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New Plymouth Taranaki, Events and Activities

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1. Puke Ariki

The treasure trove of Taranaki’s history and culture, Puke Ariki is a world-class knowledge centre where library, museum and visitor information are combined to tell the stories of Taranaki - past, present and future. Setting an international benchmark in the delivery of information and heritage services, Puke Ariki has a number of exhibitions on throughout the year, and has a variety of displays, collections, and interactive technology on permanent display. A combined museum, library and information centre, Puke Ariki sets out to inspire creativity by showing stunning exhibitions that highlight Taranaki’s past, present and future. Taranaki is a region steeped in history and Puke Ariki (Hill of Chiefs) stands on an original pa site of the great Maori Chief, Te Rangi Apiti Rua around 1700. The pa was deserted and approximately 100 years later it became the landing place for colonial settlers. Puke Ariki is located opposite Len Lye’s Wind Wand in central New Plymouth. There are a number of galleries featuring contemporary exhibitions, Taranaki past life, Taranaki geology, flora and fauna, Maori collections (Taonga) and theatre featuring short films on Taranaki life. Puke Ariki is a must see for your Taranaki experience.

2. Taranaki Garden Festivals

The Taranaki Rhododendron and Garden Festival invite you to experience the most stunning range of gardens and events in New Zealand – a festival like no other. The hospitality of Taranaki’s garden owners is what makes this event so unique. Every year visitors flock from all over New Zealand and overseas to the festival where they are encouraged to take the time to wander through the beautiful gardens and take part in many of the festival’s events. Festival gardeners show the care and dedication that only those who love growing things can provide. In 2007 the festival boasted an amazing 49 gardens, of which 17 were gardens of national or regional significance, which is the most of any region in New Zealand and something that the festival is very proud of! The events programme included the innovative Landscape Design Project by French design company L’Atelier, a glamorous twilight Garden Party, the Garden Speaker Series, Jazz & Wine in gardens, the popular Two for One day, Trees For Babies plus many more events, some of which are created especially for children and families. The Taranaki Rhododendron & Garden Festival is happening from 30th October - 8th November 2015.

3. Pukekura Park

This 52ha inner-city park is a jewel. Stretching along a river valley from the centre of New Plymouth to near the city’s southern boundary, Pukekura Park is a Garden of National Significance that combines formal gardens with walks through native bush. Visitors to the park can enjoy the internationally regarded Fernery and Display Houses, visit Brooklands Zoo, check out the Japanese Hillside and Kunming Garden, and take a row boat onto the main lake. The park’s beautiful sportsground has been named one of the top small cricket grounds in the world by Wisden, while the natural outdoor amphitheatre of the TSB Bowl of Brooklands has attracted well-known performers over the years. And from mid-December to early February every year, Pukekura Park is transformed into an illuminated wonderland each night with the TSB Bank Festival of Lights. This free event includes nighttime entertainment and daytime activities for all ages, and is so popular that it has been voted onto the coveted Mayfair spot of New Zealand Monopoly!

4. New Plymouth Coastal Walkway

This award-winning walkway stretches almost the entire length of New Plymouth, and gives visitors a close-up experience of the Tasman Sea. Walkers, runners, cyclists and skaters can travel its 7km length from the mouth of the Waiwhakaiho River in the east to Ngamotu Beach in the west, passing in front of the city’s CBD along the way. The eastern end takes walkers through a series of sand dunes, then on to Fitzroy Beach then East End Beach with its adjacent reserve and skate park. The central section of the walkway is the site of the biennial Te Kupenga Stone Symposium, with artists carving their sculptures in full public view. Adjacent to this is the central deck which features the 45m-high Len Lye kinetic sculpture, Wind Wand. On its way westward the Coastal Walkway travels in front of the Todd Energy Aquatic Centre and down to the Lee Breakwater before ending at the family-friendly Ngamotu Beach. Mobility scooters are available for hire (for free) from the aquatic centre – just call New Plymouth District Council on 06-759 6060 to book. Refreshments and ‘Wind Wanderer’ pedal carts are available at the central deck, next to the Wind Wand.

5. TSB Bank Festival of Lights

Since 1993 the TSB Bank Festival of Lights has been wowing hundreds of thousands of visitors each year with an awesome mix of events, entertainment and of course a spectacular lighting display set against the backdrop of Pukekura Park. At night, fluorescent pebble paths sparkle beneath excited feet, majestic trees and plants glow, and waterfalls and lakes shimmer and shine beneath thousands of lighting displays. But it's the features such as the talking giant, fire poi dancers or the parades that captivate the young and the not so young. Structures such as the park's water wheel, fountains and historic band rotunda are flooded with lights, while illuminated wooden rowboats offer a romantic boating opportunity like no other. So if you're looking for fun entertainment in the summer then visit Pukekura Park and immerse yourself in the magical and mystical wonderland of the TSB Bank Festival of Lights.


