Our top picks for your next weekend getaway.
The New Zealand Opera's season of La boheme opens in Wellington on Thursday for a short run following a successful Auckland season. The new production, by Jacqueline Coats, sees Puccini's masterpiece of young love and heartbreak brought to life with electrifying performances by the likes of young singers Thomas Atkins, Marlena Devoe, Julien Van Mellaerts and more. In Italian with English subtitles. Opera House, 111–113 Manners St, Wellington. Five performances from Thursday October 4 to Saturday October 13. Tickets from $25 at Ticketmaster.co.nz. Visit Nzopera.com
Seafood lovers should clear the decks on Sunday and head to Matakana for its annual Oyster & Wine Festival. Think freshly shucked plump and delicious oysters au naturel from Mahurangi Harbour paired with local wines — and plenty of other tasty treats to satisfy your cravings once you've had your oyster fill. There will also be live music from Laughton Kora, 80sX, Sam Allen and more, shucking competitions, cooking and wine demonstrations, arts and crafts for the little ones and glamorous gumboots. The Oval, Matakana Country Park, 1151 Leigh Rd, Matakana, Sunday October 7, 10am-4pm. Tickets $39.50 (adults) from Oysterfestmatakana.co.nz. Includes an event glass, first glass of wine or beer and 2 half shell oysters.
Run Forest Run … and Run Some More
There's something about our Central Plateau that attracts extreme sportspeople, and next weekend Taupo will be awash with extreme runners for its annual ultra marathon. This event, which takes place along the Great Lake Trail through private land, encompasses native forest, lake views, waterfalls, rivers and mountain ranges. You can choose between 24km (run/walk), 50km (run/walk), 74km and 100km, and there's also a 100km teams relay. Extreme! 43a Horomatangi St, Taupo, Saturday October 13, 7am-10pm. Standard tickets from $130 at Taupoultra.co.nz
There's Something in the Air Tonight
Let yourself be transported at Air Play next weekend, a New York-based circus-style show that follows a brother and sister travelling through a surreal world with plenty of excellent props to experiment with. Imagine bodies encased in giant balloons, colourful fabrics dancing in thewind, flying umbrellas and an enormous snow globe. Bruce Mason Centre, 1 The Promenade, Takapuna, Auckland. Saturday October 13, 2pm; Sunday October 14, 7pm. Tickets from $30 at Aucklandlive.co.nz