PHOTOS: Winter Storm Blankets The South Island In Snow

Snow is falling in the South Island this afternoon as temperatures plunge to freezing in some areas.

Today MetService had severe weather warnings in place for snow for Otago and parts of Canterbury.

snow flurries were expected to sea level in Dunedin this evening, with 5cm-10cm of snow expected to 300m above sea level.

Central Otago was expected to get 20cm-30cm of snow to 200m from about 10am today, and 1m or more of snow above 700m.

This afternoon, MetService meteorologist said Emma Blades said snow was falling in places such as Wanaka and Queenstown, where temperatures had reached 0C.

"It doesn't look like its quite settled because it's not quite cold enough on the ground...we are getting snowfall at the higher levels."

The NZTA has urged those travelling across the top of the South Island to plan ahead for their travel due to the severe weather forecast.

The agency's central regional performance manager Mark Owen said when bad weather hit, the roads were more dangerous.

"Drivers should expect wet, slippery roads, potentially leading to surface flooding and slips. High winds are also expected, which is a particular risk for anyone on a bike or motorbike, or high sided vehicles like vans and campervans.

"If you're caught in the weather, please drop your speeds, increase your following distances, make sure you have your headlights on, and keep your eyes on the road at all times."


Images: NZME