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Wellington's annual events

Here's a guide to the big events that are the heart of Wellington’s calendar of good times each year.

Wellington Cup Day (January)

The jewel in Wellington Racing Club’s crown, Wellington Cup Day sees impeccably dressed crowds head to Trentham Racecourse to see the best horses in New Zealand compete for Wellington’s most prestigious horse racing trophy. 

Coastella (February)

New Zealand’s most talked about boutique music festival, Coastella is a celebration of the music you know and love, as well as your new favourite bands, alongside the best of local Wellington craft beer, wine and food to keep you going ‘til the sun goes down.

New Zealand Festival (February-March)

On even-numbered years, Wellington welcomes the world's most outstanding artists, performers, musicians and writers for three incredible weeks of imagination and inspiration at New Zealand Festival.

CubaDupa (March)

Wellington’s hippest inner city street hosts a two-day festival of food, music and community. The CubaDupa street festival celebrates the vibrant, bohemian spirit of the world’s coolest little capital. 

NZ Fringe Festival (March)

Experience bold, inspiring, unexpected and daring works at NZ's oldest and largest Fringe festival. With over 1000 artists, the NZ Fringe Festival attracts talent from around NZ and all over the globe for this three week season of cutting edge performance art housed in venues all over Wellington city. 

Jim Beam Homegrown (March)

End your summer on a high note with Wellington's epic festival of homegrown Kiwi music. Spread across multiple stages in a stunning central waterfront location, Jim Beam Homegrown features rock, dub 'n' roots, reggae, pop and R&B music. 

Highball and Wellington Cocktail Week (May)

Celebrate the art of the cocktail, meet the makers, taste their tipples and learn about the true art of cocktail-making at Highball. Followed by Wellington Cocktail Week, where Wellington’s best cocktails are mixed, shaken and stirred by local leading purveyors.

Wellington Jazz Festival (June)

Our biggest mid-winter music fest, the Wellington Jazz Festival brings you over 100 gigs in five days and countless good vibes. International headliners and top quality local acts fill the city's venues with soul tunes, cool jazz, bebop and more. 

Visa Wellington On a Plate (August)

New Zealand’s largest culinary festival, Visa Wellington On a Plate, makes Wellington a foodie paradise every August. The city’s chefs and the regional producers go into creative overdrive for a fortnight of spectacular menus, competitions and events.

Beervana (August)

Beervana is a huge celebration of the magic and mayhem of brewing - think thousands of beer enthusiasts, hundreds of mind-bending festival beers, delicious food and great entertainment all in one hoppy spot. 

World of WearableArt™ Awards Show (September-October)

Mind-blowing designs from visionary, creative folk take to the stage for the World of WearableArt™ Awards Show. An internationally acclaimed, fantastical blend of art, fashion and stagecraft.

HighLight: Carnival of Lights (October)

The beautiful Riddiford Garden in Lower Hutt is transformed by a four-day carnival of lights over Labour Weekend. HighLight is a free all-ages event features immersive displays, live performance and interactive light features, plus family-friendly activities.

LitCrawl (November)

Ever wondered what would happen if a literary festival and bar crawl had a baby? Wonder no more! LitCrawl Wellington isn’t your typical literary festival – it’s fast, it’s fun, it's held around Wellington in bookshops, bars and record stores featuring writers from Wellignton, Aotearoa and the world. 

Toast Martinborough (November)

Savour fine wine, cuisine and music in the open air at Toast Martinborough. In the picturesque surroundings of this famous wine-growing village, right on the doorstep of Wellington, this a memorable day of fun in the sun.  

Summer City (December - March)

Every year, over 100 free events come together for Wellington's own Summer City, kicking off from New Year's Day. Join us for music, adventure and fun under the stars.