New Zealanders love a drink. And if it's locally made, even better. Cool-climate wines do well here – like sauvignon blanc and pinot noir – and the craft-beer scene has caught fire. Most pubs have excellent local beers on tap or in the fridge.

Bars and pubs are great, but Kiwi clubs? Outside of Auckland, there's not a whole lotta shakin'. Nocturnal vibes are often geared towards quality drinks, tapas and conversation.

Best Lists

Drinking & Nightlife

  • Golding's Free Dive The best craft-beer bar in the best place in NZ to drink some – Wellington.
  • Lovebucket One of Auckland's best selections of quirky cocktails and craft beer.
  • Emporium Napier's most civilised bar is a hark-back art-deco masterpiece.
  • Smash Palace Find comfort in chaos at this kooky Christchurch bar.
  • Mussel Inn This long-standing Golden Bay gem is the most unpretentious of gastropubs, with a live-music bent.
  • Blue Door Hidden in little Arrowtown is this southern gem: intimate, rustic and very atmospheric.