Music festivals in New Zealand have a long and chequered history in New Zealand. The first large outdoor rock music festival was The Great Ngaruawahia Music Festival in 1973. The largest was the 1979 Nambassa festival, one of several Nambassa festivals held around that time, in Golden Valley, just north of Waihi.
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There are regular jazz, folk, ethnic, and country music awards and festivals, some of which have been in existence for decades. Another popular one was the Parachute Music Festival which was a Christian music festival held in New Zealand.
It was one of the largest music festivals of New Zealand and the largest Christian music festival. But on March 27, 2014, Parachute Music released a statement on its Facebook and its website announcing that Parachute Music Festival would no longer be running.
This year New Zealand’s epic scenery plays host to some pretty amazing music festivals throughout the year and here are five of the best music festivals to enjoy.
1. Laneway Festival- 30 January
Venue: Auckland CBD
One of the favorite music festivals of New Zealand is the Laneway Festival which is going to start in January with a bang. Previous artists have included Angus & Julia Stone, Banks and Belle & Sebastian. This St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival is about leading new and revered seminal music.
The festival has always been interested in finding what’s fresh and bringing it to unique settings and surroundings to be appreciated by music lovers.
The size of the festivals, the locations, and the way it encourages community all form part of the way in which the Laneway team strives to present a live music experience like no other.
Cost of ticket: $159.90 + $2.80 BF. 2.5% credit card processing fee applies to all orders
For more info visit auckland.lanewayfestival.com
2. Raggamuffin Music Festival- 18 February
Venue: The Trusts Arena, Auckland
Cost per ticket: $129 plus booking fee
There will be 18 Bands with 12 Hours of Music. Last year welcomed a HUGE lineup of world-class Reggae and Hip Hop artists including UB40, Wu-Tang Clan and Inner Circle. This is also one of the music festivals of New Zealand.
Featuring Six60, Shaggy, The Wailers ft Julian Marley with Family Man, Ky-Mani Marley with Gentleman, Morgan Heritage, Diana King, and Etana. Alongside Six60, New Zealand bands at Raggamuffin X include crowd-pleasers The Black Seeds and Kiwi reggae legends Herbs.
Salmonella Dub, House of Shem and Lomez Brown. Jamaica’s Conkarah and Hawaii’s Kiwini and Jah Maoli complete the line-up. Raggamuffin X is strictly R18 only.
For more info visit: https://raggamuffin.co.nz/tickets
3. Splore Music Festival- 17 – 19 February
Venue: Tapapakanga Regional Park, 1 hour from Auckland
Cost per ticket: $245 + booking fee and if sold out then tier two adult cost $275 + booking fee.
This is a 3 Day festival favored by NZ locals. It is a little more low-key and takes place over 3 days on the shores of the Tapapakanga area.
Located just 50 km southwest of Auckland – this 3-day music festival respects the ancient land. Previous years have brought massive lines ups so stay tuned for yet another epic list of local and international artists to bring. This is one of the popular music festivals in New Zealand.
A fun-filled weekend of music, arts, culture, and community. Splore Festival features a stunning beachside location, an eclectic lineup of world-class local and international music, a dynamic visual arts program, a diverse range of performances, a dedicated kids’ zone, a range of workshops, spoken word, forums, sustainability and theme camps just 70 km southeast of Auckland CBD.
The Splore kaupapa is about celebrating arts and culture with a community of likeminded people who love and respect our environment.
Tapapakanga Park is a precious and beautiful coastal park that offers safe swimming on a pohutukawa fringed coastline.
With a freshwater lagoon and stunning vistas over to the Coromandel peninsula, you will be able to come together on this sacred land that has significant historical stories with the Tangata Whenua Ngati Whanaunga, Ngati Paoa, the Ashby family and Auckland Council.
For more info visit: http://splore.net/
4. Homegrown Music Festival- 4 March
Venue: Wellington waterfront
Cost per ticket: $119 + booking fee
Probably one of New Zealand’s longest-running and popular music festivals of New Zealand with 7 stages and 57 Acts rocking the stages year after year. This is the ultimate festival to check local Kiwi music in New Zealand’s very own capital of cool.
For more info visit: www.homegrown.net.nz
5. Queenstown Winter Festival- 22 – 25 June
Cost: All free
This is one of the ultimate music festivals of New Zealand for you! Not too good on the slopes? Not to worry – Queenstown Winter Fest features a week-long array of Events including Film Festivals, DJs, Bands, Hot Tubs, Parties, Fireworks – and of course, some of the best snowboarders/skiers from across the globe to compete in the Winterfest games.
For more info visit: www.winterfestival.co.nz
At the end of the year, you can also enjoy the Rhythm and Alps music festival of which dates are not yet announced. Most probably it will take place on December 30th and 31st which is a wonderful 2-day camping festival held in the South Island.
You can visit www.rhythmandalps.co.nz to know more about this festival. Now head to the venue or book your tickets online in advance to enjoy the show.
New Zealand boasts a vibrant music festival scene, each offering a unique experience against the backdrop of the country’s stunning landscapes. From the urban vibes of the Laneway Festival in Auckland to the reggae rhythms of Raggamuffin in the Trusts Arena, the music festivals cater to diverse tastes.
Splore, nestled in Tapapakanga Regional Park, promises an immersive three-day celebration of music, arts, and culture, emphasizing community and environmental respect. Homegrown Music Festival in Wellington stands as a testament to Kiwi talent, featuring an impressive lineup across multiple stages.
Lastly, the Queenstown Winter Festival combines the thrill of winter sports with a lively music scene, creating an unforgettable experience in the breathtaking Queenstown. The variety of festivals ensures there’s something for everyone, making them integral to New Zealand’s cultural fabric.
When and where does the Splore Music Festival happen?
Splore Music Festival spans three days, occurring from February 17 to 19 at Tapapakanga Regional Park, just an hour from Auckland.
What can I expect at the Homegrown Music Festival in Wellington?
Homegrown Music Festival, held on March 4, is one of New Zealand’s longest-running festivals, showcasing 57 acts across seven stages along the Wellington waterfront.
Is there an entry fee for the Queenstown Winter Festival?
No, the Queenstown Winter Festival, happening from June 22 to 25, is a free event featuring film festivals, live music, parties, and winter sports competitions.
Are there more music festivals later in the year?
Yes, Rhythm and Alps is a notable festival taking place on December 30 and 31. Check www.rhythmandalps.co.nz for updates.
How can I purchase tickets for these festivals?
Ticketing details vary for each festival. Visit the respective official websites provided for accurate and updated information on ticket prices and purchases.
Can I bring my food and drinks to these festivals?
Festival policies on outside food and drinks differ. Refer to the festival websites or contact organizers for details on what is allowed.
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