Upcoming Bay of Islands Events

There are many regular annual events in Russell and the wider Bay of Islands area.  We have listed a few to showcase the diversity of what is available in the area. Please note, we do endeavour to keep this page as updated and as current as possible, but we cannot guarantee that all events will run as listed – we encourage you to check the links we have provided.

The Old Packhouse - Kerikeri


The Old Packhouse Cafe is open 7 days per week: Our takeaway cafe is open 6.30am till 1.30pm and our dine in cafe is open 8.30am – 4pm daily. The cafes sell our Packhouse Bakery croissants and pies as well as a range of delicious salads, sandwiches and sweet treats. All baguettes and focaccia for our sandwiches are made on site. Our range of breads is available on Saturdays and Sundays. All menu items are made in-house and fresh daily. We pride ourselves on using fresh local produce from our Market growers, and accordingly our menu changes seasonally.

The Market is open Saturdays and Sundays EVERY weekend rain or shine.

Hours: Saturday 8am – 1.30pm. Sunday 8am – 1.30pm.

Every week we have live entertainment from local musicians, a Cash Out facility on site, plenty of free parking, and of course, great Northland hospitality.

We look forward to seeing you! Please check out our facebook page for more information about this weekend’s Markets.
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Cape Brett Challenge 6 June 2021

6th June 2021
Are you game for the North's toughest race?

With 3 epic race options to choose from, there is a distance here for all.

From the beautiful Kaingahoa Marae, you can take on the relentless Rakaumangamanga Mountain Run, a brutal 42km trail masterpiece - The 17km Whangamumu which is certainly not to be underestimated - or the 7km Pukehuia with the family.
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Bay of Islands Jazz & Blues Festival 13, 14 & 15 August 2021

Badges cost $80 for all three days, $60 for day passes

Musicians are still being confirmed for the festival.... but we do know they will all be from New Zealand and they will all be great!

Please note that badges are not posted out. Just exchange your order for a metal badge when you arrive at the festival from any of the venues. Just print out the order or show us on your phone. It's easy!
You can buy badges from this website or any of the venues.

We have a new ticketing system through Eventbrite.

Ferry Passes
​People who have ordered weekend ferry passes can pick them up from venues with their badges. Please keep in mind if you are staying in Russell, pick up your ferry passes from The Duke of Marlborough Hotel. If you decide to buy a ferry pass, you can buy them from the ferry offices at Paihia or Russell. These are only worthwhile if you want to travel back and forth several times.

Children under 15 are free.

Top acts from the US, Australia and New Zealand.
Be in the Bay of Islands as it comes alive with the sounds of smooth jazz and sultry blues.
Three days of music, over 150 hours of quality jazz and blues
Fantastic venues in Paihia and Russell.
Plus loads of free street music

Free shuttle bus
You will also be able to hop on our free shuttle bus around the venues around Paihia.


A printed programme booklet with information about all the musicians will be available for $5 from any venue. Please note this is subject to change without notice.
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Bay of Islands Walking Weekend 15, 16, & 17 October 2021

A fun social weekend with a great variety of walks to choose from for all ages and abilities.

The Bay of Islands Walking Weekend has over 20 walks to choose from. You can walk the islands – travelling out by sail boat, tall ship or launch, we walk to vineyards for tastings and platters, stroll past oyster farms and enjoy seafood feasts, stay overnight at Iconic Cape Brett, we walk and kayak and we walk and bike! The weekend is over 3 days, walks are guided, and group size is limited. It is a fun social weekend right in the heart of the Bay of Islands.

The weekend makes walking accessible and affordable around the islands, many walks are on private land you can only do on this weekend, and many give you a fantastic flavour of the Bay of Islands. It is in its 8th year and has many repeat walkers coming each year which speaks volumes for the event.
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PIC Coastal Classic Yacht Race 22 Oct 2021

Annual Auckland to Russell Coastal Yacht Race

The PIC Coastal Classic is a 119 nautical mile annual yacht race that is the largest coastal race in the Southern hemisphere attracting both recreational and high level sailors.
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“it!” Bay of Islands Food & Wine Festival 6 November 2021

This Boutique Food and Wine Festival is in its 12th year in the Bay of Islands and just keeps on getting better! This is “it!!” - the event not to be missed - Love it!... Drink it!.... Bite it!.....Sing it!

This is “it!!” – the event not to be missed – Love it! Cook it! Drink it! Bite it! Sing it! A successful recipe of fantastic food, wine, entertainment and friendly locals all mixed up together in the Bay of Islands.