What's On in New Plymouth, Taranaki?

The Cake and Craft Show

29 May 2015 (Fri) - 1 Jun 2015 (Mon)

TSB Stadium

If you have enjoyed all things creative in the past, now is the time to make the most of it. Great NZ Events proudly brings to you ‘The Cake and Craft Show’, the flagship destination for New Zealand Enterprise, Craft, Inspiration, Cake Decorating and handmade items.
Not just another craft show, this years event will showcase high-end retail craft by some of New Zealand’s top end entrepreneurs, artisans, designers and crafts people. With a proud focus on local handmade, homegrown talent and an opportunity to meet the makers - the vast selection of product categories and special features, demonstrations, workshops and competitions make the Cake and Craft Show, “destination shopping" at its best.
The Cake and Craft Show is created by a passionate team that searches the nation from big cities to small towns for the best-of-the-best and the next generations of talent and new opportunities. Our visitors look to us as the place to discover a wide selection of quality craftsmanship, cake concepts and well-designed goods and services connected to New Zealand.

FIFA U-20 World Cup

30 May 2015 (Sat) - 21 Jun 2015 (Sun)

Stadium Taranaki

The future stars of world football are coming to Taranaki!
The FIFA U-20 World Cup is one of the world's largest sporting tournaments, second only in the football world to the World Cup. From 30 May to 21 June 2015 the action is in NEw Zealand, with seven cities hosting matches, including six matches at New Plymouth's Stadium Taranaki.

Come and see why Stadium Taranaki was judged one of the top places to watch a match in the world, and why New Plymouth has been judged one of the best places to live!

The Pink Floyd Experience - Wish you were here

4 Jun 2015 (Thu)

TSB Theatre - TSB Showplace, 92 Devon St West

Nearly 40 years ago Pink Floyd released their 9th studio album. Titled ‘Wish You Were Here”, the album covered themes such as absence, the record industry and the madness of one of their own members. Regarded by many as one of Floyd’s finest works, it went on to be #1 in both the UK and US Billboard charts. This was an album that audiophiles all over the world played on the finest stereo systems as they sought to hear every detail in Pink Floyd’s incredibly complex and groundbreaking music.
To commemorate the 40th Anniversary of Wish You Were Here, The Pink Floyd Experience will be performing the album in its entirety. Every detail, every nuance performed live through a state of the art sound system. Imagine stunning sound, fantastic lighting, amazing projections & effects and a passionate 11 piece band performing this legendary classic album with an absolute attention to detail. This concert will be a real treat for any Pink Floyd fans!

A nearly 3 hour show, the first half of the show will have you transported back to 1971’s Meddle and from there you’ll gradually travel through to the 1990’s as the band winds through such classic albums as, Dark Side of the Moon, The Wall, Animals, Momentary Lapse of Reason and Division Bell. After you have stretched your legs and grabbed a drink at half time you’ll be ready to be immersed totally in Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here. 1975 here we come! And to finish off the show the band will deliver a handful of huge Floyd hits.

Taranaki Comedy Club - Dai Henwood

5 Jun 2015 (Fri)

The Basement Bar, Cnr Egmont and Devon Streets

Dai Henwood headlines 2 great nights of the World Famous Taranaki Comedy club.
With Support from 7 Day's Josh Thomson and Hosted by resident Taranaki Comedy Club MC Ben Hurley
These shows will sell out so don't delay, book right now!

Taranaki Arts Trail

13 Jun 2015 (Sat)

If the arts are your thing...
See some of Taranaki's best artists and their works on the Taranaki Arts Trail this June.

Chiefs v Hurricanes

13 Jun 2015 (Sat)

Yarrow Stadium, Maratahu Street, New Plymouth

The Chiefs will take on the Hurricanes in round 18 of Super XV Rugby
The Chiefs are only playing 2 of their 2015 season games at Yarrow Stadium, so make sure you are there to cheer them on!
'Nothing gets the Chiefs fired up like being cheered on by loyal fans'

FIFA U-20 World Cup 2015 FUTSAL

25 Jun 2015 (Thu) - 29 Jun 2015 (Mon)

By the Wind Wand

An exciting five-a-side version of football is coming to New Plymouth, thanks to the Local Organising Committee (LOC) of the FIFA U-20 World Cup New Zealand 2015.
Futsal is the world's fastest-growing indoor sport, and the LOC is bringing a newly purchased portable pitch to New Plymouth as part of a national promotion of next year's world cup event.

