The Christchurch Airport team truly believes the South Island is the best place in the world to live, visit and do business.

We champion the South Island every chance we get, including in our seasonal magazine "Gateway South". As we head into summer, we'll tell you of some of the many upcoming activities and events across this special island, the place we call home and love to welcome millions of visitors to… and show you some of the places you can fly to direct from this airport.


Fun, easy, diverse and much more than a stopover - that's Hong Kong. Whether you're a first-time visitor, or a regular visitor, rest assured you will not run out of things to do, eat or buy.

Jane Scribner, Director of Luxury Gourmet Travel, has visited Hong Kong more times than she can count, and now helps others experience the former British colony in South-East Asia.

"Hong Kong has always been a shopper's paradise," she says. "That hasn't changed, but it's also becoming known as Asia's culinary capital. There's more than 12,000 restaurants offering every cuisine - the best paella I have ever eaten was in Hong Kong."

Jane recommends four or five days for a first visit. "That will let you scratch the surface and have fun doing it," she says.
"Of all the Asian destinations, it is a place of contrasts - East meets West, old and new, cutting edge and tradition, city and countryside.

"There's no denying the vibrancy of Hong Kong, but it also feels very safe. It's compact so you can do a lot in a day, especially when English is one of the two official languages and public transport is efficient and inexpensive."

Asked to name the top five must-do things in Hong Kong, Jane settles on food, horse racing, outer islands, the Giant Buddha, the Peak Tram and pampering. No, that's not five, but she can explain. "There is shopping for everyone, not just people wanting high-end brands. The precincts all have a specialty, so you will find what you're looking for at a price you can afford.

"The same goes for food - from Michelin star restaurants to street-side woks, everything is fresh and delicious, but there's also High Tea, fine dining overlooking the harbour, and cocktails on rooftop bars.

"I know people not remotely interested in horse racing who've had a brilliant experience at the races in Hong Kong. There are two race meets a week and you can have fun there without paying much."

Jane encourages people to leave the city and take a short ferry ride to an outlying island, for a change of pace, hiking tracks, beaches and inviting seafood restaurants.

The 25-minute cable car ride to the Giant Buddha is an experience in itself, she says, but at 34 metres high the world's largest seated bronze Buddha is a must-see. The statue is sited near Po Lin Monastery, a Buddhist temple which welcomes visitors. 

For more than a century, the Peak Tram has taken tens of millions of visitors to the highest vantage point in Hong Kong. It's an interesting ride to spectacular views, with plenty to do at the peak and fascinating displays at the base.

Jane believes no visit to Hong Kong is complete without some pampering, especially for visitors suffering from shopping fatigue or over indulgence. "No matter how much you have done during your day or your visit, you'll be revived by a spa treatment and/or foot reflexology," she says. 

Cathay Pacific offers seasonal, direct services between Christchurch and Hong Kong. The flight operates three times a week, departing Christchurch on Monday, Thursday and Saturday, with seamless connections to Cathay Pacific's global network. The new service will be operated by the state-of-the-art Airbus A350-900, offering Business, Premium Economy and Economy cabins.


Activity choices have changed up a gear with the re-opening of the Christchurch Adventure Park.

Cyclists, zipliners and curious onlookers flocked to the 900 acre park when it first opened a year ago, but less than three months later fires across the Port Hills closed it for a while. 

Now the only purpose-built bike park of its kind in the world is open again, albeit with an altered appearance. 

Spokesperson Anne Newman says the park has been through a tough year, managing fires, rebuild and a very wet winter, all of which she says have impacted on being able to welcome back the tens of thousands of cyclists who quickly became fans.

"Unfortunately the removal of so many trees has changed the trails and the aspect of the park. We now have a hillside that is vastly different to what we originally opened, but the coaching/green trail is available, we will open more over the rest of the summer and are planning spectacular new trails."

The park was closed for ten months, but now its 200 seat café, the chairlift, zipline tours and mountain bike coaching is ready for visitors. The 26 tonne haul rope for the chairlift has been replaced, along with all four zip lines.

The chairlift transports visitors and bikes 430 vertical metres up 1.8km from the Adventure Park village in Worsleys Valley, to the very top of the Port Hills, with spectacular views along the way. Once they're at the top, cyclists ride to the bottom … to do it all again. Often several times over.

