8 great spring festivals

Spring has sprung, and that means beautiful blossoms, fragrant flowers, and all things fresh and new. We’ve found eight splendid festivals to help shake off those winter blues and get you ready for the new season.

Carterton Daffodil Festival


Stop and smell the daffodils at the annual fun-filled Carterton Daffodil Festival on Sunday 8 September, from 9am to 3.30pm. Ride on a heritage steam train, pick armfuls of daffs at historic Middlerun, and enjoy all the other events in Carterton town centre – from street markets to horse-drawn surrey rides.

Wellington Spring Festival

Say goodbye to winter and celebrate spring at the annual Wellington Spring Festival, from 21 to 29 September at the Wellington Botanic Gardens. Head along for a series of springtime events, including the Otari-Wilton’s Bush Open Day on 21 September, and Tulip Sunday: Whānau Day Out on 22 September.

Cornwall Park Spring Blooms Trail

Celebrate the new season with a burst of colour in the middle of Auckland city. The trees and gardens at Cornwall Park come to life during the spring months. Follow the trail
to experience the blooms at their best. Pick up your trail map from the park’s Huia Lodge.

Nelson Cherry Blossom Festival

Celebrate Japanese culture and the 43-year sister-city connection between Nelson and Miyazu. Head along to the Miyazu Gardens on Atawhai Drive on 22 September for a day of music, food and entertainment under Nelson’s beautiful cherry blossom trees. The event includes Japanese martial arts, a puppet show, big-brush calligraphy, dance, and more.

Alexandra Blossom Festival

The Central Otago town of Alexandra shines in spring weather with blossom-lined streets and orchards in full bloom. The Alexandra Blossom Festival runs over four days from 27 to 29 September and includes loads of fun and entertainment, with events such as the Race Around the Clock, the Grand Procession, Mardis Gras, Party in the Park, and garden tours.

Hastings Spring Festival

Since 1950, Hastings has celebrated the start of spring with a festival of flowers, dance and song and its famous blossom parade day. This year's festival programme runs from 10 to 19 September and includes free concerts, artists’ seminars, poetry readings and more. Highlights include a parade day, concerts, an olive festival, a farmers’ market,
and more.

Waikato Cherry Tree Festival

Heading to Mystery Creek for the NZMCA Motorhome, Caravan & Leisure Show? Take the opportunity to check out the Waikato Cherry Tree Festival while you’re there. The festival is held at Cherry Tree Manor on Matangi Road, Tamahere, from 20 to 29 September and attracts thousands of people from near and far to celebrate the arrival of spring in a multicultural carnival setting.

Taranaki Garden Festival

Held from 1 to 10 November, the Taranaki Garden Festival is a must for gardening enthusiasts. Events include the Mitre 10 Flora and Fauna gala event, wine tasting, flower workshops, a Juno Gin distillery tour, a country fair, and all the glorious gardens Taranaki has to offer. Make your way through all 40, including Waiongana Gardens, Magnolia Grove, Pukemiro, and Te Popo Gardens.

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