Our favorite new years festivals in New Zealand for 2021/22
The summer holiday season in New Zealand isn’t the same without attending a New Year’s Eve celebration. While Covid-19 concerns have cancelled some New Years festivals in NZ, there are still plenty of places to enjoy a summer party! Most festivals require ticket-buyers to prove vaccination for peace of mind in these strange times.
New Years festivals are some of the best places to bring in the New Year. It’s not too late to choose a destination to slam the door in the face of 2021 and welcome 2022 with your fellow kiwis.
6 New Years Festivals in NZ for 2021
Here are seven New Years festivals in NZ that are a definite go for 2021. Choosing one of these options for the New Years countdown in NZ is sure to rank high in happy summer memories to come.
1. Rhythm & Alps (Wanaka)
While the iconic Rhythm & Vines festival has been cancelled this year, its sister festival, Rhythm & Alps, is still on the calendar. As one can guess from the festival’s name, Rhythm & Alps is all about experiencing music in a mountainous setting.
This year’s epic music lineup includes 44 amazing musicians, along with plenty of food and drinks.
Rhythm & Alps is in the Cardrona Valley between Queenstown and Wanaka. Festival-goers can enjoy festivities from 29 December to 31 December.
2. Wellington NYE Celebrations
Unfortunately, the city of Wellington has cancelled the traditional waterfront fireworks celebration around Whairepo Lagoon for 2021. However, Wellington still has lots of fun places to celebrate on New Years Eve:
- New Years Eve Tapas & Jazz: El Barrio Latino Bar & Restaurant is selling tickets for their music, tapas, dessert, and drinks NYE event.
- Velocity NYE: Enjoy DJs, dancing, and extravagant light shows at Valhalla.
- New Years Eve Masquerade Afrobeats Party: The hottest Afrobeats will be bringing in the New Year at The Establishment
- NYE Latin Fiesta 2022: Dance the year away on the hottest dance floor and best Latin music in the city at The Grand.
There are plenty of places to stay the night in the Wellington-Wairarapa area after seeing in the New Year.
3. AUM New Years Eve Festival
While there are loads of places to spend your New Year’s Eve in Auckland, one of the best is the AUM family-focused camping, music, and art festival. The timing has shifted back a day because of the Covid traffic light announcement, however, it’s still on the calendar for 31 December through 3 January.
This fun hippy-like summer festival has over 100 musical artists on five stages. Activities and workshops include everything from stilt walking and juggling to art, yoga, and meditation.
AUM festival-goers usually camp or glamp. However, there are plenty of places in Aukland to stay in a real bed during or after the festival.
5. Northern Bass
The Northern Bass festivities are in the summer hotspot of Mangawhai. This three-day festival on Worsfold farm from 29-31 December brings together musicians and DJs, includes plenty of food and drinks, and culminates in a NYE fireworks display.
Those who plan to stay onsite need a camping pass. However, bussing in from other offsite accommodations in Mangawhai is also an option.
6. Highlife NYE Experience
Anyone spending NYE in Aukland should consider ferrying or bussing over to Waiheke Island for the fireworks, DJs, and views from Stonyridge Vineyard. Highlife NYE is a boutique, Ibiza-style experience. The event features music, entertainers, gourmet food, and premium beverages.
Waiheke Island accommodations sell out quickly for those who want to bring in the New Year on an island.
7. Latin Power NYE Latin Festival
The Latin Power NYE Latin Festival features Latin-inspired dancing and music, including reggaeton, funk salsa, merengue, cumbia, bachata, and others. And, of course, the bar will serve popular Latin drinks. The Wynyard Pavilion venue in Auckland will have three different stages with plenty of space to dance away all the worries of 2021.
When it’s time to crash when the party ends at 4 am, there are plenty of places to stay in Aukland.
Cancelled New Years Eve Festivals in NZ
Several NZ festival planners and cities are cancelling or postponing their 2021 New Years Eve festivals because of the threat of Covid-19. NZ NYE celebrations that have been cancelled or postponed include:
- Rhythm and Vines: NZ’s biggest NYE celebration has been postponed until Easter 2022.
- Whairepo Lagoon: Wellington has decided to cancel the traditional Whairepo Lagoon event for 2021.
- New Years Eve Queenstown: Queenstown’s NYE celebration in Earnslaw Park has been cancelled for 2021.
- New Years Eve Christchurch: Christchurch has cancelled the NYE celebration at North Haley Park for 2021.
- Rotorua GLO Festival: Rotorua has cancelled the NYE celebration at Rotorua Village Green for 2021.
- Wave Front: The Coromandel Wave Front NYE celebration at Williamson Park in Whangamata is cancelled for 2021.
- Wondergarden: Auckland has cancelled their NYE festivities in Silo park for 2021.
- Resolution Festival: Auckland’s Resolution Festival for 2021 is cancelled.
- Wild on New Year’s Event: This Waiheke Island celebration is cancelled for 2021.
Bringing in the New Year in New Zealand
New Year’s Eve in New Zealand has always been filled with fun festivals. Even though some are cancelled in 2021, there are plenty of New Years festivals in NZ that Covid hasn’t red-lighted.