Sonya is the head of news at the Bay of Plenty Times.

Your New Year's events guide

New Year's Eve is just around the corner and tickets for some of the most popular events are already beginning to sell out.

The best choices for families are the Glo Festival in Rotorua and Whangamata's New Year's Eve party, both of which are free, alcohol-free and suitable for all ages. The Glo Festival features a number of award-winning local Rotorua bands and wraps up with a fireworks display. Whangamata's New Year's Eve party is the fourth of five free evening events and features The Dozen, an Auckland covers band.

For one-night events close to Rotorua, there is the Waihi Beach Summer Festival which features the Jordan Luck Band, with Hello Sailor and Faith No More. This is an R18 event and costs $65 for general admission and $110 for VIP.

The Exodus New Year's Eve Party in Papamoa has two stages, 19 bands and six DJs. Headlining acts include legendary band Herbs, Katchafire, 1814, Three Houses Down and Cornerstone Roots. The event runs from 12.30pm to 1.30am, is R18 and costs $65 earlybird general admission or $130 earlybird VIP.

The Quit the City festival will be an affordable option. An R18 event, the festival is held in Whitford,, approximately 45 minutes out of Auckland and has two stages, 18 bands and 12 hours of live music from bands such as 1814, David Dallas, dDub, J Williams, Kidz in Space, PNC, Savage, Sir-Vere, Tahuna Breaks and The Black Seeds.

It runs from 2pm to 2am, earlybird tickets cost $45 and it is $70 for the R22 area.

For those who are looking for festivals that run for a number of days over the holiday period, there are the well known Rhythm and Vines, La De Da and Northern Bass festivals, all of which provide the option of camping out.

Rhythm and Vines is in Gisborne, with many people choosing the option to stay at the BW campground and bussing to the venue. RnV, an R18 event, is this year celebrating its 10th anniversary. Tickets are nearly sold out, especially those with the option of camping at the BW campground. There are a number of price options, beginning from the basic festival tickets for $239 for all three days, to the camping and VIP package priced at $489. Bands such as Ahoribuzz, Home Brew, Kimbra, P-Money, PNC, Six60, The Black Seeds and Unknown Mortal Orchestra will be performing. It runs from December 29 to 31.

The two-day La De Da festival is on Daisybank Farm, Martinborough and includes the option of pitching a tent at the Lullaby Lane campground. Also an R18 event, La De Da has a line-up including De La Soul and The Beatnuts from the US, Dub Phizix and MC Strategy (UK) and Optimus Gryme with MC Tiki, Ladi 6 and Shapeshifter. Tickets begin at $89 for the New Year's Eve event and peak at $400 for a VIP two-day pass including camping.

Mangawhai will be the place to be for those looking for a festival in the Auckland area. The Northern Bass New Year's event is R18 and goes from December 30 to January 1. There is plenty of space at Mangawhai, including spacious camping areas and fresh water swimming. Acts include Concord Dawn, Organikismness, State of Mind and The Upbeats. Tickets cost $99 for a one-day pass, $129 for a two-day pass and extra for camping.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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