Come late December and thousands of Kiwis get ready for their annual
holiday. They look forward to lazy days at the beach or the bach (or
crib), games of backyard cricket, food on the barbie and the holiday
uniform of shorts, jandals and T-shirts.
Christmas in New Zealand is less about snow and sleigh bells and more about sun, sand and backyard barbecues. Over the holiday season we explore the Kiwi Christmas experience –
from Abel Tasman’s first New Zealand Christmas in 1642 to the declining
reign of the Queen’s message
First observed in 1916, Anzac Day - 25 April - commemorates those killed in war as well as honouring returned servicemen and women. The ceremonies that are held at war memorials across the country, or in places overseas where New Zealanders gather, are rich in tradition and ritual.
The Anzac Day ceremony of 25 April is a form of military funeral and follows a particular pattern. The day's ceremonies have two major parts: one at dawn and another, more public event, later in the morning.
Every year on 6 February, New Zealand marks the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840. For most people, Waitangi Day is a holiday; for many, and especially for Māori, it is a time for reflecting on the Treaty and its place in modern New Zealand.