Great Kiwi festivals for the whole family

By Megan Singleton

Megan Singleton has a look at some great Kiwi festivals that are suitable for kids.
Womad offers entertainment from a plethora of artists over a weekend. Photo / Glenn Jeffrey
Womad offers entertainment from a plethora of artists over a weekend. Photo / Glenn Jeffrey

INTERNATIONAL BUSKERS' FESTIVAL
Auckland, January 29-February 1

This festival is in Christchurch's Hagley Park this week. In Auckland it will be in locations around the waterfront. You'll see Pulp Fiction with puppets, comedians Rose Matafeo, Billy T award winner Hamish Parkinson and magician Jarred Fell, cabaret performer Yana Alana, and a whole lot more.

LANTERN FESTIVAL
Auckland, February 18-21
Christchurch, February 27-28

The largest cultural festival in New Zealand celebrates Chinese New Year with more than 800 handmade lanterns, stage performances, Chinese art and festivities, finishing with a huge fireworks display.

PASIFIKA
Western Springs, Auckland, March 12-13

Auckland's annual celebration of Pacific Island music, arts, culture and cuisine turns 24 this year with performance stages set up in each village.

There'll be plenty of things to do, see and taste for all ages.

WILDFOODS FESTIVAL
Hokitika, March 12

If you're an adventurous family, or you have a cocky teen who would love the challenge, head to the wild West Coast for deep fried grubs and colostrum cheesecake, among other snacks, plus great entertainment and hilarity.

WOMAD
New Plymouth, March 18-20

The iconic World of Music, Arts and Dance runs across six stages delivering 30 hours of entertainment by artists from all over the world. They also have a Kid Zone for under 12s.

WARBIRDS OVER WANAKA
Wanaka Airport, March 25-27

If you want to ride in a Warbird, DC3 or microlight, stay an extra night and come back for Rides Day on the 28th. Otherwise come and enjoy the roar of war craft through to modern jets, as well as military vehicles for landlubbers.

AMERICAN EXPRESS QUEENSTOWN WINTER FESTIVAL
Queenstown, June 24-July 3

Running for more than 40 years, this festival just gets better. Acts for 2016 are still to be announced, but prepare for 10 days of entertainment and activities, street parties and mountain mayhem with 45,000 mates.

CADBURY CHOCOLATE CARNIVAL
Dunedin, July 16-22

The whole city will be covered in chocolate, from spa facials and sweet treats at museums to the spectacular charity Jaffa roll down Baldwin St, the steepest street in the world.

DIWALI FESTIVAL OF LIGHT
Aotea Square, Auckland, October 15-16

This Indian festival attracts thousands of Aucklanders to experience food and culture through dance, music, workshops and performance. Try the flavours of India from the many food stalls, and enjoy rides, games and story-telling.

HAWKES BAY A&P SHOW
Hastings, October 20-22

Pre-Labour Weekend the Hastings showgrounds is packed with exhibitors ranging from homewares to tractors, competitions from horse jumping to wood chopping and a parade of animals led around the grounds. Sideshows and food offerings will keep your family busy all day.

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- NZ Herald

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