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How To Make The Most Of Waitangi Day Weekend

Waitangi Day is coming (February 6) and although Queenstown doesn’t go full ball with celebrations, it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy some of life’s little pleasures over what should be a great long weekend.

Keep it simple and follow our five steps to making the most of the Waitangi Day weekend.

Coffee Date

If there’s a better way to start of the weekend than with a well made morning coffee, I don’t know what it is. There are plenty of cafes with many a talented barista to choose from in Queenstown, but three of the best have to be Bespoke Kitchen, Vudu Café & Larder and The Exchange.

Stretch the legs

From Queenstown Hill to Moke Lake Loop, Moonlight Track, Tiki Trail, Ben Lomond and Bob’s Cove, hiking trails are in abundance in Queenstown. Get out there, if not for the epic Instagram shot, then for the guilt-free gorging post walk.

Sweet treat yo’self

Queenstown’s OG chocolate shop, Patagonia Chocolates, makes each and every one of their “velvety smooth” milk, white and dark chocolates by hand using “traditional artisan techniques and love”.  And you can seriously taste the love.

Everyone loves their ice creams, and the 71% Dark Chocolate & Citrus Peels With Caramelised Nuts (Belgian dark chocolate with almonds and cashews) comes highly recommended by the chocolatier … and by us.

Get enlightened

What weekend wouldn’t be better off with a little “awakening of the enlightenment within”? Pristine Mind Meditation with renowned meditation master, Orgyen Chowang Rinpoche, is for those pursuing a happier life, seeking a spiritual journey, or simply looking to try something new.

Sip cocktails

Something sweet, something spicy, something intoxicatingly fancy and daringly exotic. You’ll find whatever floats your cocktail boat in this fair city. Bardeaux, Eichardt’s Bar and Little Blackwood all make mean mixes, but our favourite (surprise, surprise) is Reds Bar.

A few Full Montes (Amaro Montenegro, Espolon Blanco, pomegranate juice, basil and lime) and you’ll be flying.

And when it comes to Waitangi Day itself, there will be a community celebration of the commemoration of the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi (Tiriti o Waitangi) held on February 6 at Earnslaw Park from 12-3pm. There’ll be local musicians, storytelling, arts activities, cultural stalls and a Hangi.

words by niall roeder


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