Anne says the park appeals to a lot of different people.

"We see toddlers right through to the elderly enjoying the park. Visitors pop in to have coffee, or ride the chair, as well as the more adventurous riding the trails and flying high above the forest floor on our zip line."

In the eight weeks the park was open last summer, it welcomed more than 50,000 visitors, served more than three tonnes of fries and 35 kegs of beer… and now it's going to do it all again!

It seems it's time for an adventure in Christchurch - or at very least, a visit to the village to watch others being adventurous.




We recently gave away $45,000 to 23 community groups and projects, in the latest round of donations from our Community Fund. We gather small change donated in the collection boxes, top it up with a donation from the airport company, and gift it to people making a difference in our community. This round's recipients were spread far and wide, including Cheviot, Rangiora, Kaiapoi, Waipara and Rolleston, as well as projects in Christchurch's eastern suburbs.


We have spent much of the past year finding out from visitors what they like at the airport and what you want more of, so now we have some new temptations for you when you're here. We have a couple of new stores you will soon notice in the terminal, plus table tennis tables and beanbags outside in the plaza and on the lawns.


Our first Sustainability Report measures and outlines the improvements we have undertaken in the past financial year, in the areas of energy, waste, land, water and noise. Compared with FY16, we have cut overall energy use by 6% and decreased our carbon emissions by 5.9%. For the first time in June 2017 we were able to recycle more waste than we sent to landfill and we saved a record 400,000 kilowatt hours of electricity in July and August of 2016 - enough to power 50 medium-sized Kiwi homes for an entire year. Read the report


Sudima Hotel on the airport campus recently won the prestigious Department of Conservation Environment Tourism Award.
The hotel's rebuild incorporated environmentally sustainable building practices and was the city's first hotel to install electric car charging stations. Sudima suppliers must prove the sustainability of their products and the company's 'Green Team' works on green
initiatives and local community projects at each Sudima hotel and across the group. 


Christchurch Airport has revealed its vision for the airport in 2040. We review our long term planning for land-use and infrastructure every ten years, conscious the airport currently underpins the generation of 2.1 billion dollars in regional GDP and that creates more than 60,000 jobs.
Watch the 2040 Vision video



A childhood love of aircraft has turned into a life-long passion and job for Warbirds Over Wanaka International Airshow pilot and display planner John Lamont.

John has been involved with the world-famous Wanaka airshow since the first event in 1988. Three decades on, the airshow remains the biggest event in the southern lakes region, attracting around 50,000 people every second Easter.

The Easter 2018 event will see the return of some significant aircraft from the past 30 years, including the legendary Polikarpov I-16. Nine Polikarpov fighters were recovered by Warbirds Over Wanaka founder Sir Tim Wallis back in the 1990s and restored to flying condition - one will return from Germany to Wanaka at Easter.

John Lamont grew up in Blenheim and remembers Mustangs and Mosquitos flying around the region from the nearby Woodbourne air force base.

"At an early age I was able to identify any aircraft I saw. In the mid-1950s we moved to South Canterbury where there was a strong aviation community and I attended every aviation event I could. I joined the RNZAF in 1963, trained as a pilot and learnt to fly Harvards and Devons."

After he left the military, John flew for Air New Zealand for many years on national and international routes.

John estimates he has flown more than 20 different types of Warbirds, mostly WWII era piston engined fighters and trainers, but which is his favourite? 

"It would have to be the Spitfire. It's a joy to fly, plus it looks and sounds great - and has history and legend attached to it. Next would be the Russian Lavochkin La-9, followed by the P40, Corsair and Mustang."

John says he puts a lot of faith in the engineers who work on keeping the old machines flying. "The engineers do a great job. Many of these aircraft are in better condition and better maintained now than they would have been in military service."

John's early involvement with Warbirds Over Wanaka was as a pilot. Since those days he has become more involved with the organisation of the event, as the display planner and a trustee of the Warbirds Over Wanaka Community Trust which stages
the event.

Warbirds Over Wanaka is world-famous for non-stop aerial action so how tricky is that to plan? "It requires a lot of attention to detail, knowledge of the capabilities of each aircraft and the displaying pilot, detailed briefing of each display and a skilled display director to keep it all moving," he says.

