If you’re interested in all things French, from food to entertainment, then the Akaroa Frenchfest is the place for you!
Located in the South Island, near Christchurch, Akaroa is a region teeming with beauty and when the Frenchfest comes to town it’s transformed into a mecca for all things French. With a schedule packed with entertainment and culture, the region comes together to celebrate the unique history of Akaroa.
Held over a weekend within the school holidays, the event begins with a street party on Friday the 6th of October.
Beginning at 6 pm and running until 10 pm, the event is family-friendly with the local band, Rhythm Method, roving entertainers, fire performers and fun throughout the evening.
On Saturday, the highlight of the festival is The Landing, a theatrical reenactment of the dramatically historic arrival of the Comte de Paris back in the 1840’s. With local traders, sailors and whalers setting up at the trading post on the beach, you’ll watch the story unfold as told by the Akaroa Heritage Festival Society.
The performance runs from 8:45 am until 10:30 am and is an unmissable experience that all ages will enjoy. It is followed by a flag raising and a parade running from the beach to the Recreation Ground led by the Canterbury Brass Band.
The rest of the day is filled with market stalls, food vendors, games and activities, all French-inspired, running from 10:30 am to 5 pm.
On Saturday evening, locals and visitors are welcome to attend a ticketed cabaret event, Le Cabaret Renault, which is to provide an evening of frivolous fun with music and dancing. The evening begins at 7 pm, with tickets costing $25 each.
The fun doesn’t stop there, with Sunday offering a family fun day at Onuku. The Whanau Day at Onuku Marae runs from 11 am to 3 pm and includes a pōwhiri – a Māori welcoming ceremony – at 11am ($10 per person), creation stories, local Māori artwork, historical tours, food preparation at the whata and a lesson on how the French learnt to play a traditional Māori game, Ki-o-Rahi.
This event is perfect for all ages and includes a jam-packed itinerary that will make it one of the best family-friendly events of the year.
Dates: 6th to 8th of October, 2017
Prices: From $10 to $25
Images: Akaroa Frenchfest