Music festivals normally book big name global artists to lure a crowd, leaving local artists sitting at the bottom of the line-up in small font. But Wellington’s Homegrown festival (kicking it since 2008) is filled exclusively with Kiwi musicians. Six stages are split by genre and wandering across them is the best way to discover new artists, surrounded in a carnival-like atmos.
Here are some ideas from Roadtrippers for travellers from Gisborne or Hawkes Bay.
Where else can you ride around in a gigantic five seater souped up motorbike, not wear a helmet (tiaras are OK), and tell the driver where to go? You’re already on a roadie but a forty-minute blast with Vic will put you in a rock star mood for Homegrown. Make sure you ask for some open road full throttle moments.
It’s off the main drag (48 minutes from Waipukurau) but Te Paerahi is the best old school beach for a swim and quick lounge on some golden sand. There’s a pub that serves up country style home cooking and ten minutes south is the longest place name in the world. You won’t be able to say it quickly but you will get a good selfie next to Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateaturipukakapikimaungahoronukupokaiwhenuakitanatahu. You can also freedom camp at Te Paerahi.
A couple of artisan bakers run the Clareville Bakery and it’s usually always packed (a good sign) but they’re super fast at serving customers. They’ve won pie awards and it’s home to the Clareville Cracker, a fancy Lavash flatbread found at Moore Wilson’s, plus their stone baked sourdough and range of breads are OMG.