Winter is definitely settling in here in NZ! Looking to plan a winter adventure, kiwi style? We’ve put together a list of reasons why NZ in winter is awesome:
Less queues and no peak pricing: One of the great things about travelling New Zealand in winter is that it’s considered the ‘low season’, meaning you can check out some of the biggest tourist hotspots and avoid those crazy summer queues! Note: Avoid the school holidays if you can, as these tend to be busier times. https://www.govt.nz/browse/education/school-and-college/2016-school-holidays/
Whale watching in Kaikoura: While sperm whales hang out in the Kaikoura coast all year round, come winter the humpback, pilot, blue and southern right whales stop by on their way from the Antarctic to the tropics! June to August is the best times to see them, plus with the added bonus of the beautiful snow capped mountain scenery.
Hanmer Springs: Hanmer springs is located between Christchurch and Kaikoura, and is considered one of New Zealand’s best hot springs resorts. With picturesque scenery surrounded by snow-capped mountains, the famous thermal pools and spa (co.nz) are a beautiful place to relax.
Queenstown: Know as the adventure capital of NZ, Queenstown is the perfect place for a winter adventure! With world class ski fields, beautiful scenery, bars, ski-touring and more, you’ll be sure to see some of the best winter scenery there is to offer.
Baby Seals in Kaikoura!: The perfect spot for the animal lovers among us. There is a waterfall located 15 minutes north of Kaikoura (Ohau Waterfall Walk) which is filled with baby seals during the winter months 🙂
For the snow sport lovers: NZ is home to 18 commercially operated ski fields. The three main regions that are popular among tourists are Mount Ruapehu (in the central North Island), the Southern Lakes (Queenstown and Wanaka in the South Island), and Mount Hutt (near Christchurch in the South Island).
Ohakune Mardi Gras: Known to be the premier winter street party of the season, this is an awesome way to welcome the cooler months with local and international artists, street performance, fireworks, and an atmosphere like no other. For ticket information and more see: http://ohakunemardigras.co.nz/#_
NOTE: Stay safe on our roads. Be sure to take extra care on road trips, especially in winter where the roads are often icy. Make sure to check the conditions before beginning your journey, ensure your car is road safe with all defrosters, heaters, indicators, lights, tires, etc. are all in good working order.
We’d love to hear about your winter adventures. Let us know what you’ve got planned for the upcoming winter months in the comment box below.
The weather is great and the summer vibes are booming! What would be better then going to a festival right now? Next month it’s time again for Splore Festival!
This three-day festival (with camping!) is not too far away for Auckland (Tapapakanga) which makes it the ideal summer escape from the busy city! For only $255 you can enjoy this massive line-up, see below! It’s a great festival, suited for people from all ages!
This coming weekend (31st May – 2nd June) is a long weekend here in New Zealand in celebration of Queens birthday. This means that Monday is a public holiday 🙂
There’s plenty going on down at Queens Wharf in Auckland City (99 Quay Street, Auckland) over the weekend. From 10am-4pm on Saturday, Sunday and Monday this weekend there will be attractions, market stalls, tea parties, vintage and new car displays, and history of our British and Irish counterparts.
The programme for the weekend can be found below. Definitely worth checking out, and remember admission is FREE 🙂
Saturday 31st May 10:30: City of Sails Pipe Band 11:00: Northland and Auckland Scottish Country Dancers 11:30: Clan Celtica Pipe Band | Traditional marionette puppet performance 12:30: Northland and Auckland Scottish Country Dancers 1:00: Clan Celtica Pipe Band | Traditional marionette puppet performance 1:30: City of Auckland Morris Dancers 2:00: Meadowbank School Maypole Dancers 2:30: Daily film: Wily Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971)
Sunday 1st June 11:00: Signals Pipe Band & Highland Dancers 11:30: City of Auckland Morris Dancers | Traditional marionette puppet performance 12:00: Twisty Willow – Irish and Scottish folk music 1:00: Mad Hatter’s Tea Party – all welcome 2:00: Traditional marionette puppet performance 2:30: Daily film: Alice in Wonderland (1951)
Monday 2nd June 10:30: Twisty Willow – Irish and Scottish folk music 11:30: Pukekohe Pipe Band | Traditional marionette puppet performance Papakura Pipe Band and Highland Dancers (15 minute slots) 12:00: Auckland and District Pipe Band Clan Celtica Pipe Band 12:30: Massed pipe band 1:00: Maritime Crew – sea shanties 2:00: City of Auckland Morris Dancers 2:30: Daily Film: Wallace and Grommet: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (2005)
Experience the 15th Chinese Lantern Festival this weekend and especially this Friday, when you can join INTERNeX to explore this beautiful festival. When the sun goes down more than 800 lanterns will light up. Stunning lanterns in all their glory will give a great effect, especially when it gets dark. This festival is all about Chinese lantern and the Chinese culture. Their delicacies and performances. You can try typical Chinese food, buy Chinese souvenirs and watch international performances on Albert Park Main Stage. Almost every time there is an interesting and astonishing act going on.
The Lantern Festival is separated in two different parts. The other location where you can enjoy China is at the Queens wharf. Catch an outdoor movie with some friends where you can relax and enjoy the contemporary Chinese culture on the waterfront.
We will experience the festival as well this Friday, the 14th of Febuary, at the Albert Park. We will meet at 8.30pm at the entrance of Kitchener Street, at the big stones and going to explore the Lantern Festival with a group. See map at the Facebook event for the exact meeting point and if you really can’t find you can contact us on 021 08395428.
2013 marks the third year of the Auckland Festival of Photography’s Annual public commission of photographic art by New Zealand photographers. The festival opened on June 3rd and is running daily from 9am to 6pm throughout June. Photos are on display at various places around the city, including Wynyard Quarter, for more information check out the website www.photographyfestival.org.nz. As part of this festival, there is a film screening held at the Auckland Art Gallery on Sunday 23rd of June at 3pm. A documentary by Laurence Shustak will be screened. This documentary will explore the question: “Why would a successful New York photographer leave his family, friends and career behind and travel to the edge of the earth, Christchurch, New Zealand?
Next Monday (3rd June) New Zealand will be celebrating the Queen’s Birthday. There will be plenty of things taking place in downtown Auckland with the “Best of British” festival being held on Queen’s Wharf. This is a celebration of everything British, with classic car and dancing displays, a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party and plenty of other free activities.
This event is free to the public and open each day of Queen’s birthday weekend (10AM-5PM 1-3 June).
Visit the Queen’s Wharf page on Facebook for more information.
St Patricks Day will be celebrated this Sunday 17th of March. St Patrick is the patron Saint of Ireland. In celebration of this day there will be a parade held in Auckland City’s Queen Street featuring Sean Kelly and the Celtic Flyers, the Connolly School of Irish Dance, Kiwi and the Leprechauns by Catherine Kelly and the Celtic Flyers. The parade runs from Mayoral Drive to Queens Wharf. Wear something great and head to Queens street for a St Patrick’s Day celebration!