Wild weather is on the way for the long weekend, and holidaymakers are warned to brace themselves for wind, rain - and a little bit of sun.

WeatherWatch.co.nz head weather analyst Philip Duncan said today would not be the best day to be heading away, but wind and showers should ease by the evening, making the day the best for holidaymakers in most parts of the central to upper North Island.

Mr Duncan said the forecast for the long weekend was "messy".

"This really is a mixed bag of weather - we are getting everything. Just about every region in New Zealand is going to have some sun, some rain and wind. Everyone is going to get a mixture of everything."


The Bay of Islands, Eastern Coromandel, Bay of Plenty and Gisborne were in for the driest, warmest weather, compared with those on the west such as Taranaki, Waikato and West Coast who should prepare for a wet and windy stretch.

"Don't feel like your weekend is completely ruined but certainly the west coast of New Zealand is in for a very wet weekend. I think they will be one of the worst places to be as far as wind goes," Mr Duncan said.

Winter weather was also hitting the South Island.

The start of the working week doesn't look any more promising for the central/upper North Island.

Fun for everyone
Plenty of events, festivals, concerts, music gigs and food and theatre shows are happening this Labour Weekend to entertain everyone.

* In Auckland, children's classic Mary Poppins, the stage musical, is a hot favourite at the moment, after premiering this week. Showing at the Civic, there is a performance tonight, two shows tomorrow and two on Sunday.

* Another show, Journey To The Deep, should also provide family fun at Silo Park and at the Navratri Festival at the TelstraClear Pacific Events Centre in Manukau.

* Diwali Festival of Lights is on at the TSB Bank Arena in Wellington, on Sunday, while Luxcity - a city made of light - should draw in big crowds in Christchurch tomorrow.

* This year's Hawke's Bay A&P Show has been happening this week; it finishes today at Kenilworth Rd, Hastings. Up to 40,000 people head there each year to buy and sell and be entertained. It is a family favourite and has lots of entertainment for children, including a chance to get up close with farm animals.

* Those in Hamilton tonight can catch Kiwi reggae band 1814 - featuring Tribal Conexionz - performing at the Homebase Sports Bar in Te Rapa.