Christchurch Skiing, Snowboarding and the Southern Alps
(Christchurch, Canterbury, South Island, New Zealand NZ)
Exciting skiing trips and excursions from Christchurch are extremely popular during the winter months of June, July and August, particularly skiing in the Southern Alps in Canterbury, around Mount Cook - the tallest mountain in the Southern Alps and throughout New Zealand, and on the nearby Tasman Glacier. Many of the skiing resorts and destinations near to Christchurch are open from May to October and generally feature good facilities.
Winter in Christchurch is actually summer in Europe and America, and winter resorts close to the city are always busy at this time of the year.
There are a number of excellent ski resorts located near to Christchurch, in areas of Canterbury and the Southern Alps, attracting crowds of tourists and visitors from around the city and beyond.
Skiing in the Southern Alps, nearby Christchurch, is just a short drive and these resorts can usually be reached in around one hour from the city centre. The Southern Alps stretch along the South Island and include a number of magnificent mountains with good skiing and snowboarding facilities, including Mount Cook, one of the tallest mountains on New Zealand's South Island with impressive glaciers and large lakes.
The winter resorts and destinations close to Christchurch contain a good range of hotels, offering inexpensive accommodation and lodging. There are also useful tourist information centres, providing the latest tourism information for the area. Skiwear is available for hire and purchase in most skiing resorts, with rental ski shops offering numerous different skis and affordable accessories, good quality snowboards, snowshoes, jackets and many stylish goggles.
There are an enormous variety of winter sports and other popular activities available at the Southern Alps. These include guided tours of the Mountains around the Southern Alps, exciting floodlit night skiing, leisure and fitness centres, outdoor adventure schools, horse trekking, scenic walking and tramping trails, mountaineering, abseiling and rock climbing.
During the milder summer months of December, January and February, outdoor activities at the Southern Alps and skiing resorts nearby Christchurch include bobsled, local excursions, fishing, children's playground areas, cycling, swimming, tennis, athletics and many other exciting activities.
Major winter holiday destinations within easy reach of Christchurch are often connected to the city with regular door-to-door shuttle buses and coaches. Some of the most popular mountains and resorts nearby include:
- Broken River Ski Area - located around 120 km / 75 miles from Christchurch city centre, the Broken River Ski Area is very popular and is rarely crowded, with skiing facilities for all abilities
- Craigieburn - to the west of the city, Craigieburn is ideal for experienced skiers, with secluded ski runs and breathtaking views of the surrounding mountainous areas
- Methven Heliski - just outside of Christchurch, to the south of the city, Methven Heliski features a number of difficult ski runs and good skiing facilities, including ski equipment hire and ski guides
- Mount Cheeseman - catering for all levels of skiing, Mount Cheeseman contains a variety of different conditions and facilities
- Mount Dobson - popular with snowboarders and skiers alike, Mount Dobson has much to offer enthusiasts staying in the Christchurch area and attractions at Mount Dobson include ski schools and experienced instructors
- Mount Hutt - containing some of the best facilities and longest ski-runs, Mount Hutt caters for all levels of experience and features a well-stocked ski shop, snowboarding areas and ski equipment hire
- Mount Lyford - just 90 minutes from the city centre, Mount Lyford is suitable for beginners, with a number of basic ski slopes, ski equipment hire and good general amenities
- Mount Olympus - one of northern side of the city, Mount Olympus is a favoured excursion from Christchurch and offers numerous accommodation packages and options, ski instructors, snowboarding runs and ski equipment hire
- Porter Heights - amongst the most popular excursions, Porter Heights is close to the city and both novice skiers and more experienced skiers will enjoy the facilities and runs on Porter Heights
- Temple Basin - located on the western outskirts, Temple Basin is home to some of the regions' best Alpine skiing and this vast resort features many different themed packages and options