June has arrived, officially marking the half-way point of 2019. The first month of winter may seem gloomy but, lucky for us, Auckland sure knows how to pull through when we need it most. The Super City delivers an epic line-up of international artists, musical theatre performances and artsy festivals to get involved with this month.
It’s time to flip the page of your calendar and start pencilling in your must-dos because here are all of the best things to do in Auckland this June.
Saturday, 1 June
After exceeding expectations with two new tracks from their highly anticipated album Langata, Crooked Colours is heading to our shores. On Saturday 1st June the Australian trio brings their unique brand of electronic dance music to Auckland’s Galatos. Known for high energy performances and dance-fuelled audiences, the show will feature old favourites as well as the groups newer tracks and be a night of serious fun.
Marina Cantina’s Bottomless Lunch
Saturday, 1 June
Mexican food with bottomless sangria? Yes, please. Head to Marina Cantina for their Mexican bottomless lunch on Saturday 1st, at either 11am or 1.30pm. The light-filled restaurant overlooks the boats in the marina and makes for beautiful views to enjoy while digging into the delicious food. The two-course Mexican feast will be served with your choice of bottomless sangria, Estrella Damn Cerveza or Mexican mocktails. Book your table now for the perfect Saturday lunch.
Saturday, 1 June
Catch UK pop starlet Nina Nesbitt for her first time on New Zealand shores. Playing at The Tuning Fork, Nesbitt will perform her hits including The Best You Had and Somebody. Her soft and angelic vocals match her meaningful lyrics beautifully, creating the signature, emotive sound she is known for.
Auckland Beer Mile
Saturday, 1 June
Saturday, 1 And Sunday, 2 June
The non-profit indie arts festival, Chromacon celebrates the coming together of communities, artistic excellence and creativity. Connecting New Zealanders with the best local illustrators, comic artists, designers, animators and game developers, Chromacon is open to everyone. Expect original artwork and creative projects across a range of media and styles, with the opportunity to purchase some of the work. There will also be live events, painting and drawing demos and artist talks and panels on different subjects throughout the weekend. Check the full timetable here and be sure to head along.
Meera Musical Theatre Show
Saturday, 1 and Sunday, 2 June
A bold love story that combines the mortal and immortal world, Meera is based on a 16th-century Indian tale of a princess and her endless love for the Hindu god, Krishna. Through theatrical and musical numbers, opera singing, dancing and narration, the show tells an epic story of love and loss. Bharatanatyam is one of India’s classical dancing forms and rarely seen on New Zealand stages, the strong footwork, rhythm training and technical movement will have you captivated from the start. The multi-cultural cast of around 100 includes local and international performers and an incredible amount of talent on one stage. Be sure to catch the show at ASB’s Theatre while it is here.
Queen’s Birthday on Queens Wharf
Saturday, 1 - Monday, 3 June
All weekend Queens Wharf will buzz with British-inspired festivities including market stalls, food vendors, fast rides, car displays, stage performances and activities. From 10am till 4pm Saturday, Sunday and Monday the waterfront space will become a mini British carnival where you can catch dancers, puppeteers, parades and live music every hour. Grab a bacon sammie and wander the stalls scouting some crafty gems to buy, before settling in for some funny and impressive entertainment.
Doc Edge Festival
Saturday, 1 - Sunday, 9 June
The Doc Edge Film Festival runs over Queen’s Birthday weekend with dozens of films across various genres, including dance, food, human rights and politics in various languages. On Saturday catch Kabul, City in the Wind, a story of life amidst a conflict and war zone and all of the heartbreak and struggle that comes with it. Or More Human than Human, which explores the rise of artificial intelligence and the effects it has on our lives. Check out the full timetable and get your tickets here.
Auckland Festival Of Photography
Sunday, 1- Thursday, 13 June
An Auckland-wide contemporary art and cultural event takes place every June within all of the city’s major galleries, project spaces, non-gallery venues and public sites and is back for 2019. The Auckland Festival of Photography programme features a range of new and established artists, showcasing their existing and new work. Images of deer throughout Auckland’s CBD, a dedication to countering Islamophobia and extremism, and photojournalism on the Venezuela crisis are among the line-up of what to expect at this year’s festival. Check the full timetable and locations here.
Sunday Roast on Waiheke
Sunday, 2 June
Escape the mainland and head to Waiheke for a real Sunday treat. Not much says comfort like a Sunday Roast and Wild on Waiheke and Waiheke Island Brewery bring back the traditional lunch with a twist. Have a light breakfast and arrive hungry because the feast includes roast pork with crackling, smoked pear puree, Waiheke Brewery porter gravy, potato roasties, cauliflower cheese, Brussel sprouts, Asian spiced carrots and pork and prune wonton. Book your table here and get ready for a day of indulging.
Music In The Vines
Sunday, 2 June
Hop in the car Sunday morning and head to beautiful Mangawhai for a day of live music and great wine. Te Whai Bay Wines will host Music in the Vines, an afternoon of acoustic music, great wine and tasty platters to enjoy in the extensive and scenic grounds. Sit in the picnic area outside or inside the pavilion, entry is free and the day out of the city will give you all the vacay vibes you need.
