With the summer sun on our backs, we welcome the glorious golden tones of autumn..

Christchurch Airport, the Gateway to the South Island, broke and set records during the summer season, which included new aircraft and seasonal services bringing the world south and taking southern residents to friends and family in every corner of the world.

It may be time to plan another holiday, using any of our airline partners to get you where you want to go. Remember there is nowhere in the world you can't get to when you make your first flight an international one from Christchurch Airport!




Over the summer we had record airline capacity on offer, with 2.3 million seats available across November, December and January. International airline capacity growth increased 3% on last year with more than 650,000 international seats available for the first time. Long haul services direct to Christchurch saw an increase in seats of 12.5% compared to last year, to destinations including Guangzhou, Singapore and Hong Kong.


There's a couple of new kids on our block… China Southern Airlines is now flying its new Boeing 787-9 here daily, while Singapore Airlines is flying its new A350 here every day. Travellers are enjoying extra levels of comfort both aircraft offer, from Christchurch direct to Guangzhou or Singapore respectively… and on to hundreds of exciting destinations across the world.


Visitors to the terminal will soon be offered a Virtual Reality experience within our Digital Innovation Zone, by the domestic arrivals area. We're about to showcase ideas and experiment with emerging technologies in this area of the airport, including robotics and Augmented Reality, so you can see the future arrive.


Our trade supply precinct called Harvard Park is taking shape, with anchor tenant Bunnings beginning construction. More than 170 jobs will be created when the big store opens, covering more than 13,000m2 and parking for 300 cars. Bunnings will be alongside the new BP service station already operating on the Harewood Road/Russley Road corner.


We are shining a light on the future of tourism by being a Foundation Partner in, and hosting at the airport, Lightning Lab Tourism. It's a three-month business acceleration programme focussed on issues facing tourism in this country. Teams of entrepreneurs are coming together to work with industry experts, coaches and mentors to build a sustainable tourism industry.



Many South Islanders consider the Sunshine Coast the perfect holiday spot - one flight from Christchurch, home to a picture-perfect coastline and spectacular beaches, framed by lush hinterland and the Glass House Mountains.

helloworld Fendalton Managing Director Bridget Hanrahan says the Sunshine Coast is ideal if you want to avoid the hustle and bustle of the Gold Coast.

"It's not as busy or commercial as the Gold Coast, and there's so much to explore on the Sunshine Coast," she says. "There are sensational beaches along the coast, so you'll be spoilt for choice and it's the stepping stone to Fraser Island, the magical eco-environment with stunning beaches."

Bridget highly recommends the Sunshine Coast for families.

"Apartments and self-catering options are the norm, so it's ideal and good value for money for families. Australia Zoo and Sea Life Sunshine Coast are fantastic days out for all the family.

"The zoo is the home of the Crocodile Hunter and some of Australia's most unique animals. You can cuddle a koala, walk with a tiger, see meerkats up close, watch crocodile feeding and enjoy exciting action in daily wildlife shows.

"Sea Life Sunshine Coast is the largest aquarium and oceanarium in Queensland, where you can see thousands of marine and freshwater animals including seals, turtles, sharks and stingrays," says Bridget.

If you want to see a little more, Bridget recommends the Sunshine Coast's lush rainforest, country villages and breathtaking mountain scenery.

"Our clients enjoy the boutiques and galleries, putting on their hiking boots to wander through the national parks, or taking a leisurely drive through the Glass House Mountains National Park."

Air New Zealand, Qantas and Virgin Australia all fly daily direct services from Christchurch to Brisbane, with the Sunshine Coast a short one hour drive north of Brisbane Airport.


Wanting to do some good in your community, or looking for some help?
The answer is at your fingertips.

Created by four young women and built by scores of volunteers, Collaborate is a web app matching people with volunteer opportunities to suit their interests and skills.

Christchurch Regional Lead Camille Wrightson says Collaborate has been running in various parts of the country for 18 months.

"We're building a stronger community one volunteer at a time," she says. "Non-profit and community organisations need support and there are lots of people looking for volunteer opportunities. The people who collaborate through the app want to make a difference and do good where they live."

Camille says Collaborate was created for the community by the community, with three core values: Community is at the heart of everything. Everyone has a skill that can make a difference. Doing good should be easy and fun.

She says some people volunteer in a one-off way, perhaps giving up a weekend afternoon, while others commit to something bigger and longer term.

"Anyone needing an extra pair of hands can post on the app free. We have lots of success stories, from finding van drivers at the last minute to help refugee families move into a home, to small charities forming long-term relationships with skilled volunteers like graphic designers."

Camille says her group is grateful for support it has had from businesses. A recent grant from the Christchurch Airport Community Fund helped set Collaborate up in Christchurch, where community groups are now getting the help they need from volunteers.

"Volunteering is rewarding and we want to make it easy. We're a movement of people passionate about connection and through Collaborate we have an app that brings people together."

Charities and community groups can apply for funds at


From a new shirt to self-proclaimed obsession, street art producer.
George Shaw is literally leaving his mark all over town.

Joint founder, with his partner Shannon, of the 'Oi YOU!' street and graffiti art production company, George says in 2005 he bought a new shirt and wore it to a party.

"A friend at the party asked if the stencil characters on the shirt were by Banksy," he says. "I asked "who?" and she told me stories of Banksy, the anonymous England-based street artist.

"I started researching him the next day, realised I had to have his artwork in my life, bought my first piece the next week… and so began my extensive collection.

"An interest soon became a passion that morphed into an obsession and I spent the next few years travelling the northern hemisphere visiting street art events."

George moved to New Zealand in 2009, intending to bring the street art flavour he experienced in the UK to this part of the world.

"We delivered two shows in Australia before producing three massive events in Christchurch. The first called RISE, at the Canterbury Museum, won NZ Museum show of the year and attracted 248,000 visitors - the most visited show in their history.

"During that time, we oversaw the painting of 40 murals in the central city and totally transformed how the city looked post-earthquake."

More recently, George and his team have literally brightened Christchurch Airport.

"The airport company identifies a space or entity it would like to enhance, and we consider what is pertinent for that place. We conceptualise ideas, the airport team makes a choice and we identify the artist or artists to deliver it.

"One of the best things about the job is the stream of compliments we get. Perhaps the most memorable was from a woman I suspect works at the airport, who said, as she walked past, 'Thank you so much - that's going to brighten my day, every day!' "


Guest reviews of PurePods offer enthusiastically positive gratitude for an unforgettable experience in New Zealand. The word which features most often is 'amazing', but 'excellent' and 'perfect' are close behind.

CEO Stephanie Hassall agrees with guests who say a PurePod stay is no like no other.

"A PurePod is an intensely deep immersion into pure New Zealand and a beautifully romantic getaway," she says.  "Imagine being all alone in a stunning natural location in a luxury glass cabin - glass roof, glass floor, three glass walls - with big wide sliding doors and decking.

"Your adventure starts with a 10 to 15 minute walk through bush, tussock, hills and paddocks… and your first glimpse of the PurePod is magical."

All the glass and the big sliding doors mean guests are truly immersed in the surrounding natural environment. Even the shower and toilet have glass floors and glass walls, so for stargazers, the glass roof and lack of light pollution ensures plenty of stars to view on clear nights.

Each PurePod is located away from all other human activities, but Stephanie says there's no need to be concerned about privacy. "If you feel a bit shy, each pod does have blinds and a shower curtain (though leaving the blinds up mean you can watch the sunrise from the comfortable bed)," she says.

The PurePods are in seven distinctly different South Island locations. They are solar powered, operate fully off the grid, are deliberately free of a wi-fi connection and have less impact on the environment than camping.

"No other humans are visible in the immediate vicinity and the space is yours to enjoy entirely on your own," says Stephanie. "Most guests tell us one night is not enough, because the reconnection with nature is so special."



An initiative launched by the tourism industry in 2018 invites everyone who lives and travels here to care for the land we love.

Tiaki - Care for New Zealand encourages Kiwis and visitors alike to experience New Zealand while keeping everyone safe, protecting our environment, respecting our culture and protecting the country for future generations.

Tourism operators such as PurePods are helping guests understand how they can care for our beautiful country.


When the Kaikoura earthquake struck in 2016, the future of the Coastal Pacific was literally out at sea. Several sections of the railway had been swept into the Pacific Ocean by landslides, with 80km of Midland Line torn, buckled and broken.

But after two years of agonising work, the Coastal Pacific returned late last year - and what a return!

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern travelled on the inaugural service from Picton to Christchurch and, during the journey, pledged $40million of investment into the train's future, enabling the Coastal Pacific to run year-round with additional premium carriages.

Since then, KiwiRail Head of Tourism and Marketing Ah-Leen Rayner says the Coastal Pacific has been wowing travellers.

"With the Pacific Ocean to the east and the Kaikoura Ranges to the west, this is definitely a picturesque scenic train journey," she says. "You can easily spot sealife from the comfort of your seat. You'll hear "Look, dolphins!", "Did you see that albatross?" and "That's a whale!" around the carriage."

Further north, the train glides through world-famous Marlborough vineyards, traverses the mighty rivers of Awatere and Wairau and, to the south, it roams pastoral Canterbury farmlands and over the great Canterbury Plains.

Ah-Leen says numbers suggest people have been eagerly awaiting the return of the Coastal Pacific.

"In the first weeks of the season, more than 13,000 passengers had travelled on it. That's more than the entire 2016 season, and forward bookings for the rest of this season are already more than three thousand up on the 2016 year.

"People seem keen to leave their car at home, sit back, relax and enjoy some of the best the South Island has to offer."


If you think motorsport isn't your thing, next month's Highlands Festival of Speed in Cromwell might just change your mind.

It's a weekend of classic and historic cars racing on the world class Highlands Motorsport Park circuit, but there's much more on offer too.

Josie Spillane, Chief Operating Officer, says the Highlands Festival of Speed started when the park opened in 2013, and it's a relaxed way for people to get up close with NZ motorsport. 

"We want to showcase how exciting motorsport can be, so visitors have access to the cars and stars, the pits, grid, car show, on-site museum and café, sculpture park and go-karts

- there's plenty to choose from," she says.

"Every pass includes access to the pits to see the vehicles and drivers. We also invite people to walk the grid when the drivers are lined up, to get a sense of how it feels for the drivers and to talk to them before they start.  It's pretty special to be on the track - you can't help but get caught up in the excitement of it all.

"We have about 200 competitors and thousands of spectators come to the festival each year and the two days of action never disappoint."

There's pre-65 racing, Mainland Muscle, Porsche, OSCA, classics, sprints and more… plus visitors can book a pro driver to drive them around the circuit in a Ferrari or a Porsche 'taxi', or get behind the wheel themselves of a go-kart on site to test their skills against family and friends.

"The festival is a true celebration of motorsport and the competitors, who all have a great time putting on a show," Josie says. "It combines two great loves - motorsport and tourism, because as well as the festival, visitors can experience our activities and then all that Cromwell and Queenstown Lakes have to offer - the cycle trails, the wine experiences, the adventure tourism and make a weekend of it!
April 6-7


Of the five Antarctic Gateway cities around the world, Christchurch boasts the closest ports to the Ross Sea region, where Antarctica New Zealand supports world leading research, especially across its summer season.

New Zealand and US Air Force aircraft transport scientists, cargo and support crews 3,832km to McMurdo Sound, where New Zealand's Scott Base sits on the shores of Ross Island.

Megan Martin, GM Communications for Antarctica New Zealand, says over the 2018/19 season, the government agency supported a range of science events spread over 1,500km.

"The aim is to understand the impact of environmental change on Antarctica and, in turn, its influence on the rest of the world," she says. "One project, led by Dr Natalie Robinson from NIWA, focuses on the thickness and extent of sea ice and how it is influenced by 'super-cooled' water flowing beneath the Ross Ice Shelf. Professor David Prior from University of Otago is studying the Priestley Glacier to understand how glacier ice might flow faster as the world warms."

Megan says the Ross Sea region Marine Protected Area (MPA) was established in December 2017. At 1.55 million km2, it is the largest MPA in the world and New Zealand scientists are contributing research to prove its worth.

"That research includes Dr Regina Eisert, from the University of Canterbury, teaming up with BoxFish Research, an underwater robotics company, to gain world-first insights into killer whale behaviour in Antarctica; and Manaaki Whenua (Landcare Research) scientist, Dr Dean Anderson, studying how Adelie penguin populations might respond to different climate change scenarios."

Antarctica New Zealand supported 25 other science events this season, including nine long-term monitoring projects - one which was begun by Robert Falcon Scott in 1911.

Megan says New Zealand actively contributes to this legacy of Antarctic science, ensuring the continent and Southern Ocean is valued, protected and understood.


Ask chef Darren Wright how he likes his beef cooked and he'll ask what cut of meat you're offering.

It's not a joke, but part of his role as a Platinum Lifetime Beef and Lamb Ambassador which sees him explain why different cuts are best cooked in different ways.

Darren has been a Beef and Lamb Ambassador since 2009 and became the country's fifth Platinum Lifetime Ambassador in 2014. That has seen him spend time travelling nationwide and overseas, helping educate people about what he describes as the fantastic beef and lamb this country produces.

"I spent eight weeks in Korea at one point," he says. "I worked at a massive hospitality show there, with tens of thousands of people walking through sampling all sorts of food. I was using beautiful ribeye and sirloin cuts, sealing the meat, cooking it medium and cubing it into juicy and succulent samples for people to try. But they were looking the meat over and walking away.

"The interpreter told me they thought it was raw. I explained to her that the grass-fed beef had been cooked to retain the flavour and the juices. She started explaining that to the guests and they tried it and loved it.

"That showed me education has to be a large part of my role, considering what different people are used to cooking and eating, their traditions and methods, then explaining how our world class product is best cooked and eaten.

"Another example is considering how we will often roast a shoulder of lamb, but Asian cooks don't have an oven and more usually cook finely cut pieces of meat in a wok."

Darren offers beef and lamb dishes at his Christchurch restaurant 'Chillingworth Road' and says he likes to surprise and delight customers, but doesn't always ask them how they prefer their meat cooked.

"We cook the meat to ensure it will offer the best flavour and succulence. That's offering the best food the best way to give the consumer the best experience.

"I love eating beef and lamb. In summer I like less heavy cuts, in winter I prefer braised beef short rib or beef cheek. Ideally, a combination of the two gives the benefits of tender and slow cooked delicious beef, but again, it depends on thinking about the cut and cooking it the way that suits it."

Darren says sometimes the simplest food is the best - for example, a beef fillet with mushrooms and potato. Three ingredients, each cooked simply to be their most flavoursome.

"I like to focus on the flavours of the ingredients and highlight the beauty of each individual element, to expand a consumer's mouth and mind."

With that philosophy in mind, it's easy to see how and why this chef's passion for two of New Zealand's premium products has translated across the world, turning beef and lamb into cuisine art.




3 beef short ribs (from your local butcher)
1 carrot, roughly chopped
1/2 onion, roughly chopped
2 stalks celery, roughly chopped
2 bay leaves
thyme sprigs
hot beef stock (enough to cover)
1 tbsp tomato paste
splash of red wine


250g flour (plus extra, for dusting)
2 whole eggs
2 egg yolks
1 tsp olive oil splash of
red wine


1kg chevre de bouche
(goat's cheese) or feta (plus extra, to serve)
2 stalks asparagus
1 radish
3 sprigs watercress
olive oil
80g braised beef rib
25g butter
5g hazelnuts, chopped
1 lemon (juice of 1/4)


Sauté carrot, onion and celery in oil. Add bay leaves and thyme sprigs then pour into a pan or crockpot bowl. Place beef rib on top of vegetables. Cover with hot beef stock then add tomato paste and red wine. Braise for 4 hours in the oven or in a crockpot overnight (or 6-8 hours) until beef is tender. Cool and remove from liquor.


Sift the flour and salt together into a large bowl. Make a well in the centre. Place the eggs, egg yolks and olive oil in a bowl and beat together with a fork. Pour into the flour well and using a spoon, combine with flour.

Tip dough mixture onto a floured surface and using your hands, bring the dough together and knead for 5 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Form into a disc, wrap in plastic film and set aside for 30 minutes to rest.

Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out to flatten slightly. Set a pasta machine on the widest setting and lightly dust the rollers with flour. Feed the dough through the machine. Reduce the settings one notch at a time and feed the dough through each setting. If the dough becomes sticky, lightly rub flour onto both sides of the pasta sheet.

When you reach the second-last setting, fold the pasta sheet into thirds (this is called a book fold), then turn it 90°C and feed the dough through the machine, starting on the widest setting again and working through to the second-last setting.


To form tortellini, cut rounds from pasta dough and brush with egg wash. Place goat's cheese in centre and fold in half. Form tortellini shape. Cook tortellini in boiling salted water until tender.


Peel asparagus then blanch in boiling salted water.
Cut radish into julienne and place in a bowl with the watercress. Dress with olive oil. Season.
Heat sliced beef in reduced cooking liquor. Once heated, arrange on a plate with asparagus.
Heat butter in a pan until it starts to brown. Add chopped hazelnuts and squeeze lemon juice in. Toss tortellini into pan, then plate. Spoon over butter. Crumble goat's cheese over the top and spoon on some of the hot cooking liquor. Garnish with radish and watercress and serve.

Darren's recipe supplied by The Christchurch Food Show
5 - 7 April 2019,
Horncastle Arena



Glenmark Domain
March 10

The coolest little wine festival in the country! North Canterbury kai at its best, with local producers, chefs and restaurants offering delicious, fresh and seasonal food to complement the region's wines. Paella, cheese, pork, dumplings, cakes, venison, pancakes, whitebait and much more, alongside alcohol and non-alcoholic beverages, coffee and an impressive line-up of family friendly talent.

March 16

Promising to serve up a whole ocean of fun, this year's Havelock Mussel Festival will bring together temptations for your tastebuds and for your dancing feet. With Katchafire headlining the entertainment line-up and Annabel Langbein headlining the taste temptations, you can bet on live music, delicious food, beer, wine and seafood. The festival's been running for 15 years with many saying this year will be the best one.


March 21-31

Cabaret, circus arts, comedy, dance, improvisation, literature, music, performance, art, theatre, political art, spoken word, storytelling, visual art is some, but not all, of what's on offer at this festival for 11 days of March. Dunedin Fringe is a whirlwind of non-stop arts and entertainment, ending with an awards night to celebrate the best of the festival's best

March 31

A chance to drool over some of the finest cars in Canterbury. Featuring vintage, classic and new models, there will be more than 100 cars on show - including superb examples from McLaren, Jaguar, Porsche, classic American and more. Live entertainment, food and drink available too. Proceeds go to Akaroa Health Hub, Akaroa Fire Brigade and Westpac Helicopters.

May 25

Celebrate autumn in Nelson Tasman by taking part in the inaugural K2M multisport event. Wind your way by foot or bike off road on the Great Taste Trail from the famous Kaiteriteri Beach to the Mapua Estuary. You can trail run, walk or cycle any of the marathon, marathon relay, half marathon and 10km options. Finishing the event at Mapua Wharf is a plus too, with sumptuous seafood, fine wine and craft beer among the offerings.
May 30-June 2

Let's just say this event is New Zealand's first and the Southern Hemisphere's longest running such event, so is something you need to experience! Steampunk is often described as a sub-genre of science fiction that uses technology and aesthetics inspired by the 19th century. In Oamaru, it embraces the steam engine surroundings and historic settings with colour, character and awesome fashion and style. Quite simply, it's cool.