Nothing screams summer more than a line up of some fantastic festivals. When the weather gets warmer, what can be better than wine, music, song and great food. Lucky for us living in New Zealand, the summer months offer a great selection of all of the above. Here are our top picks for the 2015 / 2016 summer festival calendar. If you haven’t got your tickets yet, then get in quick as many of these sell out fast.
1.Marlborough Wine & Food Festival
Top of our list is the Marlborough Food and Wine Festival, which takes place Saturday February 13th 2016. This is New Zealand’s original and longest running wine festival held in our home world-renowned wine producing region-Marlborough. Festival goers will get the opportunity to sample a unique selection of world-class wines and delicious local cuisine all in the heart of one of Marlborough’s oldest and most picturesque vineyards – Brancott Vineyard. Check out the video from last year’s festival.
Day-long entertainment from top kiwi acts, including Ladi6 and Tahuna Breaks cap this unique vineyard festival. The Sisters will be there in full force and we are ramping up for a great day filled with lots of fun, treats and giveaways, so be sure to come and find us and say hello. You can chill out for a while and enjoy some Sisters time. The festival website has comprehensive details of the event programme and is worth checking out. BOOK TICKETS
2. Rhythm and Vines Festival
Of course if you are looking for a fun and music filled glamping experience to ring in the New Year, then the iconic Rhythm and Vines Festival takes place 29 – 31 December 2015. This three-day New Year Music Festival is set in beautiful vineyards in Gisborne. The festival showcases the world’s best musicians in the Waiohika Estate Vineyard in Gisborne. There are full details of the artists performing and the schedule and pretty much everything you need to know on their very funky website. The festival has become a rite of passage for more than 30,000 local and international fans who travel to experience the first sunrise of the year at New Zealand’s biggest music festival. BOOK TICKETS.
3. Red Red Wine Vineyard Tour
Next on our list has to be the UB40 Red Red Wine Vineyard Tour. UB40, featuring the original members Ali Campbell, Astro and Mickey Virtue, will headline the Red Red Wine Vineyard Tour in venues around the country in January 2016. Iconic Kiwi artists Jason Kerrison and Herbs will be the support acts at all events and the concert at Rotorua Lakefront will see additional special guests perform, including Ardijah, Three Houses Down, Manalio and Beau Monga. The original line-up of UB40 with Ali, Astro and Mickey enjoyed huge success over a period of 30 years from 1979 to 2008, with #1 albums, multiple gold and platinum selling albums, Grammy nominations, 4 worldwide #1 hits and over 70 million in sales. Now reunited again, they continue to take their smooth yet rootsy blend around the world and their live performances never fail to uplift the audience.
The Red Red Wine Vineyard Tour kicks off on Wednesday 6th January at Kainui Road Vineyard, Bay of Islands. It runs through 17th January in venues in Hawkes Bay, Rotorua, New Plymouth, Queenstown, Christchurch and finally Auckland’s Matua Wines. Tickets are $99+BF and children 12yrs and under are free with a paying adult. Please note that the Auckland concert is SOLD OUT and other venues are selling very fast! More details and information on tickets can be found on Eventfinda.
4. New Zealand Festival
Last but certainly not least, if you’re looking for a more cultural festival experience, this year marks the 30th birthday, the New Zealand Festival. This takes place in Wellington from 26 February – 20 March 2016. The New Zealand Festival brings the best live arts experiences from around the globe to audiences in New Zealand. Committed to originality, excellence and making the world a better place through art, the Festival transforms Wellington into a buzzing culture zone with three weeks of the finest international and home-grown music, theatre, dance, visual art and writers.
Collaborating with, and commissioning new work by, international and New Zealand artists, companies and co-producers, the Festival continues to stretch boundaries and imaginations wherever possible, regularly collaborating with other national companies such as the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, New Zealand Opera, Chamber Music New Zealand and the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa. BOOK TICKETS
There is no doubt that there is something for everyone. There are lots of great little events in vineyards across New Zealand during the summer months, so be sure to check out local websites or the Food and Wine section of the Tourism New Zealand website.