ZM Flochella Music Festival was a day of "chilled vibes", colourful inflatable's and a fun festival atmosphere as thousands braved the forecasted rain to swarm Tikitapu.

It was the first time the festival has been held in Rotorua and more than 6000 people went to enjoy the live music and pool party atmosphere.

Emily Wilks, left and Eden O'Shannessey enjoying Flochella at Tikitapu. Photo/Stephen Parker
Emily Wilks, left and Eden O'Shannessey enjoying Flochella at Tikitapu. Photo/Stephen Parker

Mitch James started the show at 1pm, but both Kiwis and international visitors had been flocking to the lake since this morning.

Buses had been running back and forth from Puarenga Park to the festival all day and 12 buses took an estimated four or five loads each. The car park at Puarenga Park was close to overflowing.

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The water was full of people, boats lined the edge of the swimming area and a small crowd got up to dance in front of the stage.

There were inflatable flamingos, unicorns, ducks, couches and a toucan.

#watch as the first act at Flochella, Mitch James, takes the stage

Posted by Rotorua Daily Post on Sunday, 4 February 2018

When James finished his performance he told the Rotorua Daily Post he was pleased the weather had remained fine so far.

"There's so many people out there and I'm glad the weather held out (during his performance). It was a cool vibe and there were a lot more people than last year so it seems like Flochella is growing."

He said he would always be keen to come back again.

"It's just good fun for all walks of life also when the weather holds out it's worth it."

As for his plans for the rest of the day, he said: "I'm just going to kick back and enjoy the Rotorua vibes."

The forecasted rain set in much later in the afternoon after well received performances from Drax Project, Kings and Jupiter project who kept people up and dancing.

Thousands have flocked to Tikitapu for the Flochella festival. Photo/Stephen Parker
Thousands have flocked to Tikitapu for the Flochella festival. Photo/Stephen Parker

Talia Mia and her friends had come down from Auckland for a birthday celebration.

"It's been really fun, Drax Project were really good and everybody loved the saxophone.

"It's just chilled, happy vibes and a good family event."

Between the performances there was a live DJ, girls putting glitter in their hair, people jumping off the bomb tower, sun block being passed around, plenty of food trucks and games to keep people entertained.

As the rain set in and the sky turned grey, those who didn't get into the water were soaked.

#WATCH Headline act Amy Shark is live at Flochella!

Posted by Rotorua Daily Post on Sunday, 4 February 2018

However, it didn't put off the enthusiastic crowd, with most staying to see the festival's
headline act Australian artist Amy Shark who was the last act for the day just after 5pm.

Jess and Max had brought their friends Victor and Arian from Sweden to the festival - and also a four person floating couch.

"It's unfortunate about the weather, it would have been better if the water was warmer, but it's been cool," Jess said.

Max, who had recently moved to Rotorua from England, said it was a really good Kiwi experience.

Shark was a hit with the crowd and the diehard fans who had stuck it out through the rain sung along to every word.

Amy Shark performs at the Flochella festival at Tikitapu. Photo/Stephen Parker
Amy Shark performs at the Flochella festival at Tikitapu. Photo/Stephen Parker

A woman who had travelled from Wellington for the event said it was a good excuse for getting out of the city.

"We somehow managed to blow up our inflatable, had some good food and the weather was pretty strong."

Event manager Kat Hicks of NZME said the day had been fantastic and on the whole people were well behaved.

"It's been about the vibe of the people.

"I've enjoyed some of the creative, colourful and gun floaties people brought with them and the venue has been great."

However, not everyone was happy with how the festival was going.

Sheryl Murray from Blue Lake Top 10 Holiday Park contacted the Rotorua Daily Post upset about people being drunk.

"The drunkenness is unacceptable ... It's alcohol free inside but who's stopping anybody drunk getting in? Who's breath testing?

"We've got maybe one third of the guests on the park attending (the festival). That's one third we could have well and truly done without."

"We've guests who are stunned at what we've had to put up with and we've hired extra security."

A police media spokeswoman said St John Ambulance was called to the festival for a medical event but police were not required.

ZM content director Ross Flahive said they were searching all bags and confiscating alcohol at the gate.

"We have from the outset promoted this as an alcohol and drug free event and are working closely with security and police inside the venue.

"Almost 6000 people are attending and there's only a handful of cases of drunkenness.

"There's a few people we've had to eject, but the rest have had a really great fun day," Flahive said.

A Rotorua Daily Post reporter at the event said most festival goers were lounging around on floaties or dancing in front of the stage.