SEE THE NEW YEAR IN HERE
Aum dance festival, South Head, Kaipara, North Island
Expect light shows, poetry and all sorts of wonder at this premium dance party. Visit aum.co.nz
Whare Flat Folk Festival, near Dunedin, South Island. Run annually by Dunedin’s New Edinburgh Folk Club since 1975, the Whare Flat Folk Festival features four days of concerts, workshops, entertainment and relaxation in the superb Waiora Scout Camp in the Whare Flat valley just outside of Dunedin. Visit whareflat.org.nz
Rhythm and Vines, Gisborne, North Island. Internationally acclaimed three-day music festival amid the setting of the pituresque Waiohike Estate Vineyard in Gisborne. Heavy on dance and electronica. Visit rhythmandvines.co.nz
Wings Over Wairarapa, near Wellington, North Island. Wings Over Wairarapa features some of the world’s rarest vintage aircraft including WWI aircraft and some classics from WWII. Visit wings.org.nz
Sculpture on the Gulf. Waiheke Island, North Island. New Zealand’s premier outdoor sculpture exibition takes place on the walkway above Maitaitia on Waiheke Island. After ten years and counting, the event supports and showcases established and emerging artists. Mid Jan to Mid Feb. Visit sculptureonthegulf.co.nz
International Buskers Festival, Auckland, North Island.miss Auckland’s 13th annual Showcasing some of the world’s most successful street performers. Acts will pop up all over the CBD, look for them in the viaduct area, Vulcan Lane, Wynyard Quarter and Princes Wharf and downtown Westfield. Visit aucklandbuskersfestival.co.nz
Auckland Seafood Festival, Auckland, North Island
Auckland’s popular Seafood Festival usually takes place on Anniversary Weekend. Three days of the best seafood, music, wine and beer. Visit seafoodfestival.co.nz
Southland Buskers Festival (Invercargil, South Island)
The annual Southland Buskers Festival hits the streets with fresh talent from world renowned buskers. Visit southlandbuskersfestival.co.nz
Martinborough Food and Wine Festival (Wairarapa, North Island)
Going from strength to strength, this festival takes place at the region’s oldest vineyard. It’s a big affair with produce for sale, cooking demonstrations, celebrity chefs music and more. Visit marlboroughwinefestival.co.nz
February 9th. Christchurch, South Island. Belgian Beer and Mussell Festival. Enjoy the supreme pairing of New Zealand mussells with some of Belgium’s best beers and surperb live entertainment. Visit http://www.feastofcanterbury.co.nz
Napier Art Deco Weekend (Napier, North Island)
The annual Art Deco Weekend is a riot of colour and activity with paid and free events, the town teaming with heritage cars and people dressed up in art deco fashion. Highlights are the soapbox derby and the fashion parade in the soundshell. Visit artdeconapier.com
February 16 – 17th, Waikato, North Island. Waikato Time Food and Wine Festival takes place on Hamilton’s Claudelands Green. Savour delicious cuisine while listening to live music including back by popular demand, Jan Preston. Let the kids loose in the playgronud and enjoy the festival’s many stalls offering delights from restaurants and wineries. Visit http://www.hamiltonwaikato.com.
February 16 – 17th, Nelson, South Island. The Nelson Lakes Festival, held at St Arnauld, Nelson Lakes National Park is a celebration of 170 years of European influence with historic films, trails and archive displays. On Saturday there is a Waka Ama regatta on the lake and on Sunday an art and craft market at Kerr Bay. For details see http://www.festivalnelsonlakes.co.nz.
Chinese Lantern Festival (Auckland, North Island)
One of the biggest events on Auckland’s summer calendar. Grab a take away from one of dozens of Asian food stalls and watch exciting on-stage performances, then stroll around hundreds of stunning lanterns imported from China. Visit www.asianz.org.nz
February 23rd, Kerikeri, Northland. The Ocean and Orchard Wine and Food Festival has a line-up of talented musicicans so you can relax and enjoy the vibe while sampling food and wine from 30 stalls, enjoy cooking demonstrations and other entertainment.
Otago Goldfields Cavalcade (destination changes yearly, Otago, South Island)
Ride or walk in the footsteps of New Zealands gold diggers and early pioneers. Sign up early to join a week long horse ride, wagon trail or walk. Or simply take your place in the crowd on market day and witness up the Cavalcade roll into town with up to 500 horses in the parade. Experience the atmosphere, the market day and the hoedown. For details visit cavalcade.co.nz
March 9-10th. Weston Springs, Auckland, North Island. One of Auckland’s most popular and long-running events Pasifika celebrates New Zealand’s Pacific heritage. Showcases culture of Island people. For more information visit http://www.aucklandnz.com/pasifika.
March 16th, Gibbston, South Island. The Gibbston Wine and Food Festival will be held at Breenan and Mt Rosa Vineyards just off the main Gibbston Highway, 20 mins drive from Queenstown. Relax in this picturesque location and enjoy fantastic wine from leading and boutique wineries along with fine food. Go to http://www.gibbstonwineandfood.co.nz.
March 16th, 14th Tauranga Multicultural Festival will see The Tauranga Historic Village transformed into a truly multicultural and multilingual Village for the day. Visitors will be able to see dances from all corners of the world, listen to many music genre and try a huge variety of authentic ethnic food and some interesting activities specially for children. Visit http://www.trmc.co.nz.
March 30th. Whangerei, Northland. The inaugural Whangerei Fritter Festival. Soak up the sounds of a great music line-up: Sola Rosa, The Black Seeds and Batacuda Sound Machine. Sample the delights of local restaurants and wineries and watch the hotly contested competition for the Fritter Trophy. Visit http://www.whangareinz.com
April 12-14th. – Great Barrier Island, Hauraki Gulf, North Island. Take part in the inaugural three-day Great Barrier Island walking festival. Great scenery, huge variety of walks for all levels, expert guides. For details visit http://www.greatbarrierwalkfest.org/
Auckland Writers Festival (Auckland, North Island)
The International Writers and Readers Festival is a highlight of the city’s calendar each year with a week of events, some paid, some free, in the Aotea centre. For the full festival programme visit writersfestival.co.nz
Bluff Oyster Festival (Bluff, South Island).
Bluff Oysters are renowned worldwide so don’t miss your opportunity to celebrate Southlands premier kai at the annual festival of Oysters and Food. Visit bluffoysterfest.co.nz
Waiheke Walking Festival (Waiheke, Island off Auckland, North Island)
Featuring 38 free guided walks held over nine days encompassing everything from Waiheke’s famed vineyards to mesmerising views and golden shorelines, there’s something for everyone. Visit Waiheke Walking Festival Website
Art in the dark (Auckland, North Island)
Over three consecutive nights, creative lighting projects illuminate Western Park in Auckland. Visit artinthedark.co.nz
Toast Martinborough (Wairapa, North Island)
One of the biggest food and wine festivals in New Zealand – a chance to taste the new vintage release, eat fantastic food, hear great music and spend a weekend away with friends in rural Wairarapa. Visit toastmartinborough.co.nz
Festival of Roses (Timaru, South Island)
This popular festival has become one of the country’s premier garden events. Timed to coincide with the blooming of Timaru’s many gorgeous rose gardens, this festival combines beautiful flower and garden displays with community events and entertainment. Visit festivalofroses.co.nz