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Get your fill of festivals

Whether you're looking for international headliners, culinary delights, family fun, or a day in the vineyards, Wellington's festival line-up has got your covered.

Celebrating the arts

NZFestival CivicSquare

Every winter, the New Zealand International Film Festival (Jul – Aug 2017) brings the best and brightest of world cinema straight from the international circuit to the big screens of New Zealand.

In spring, Wellington will once again sparkle for the World of WearableArt™ Awards Show (21 Sept - 8 October), the creative spectacular which brings the best of art, design, fashion, and performance to the stage for an incredible three-week season.

Discover the original, the experimental and the downright daring when the NZ Fringe Festival (10 Feb - 4 Mar 2017) takes over Wellington. Over 1,000 artists will fill the city with astonishing, unexpected and innovative performances. 

A two-week celebration of the arts designed especially with young arts-lovers in mind, the Capital E National Arts Festival (13-25 Mar 2017) combines local and international artists to bring families their fix of theatre, music, dance and circus.

Held on even-numbered years, the New Zealand Festival (23 Feb - 18 Mar 2018) enlivens the world's coolest little capital with over 300 events in outdoor spaces and indoor stages across the city. 

Music to our ears


Jazz aficionados can enjoy mid-winter musical magic at the Wellington Jazz Festival (7-11 Jun 2017). Over 100 gigs from international headliners, local stars and street performers heat up the capital by keeping it cool.

Kick-back and enjoy the long, summer nights with Gardens Magic (10-29 Jan 2017). A series of free outdoor concerts held in the picturesque Wellington Botanic Garden, it's a long-standing favourite with locals and visitors alike. 

New Zealand music takes centre stage at the Jim Beam Homegrown (4 Mar 2017) music festival. The one day event sees around 50 kiwi acts perform across seven stages on the Wellington waterfront. Sweet!

Something to whet your appetite

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Book your seat at the table for New Zealand’s largest culinary festival, Visa Wellington On a Plate™ (11-27 Aug 2017). The festival serves up a delicious range of events, competitions and menus celebrating Wellington’s unique flavour.

Take a journey of beer enlightenment at Beervana (11-12 Aug 2017). New Zealand's premier beer festival serves up over 200 craft beers on offer, and the opportunity to meet New Zealand’s best brewers and international guests.

Head to the wine-growing region of Wairarapa for a day of fun in the sun at the Wairarapa Wines Harvest Festival (11 Mar 2017), or savour fine wine, cuisine and music in the open air at Toast Martinborough (Nov 2017).

Best of the 'burbs

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Thorndon Fair (Dec 2017) sees over 20,000 people and 250 stallholders gather for a street fair that highlights the charms of Wellington's oldest suburb, Thorndon. 

Celebrate the diverse and vibrant community of the South Coast when Island Bay Festival (11-19 Feb 2017) hosts 30 community events across nine days. 

Explore the colour and character of one of Wellington's iconic suburbs while enjoying delicious food, live music, craft stands and entertainment at the annual street fair, Newtown Festival (6 Mar 2017). 

Out and about in the city

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In September, say goodbye to winter at Wellington's Spring Festival (Sep - Oct 2017). Enjoy the glorious colours of spring flowers at Wellington Botanic Garden, see Otari-Wilton’s Bush at its best, and discover other highlights around town.

Frolic in a flash mob, bop to Brazilian beats and feast on flavoursome food, all in one street at CubaDupa (25-26 Mar 2017). The vibrant festival transforms Cuba Street into a playground of colour, sound and flavour. 

Hungry for more?

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Check out some of the other great festivals Wellington has on offer.  

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