The 30th anniversary Warbirds Over Wanaka International Airshow will be held at Wanaka Airport at Easter 2018
(March 30, 31, April 1).



Burt Munro's high-speed life as seen in the movie "The World's Fastest Indian" has inspired the largest motorcycle rally in the southern hemisphere, which will take place for the 12th time from February 8 to 11.

More than 2,500 local, national and international motorsport enthusiasts compete in exciting events with a spectacular trophy on offer, upholding and reliving the legend of Burt Munro.

Burt was born in Edendale in 1899 and his dedication to motorcycles and life's achievements is well known not only to Kiwis, but across the motorsport world. He bought his first Indian Scout in 1920 and went on to modify it with his own handmade parts for the rest of his life.

He set New Zealand land speed records in the 1940s and 50s and travelled to the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, USA. He was 63 when he first competed and set a land speed record of 178.97mph. He returned eight more times and set two more world records, one of which still stands today - 183.58mph set in 1967. Records show, however, he managed to notch up 190.07mph during a qualifying run on his beloved Indian motorcycle.

After the 2005 movie about Burt, the Southland Motorcycle Club created the Burt Munro Challenge in his honour, not only for setting speed records but also to celebrate Burt's ingenuity, determination and love of motorcycles.

Chair of the Burt Munro Challenge organising committee, Wayne Affleck, says the event attracts a lot of attention from motorsport fans because it's unique.

"We have six different types of racing events over four days on six different tracks, as well as a rally which brings the majority of the people here, and this time we will have a drag race for the first time too," he says. "Each event has its own appeal, but the beach race is the one with the iconic Burt Munro association.

"We have had as many as six world champions here at once for the event and have mixed it up a bit, by putting them on stage to tell their stories."

The Munro family has donated a "Competitor of the Year" trophy which is contested each year by motorcyclists keen to emulate their hero. 

"That trophy is not about winning, but about someone who comes with nothing, keeps the bike going with the spanners in his hand, and sees it through just the way Burt did," Wayne says.

"Burt's legacy lives on and the event has matured to have an international flavour and following," Wayne says. "We already have a lot of Australians registered for the event and always get some from America, as well as spectators and competitors from Europe, especially Germany, and from England.

"We are very proud of the event, which attracts top riders and weekend warriors to a variety of great events, fantastic and spectacular entertainment and famous southern hospitality."


They say laughter is good for us, so get ready to be very well in January!

The World Buskers Festival will celebrate its 25th anniversary from January 18 to 28 with laughter and tears (the happy kind) guaranteed.

Festival Director Melissa Haberfield says there's something for everyone, with some brand new talent as well as lots of crowd favourites from previous festivals back by popular demand, including the now famous Kiwi "Tape Face", otherwise known as The Boy with Tape on His Face. 

"Tape Face is bringing a new show to the festival after sell-out success all over the world, including reaching the finals of America's Got Talent and working at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival," she says.

Remember this is the Kiwi who sells out all his shows night after night without saying a word. You'll want to hear that...or, rather, to see it and hear the laughter all around you. You'll need to be quick because bookings are already open and you don't want to miss out and shed the other kind of tears. Remember too, to save your gold coins so you can re-pay the laughter with donations, which is the only way these performers earn their living.

"For ten days and 11 nights, our city becomes a playground filled with laughter, colour and fun, as street artists and night show performers entertain hundreds of thousands of locals and visitors, in a festival like no other. We invite you to embrace everything on offer in our 25 year celebration of World Buskers Festival," says Melissa.

Festival Producer Tim Bain says "It's a line-up that is daring, bold, cheeky, hilarious and world class. We're delighted to be presenting Kiwi icons The Topp Twins, the irrepressible
Le Gateau Chocolat, international cabaret sensation Ali McGregor, Ru Paul's Drag Race's Ginger Minj, 12 internationally acclaimed comedians and so many more." 



When you travel, you might have food with you and whether you're coming home or heading away, there are a few important things to remember.

Parents often pack snacks to keep children's munchies at bay. That's a good idea as long as you, or the children you packed for, actually eat the snacks on the flight and don't forget about them until they're found when you arrive at your destination. The same goes for airline food - don't take it off the flight... that can be an expensive mistake! 