Along with mouthwatering food, award winning vineyards, beer, and cider – we have lots of fun going on around the place – there are real kiwi competitions such as “Kina Sucking”, “Oyster Shucking and Eating” and of course “Pie Eating” – we are in Pai-hia after all.

Live music on stage all day which can be seen from all over the festival – it is a great friendly festival where you are never far from the action.
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Kerikeri Half Marathon 21 November 2021

Come join other running and jigging enthusiasts alike in this picturesque, rural half marathon that runs from Okaihau to Kerikeri.
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Bay of Islands Sailing Week 26, 27, 28 and 29 Jan 2022

An annual event, running for over ten years, the week of racing is run by a dedicated group of volunteers. Whether you are planning to participate or observe, it’s a fabulous week of sailing. Photo Credit: Will Calver oceanphotography.co.nz
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Waitangi Day Paihia 6 Feb 2021

Whilst this event is not in Russell, it is our national day and there is no way you should not go to this at least once in your life!
Ferries leave Russell direct to Waitangi from early in the morning. See excellent displays of wakas, food stalls, rides for all ages, so grab your camera and get your nationalism on!

Waitangi Day, New Zealand's national day.
Every year on 6 February – Waitangi Day – people of all communities and backgrounds gather at Waitangi to commemorate the first signing of New Zealand’s founding document: Te Tiriti o Waitangi, The Treaty of Waitangi, on 6 February 1840. Waitangi Day is recognised as New Zealand’s national day and is the most important marker in the country’s history.

Ongoing recognition of the Treaty of Waitangi as the nation’s founding document will continue to keep this celebration alive, as the Treaty continues to live as part of New Zealand’s past, present and future.

On the 6 February the Treaty Grounds closes its buildings for the day and the grounds become the location for the Waitangi Day Festival.

The free festival at the Treaty Grounds starts at 5am with a Dawn Service in Te Whare Rūnanga (Carved Meeting House). All-day entertainment creates a fun, festival atmosphere, with performance stages on the Upper Treaty Grounds, at the Waka Shelter and on the sports field opposite the Treaty Grounds.

More than 150 market stalls offer an amazing array of art and crafts, clothing and a wide variety of food options. Children’s activities include bouncy castles, kids racing cars and sports games.
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Bay of Islands Waka Festival 13 March 2021

Waka Ama paddling , all distances, teams, 2 person and single paddlers – suits all ages and all experience levels!

We welcome you to a festival of Waka involving Waka Ama and traditional Waka paddlers.

This is a 2 day event, with races for all ages – sprints, short distances and a long race. Novice midgets through to serious paddlers! It is a fun event and each day will finish with a meal and prize giving.

The base is the beach at Ti Tii Beach Bridge end. Great for spectators as well.
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BDO Cycle Tour of Northland 18 March 2021

The BDO Tour of Northland is a 4 Day cycling event around the Northland Region

With the postponement of the 2020 event 2021 will be the 20th edition of the Northland Event after 2001 saw a keen group of riders take part in the very successful inaugural event.

2021 will see us go the reverse direction again (Same as 2017/18/19)

The event will follow Northland’s fully sealed Twin Coast Discovery Highway which touches New Zealand’s essence: unsurpassed nature estate, scenery, fishing, diving, walks, culture and heritage, golf, food, wine and people.

You will discover New Zealand in a nutshell. A must for participants from both within New Zealand and overseas, the event takes in both the East Coast and West Coast of Northland.

All abilities are welcome to participate – elite riders, competitive masters, weekend warriors, cycling tourists, and social or corporate groups – this is a fun few days with a great bunch.
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BOI Country Rock Festival 7, 8 & 9 May 2021

2021 festival is on (Covid permitting)!

Friday 7 to Sunday 9 May 2021
The Bay of Islands Country Rock Festival features good music and friendship in the stunning setting of the Bay of Islands of New Zealand – one of the top tourist spots of the country. Each year the festival features more than 40 acts performing at multiple venues. Street music in Paihia and Russell also gives you a chance to enjoy the music as you dine at a nearby cafe or join in some line dancing.

FANTASTIC VALUE = You pay $80 and we give you more than 45 bands to watch perform over the three days of the festival.

Check out the musicians, venues and news. We have details of accommodation available from our supporting hotels and motels, with phone numbers and links to their websites where available. Many musicians and fans book year to year, so make sure you don’t miss out for the next festival.

For further information on the festival, contact organiser Shirley May.
Phone: 027 235 0106

You can also buy badges OR vouchers to exchange for badges from:
– This website
– On arrival at any of the venues
– Wards Music Whangarei

Please note that the programme and musicians attending is subject to change at any time, sometimes at very short notice.
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