The Futsal pitch will be in place on the green space next to the Wind Wand car park from 25 to 29 June, with sessions run by Futsal Whites coach Scott Gilligan; one of only 12 FIFA qualified Futsal coaches in the world.

Teams must be registered and spaces are limited

Alan Davies - Little Victories

3 Aug 2015 (Mon)

TSB Theatre - TSB Showplace, 92 Devon St West

Alan Davies - Star of television programmes Jonathan Creek and QI returns to New Zealand with 'Little Victories'
A stand up veteran of 25 years, Davies’ virtuosic storytelling and whip-smart funny bones combine to make the all-new ‘Little Victories’ a must-see.
Much lauded as the resident dunderhead on QI, or the charming but reticent crime solver Jonathan Creek, Davies previously toured New Zealand in early 2013 selling out his popular show ‘Life is a Pain’. In 2014 he embarked on a national tour of Australia also selling out ‘Little Victories’ in every city.
At the beginning of his comedy career in 1991, Davies was named Best Young Comic by London’s Time Out magazine. After winning the Edinburgh Festival Critics Award for Comedy in 1994, he also picked up a nomination for the Festival’s prestigious Perrier Award. Davies has in his illustrious career worked regularly as an actor on both the stage and television, including the making of a three-part documentary series Alan Davies' Teenage Revolution (Channel 4), partly based on his autobiographical book My Favourite People and Me.
This multi-talented actor, writer and stand-up comedian has been busy since his last trip to NZ in 2013, touring to Amsterdam, Antwerp and throughout the UK. Jonathan Creek came back to the small screen in 2014 drawing 7.36 million viewers in the UK; Davies also hosts a conversational TV show, As Yet Untitled, airing now in the UK. In addition, his regular Arsenal FC podcast "The Tuesday Club" has surpassed seven million downloads and peaked at number 1 in the UK podcast chart. The ever-popular QI also returns to our screens this year.

Taranaki Arts Festival - Band of Magicians

27 Aug 2015 (Thu) - 30 Aug 2015 (Sun)

TSB Theatre - TSB Showplace, 92 Devon St West

Experience real magic at the feature show of the Taranaki International Arts Festival by joining the world's first magic supergroup - Band of Magicians, as they impress even the most skeptical!
Natural showmen, James Galea, Ben Hanlin, Blake Vogt and Adam Mada are four of the hottest young magicians in the world.
Restore your sense of wonder with the Band of Magicians in this contemporary magic show the whole family will love.

Isla Grant

4 Sep 2015 (Fri)

TSB Theatre - TSB Showplace, 92 Devon St West

Scotland's legendary singer/songwrite Isla Grant returns to New Zealand for her Farewell Concert Tour.
Isla is an internationally acclaimed recording artist; her beautiful voice combining country folk songs to easy listening presenting an unforgettable evening.
Isla's spellbinding concert features her wonderful hit songs and takes a nostalgic look at her long and successful career.
Al Grant, Isla's genial and talented husband, will join her on-stage to bring his irrepressible humour to the show, also featuring his tribute to Jim Reeves.
Isla's Farewell Concert performance will be a 'Grand' International Concert not to be missed.

The Russian National Ballet - Swan Lake

15 Sep 2015 (Tue)

TSB Theatre - TSB Showplace, 92 Devon St West

Beautiful full length performances of two of the most cherished classical ballets of all time.
The Russian National Ballet Theatre commences a tour of full-length classical performances of Swan Lake in over 15 cities in New Zealand and over 30 cities across Australia from August.
The Russian National Ballet Theatre was founded with support of the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation. The basis for the creation of the theatre was necessity of promising young theatre with high creative potential, both the classical and contemporary.
The Russian National Ballet Theatre is a cut above many of its rivals.

UB40 Red Red Wine Vineyard Tour

10 Jan 2016 (Sun)

Sentry Hill Winery, 152 Cross Road

UB40, featuring the original members Ali Campbell, Astro and Mickey Virtue, will be returning to New Zealand in early 2016 for their first ever vineyard tour.
One of New Zealand’s much loved festival acts, the Red Red Wine Vineyard Tour sees the band headline a series of concerts in some of the country’s most stunning locations and it will be swinging into New Plymouth’s Sentry Hill Winery on Sunday 10 January.
The original line-up of UB40 with Ali, Astro and Mickey enjoyed huge success over a period of 30 years from 1979 to 2008, with #1 albums, multiple gold and platinum selling albums, Grammy nominations, 4 worldwide #1 hits and over 70 million in sales. Now reunited again, they continue to take their smooth yet rootsy blend around the world and their live performances never fail to uplift the audience.

Upcoming Events in New Plymouth

Check out all upcoming events in New Plymouth at the Eventfinda website.
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