Christchurch has a rich cultural hub which comes alive at night with a vibrant nightlife full of entertainment. The city has a lot of upbeat bars and noisy live music venues – all with great happy hour deals. We have made your choice easier by listing down some of the best bars in town. Take a look!
7 Most Vibrant Bars in Christchurch
12 Bar is a friendly and lively American style dive bar situated in central Christchurch. This bar is an amazing mix of beer, food, music and games and is sure to compel you to come back. You can have plenty of some good quality craft beer on-site or takeaway. It also has drinks which are long time favourites of people including Speights and DB. A variety of options is available on New Zealand wines too, in fact, you will find a lot of people sipping on one. Great food complements great beer and 12 Bar offers delicious food made from its food truck - Beat Kitchen. You can order food through food delivery apps from here as well. 12 Bar hosts frequent live shows with blues as a common genre. The feel-good music is performed by different bands like South Street Trio, Wolf Belly, Matt Hall and The Penny Blues Band. There is a gaming section here so you can bring your family here as well!
Address: 342 Saint Asaph Street, Christchurch Central, Christchurch.
The Smash Palace
Set in a building and the surrounding site which was once occupied by Brick Farm Restaurant and Bar, this bar is a fusion of the best features of both Brick Farm and Smash Palace. It is a bus-converted-into-a-bar and offers great local wine and has unlimited tap beer on its menu. The menu also has the city's best homemade burgers made from scratch. Enjoy a bowl of cheerios while listening to music while their service caters you. Smash Palace ticks all the boxes when it comes to good hospitality.
Address: 172 High Street, Christchurch Central, Christchurch.
Canterbury Brewers' Collective
Started by New Zealand's "Beer Man", Chris Ruske, this bar is the central spot for takeaway brews, cold pints and uninterrupted chats over which to find your new favourite booze. Kegs from local breweries like Three Boys, Ghost, Brew Moon, Beer Baroness, Two Thumb Eruption, and more are found on tap. While expanding the business, Chris has stuck to his original mission, that is, to serve beer brewed by sole brewers, groups of friends or families who form a major part of the area's craft beer scene. He knows the brewers himself and takes pride in serving their creations to the wider public.
Address: 96 Oxford Terrace, Christchurch Central, Christchurch.
This bar is a haven for gin seeking enthusiasts. There are around 80 different kinds of gin in New Zealand alone, not to mention the variety around the world. This bar does not serve gin the conventional way, instead, notches things up a bit. Boutique gins are mixed with fermented berries, rose petals and lush tonics adding a lot of flavour, colour and texture. The bar has a very friendly atmosphere and is designed with well-loved furniture and lots of plants adding a nature's vibe to it. There is an array of other drinks too, like wine, beer, hot gin punches, etc. A small menu of tapas features goat cheese served with flatbread, pizza, and light bite options.
Address: 92 Victoria Street, City Centre, Christchurch.
Civil and Naval
A cosy yet cool and approachable bar, this bar is located in Lyttelton in a beautiful brick building. You will have them serving food, beer, wine and cocktails from all over the world. The focus is on boutique and family-owned producers as well as small scale international distillers. The food they offer is perhaps very interesting and is laid down in a well-thought-out menu. Some of these delicious items are miso butter coated edamame beans, deep-fried cauliflower with maple and chipotle, hand-cut chips and bottomless aioli, making it a place for your teetotaller friends too!
Address: 16 London Street, Lyttelton.
Located in The Arts Centre in the space that was once occupied by the legendary Annie’s Wine Bar, Cellar Door exists in a place that is already very special to Cantabrians. Local Pinot Noir barrels are revamped to be made into a wooden bar made with staves. Sunlight travels through the large historic windows and there's much attention to detail when we see the Crown Lynn china and vintage cutlery. Cellar Door has its "wine tasting flights" where each flight has a unique name and explains the process and origin in simple language instead of telling you what to drink. Start your journey to find what you love to have. Craft beers on tap and spirits are also available. The food menu mostly consists of gluten-free and vegan food.
Address: 1 Hereford Street, Christchurch Central, Christchurch.
Evil Genius Bar and Eatery
A bar and restaurant having an easy-going atmosphere with views of the estuary, marshes and hills beyond. Have a leisurely lunch, dine-in with your friends or hang out with your friends over a glass of wine or two. Evil Genius offers a menu full of fusion of Asian food with Evil Fried Chicken being the favourite. It has several equally tasty vegan alternatives as well. Enjoy the local wine, craft beer and cocktails amidst the relaxing music. Dance your heart out at the dance parties and open mic nights hosted by them on Thursday or Friday nights.
Address: Unit 2/1091 Ferry Road, Ferrymead, Christchurch.