Packing List, Christchurch
Make sure you bring plenty of warm clothing in our colder months of May through September. These months tend to be wetter than usual and often include a cold southerly wind which will make the temperature feel even colder. Given that it is likely to get wet make sure you have a good rain coat.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Nothing out of the normal is needed for winter. If you find you catch a cold then there are plenty of chemists to get supplies from.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Any outdoor related travel around Christchurch and further out should ensure that the emphasis is on warmth. It will get very cold in exposed areas including around the Port Hills so include gloves and thermal gear.
Miscellaneous: Bring gear aimed at it being really cold so if it is actually warmer then you can just remove a layer or two.
Luggage and bags:
Most likely, Christchurch is not going to be your only destination on this trip, so make sure you pack your bags to be easily transportable for you.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: In August, it was definitely cold, but not freezing. I was perfectly fine with a rugby jersey and an undershirt. My wife went with a fleece coat, but was not too cold. I would recommend bringing a warm jacket, which can be shed during the warmer parts of the day.
Make sure you take some clothes for cold weather...we were in Christchurch in the middle of summer and it was really cold (especially the wind)! I had packed my summer clothes only to find that I couldn't wear them at all...haha... Make sure you take a warm jacket and good walking shoes too...
Photo Equipment: Take lots of film or memory cards for all the photos you will take...there is some beautiful scenery in New Zealand... :)
Christchurch has warm Summers and cool winters however it can get a bit confused with many wind changes etc. Let common sense prevail & bring a warm top - you can always take it off if needed. In winter Christchurch has been mild and dry over the last few years but has had the ocassional dumping of snow and some very cold and wet weeks thrown in for fun.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Anything you forget can be easily purchased from the many Chemists & the after hours doctor on Bealey Ave if you need something stronger.
Miscellaneous: To see what the weather will be like on your holiday you can visit the 10 Day Weather Forecast site for an idea of what you may need to wear.
Luggage and bags:
Christchurch is a city that caters to the backpacking and the business/family traveller. I think that the kind of luggage you bring would depend entirely on what you were hoping to do in and around Christchurch. If you are planning a large trip around the South Island then I would suggest the less you bring the better! You may even like to hire a campervan and drive around though, in which case all your luggage can be dumped in the van! Up to you really :-)
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Christchurch gets very hot in summer (30 degrees +/-), so summer clothes are necessary. There are beaches out Brighton way that you may like to go to.
In winter Christchurch is pretty cold and often has snow fall. Many people who visit Christchurch in winter are on there way to the mountains further south to go skiing. If you have your own ski gear then I suggest you bring it. I reckon that ski hire in NZ is expensive (for a kiwi anyway!).
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Everything you will need can probably be purchased in Christchurch.
Photo Equipment: Likewise with Photo Equipment!
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: New Zealand is THE outdoors country!! You will be able to find really good quality camping, beach and outdoor equipment in almost every New Zealand city. Christchurch is no exception. If you are planning a long trip in NZ then it may be better to buy some of this stuff here rather than bring it all the way from home.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: If you're a short guy like me, remember to bring a spare pair of trousers. Why? Well, all trousers come in "regular" length only, that's 83-85cm or 34in (they use cm here which can be quite confusing) and I am 32in person. I went to 20 or so stores the other day, but found only one-length trousers, in all sizes (widths) of course, but all too long for me. The only place I could get different length trousers are at Just Jeans or Levi's, but then they're rather expensive. I wonder how short men survive here...?
If you are travelling to NZ in June/July, be sure to pack along extra sweaters and jackets as the winter there can be really cold, especially in the early mornings.
Left: A frost covered Bungee bridge in Arrowtown. No jumps for thrill seekers during winter. The cold wind will probably knock them out before the cord stretches to its fullest point.
Photo Equipment: Bring many rolls of film!!
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Regardless of what season you decide to visit, make sure you bring with you a range of clothing (from light clothes to warm winter wear). The weather is very unpredictable here and can change in a matter of hours. If you go further south to Dunedin or Queenstown you may encounter snow even during the summer months!!
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Once I landed here, I was immediately issued my severe cold weather gear for my onward journey to Antarctica!