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New Plymouth Taranaki, Events and Activities



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?

Last Night Of The Proms - Ars Nova Choir & New Plymouth Orchestra

25 Sep 2014 (Thu) - 8 Nov 2014 (Sat)

TSB Theatre - TSB Showplace

If opera makes your heart sing then you won't want to miss this.
Ars Nova Choir and New Plymouth Orchestra present the Last Night of the Proms. This year's theme is "opera", with some well known arias, duets and overtures-everything from Wagner to La Bohème. you'll certainly have heard them before (if only on the posh ads!). Compères Bryan Vickery and Stuart Trundle will be there to guide you through the festivities, and we hope to have four soloists. Clarissa Dunn returns, having wowed the crowd in 2012, and two young singers from Waikato University will delight with their operatic offerings.
Hear the usual favourites: Land of Hope and Glory, Jerusalem, I Vow to Thee My Country and the Fantasia on British Sea Songs, along with all the charmingly barmy British carry-on and some surprise guests. There's a special price for groups of 10, so why not make up a party and make a great night of it! Dinner and a show always a great night out - or make it a weekend on the town!

Eb and Sparrow With Missie Moffat

4 Oct 2014 (Sat)


A five-piece folk band not to be missed...
Home Alone Music is proud to present Eb & Sparrow's debut album.
Eb & Sparrow is a genre-defying, five-piece folk band that has been gaining attention across the country from city bars to folk clubs, festivals to house concerts. They have supported Rodriguez, Pokey LaFarge, Beth Orton, Wagons, Delaney Davidson & Marlon Williams, The Warratahs, Anika Moa, Tami Neilson, and Aldous Harding.
Eb & Sparrow’s new debut album, released through Home Alone Music, is self-titled and self-assured. The 10 song collection is built on - but far exceeds - their three preceding EPs as it takes the band's paradoxically woven nature to new heights. These songs are proudly soaring and grounded, dark and bright, dreamy and direct, country and Spanish, 1850s and 1950s, delicate and propulsive, all the while lamenting and laughing.

Taranaki Daily New Half Marathon

5 Oct 2014 (Sun)

Pukekura Raceway

Get those running shoes on...
You can walk or run, as an individual or a group so get up and get moving! Fun friendly and relaxed.

Winter's Last Waltz

18 Oct 2014 (Sat)

The Mayfair

Enjoy an evening of glamour showcasing the talent of Taranaki Musicians with the sounds of the 70's.
A collaborative, big band style show that will take you back to the spirit and the sounds of the 1970's and beyond. Featuring covers from The Band, The Beatles and more!
A show not to be missed!

Powerco Taranaki Garden Spectacular

31 Oct 2014 (Fri) - 9 Nov 2014 (Sun)

Mt Taranaki, Egmont Road, Egmont Village , Stratford

Don't miss seven new gardens...
Ranging from a sub-tropical inner city garden with soaring palms to a tranquil Zen garden and an organic country garden in this year’s Powerco Taranaki Garden Spectacular.9.
And with King Garden gaining “Garden of Significance” status from the New Zealand Gardens Trust, there are also 12 gardens ranging from gardens of Significance to National Significance including one of International Significance in the 49 gardens in this year’s event.
“It is a feast of food, fashion, art, inspiring speakers and 49 of the some of the best gardens in New Zealand opening their garden gates. Our Landscape Design Project this year will once again wow the senses.”

Bill Bailey Limboland

9 Nov 2014 (Sun)

TSB Theatre - TSB Showplace

He's back...and always hilarious with the world premiere of his brand new live show!
The gap between how we imagine our lives to be and how they really are is the subject of Bill’s new show Limboland. With his trademark intelligence and sharp wit, he tells tales of finding himself in this halfway place. From his countless global travels, he recounts the hilarious saga of a disastrous family trip to Norway to see the Northern Lights. He rails against a world that doesn’t match up to our expectations and contemplates the true nature of happiness.

The Seekers 50th

29 Nov 2014 (Sat)

TSB Bowl of Brooklands

Remember the 60's?... then you'll know the only surviving chart-topping band from the 60s, anywhere in the world, with all the original founding members.
The legendary original line up of The Seekers have reunited for ‘The Golden Jubilee Tour’ – celebrating 50 years since they first sang together.

Following sold out tours of Australia and the UK, The Seekers - Judith Durham, Athol Guy, Keith Potger and Bruce Woodley – have announced a five-date tour of New Zealand in November.

Sing along as they take you down memory lane with the songs, stories, memorabilia, messages of congratulations from music industry contemporaries, and video clips on the big screen.

Upcoming Events in New Plymouth

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