Held each year on the Monday closest to the 29th, the day of the founding of Auckland Province, of which Auckland is New Zealand’s largest city. This was the day in 1840 when the Maoris ceded sovereignty of the province to the British. After laying the foundation stone for the city of Auckland in September of that year, the event was celebrated with a regatta. The regatta has now become the key event to commemorate the province’s founding.
The 2013 anniversary regatta is to be held on January 28th along with the other celebrations. The regatta has grown to be the world’s biggest one day sailing regatta and this year celebrates 173 years. The event attracts a huge number of participants from around the world and a large fleet of vessels from tall ships to sloops, gaff riggers, racing keelers to sailing dinghies, multi hulls to radio controlled boats, traditional waka ama canoes to sea scout crafts, classic yachts, several vintage tug boats and America Cup prototypes are expected to participate.
While it certainly is a great day for sailors so will it be for thousands of spectators who will throng every vantage point of the Viaduct and Wynyard Quarter to witness the event. Additional enjoyment will be provided in the form of free family entertainment and dragon boat and waka ama racing. Spectators will have an opportunity to get close to the priceless heritage vessels that will be berthed in the Viaduct Harbour and at night they will be all lit up providing a spectacular sight.
Other events held to celebrate the holiday include fire fighting displays, a parade through the Viaduct, special anniversary day cruises, Ports of Auckland public tours by boat, rides on SS Puke – a steam tug, sailing on a square rigged brigantine, the Auckland Seafood Festival featuring chefs from around the world complemented by several varieties of craft beers and wine and free fishing events for families among other competitions and draws.
Being in every region of the country from the north to the southernmost tip, Millennium & Copthorne Hotels NZ is able to provide special regional experiences like no other. Stay at this prominent chain of New Zealand hotels to experience the country at its best. In January enjoy the advantages of staying at the chain’s Auckland hotels to experience some of the city’s best entertainment offerings.
Uditha Dharmawardhane is a travel writer who writes under the pen name Roland Lefevre. He specializes in creating features on leisure as well as business travel destinations across the globe.