News | 6 December 2022

The festive season is coming to places near yule!

Pōneke will be celebrating the silly season in the capital with a full calendar of free, whānau friendly, fun and accessible summer events for everyone to enjoy.

Performers on stage light up with purple lights and the tress surrounding them.
Gardens Magic

Welly Walks

Saturdays from 10 Dec – 22 Jan | Wellington trails | Free

This annual event showcases the many walking tracks around Pōneke, and this year’s six walks range from beginners to pro, for kids, for dogs, and there’ll also be treats to be discovered along the way.

The treats box is back and bigger than ever before, filled to the brim with goodies from local Wellington businesses, but a secret code will be needed to unlock the treasure trove. Wellington.govt.nz/wellywalks

Super Smash cricket

Saturday 24 Dec | Cello Basin Reserve 

Wellington Blaze and Firebirds kick-off their Super Smash season with a Christmas Eve double header at the home of cricket. Supersmash.co.nz

New Year’s Eve

8pm–midnight, 31 Dec | Whairepo Lagoon | Free

Join us for a free, fun evening of great music to bring in the New Year in one of Wellington’s iconic locations along the waterfront. Covers band Zephyr will entertain from 8pm, followed by a kids’ countdown at 9.30pm. Orchestra Wellington will wow with a disco boogie theme from 10pm, followed by the New Year’s countdown and a blast of fireworks to bring in 2023. wellington.govt.nz/newyear

Gardens Magic

10–29 January | Botanic Garden ki Paekākā | Free

Gardens Magic is back in 2023, with the iconic free Concert Series, daytime Kids’ Garden Trail and evening Light Display from 10–29 January in the beautiful Botanic Garden ki Paekākā. wellington.govt.nz/gardens-magic

Summer in Te Aro Park

Throughout Jan–Feb | Te Aro Park | Free

This summer Te Aro Park will see a range of activities and small events put on by local community groups, residents and businesses to welcome people into the space and bring the park to life. Keep an eye on our social media channels to find out more.

Summer Pop-ups

Throughout January–February | Free

Keep an eye out for the roving performers delighting Wellingtonians during the summer months.

Summer Sampler

Sat 7 Jan–Sun 19 Feb weekends | Wellington Waterfront | Free

Join us on the waterfront as some of Pōneke's finest performers fill the area with vibrant delights, all to raise funds for the Wellington Free Ambulance. Last Summer Sampler saw a rollercoaster of talented swing dancers, jazz bands, fire spinners, opera singers, acrobats, and some of Aotearoa's best buskers. This time, it returns with even more surprises, offerings, and incredible artists. Gather up your loose change, stroll down to the waterfront, and see the talent Wellington has to share.

Football Ferns vs USA

18 January, 4.05pm kick-off | Sky Stadium

The Football Ferns will kick-off 2023 by taking on the FIFA Women’s World Cup champions the USA for the first time ever on home soil in January 2023. nzfootball.co.nz.

A group of Pasifika dancers performing.
Pasifika

BOWLZILLA

Sat 18 Feb | Waitangi Park | Free

Bowlzilla will be the stage for some of the top skateboarders from here and around the world as they vie for top honours carving up the bowl. Bowlzilla.net.

Gindulgence

Sat 28 – 29 Jan | Frank Kitts Park

Enjoy a day of New Zealand's finest craft gins at Gindulgence along Wellington’s waterfront. Gindulgence.co.nz.

Salsa@Sunset

5.30pm, Thurs 2, 9, 16, 23 Feb | Odlins Plaza, Wellington Waterfront

Learn how to Salsa in the setting sun on the waterfront with CUBA*FUSION.

Fat Boy Slim

Fri 3 Feb | Anderson Park

The iconic DJ will play an outdoor summer event at Anderson Park. Fatboyslimtour.

Whānau Film Night

6pm–9pm, Sun 5 Feb | Waitangi Park | Free

Pack a picnic dinner and join us for an evening of outdoor cinema. A series of short Māori and Pacific films by Mana Moana followed by our feature film, 'Whina'. wellington.govt.nz/waitangi

Te Rā o Waitangi

12 noon–6pm, Mon 6 Feb | Waitangi Park | Free

Bring your friends and whānau and enjoy an award-winning line-up of Māori performers, food and culture. wellington.govt.nz/waitangi

Wellington Pasifika Festival

12 noon–6pm, Sat 11 Feb | Waitangi Park | Free

Take a tour of the Pasifika Islands and sample the sounds and flavours special to each culture. Celebrate our tight-knit Pacific communities, arts and culture. wellington.govt.nz/pasifika

Dragon Boat Harbour Fun Day

Saturday 11 Feb | Whairepo Lagoon | Frank Kitts Park

A fun race day to give competitors and the public a taste of what’s to come in the March festival. Wellington Dragon Boat Festival

Wellington Round the Bays 2023

Sun 19 Feb | Waitangi Park

Wellington Round the Bays is the largest mass participation event in the lower North Island. It's open to everyone, with options for all the family. wellingtonroundthebays.co.nz

The Performance Arcade 2023

Weds 22 – Sun 26 Feb | Wellington Waterfront and City | Free

The Performance Arcade is an annual exhibition and festival programme of events located on Wellington Waterfront. theperformancearcade.com

Fringe Festival

17 February - 11 March

Dive into a kaleidoscope of awesome with the 2023 New Zealand Fringe Festival returning to the city this summer.

Be a part of the Birthplace of Brilliance as Fringe takes over Pōneke for 23 days of ground-breaking art this Summer. Fringe.co.nz.

U R Here

Fri 25 Feb 4-6pm, Sat 26 & Sun 27 Feb 3pm - 6pm

Martin Luckie Park, Lavaud Street, Berhampore

Barbarian Productions bring their radical theatre magic to the great outdoors, transforming a little-known park into an open-world adventure full of weirdness and wonder. Are you ready to play? Barbarian.co.nz

BLACKCAPS v England Test

Fri 24–Tues 28 Feb | Cello Basin Reserve

Following an away series in June, the BLACKCAPS will be looking to draw on home support to take the final match of the series. wellingtonnz.com/summerofcricket

Community Christmas Events

There’s also a number of community events on for those who may not have somewhere to go for a Christmas meal this year – all are welcome, and volunteers and donations appreciated too.

  • Te Pokapū Hapori: https://ycentral.nz/tepokapuhapori/
  • Stillwaters House on Willis St: https://www.facebook.com/stillwaterswgtn/
  • St Peters on Willis: https://www.stpetersonwillis.org.nz/calendar/events

Public Transport

Don’t forget, Metlink is also offering free travel to all passengers travelling on bus and train services on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve.

Holiday Hours

Some of Council’s facilities and services have reduced opening hours during holiday periods. Check our holiday hours page, or for more information you can contact us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year on 04 499 4444.