Christchurch Weather & Climate: What is the Weather Like in Christchurch?
Christchurch Weather & Climate: What is the Weather Like in Christchurch?

Christchurch Weather & Climate: What is the Weather Like in Christchurch?

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Plan for the Weather in Christchurch

Is the hub of the South Island the next destination on your list? Then prepare and pack for the weather using this Christchurch weather and climate guide.

The bustling New Zealand city offers a generous mix of urban life and outdoor experiences, with surrounding beaches and hills to enjoy. Plan your trip using The Complete Travel Guide to Christchurch and find out what is the weather like in Christchurch in the guide below.

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The Seasons in Christchurch

The below guide to the Christchurch weather and climate will refer to the seasons of summer, autumn, winter and spring. These seasons in Christchurch fall under the following months:

  • Summer – December, January and February
  • Autumn – March, April and May
  • Winter – June, July and August
  • Spring – September, October and November

For a more in-depth look at the seasons, check out The New Zealand Seasons and Climate.

Christchurch Weather & Climate: What is the Weather Like in Christchurch?© Unsplash

Temperatures in Christchurch

Being on the South Island and further away from the Equator (i.e. closer to Antarctica) than most New Zealand cities, Christchurch experiences cooler temperatures in comparison. Nevertheless, average daily temperatures tend to be comfortable. The coldest temperatures are experienced in winter where overnight frosts are common.

Temperatures in summer are warm but not usually too hot with temperatures moderated by cool sea breezes.

Average Daily Temperature Month by Month

Check out What is the Weather Like in New Zealand? to see more temperatures month by month around the country.

Christchurch Weather & Climate: What is the Weather Like in Christchurch?© Unsplash

The Climate of Christchurch: Rain, Sunshine, etc.

Although cooler than other cities in New Zealand, Christchurch experiences a little more consistency in its other weather patterns. Christchurch has a temperate and relatively dry climate due to being protected from westerlies by the Southern Alps.

Snow is unlikely in the city but can fall a couple of times a year on the hills of the surrounding suburbs.

Christchurch also experiences plenty of sunshine at around 2,100 hours of sunshine per year. UV levels are high in late spring, summer and early autumn.

Average Monthly Rainfall

Christchurch Weather & Climate: What is the Weather Like in Christchurch?© ChristchurchNZ

What to Pack for Christchurch

What you pack for Christchurch will depend on the season you are visiting. Between April and October, take a warm jacket to take off the chill, as well as warm layers even for sleeping, as Christchurch’s older buildings are not well insulated. A rain jacket is also recommended for these months.

Between November and March, it’s a good idea to have sunscreen and a sunhat available due to the high UV levels. Christchurch offers a mix of city exploration and outdoor experiences in the surrounding region, so have clothes suitable for both.

Christchurch Packing List

  • Pants (jeans, skirt, leggings, hiking pants etc.)
  • Sneakers (casual shoes for city and hill walking)
  • Tops (T-shirts, shirts, singlets, etc.)
  • Light long-sleeved top (sun protection in summer)
  • Mid-layer (sweater, cardigan, hoody, etc.)
  • Warm underlayer (merino wool or thermal underlayer)
  • Jacket (keep warm from April to October)
  • Rain jacket
  • Socks
  • Underwear and bras
  • Flip-flops
  • Swimwear
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunhat/cap
  • Sunscreen
  • Sleeping attire (pyjamas)
  • Camera
  • New Zealand Dollars
  • Passport (proof of age for buying alcohol)
  • Reusable travel shopping bags

For a more complete packing list for travelling around New Zealand, see New Zealand Packing List: What to Pack for New Zealand, as well as our seasonal packing lists:

Author

Robin C.

This article was reviewed and published by Robin, the co-founder of NZ Pocket Guide. He has lived, worked and travelled across 16 different countries before calling New Zealand home. He has now spent over a decade in the New Zealand tourism industry, clocking in more than 600 activities across the country. He is passionate about sharing those experiences and advice on NZ Pocket Guide and its YouTube channel. Robin is also the co-founder of several other South Pacific travel guides.

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