There’s always something on in Whanganui. Our annual events celebrate what makes Whanganui unique, from our rich heritage to our vibrant arts scene to our great sporting achievements. We also have plenty of smaller, niche events on every week, thanks to our vibrant and active community. Check out the listings below.
Vintage Weekend Whanganui
If you’re a vintage enthusiast or just yearn for yesteryear you must come to the Vintage Weekend, Whanganui’s premiere heritage event. Spread over four days, during Wellington Anniversary Weekend in January, we guarantee you will be transported to a bygone era! Music abounds at the Caboodle. Dress-ups, markets, bands, food and wine – it’s a few days of old-time fun and tomfoolery for all! One of the top events in Whanganui.
Whanganui Artists Open Studios
In late March, visit over 60 studios and galleries and over 150 artists studios with outstanding examples in glass, furniture, printmaking, ceramic, jewellery and painting. The trail points you towards local artists and studios nestled along the banks of the serene Whanganui river, or hidden in the hills in a huge old brick kiln. Great art, great prices and great experiences – the best showcase of many art events in Whanganui!
Whanganui Cricket Festival
Established over 10 years ago, the Wanganui Cricket Festival runs for three weeks in January for Years 5 to 10 with each age groups competing for a four-day period. The event also includes the NZ National Girls Cricket Tournament and competition is of the highest calibre. With traditionally spectacular weather in January, the games are held at Victoria Park, Whanganui’s premiere cricket ground. A great time to support your budding cricketer and combine a family holiday!
Masters Games Whanganui
Centered at the Games Village in The War Memorial Centre, this nine-day event comprises more than 55 different sports and 2,400 individual events as well as nightly entertainment. Alternating between Whanganui and Dunedin each year and with offerings for ages 20 and up, the NZ Masters Games attracts competitors not only from all over New Zealand, but also from more than 20 countries internationally. A great time and great place!
V8 thunder at Shelter View Jet Sprints Park in Whanganui!
The fourth round of the NZ Jet Sprint Championships with up to forty boats speeding and slamming around a purpose-built course within a natural amphitheater ensuring you don’t miss out on any of the action! Adrenalin pumping and thrilling! Make sure you don’t miss this March 21st event – the last round in the series! One of several great motorsport events in Whanganui!
Arts and Crafts Movement Walking Ramble
Offered again by popular demand. Covering several blocks on foot, see key inner-city places which made Whanganui a centre of Arts and Crafts Movement design. Refreshments provided. Hosted by Whanganui District ...Read more
The Amazing Dinosaur Discovery
The Amazing Dinosaur Discovery is a 2 hour interactive dinosaur walk through that brings prehistoric times alive again! Come and explore the prehistoric ages and discover over 30 lifelike dinosaurs. You don't want ...Read more
DC-3 Scenic Flights at Whanganui Vintage Weekend 2021
Whanganui Airport Terminal
Air Chathams fabulous 1945 Douglas DC-3, is coming back to Whanganui for Vintage Weekend 2021! She will be returning in the original NAC (National Airways Corporation) livery having undergone a restoration in ...Read more
Billy Webb Challenge 2021
Whanganui River - Roadside Stories
Whanganui’s proud rowing history comes to life in this legendary long-distance single sculling race! The ‘Billy Webb’ commemorates New Zealand’s first professional single sculling world champion – William ...Read more
A 2 hour cruise on the Whanganui River, falling on the same weekend as Whanganui’s famous Vintage Weekend. Express your Steampunk alter ego, join in and enjoy the shenanigans. Fully licensed galley with hot and cold ...Read more
Billy Webb Challenge 2021
Whanganui Riverboat Centre Museum
Whanganui’s proud rowing history comes to life in this legendary long distance single sculling race! The ‘Billy Webb’ commemorates New Zealand’s first professional single sculling world champion - William ...Read more
Bayleys Whanganui Vintage Weekend
In Whanganui, we begin every year with a big, loud, colourful party! While enjoying an eclectic range of vintage and celebration-themed events, we rejoice in how lucky we are to live in this humming place filled with ...Read more
Cruising at 11
Enjoy river travel as it used to be as you listen to stories, take in the beautiful scenery, send a message with the homing pigeons and visit the engine room during this unique and authentic cruise aboard our Paddle ...Read more
UCOL Taster Workshop Whanganui
See what UCOL has to offer with a taster workshop. The taster workshops will run for 1.5 hours, and there will be a maximum of 15 participants in each one, register now so you don't miss out! Register before 5 ...Read more
The Crooners - Operatunity
Whanganui War Memorial Centre
Cruise down memory lane and swoon over smooth melodies, love songs and tight harmonies delivered with lots of pizzazz! Starring singers Karl Perigo, Russell Dixon and Sharon Emirali, with a fabulous live band ...Read more
Jane Winstone Retirement Village
This is the theme of Cecily Shaw’s next vocal recital, coming at the end of January to Palmerston North, Whanganui and Marton. She will be accompanied by the expert Manawatu pianist Guy Donaldson. Mezzo-soprano ...Read more
The Original Gypsy Fair - Est'd 1990
For over 30 years in its current format, The Original Gypsy Fair has been travelling NZ and we will be back in the River City at the World famous Kowhai park for our 20th fair of the 2020/2021 season. Bigger, ...Read more
Cemetery Circuit Street Races
Of international fame and run for the first time in 1951, this event captures the hearts and minds of motorcycle enthusiasts everywhere! Formula 1, BEARS, classics and side cars, international and national legends, this street circuit is one mile long with eight corners, two railway crossings, an over-bridge and blind S’s beside the old Whanganui cemetery. If you have just a sniff of petrolhead in you, you won’t want to miss this. Held every year on Boxing Day (26th December) – one of the top events in Whanganui.