Sunday, 9 June
Hit that nostalgia button, the 1960s pop-rock group The Monkees brings their old classics to Auckland Town Hall this June. Michael Nesmith and Micky Dolenz from the original crew are touring Australia and New Zealand, performing their much-loved hits that the band became known for. I'm a Believer, Last Train to Clarksville and Mary Mary are among the line-up of tunes to sing and dance your heart out to on the night.
The Heels Are Alive
Thursday, 13 - Saturday, 15 June
Cabaret shows are high energy, entertaining and wildly impressive. Fine Fatale comes to The Civic this June with their brand-new show, The Heels are Alive where you are welcomed to the urban jungle, full of tropical flowers and roaring oceans. Full of unadulterated Pacific flair and the beautiful sounds of the Taka Too Wops, the birds of paradise call on their ancestors in this contemporary embodiment of Pasifika pride. The magic and fantasy of the show will take you on a journey that you don’t want to miss out on.
Auckland Wine Week
Thursday, 13 - Sunday, 23 June
Explore the wonderful world of wine right here on your doorstep during Auckland Wine Week. Celebrating the places and people behind New Zealand's best wines, as well as a delicious wine tasting adventure, the week is full of fun events around our stunning winemaking region. Waiheke Wine Day Out, Matakana Magic and Wineries Out West are among the line-up of activities. For all of the details, timetable and tickets check here.
Set Mo Surrender Tour
Friday, 14 June
Set Mo premiere their live show on the Surrender tour, celebrating the release of their anticipated debut album. One of Australia’s most loved electronic acts, they have built up a following of fans who love the range of mellow and party tracks they produce. Progressing from DJs to the fully-fledged live show takes Set Mo’s on-stage presence to an entirely new level. Using live singers as well as epic visuals and lighting the show will be like nothing they have done before.
Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour
Thursday, 20 - Wednesday, 26 June
The Banff Mountain Film Festival is one of the largest and most prestigious mountain festivals in the world. Held every autumn in Banff, the festival then hits the road, stopping in 550 locations across 45 countries. This year’s tour features a collection of the most inspiring action, environmental, and adventure films from across the festival. The New Zealand Alpine Club is proud to host the Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour, bringing the spirit of outdoor adventure around the country.
Thursday, 20 and Friday, 21 June
Returning to New Zealand this June with his new tour is Michael McIntyre. One of Britain's favourite comedians is back with fresh and hilarious content to perform at Auckland’s Spark Arena over two nights. The BAFTA award-winning comedian delivers spot-on observational comedy and has a trademark ability to turn mundane situations into master-classes of human exasperation. McIntyre sells out arenas around the world and no doubt his Auckland shows will too so get in quick and secure your tickets now.
Beauty and the Beast
Friday, 21 - Sunday, 23 June
Childhood favourite Beauty and the Beast comes to Auckland’s ASB Waterfront Theatre this June for three nights. The Auckland Performing Arts Academy brings the story to life on stage with their talented cast. The classic story features the Beast, who is really a young prince trapped under a spell. Only love can break the spell, and as time starts to run out the reality of being the Beast forever edges closer. The beautiful Belle is his last chance, but first, he has to learn how to love and be loved. Relive your childhood and catch the performance of the nostalgic and heartwarming story while it is here.
Saturday, 22 June
Best known as Ron Swanson in Parks and Recreation, Nick Offerman is an accomplished entertainer with unique humour and comedic ability. As well as acting, he has also published four books and is an excellent live performer, thriving in front of an audience. Returning to New Zealand on his All Rise tour, Offerman delivers an evening of talking and light dance that will make you laugh from the get-go but also be probed to consider humanity as we know it.
Saturday, 22 June - Sunday, 14 July
The Matariki Festival celebrates the Maori new year and is full of exciting, cultural festivities that everyone is invited to get involved with. Auckland comes alive with the celebrations of the nation’s Maori identity, the Maori new year and new beginnings. Historically, Maori navigators were guided to New Zealand by the stars including Matariki, with crews using skilful voyaging techniques passed down through generations. These themes will be woven throughout the festival which has over 100 events and programmes—experience Maori stories, entertainment, discussions, performance and art all kicking off June 22nd.
Once Live Theatre Show
Thursday, 27 June - Sunday, 14 July
The little musical with a big heart Once comes to Auckland’s ASB Arena this June for a few weeks of beautiful and uplifting theatre. The show opened on Broadway to universal acclaim and became one of the most awarded musicals in history. Set in modern-day Dublin, the performance captures the spirit of a gritty and homely Irish pub. The Tony, Grammy and Oscar-winning music will have you tapping your feet and the originality and unashamed theatricality of the whole performance will blow you away.
Saturday, 29 June
Mitch James is the singer-songwriter quickly climbing New Zealand’s musical ranks after his debut album dominated charts last year. Opening for Ed Sheeran and headlining festivals around the country has given James the acclaim he deserves as he sets off on his own tour across the UK and New Zealand. Supported by the four-piece indie pop-rockers Mako Road, the tour will land in Auckland on the 29th of June. Performing hits off of the album including 21, Bright Blue Skies and Old News, it will be a sing-along, a dance-fuelled night of fun.
Image Credit: Lydia Arnold