Mixed weather bag for Christmas Day

A weekend of great weather will kick off the summer holidays for many ahead of changeable weather forecast for Christmas Day.

The MetService said tomorrow's weather was likely to be mostly fine and dry for the north of the country.

"The weekend before Christmas looks great for outdoor plans for a time, although another front is likely to spread some wet weather up from the south," meteorologist Daniel Corbett said.

The front would bring wet weather to the south and west of the South Island, and some wet weather to parts of the North Island on Saturday night and early Sunday.

Another fine spell was expected at the start of next week, but that was expected to be short-lived as another weather system was poised to approach the west of the country in the run up to Christmas.

The MetService said the system was likely to bring wet weather to some western areas by Christmas Eve, and strong northwesterlies across central and southern New Zealand.

There was also a risk of showers over parts of the country on Christmas Day before drier weather took its place.

WeatherWatch analyst Philip Duncan said a front would bring heavy rain to the west of the South Island and brisk westerlies to the middle of the country on Christmas Eve.

Meanwhile, a high would bring calmer, drier conditions to the top half of the country. The high would then move further north, allowing the front to move into the North Island for Christmas Day.

Mr Duncan said as the front moved north, there would be quite a bit of change with the weather on Christmas Day.

"Generally speaking most of New Zealand still doesn't look overly wet - but it's becoming clear that some regions will be in for a partially wet day on December 25 with a south to southwest change moving north."

The areas at highest risk of showers would be in the west of the North Island and east of the South Island.

- APNZ

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