wineries of North Canterbury for a lesson in cool-climate wine making.
- Sit down for lunch made from local produce at a winery restaurant.
- Soar high above the vineyards on a helicopter flight to one of the area’s best wineries.
- Combine wine tasting with a relaxing soak in the Hanmer Springs thermal pools.