It's been a wet beginning to Christmas for the north of the country but Wellington had an unexpectedly fine start to the day.
MetService said the rain in the upper North Island was clearing and the afternoon should be sunny.
Forecaster John Law said the best conditions should be found in central New Zealand. While Wellington was likely to get sporadic afternoon showers, temperatures should remain in the mid to high twenties.
In the South Island, rain was set to return for the afternoon.