- Discovering the Joys of New Zealand Wine

Canterbury Wine Region

About this site

Highlight Wine

North Island Auckland Northland Waiheke Island
Bay of Plenty Gisborne Hawke's Bay Wairarapa

South Island Nelson Marlborough Waipara Central Otago

NZ wine in America



NZ Photo Gallery

On the east side of the South Island lie the Canterbury plains, the largest section of flat ground in New Zealand. From the main highway along the coast, there is an unobstructed view west to the Southern Alps. The Canterbury vineyards are located mainly in an arc around the city of Christchurch. On the map or from the air, the area is easy to spot by the volcanic cones of the Banks peninsula jutting out into the Pacific.

Christchurch is the largest city on the South Island and the center for almost everything. At the heart of the city is Christchurch Cathedral and the gathering spot of Cathedral Square. The Avon River meanders from Hagley Park through the city center and out to the sea. Hire a boatman for a leisurely glide on a punt.

The wineries are found in the westerly suburbs of Christchurch, with a few located on the hills of the Banks Peninsula. In common with the other South Island regions, the growing season is long, cool and dry. The featured varietals are Riesling, Chardonnay, and Pinot Noir. Giesen Wine Estate is probably the most well known brand and has pioneered the production of quality dry Riesling in the region.

Canterbury is regarded as having the potential to be a great wine region. With several good producers gaining experience, the stage is ready. To really put itself on the map, Canterbury needs someone to step up with a blockbuster wine like Cloudy Bay and Felton Road have done.

Here is the list of wineries: