For an authentic Canterbury culinary experience, visit an artisan producer, or get yourself to one of the region's flourishing farmers' markets.
By going direct to source, you'll access some of the area's freshest produce, finest foods and homemade treats. You'll also get the lowdown from the passionate people behind these gastronomic joys.
Enjoy a buzzing atmosphere in a charming setting at Christchurch Farmers' Market. Held at historic Riccarton House every Saturday morning. Meats, cheeses, fruit and vegetables sit alongside superb coffee and goodies to enjoy while you're strolling around.
With over 300 stalls Riccarton Market is Christchurch's largest market. Held every Sunday from 9am - 2pm there's always a bargin or tasty treat to be found.
Waimakariri & Waipara Valley
The morning markets, just north of Christchurch, are well worth getting out of bed for. Ohoka runs a Farmers' Market on a Friday morning from 9.00am-12.30pm. The Waipara Valley Farmers' Market is held in Amberley first thing on a Saturday, or head to Oxford on a Sunday morning. You'll find stalls bursting with of all sorts of delicious local fare to take away, and lots of tempting treats to snack on for breakfast or lunch.
Akaroa's beautiful landscape is also a unique micro-climate for growing sublime produce. Come and taste the difference for yourself, with a trip to the weekly market, held every Saturday morning in spring through autumn. You're bound to get hungry perusing the olives and olive oil, nuts, breads, pastries, cheeses and preserves.
Saturday mornings are a hive of activity in the historic portside town of Lyttelton. Its thriving Farmers' Market attracts a host of locals and visitors every weekend, with a colourful array of local produce and handmade eatables. Local musicians often provide entertainment, and there are lots of tempting treats to enjoy with a good coffee as you soak up the atmosphere.
Mid & South Canterbury
Further south, bring a hearty appetite to Ashburton's Saturday morning Farmers' Markets, or the rural townships of Methven and Geraldine – both hosting summertime weekend markets. In Timaru, Community House carpark, Strathallan Street is the place to be each Saturday from 9am-12.30pm. Rain or shine, impassioned local producers offer delicious food, produce and drinks.
The weekly Waimate Market includes fresh farm produce along with arts and crafts. It's held each Saturday from 9.30am at the Waimate Community Centre (135 Queen Street, Waimate).
Travelling around Canterbury
Throughout the region you'll often see small roadside signs for the products of artisan producers – so keep an eye out, and stop in and get yourself some unique local delicacies. Whether it's honey, free-range eggs, organic fruit and vegetables, handmade chocolates or preserves, flavour triumphs in fresh food that’s been produced with love and care, and a commitment to quality. Your taste buds will certainly thank you for it!