Holiday-makers can expect spells of sunshine, then unsettled weather

Popular holiday spots should get some decent sunshine hours today, but showers and rain could put a dampener on the weekend for many.

MetService meteorologist John Law said the Bay of Islands was the place to be in the North Island today, with some "nice spells of sunshine".

"It's not out of the question we'll catch an isolated shower, but hopefully not too bad for those guys as we head through Friday."

The weather was also looking good for the Bay of Plenty and Coromandel Peninsula, with fine spells and the odd shower today.


But the rain could become more frequent during the weekend as a low developed over the north and west of the country bringing wet weather, particularly to the north through to the Bay of Plenty.

"So it's definitely a forecast to keep an eye on if you're planning to head outside at the weekend."

Further south, Taupo was likely to be showery today with the chance of thunderstorms, and a rainy weekend.

South Island holiday spots were in for a better time. It should be fine today in Queenstown and Aoraki/Mt Cook, followed by cloud and showers over the next two days, Mr Law said.

Yesterday had brought grey skies to the east of the country and showers in the central North Island. The Bay of Plenty and Coromandel had southwesterlies, while Auckland had isolated showers.

The place to be yesterday was the West Coast of the South Island. "It looks as though they've had some nice weather and some pretty decent temperatures, too." Greymouth had been fine with 20C by mid-afternoon, not as hot as Nelson's 23.5vC but less overcast. It was too soon for an accurate New Year's Day forecast.

Holiday hotspots

Paihia, Bay of Islands: A decent day today with sunshine, fairly light winds and a high of 22°C in the afternoon. Wetter weather tomorrow with fresh northeasterlies, improving through Sunday but wet at times.

Mangawhai, Northland: A few isolated showers today. A few more tomorrow, with rain towards the end of the day and more wet weather on Sunday.

Whitianga, Coromandel: Western Coromandel is likely to get the most showers, and Whitianga in the east should have fine spells and the odd afternoon shower. Showers developing tomorrow, with heavy rain by Sunday and highs of 23°C.

Whangamata, Coromandel: Isolated showers today, particularly in the afternoon. Showers over the weekend, getting heavier on Sunday.

Taupo: Showery today with some fairly heavy, and perhaps thunder, in the afternoon. Rain will push through over the weekend, particularly on Sunday.

Queenstown: A decent day today with fine, dry weather followed by a fine day tomorrow with some cloud. Expect a touch more cloud on Sunday and the odd shower. Highs of up to 23°C.

Aoraki/Mt Cook: A fine day today with a touch more cloud later and a few spots of drizzle. More cloud and a few afternoon showers tomorrow, followed by more persistent showers on Sunday.

Mt Maunganui, Bay of Plenty: Spells of sunshine this morning, with the odd shower in the afternoon and a high of about 24°C. A few showers tomorrow, becoming more frequent, with heavier rain on Sunday.