Think winter is all about hunkering down inside? Think again! Here's a small snapshot of some of Aotearoa's many festivals and events to tempt you outdoors during the cooler months.
Fireworks and festivities in Queenstown
Welcome to Winter is a four-day event to kick off the start of the snowy season. On from July 7 -10, the festivities include a winter wonderland market, food trucks, live entertainment, and the ever-popular Coronet Peak night ski, where snow fans can hit the slopes under a blanket of stars. Don't miss the free public fireworks display at the lakefront an for an even better view, book a spot on the fireworks cruise or catch the action from above on the twilight ziplining tour. queenstownnz.co.nz/welcometowinter
School holiday fun in Taupō
There will be plenty to keep the kids occupied in Taupō these July school holidays, with the city's Winter Festival on from July 8-24. Family-friendly events include a light show, igloos and an ice rink at Tongariro North Domain, while older kids can try out the teens' creative writing workshops at the Taupō library. There are also a range of concerts and dining events for the adults. taupowinterfestival.co.nz
Ancient artefacts in Auckland
You don't have to be a history buff to marvel at the newest exhibition at Auckland Museum. Ancient Greeks: Athletes, Warriors and Heroes is packed with fascinating items more than 2000 years old, including bronze figurines, weapons and armour, coins and jewellery. The special collection is on loan to Aotearoa from the British Museum and is one of the largest exhibits of its kind to come here. The exhibition is on until November 6, and the museum is also offering sensory-friendly "quiet hours" viewings and twilight tours of the displays, for those who want to browse without the crowds. aucklandmuseum.com
AdvertisementAdvertise with NZME.
Dunedin's cool weather carnival
With giant lanterns, stilt walkers, light projections, aerial performances and food trucks galore, Dunedin's Midwinter Carnival is a family favourite. Catch the action on the streets around the First Church on July 8-9. Ahead of the main event, kids can have a go creating their own festival vibe at home, with lantern-making workshops at Meridian Mall on July 2-3. midwintercarnival.co.nz
Whet your appetite in Wellington
Calling all foodies from the Capital and beyond - Wellington on a Plate is back from August 1-31. The city's biggest wining and dining event includes a delicious lineup of festival eats, events, workshops and seminars, with something to tempt all tastebuds. Cocktail and burger fans are once again well catered for with a range of woap specials on offer, while themed dining events include the "beast of a feast" at Wellington Zoo, and a Soprano's evening at Ombra, where diners can savour all of Tony's favourite bites. visawoap.com
Midwinter Christmas in Greytown
Head to the Wairarapa for a cool weather Christmas celebration, featuring night markets, live entertainment, workshops and crafts, and a kids' scavenger hunt. The Greytown Festival of Christmas also includes the popular Main Street Glow, where the country town's main drag is festooned with fairy lights and decorations to make winter come alive. Catch the action from July 1-30. greytownvillage.com
A treat for film fans
Kicking off in Auckland on July 28, the New Zealand International Film Festival is coming to a cinema near you this winter. This year's line-up boasts nine NZ feature films, as well as some top picks for music fans, including Hallelujah: Leonard Cohen, a Journey, a Song, and Meet Me in the Bathroom, which looks at the rambunctious New York rock scene of the Noughties. The festival will travel to 13 towns across Aotearoa. nziff.co.nz
For more travel inspiration, go to newzealand.com/nz.
Check traffic light settings and Ministry of Health advice before travel at covid19.govt.nz