Christchurch Shopping Guide - Find where and what to shop and buy

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Possum fur gloves are as warm and cozy as they are unique and they make for a real conversation point when brought back home. They are just part of the array of wonderful things to buy in Christchurch which also includes sheep and lamb wool sweaters and bat leather key rings.

Sports and leisure wear from the venerable Canterbury sports wear brand is made and sold here, but it isn't necessarily any cheaper than elsewhere. Fine New Zealand wine is a great buy as is any kind of dairy product, especially cheese. Artworks from galleries or the superb Arts Centre are very worthwhile investments.

Adventure wear and travel goods are good buys also. The many mountain climbing and intrepid travel stores in Christchurch can fit most visitors out for their onward journeys to elsewhere in New Zealand and the local knowledge here is second to none.

Arts Centre

The converted buildings of the University of Canterbury contain artist's studios and hidden rooms for kilns and weaves. Visitors are welcome to watch the craftsmen at their work or browse through beautifully laid out and well stocked shops to choose an appropriate souvenir or quality investment. Paintings and fine woolen garments are all made on the premises and are especially good buys.

Colombo Street

Colombo Street is the prime shopping street in Christchurch. Second hand bookstores, brand new clothing boutiques as well as plenty of coffee shops and cafés line both sides of this long thoroughfare that runs straight through the middle of Cathedral Square.

Cashell Mall

The mall on Cashell Street is the closest Christchurch has to a pedestrian shopping mall. It is relatively small and contained but the range of stores here is surprisingly large. Good buys include boots lined with sheep skin and there is a great selection of leather products such as decorative key rings and wallets.

New Regent Street

This cobbled laneway runs between Armagh and Gloucester Streets and the antique stores and mirror shops here are particularly good. Visitors should consider the fragility of their purchases here in light of the trip back home.

Christchurch shopping tips

Good quality goods can be trusted as originals here. The availability of fresh produce and resources like wool and leather means that fussing around with fakes and inferior materials would waste more time than it would be worth. Bargaining and negotiating prices in the markets is fine, and some respectful haggling is acceptable in the artisan studios, too.

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