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20 Amazing Things To Do In Auckland This Weekend

By Hana Okada
22nd Feb 2018

20 Amazing Things To Do In Auckland This Weekend

We hate to break it to you, but we’re nearing the end of our beautiful New Zealand summer (sob). Don’t let that get you down, if anything it means there’s absolutely no time to waste! Make the most of the fabulous outdoor activities, long days and warm nights this final summer weekend at some stellar events you won’t want to miss. From unmissable festivals (plural!), enough foodie delights for a week-long food coma and good times you won’t find any other weekend, it’s time to get serious—seriously excited!

All Weekend

Chinese New Year Garden Pop-Up

Ease that food baby and go for a perfect post-dinner stroll at SKYCITY’s Chinese New Year garden. Complete with cherry blossom and an oh-so-romantic bridge walk, it’s a perfect place for a night-time wind down—or maybe if you need to update that profile pic from 2015. This Chinese inspired walkway is beautifully lit and lined with bamboo all around. Plus, it’s open all hours—this has nighttime adventure all over it!

Where: SKYCITY Auckland Main Plaza, Auckland CBD
When: Saturday 24 February—Sunday 4 March
For more info, click here

New Zealand’s International Yoga Festival 2018

Following popular demand, this epic festival of inner mastery has extended a day for a weekend full of good times for its seventh year. There is now four jam-packed days filled with workshops, activities, talks and yoga classes for you to get amongst! With more international presenters and guests than ever, this ever-growing space of spirituality will cover every style of yoga classes from mindful meditations to even SUP and aerial yoga!

Where: Kawai Purapura Retreat Centre, Albany
When: Thursday 22 February—Sunday 25 February
For more info, click here.

Zirka Circus

Back with its fifth tour of New Zealand, Zirka Circus is bringing even more mind-boggling, spectacular entertainment to our shores! Their new show Send in the Clowns is more spectacular than ever, with performing arts, theatre, and hilarity all wrapped up in a world-class performance! Whether you’re all about the action-packed daredevil acts or beautiful ballet, there is something for everyone in this stellar show! This is one adventure-filled (and animal-free!) circus for the whole family to love.

Where: Bruce Pulman Park, Papakura
When: Friday 23 February—Sunday 25 February
For more info, click here

Auckland Fringe

The feisty, independent open-access arts festival is back for a seriously kick-ass two weeks! Auckland Fringe is open to anyone and everyone who wants to get involved, celebrating inclusivity in this wonderful city of ours. From main stage to floating theatres, dancing with cats to dental hygiene talks (very important), immerse yourself in the weird, wacky and wonderful Auckland arts scene.

Where: The Basement, Auckland CBD
When: Friday 23 February—Sunday 4 March
For more info, click here.


A quick hour drive from Central Auckland will transport you into one of the most idyllic spots around town for that wicket summer festival people keep coming back for. It’s Splore time, which means international and local artists across multiple stages, workshops, performing arts, and forums. Splore has become more than a festival, as you take in the upbeat, friendly and inclusive culture that it’s all about. Welcoming festival-goers of all ages from around the world, this festival vibe is truly unique to Splore. Featuring musicians Dizzee Rascal, Black Milk, Tali, Lady Flic, Aroha and so many more, this is three days of good times that you won’t find anywhere else.

Where: Tapapakanga Reigonal Park, Auckland
When: Friday 23 February—Sunday 25 February
For more info, click here

Friday 23 February

Friday Films: The Trip to Spain

Launch your weekend the right way with a movie under the stars, a food truck delight to die for and a cold brew to wash it all down! It seems like Fridays are Silo Park’s specialty, with an unmissable food truck line up including Crepes A Go Go, Judge Bao, Mr Dog Frites, Olas Latin Food, Puha & Pakeha, Philippe’s Poutine and so much more! You’re visiting Spain this week with Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon in this hilarious six-part episodic road trip through Europe. Promising lots of laughs, restaurants, sights and a dose of ridiculous impressions, you’ll be looking up the next flight to Spain after this one!

