Taranaki Summer Festivals

Ahh yes. We’ve reached the end of winter’s cruel grasp and the warm glow of summer is almost upon. Yes you should be excited – warmer weather means more outdoor activities. And there’s no better place for these than the Taranaki region, voted the second best region to visit IN THE WORLD by Lonely Planet! Check out these awesome festivals that are happening this summer (and beyond) in Taranaki!


Festival of Lights

Warm summer nights call for something cool. Really cool. And, visually, you won’t find anything cooler than TSB’s Festival of Lights. Held annually, this stunning spectacle transforms the beautiful Pukekura Park in New Plymouth, into an illuminated wonderland. Crowds stream from all over the country to grab a glimpse of the multi-coloured lights that gleam amongst the trees in one of New Zealand’s premier botanical gardens. There’s also daytime events for families and children, live night entertainment and twilight movies! What more do you need for an action-packed few days in New Plymouth?


After a car show with a bit of grunt? Rather see a hot rod than eat a hot dog? Now in its 10th year, Taranaki’s own Americarna is an engine lover’s dream. The festival celebrates American car culture, with over 750 American themed vehicles on display for your viewing pleasure. And, if you own one of these beauties yourself, why not enter it in the festival? Remember, American themes cars only!

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Experience the World of Music, Arts and Dance. Running from Friday 16 March – Sunday 18 March, this all ages festival is the perfect send off to summer. Back at Pukekura Park, the three-day event will see performances from sitar strumming Anoushka Shankar, jazz superstar Kamasi Washington and all-time rock legends, Dragon! There’s also artist workshops, food stalls, site installations, a kidzone and so much more. Whether you’re thinking of heading down for one day or doing the whole three, this is one not to be missed!

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New Plymouth Accommodation

Just over two kilometres from festival hot-spot Pukekura Park is Quality Hotel Plymouth International. Offering four star accommodation in a central location, it is the perfect option for those visiting the region. Also take note of the onsite restaurant, The Orangery, which encompasses a great selection of food and wine! Lonely Planet doesn’t lie. So while you’re in Taranaki, why not check out some other awesome activities? If you haven’t visited before, then chuck it on the list this summer!