The Governor-General has given Cantabrians a message from the Prince of Wales.
Sir Jerry Mateparae said the message from Prince Charles conveyed his horror as he watched the events unfold last year.
The Prince said his son, Prince William, had been deeply moved by the Christchurch people he met during his visit in March 2011.
He said he also knew the tragedy had brought out the best in the city's residents.
Condolences from around the world
Condolences have been sent from the United States and Britain on the first anniversary of the February earthquake.
Members of the US-NZ Council have gathered in the United States capital, Washington DC, to remember the February earthquake.
Many of them were among the 120 diplomats and government officials attending the fourth US NZ Partnership Forum in Christchurch on the day the quake struck.
The council has sent its condolences to the people of Christchurch and thanked them for the help given in the aftermath of the quake.
Council chairman Jim Bolger says that, at the time of the quake, delegates were scattered across the city at 10 different locations and many narrowly escaped injury.
He has paid tribute to the work done shepherding delegates to safety and out of the city.
Mr Bolger says the American delegates continue to feel a special bond with Christchurch, and the council's American counterpart has raised more than $5 million for the quake relief effort.
UK offers condolences
British Foreign Secretary, William Hague, has offered his condolences to the people of New Zealand on the anniversary of the Christchurch earthquake.
In a letter to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Murray McCully, Mr Hague says his thoughts are with all those affected by the tragedy, especially the residents of Christchurch.
He says it is difficult to imagine how Cantabrians have coped with the aftermath of the tragedy, including the 10,000 aftershocks since the original quake.
Mr Hague says Britain stands ready to help Christchurch in the journey ahead.