Taking Food Overseas 

There aren't many restrictions on what you can take out of the country, but if you're thinking of taking a special food, for yourself or as a gift, you might want to check the lists on the MPI website

Bringing food into New Zealand

All food you, or a visitor you are meeting, bring into New Zealand must be declared on the passenger arrival card. Depending on what it is, biosecurity officers may need to inspect it, to ensure food products are not bringing pests or disease into the country.

For that reason, there are a few restrictions, so it might pay to check the information on the MPI website - and perhaps share with visitors coming to see you 



The next time you think you might freeze some fruit cake, consider this!

Antarctic Heritage Trust conservators found a 106 year-old fruit cake among the artefacts from Antarctica's first building at Cape Adare. Made by Huntley & Palmers, the fruit cake is still wrapped in paper and encased in the remains of a tin-plated iron alloy tin. 

The cake was most likely taken to the ice by the Northern Party of Captain Robert Falcon Scott's 'Terra Nova' expedition (1910 - 1913). 

The Trust's Programme Manager-Artefacts Lizzie Meek
says although the tin was in poor condition, the cake was

"There was a very slight rancid butter smell to it, but other than that, the cake looked and smelled edible! There is no doubt the extreme cold in Antarctica has assisted its preservation," she says.

The cake was among almost 1,500 artefacts the Trust recently collected from the two huts at Cape Adare. The huts were built by Norwegian Carsten Borchgrevink's expedition in 1899 and later used by Captain Scott's party in 1911. All the artefacts were flown back to Christchurch, where they have been conserved by a team of international experts at a special laboratory at Canterbury Museum.

Lizzie says the fruit cake was among the final artefacts the team conserved.

"The last objects were a handful of unidentified and severely corroded tins. Finding such a perfectly preserved fruit cake among them was quite a surprise. It's an ideal high-energy food for Antarctic conditions, and is still a favourite item on modern day trips to the Ice."

Conserving the tin involved rust removal, chemical stabilisation and coating the tin remnants. Conservators also deacidified the tin label and made some physical repairs
to the torn paper wrapper and tin label. The cake itself was
left untouched as you see in the photo.

The permit the Trust was granted to collect the artefacts stipulates that all the items must be returned to the site following conservation, in keeping with the site's status as an Antarctic Specially Protected Area (ASPA). This will happen once the huts themselves have been restored - which means the cake will go back "on ice".

The Antarctic Heritage Trust is a New Zealand-based charity with a vision of inspiring explorers. Through its mission to conserve, share and encourage the spirit of exploration, the Trust cares for the remarkable expedition bases of early Antarctic explorers including Captain Robert Falcon Scott, Sir Ernest Shackleton and Sir Edmund Hillary.

We were hoping to share the recipe of this 106 year-old fruit cake but there's a bit of secrecy around it so we decided to respect the secret!



January 13

Dunedin will host excellent sporting action and family fun this summer when the Black Caps take on Pakistan at the University of Otago Oval. The city will go all out to welcome the teams and spectators with activities and events you'll want to be part of.

January to March

Four events to choose from or enter them all to run or walk on sand, park, trail and/or road. Each event is set on a different terrain, so there's a new challenge and new things to see in each event -
Sand January 14,
Park February 4,
Trail February 18
and Road March 11.

January 25

What better way to celebrate summer than displaying your artistic talents on the beach! The sculpture event uses the abundant items found on the driftwood-strewn beach to inspire a community art celebration. You don't have to be artistic, but you do have to be prepared to have fun in the West Coast sun.

February 3

Off-road running for all abilities, including a Mountain Skyline Run, Adventure Run, Wilderness Trail Run and an Explorer Trail Run. Runners and walkers follow trails through forests, alongside waterfalls rivers and streams, along ridge lines and clifftops, with panoramic mountain and lake views.

February 4

Shantytown to Moana on a route never done before. Gold Trail riders will revisit the history of the West Coast and the Gold Trail. This will be the first time a peloton of mountain bike riders ride down the main street of Shantytown, on their way to Moana and Lake Brunner, via a swing bridge and historic railway bridge.
February 10

New Zealand's original and longest running wine festival, held in the country's largest wine growing region. World class wines will be on offer alongside local cuisine, with Master classes from winemakers and foodies - as well as Fashion in the Vines and day long entertainment.