Neatest Places in Christchurch for an Ice Cream

A hand holding an ice cream.

On a hot day in Christchurch, there’s no better way to cool down than with a delicious iced delight.

From ice cream to gelato to sorbet, there’s no shortage of talented merchants in Christchurch serving up the perfect treat when it’s scorching outside.

The ice cream cabinet, two customers and one staff member scooping ice cream at Utopia Ice in Christchurch.

Utopia Ice

15 Wakefield Avenue, Sumner, Christchurch, Christchurch & Canterbury

Owners Mandy and Sebastian of Utopia Ice use a French artisan custard style of creaming to create inventive flavours and a menu that is half plant-based and often dairy free.

Test your taste buds with combos like asparagus and cream cheese (surprisingly refreshing and creamy); white chocolate and olive oil (sweet and smooth); sea salt caramel, cashew and popcorn (bathe us in this), Vietnamese coffee (a creamy, ice cold coffee hit), and raspberry and saffron (refreshingly spiced).

They bring their community-mindedness all the way to the ice cream cabinet, using free-range eggs and ingredients grown in local backyards as well as their own on-site garden, the latter with its passion fruit, figs, grapes and lavender often featuring as flavours on the ever-changing ice cream menu.

Rollickin' Gelato

New Regent Street and Cashel Street, Christchurch Central City, Christchurch & Canterbury

Rollickin' Gelato has quickly developed a cult status in the city, evolving from a post-quake roving cart to its flagship creamery on Cashel Street and second store on New Regent Street. With long lines often spilling from its buildings: Rollickin’ is popular for a reason.

Unique flavour combinations like custard and rhubarb, peanut butter, marshmallow fluff and chocolate fudge sauce, and crowd favourite Yogi Bear (yogurt gelato with swiss caramel sauce) sit alongside more traditional options in a new state-of-the-art freezer. Dairy-free friends are also looked after, with the sorbet menu just as extensive and delicious looking as the gelatos, and treats can be scooped out of compostable cups or choc waffle cones depending on how much sweet you can handle.

Fuse Real Fruit

73 Cashmere Road, Cashmere, Christchurch, Christchurch & Canterbury

Over in Cashmere, Fuse keeps the neighbourhood cool over the summer period with a food truck dedicated to doing one thing very well: real fruit ice cream. Choose your size, base and flavour, and then add some extra interest with biscuit slices, quickset chocolate sauces, joyful sprinkles and more.

Two people sitting outside in the sunshine.

Frances Nation Grocer

28 Worcester Boulevard, Christchurch Central City, Christchurch & Canterbury

Next time you find yourself by the Arts Centre on a balmy day, pop into Frances Nation Grocer for a big swirl of real fruit ice cream. The flavours change depending on what’s in season, from fresh and local raspberries and blueberries to a nostalgic banana favourite. Make sure you grab some NZ-made pantry essentials or a bottle of North Canterbury wine while you’re there.

Gelato Lab

5/132 Opawa Road, Opawa, Christchurch, Christchurch & Canterbury

Bringing a small piece of Italy to the leafy suburb of Opawa, Gelato Lab churns out traditional gelato in delicious and ever-changing flavours, from old favourites to new and interesting combinations, thanks to their scientific approach to the elements. 

If you can't decide on a flavour, don't worry, the friendly staff, or a regular in the line, will walk you through your options and send you out the door with a scoop or two and a smile. 

Gelato Dolce

Gelato Dolce is a local ice cream cart on the move, found outside the Arts Centre, Ohoka Farmers’ Market on Fridays and at various summertime festivals and events across the city. Inside the petite red and the white cart you’ll find handmade gelato and vegan sorbets, just the way they make it in Italy.

Ice Cream Charlie

91 Armagh Street, Christchurch Central, Christchurch & Canterbury

Walk on down to Victoria Square on a sunny day and you’ll find a line of people patiently waiting for their turn in front of the iconic pink and white vanilla ice truck that is Ice Cream Charlie. If you’ve ever tasted their ice cream, you’ll know joining that queue is well worth it.

The ice cream is hand made with a new batch churned out every second day. You can choose from a variety of toppings from the Classic Charlie, the creamy vanilla ice topped with delicious raspberry sauce, to newer topping additions such as kiwi fruit.

Gelato & Tea

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96 Oxford Terrace, Riverside Market, Christchurch, Christchurch & Canterbury

Churning out artisan gelato and ice cream made in-house, Gelato & Tea’s scoops range from comforting classics to new discoveries. Fill your cone with matcha, mascarpone and honey, pistachio shortbread or blueberry and lemon curd. Located inside Riverside Market, grab a scoop to go, take home a tub or try a bit of everything with their tasting packs.

Bomba

13 London Street, Lyttelton, Christchurch & Canterbury

This Lyttelton joint has taken the port town by storm with their Neapolitan style pizzas. And what would an authentic slice of Italy be without a gelato to finish on? In keeping with the Bomba ethos, expect simple gelato flavours that hero fresh and local ingredients.

Paleta bar

255 Saint Asaph Street, Christchurch Central City, Christchurch & Canterbury

Similar to the popsicle, paletas are a frozen Mexican ice block that are usually made using fresh fruits – making them an ideal summer refresher. Paleta Bar brings this sweet taste of Central America to Little High, with a fridge full of paletas as well as artisan gelato made in-house. Keep your paleta naked, or pimp it up with a chocolate coating and colourful toppings.

Airstream Ice Cream

12 Hereford Street, Christchurch, Christchurch & Canterbury

On the corner of Hereford Street and Rolleston Ave sits a metallic food truck crowned with the inviting words ‘ice cream’. After taking a stroll around the gardens, head here for your favourite flavour of real fruit ice cream. Featuring boysenberry, mango, passionfruit, strawberry and more, this spot is sure to delight the young and old.

Real Fruit Parlour

1066E Colombo Street, St Albans, Christchurch, Christchurch & Canterbury

This Edgware-based cafe doubles as a fruit and veg grocer, meaning there are always local berries at hand, ready to be transformed into a fruity frozen delight. The real fruit ice creams are the perfect follow-up to the range of fresh and delicious salads available in the cabinet.

Saturdays

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195 Marine Parade, New Brighton, Christchurch, Christchurch & Canterbury

After a swim at New Brighton Beach or dip in the plunge pool at He Puna Taimoana, you’ll naturally be in need of ice cream. Make your way over to Saturdays, a beachfront cafe that locals flock to for great coffee, delicious brunch and - most importantly - real fruit ice cream in a laid-back coastal setting.

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Dark moody image inside Downstairs where their is bright feature lighting.
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