Where: Silo Park, Wynyard Quarter
When: Friday 23 February,
For more info, click here

The Dystopian Film Festival

Transport yourself into the strange, spooky and scarily relatable at Academy Theatres, with some of the most memorable dystopian classics in movie history. The future looks bleak in these epic flicks, including Alphaville by Jean-Luc Goddard, The Trial by Orson Wells, Strange Days by Kathryn Bigelow and so many more. Pick up the passport program and get a stamp for every film you attend—you can score a double pass after four stamps! How many can you get through?

Where: Academy Cinemas, Auckland CBD
When: Friday 23 February
For more info, click here.

Culley Sauces BBQ Masterclass with BBQ Master “Stretch”

Think yourself as a bit of a BBQ connoisseur? There’s much to be learned and you’ll learn it all right here at Fireworks Smokehouse! Hosted by Stretch and assisted by Pitmaster Ants, you’ll be shown the ropes on all things brisket, ribs, and chicken from start to finish. This whopping six-hour event will include breakfast and lunch as well as beer and bourbon tastings! The class will cover everything from trimming meats up to a competition level, equipment, rubs, marinades, and of course taste, as well as everything in between!

Where: Fireworks Smokehouse, Auckland CBD
When: Friday 23 February, 8am—2pm
For more info, click here

Friday Night Food Markets

One of Auckland’s greatest food markets is coming to SKYCITY for a celebration of scrumptious Asian delights! The Auckland Night Markets is bringing its scrumptious street food to the heart of Auckland, as you travel around the world in one night with drool-worthy street food bites. Pick and choose a delicious dinner to your heart’s content—or at least until your pants allow! Get ready for an amazing Asian feast, street food style.

Where: SKYCITY, Auckland Central
When: Friday 16 February, 5pm—10pm
For more info, click here

Ellen Melville Centre’s Japan Day

If you can’t wait for the actual day filled with all things wonderfully Japanese, this taster of what the epic weekend holds is the place to be! Featuring green tea tastings, origami making and performances from Yosakoi Soran Dance Troop, there’s so much to see and do in the run up to the big day!

Where: Pioneer Women’s and Ellen Melville Hall, Auckland CBD
When: Friday 23 February, 12pm—1:30pm
For more info, click here

Allure of the Orient—Chinese New Year

Celebrate the beauty of Chinese New Year at Skycity’s Allure of the Orient. Experience authentic entertainment, a Chinese New Year garden pop up, as well as dragon dancers, calligraphy demonstrations, and even dancing pandas! Ring in the Year of the Dog this Chinese New Year in the heart of the city!

Where: SKYCITY, Auckland CBD
When: Friday 23 February—Saturday 24 February
For more info, click here

Ladylike: A Modern Guide to Etiquette

It’s back! After a smash-hit sold out run at the New Zealand International Comedy Fest, the critically acclaimed Ladylike: A Modern Guide to Etiquette is back to teach you some manners. Let Louise Beuvink show you the ropes from everything including the art of passive aggressive Facebook comments, to the science of making champagne with a wine cask and a SodaStream. This is one go-to guide in etiquette and housewifery for the modern age that you won’t want to miss!

Where: Q Theatre, Auckland CBD
When: Friday 23 February—Sunday 24 February
For more info, click here

The Aperol Garden

The beautiful Deck at Ostro is transforming into an Aperol experience to say “cheers!” to our fave summer drink. Complete with an Italian inspired garden and a perfect menu to match the orange drink of our dreams, it’s all hands on deck! Nab a ticket for $40 to get the whole Aperol experience, where you’ll meet an Aperol ambassador for a how-to on making the perfect spritz, be treated to a tasting platter and of course, an Aperol spritz of your own!

Where: Deck at Ostro, Britomart
When: Friday 16 February—Wednesday 14 March
For more info, click here

Saturday 24 February

Vive La France

Don’t the French just do it so well? Get to Milford and amongst the trendy market stalls filling the street, live music and an outdoor café setting on the French boulevard. Dripping sophistication and promising lots of fun, this is going to be one fabulous French market and entertainment featuring something for everyone, including face painting, bouncy castles and balloon twisters for the little ones!

Where: Kitchener Road, Milford
When: Saturday 24 February, 9:30am—2pm
For more info, click here


Reckon you’re the biggest and baddest meat lover around? Meatstock is where you need to be this February for all things juicy, tender meat! See the pros battle it out at the NZ Butcher Wars or nail the perfect chicken and ribs from five-time World Barbecue Champion Tuffy Stone. If you reckon you’re a bit of a master on the grill, you can even register to be part of the King of the Cue and NZ Barbecue Awards for a chance to score some top-tier prizes. And, if you’re just there to eat, come well prepared—there’s more than ten stallholders serving up all things meat, as well as pros in the industry giving you all the tips and tricks for the perfect cut. Bring on the meat sweats!

Where: ASB Showgrounds, Ellerslie
When: Saturday 24 February—Sunday 25 February
For more info, click here

Heineken Urban Polo

This is one seriously cool urban sporting event to be held at Ellerslie this year—a change from Shore Road—due to the adverse weather! The best Polo showcase in Auckland this summer, it’s a fusion of sport, a tipple or two and wicked live music. There’s three adrenaline-filled 30-minute polo games sandwiched between live music from the hottest DJs, plus on and off-field entertainment. Get ready to dress to impress!

Where: Ellerslie Racecource
When: Saturday 24 February, 2pm—9:30pm
For more info, click here.

Chamberlain Tap Takeover #5: Forking Epic

The Tap Takeover is back and ready to impress your tastebuds! Vote on your fave brew in the battle of the pints at this clash between Epic Brewing Company versus Fork and Brewer. Both award-winning breweries with surprises up their sleeves, there’s no doubt it’ll be a tough call—who knows, you might have to go for round two just to be sure! Make it a party with The Chamberlain’s infamous Beast Feast, with this month’s including a whole 2kg of wood fired smoky BBQ pork ribs, with Louisiana hot sausages, deep fried pies, sweet corn and bacon drip and southern buttermilk biscuits! Wash it all down with your new fave brew for a Saturday done right.

Where: The Chamberlain, Britomart
When: Saturday 24 February,
For more info, click here

Japan Day

New Zealand’s biggest annual Japanese festival is back! Experience Japan In all of its wonder without the hefty price tag at this festival bigger and better than ever. Including an outdoor anime movie, traditional dance, special guests from Japan, cultural experiences and a variety of lip-smacking Japanese food stalls, you’ll need to pick your jaw up from the ground after seeing all this goodness!

Where: Queens Wharf, Auckland CBD
When: Saturday 24 February—Sunday 25 February
For more info, click here

Sunday 25 February

The Merchant of Venice

Pop-up Globe is back and better than ever, presenting you with one of Shakespeare’s classics The Merchant of Venice. Already deep in debt to his best friend, Bassiano requires one more loan to woo and win the wealthy heiress Portia, unaware that when the due date comes to repay the debt, he will be gambling for his life! Full of wit, drama and disguise that Shakespeare has become legend for, this is based on the performance tradition going way back to 1614, performed by the Buckingham Company—an all-male company of actors and musicians around the world.

Where: Pop-Up Globe Theatre, Ellerslie
When: Sunday 25 February, 2pm—4:45pm
For more info, click here

Fight Workshop

The world-class fight sequences across three standout seasons of Pop-up Globe have thrilled audiences, perfecting everything from Sebastian simply kicking Sir Andrew Aguecheef in Twelfth Night to as complex as 15 armoured knights smashing each other with broadswords to recreate the Battle of Agincourt in Henry V. Fight just like The Bard perfected in this workshop ideal for beginners and experienced performers alike, lead by Pop-up Globe’s fight director Alexander Holloway. It’s the perfect introduction to unlocking your inner warrior Shakespeare style, all wrapped up in the thrill of working on Pop-up Globe’s unique stage.

Where: Pop-up Globe Theatre, Ellerslie
When: Sunday 25 February, 10am—12pm
For more info, click here

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