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Festival Week
12th -18th February

The Island Bay Festival is back! Have a summer Bay-cation and discover your community. The Festival is all about sharing the talent and diversity of the South Coast. This year we have many events and opportunities to get involved in. Check out the full list below!


Wellington Southern Bays Historical Society

Theme: Festivals Past!

Discover more about your neighbourhood, past and present through the Southern Bays Historical Society. The aim of this group is to provide the community with a good understanding of the history and people of the area. Drop in for a cuppa to find out more.

This talk is a highly entertaining and nostalgic. Look at our food and drink preferences from your grandparents time until today. It is guaranteed that you will be nodding your heads in recognition of these trends, and reliving fond memories.

Everyone is welcome to attend.

Supper is provided.

South Wellington Baptist Church, 284 The Parade
12 February 2024

FREE, but koha is welcome.


Baby Rock & Rhyme

Join us for these fun and free sessions to interact with your baby through the magic of story and song! Rhyme, rhythm, repetition and music are the building blocks of language for babies. Recommend for babies/children aged 0 – 2 years. Run by Wellington Libraries. You are welcome to stay after the session, meet other parents/caregivers, chat and have a cuppa. Free tea/coffee and biscuits provided. Nau mai rā tātou katoa Everybody is welcome For further information contact Island Bay Community Centre.

Run by Wellington Libraries.

Island Bay Community Centre
13 February 2024


10:15am - 10:45am

Pilates at the Park with Faye Tohbyn

Please bring: mat, koha and wear loose comfortable clothing

50 min in the open air.

Bring a yoga mat.

Pilates is a low-impact exercise that focuses on core, strength building, alignment, flexibility and mobility.

Gentle exercise is a lovely way to start the day, to do so out in the fresh air adds another dimension to the experience.  Pilates is a form of low-impact exercise that aims to strengthen the body and improve alignment and flexibility.  Exercises can include an emphasis on core strength for general fitness and wellbeing.  This mat session does not involve any pilates machines or equipment and is suitable for beginners.

Faye Tohbyn is an experienced mat Pilates Instructor. Leveraging her training Faye will guide you through a beginner’s mat pilates session.  This is a great way to sample mat pilates, it may inspire you to consider joining other sessions run by Faye and to further embrace Pilates as an exercise form.

If you miss this event, there are regular classes every Tuesday at the Island Bay Community Centre.

Shorland Park
14 February 2024


9:00am - 9:45am

South Coast Studio - Yoga Meets Life Drawing

Do a pose, draw a pose:

Based on the teaching methods of British artist Cecil Collins, we impart a non-academic style of life drawing to help you let go of inhibitions and preconceptions, connect with your body and be fully present in your mark-making.

So it makes sense to do some yoga first and let that take us exactly where we want to be; centered and in our best space.

What to expect:

1 hour of guided Vinyasa Yoga Practice

1 hour of guided Life Drawing

Refreshments, korero and connection.

This workshop welcomes all levels.

Price inclusive of art materials & refreshments.

Please bring your yoga mat.




South Coast Studio
14 February 2024

Festival Special price $40 p/p

6:00pm to 8:00pm

Island Bay Walking Group

Walkers of all ages are welcome to come along and join in the fun with this walking group on Thursday mornings. As well as doing many local walks, they also have adventures further afield including - Botanic Gardens, Days Bay, and Cable Car adventures. 

Come and meet them on Thursday mornings at 10am, departing at 10.10am.

Botanic Gardens, Days Bay, and Cable Car adventures
15 February 2024



Coast Walk - Introducing the Marine Reserve Video Tour

Walk along the coast from Te Kopahou Visitor Centre to the island Bay Snorkel Trail for an intro to the Marine Reserve Video Tour. Participants can scan the QR codes and meet underwater videographer Nicole Miller, who will be talking about the video tour and Taputeranga Marine Reserve. Walking tour starts at the entrance to the car park of the Te Kopahou Visitor Centre at 11am. Find out more about the Taputeranga Marine. Bring your coffee cup for a take away coffee at the Beach House Kiosk or join us half way at the car park opposite 432 The Esplanade approx. 11.30am. We then continue our walk to the Island Bay Snorkel Trail (approx. 30min). 

Reserve Video Tour here:

Car park of the Te Kopahou Visitor Centre
17 February 2024


11:00am - 12.15pm

Manawa Karioi Nature Trail Opening

We are inviting the community to join the Manawa Karioi committee and Tapu te Ranga Marae trust in celebrating the opening of the development of Te Ara o te Wao Nui a Tāne/The Nature Trail as part of the Island Bay Festival on Saturday. 

Thanks to a generous donation from T D Mankelow Family Charitable Fund, Mawa Karioi were to create a special track with fun educational features to discover along the track.  

Next to the Tapu te Ranga Marae car park
17 February 2024


1:00pm - 2.30pm

Tapu Te Ranga Swim

The annual Tapu Te Ranga 'Island to the beach' swim. 

Swim from the shores of Tapu Te Ranga island to the shores of Island Bay. 

Prizes for: Overall winner, Female winner, Male winner, Kid winner, Best costume!


  • Wetsuits are not compulsory but are highly recommended for swimmers.

  • Swimmers under 12 years of age must be accompanied by a competent adult swimmer and their registration form must be signed by adult.

  • Numbers will be limited to a maximum of 100 swimmers.

  • Swim safety briefing will take place on beach to the right of the Island Bay jetties (on The Esplanade) prior to the commencement of ferrying of the swimmers. All participants must attend. 

Island Bay
17 February 2024

$20 per swimmer - cash only

8:00am - set up
8:30am - swimmer safety briefing
8:35 - shuttle swimmers to island
9:00am - swim start
9:30am - race close, prize giving

Nela’s Chai - Vegetable fried rice with Raita workshop

Discover the health benefits of Indian spices in this cooking workshop with Island Bay food entrepreneur Nela Patel from Nela’s Chai.

Nela Patel demonstrates how to cook a range of easy and cost effective Indian dishes using her own ethically sourced, roasted and ground spices direct from India!

Come and be inspired with tasty, healthy recipes in the comfort of Nela’s home.

Note: The dishes demonstrated in the workshop are all vegetarian. Nela will discuss gluten-free and vegan options too.


Nela's House - 12B Murray St Island Bay
18 February 2024


2.00pm - 3.00pm

South Coast Studio - Open invitation

South Coast Studio is extending an open invitation to join in any regularly scheduled weekly workshop during the festival week for half price. Classes are open to all levels, no experience needed, all materials are included. Just book your space and come along to have some fun.

Monday - 4:30 – 6:30

Draw Your Way 

Tuesday  - 1:00-3:30pm or 5:30 – 7:30pm  and Friday 1:00 - 3:30pm 



Wednesday - 6-8pm

Yoga Meets Life Drawing 




South Coast Studio Unit 1 408 The Esplanade Island Bay
12 February 2024


Choose your time

The Story of Paekawakawa Bush

A 15 minute slide show in the Island Bay Community Centre Lounge. Where is it? How did it come about? Who looks after it? Who paid for it? 

Kawakawa tea & Kawakawa biscuits will be served

Island Bay Community Centre Lounge
14 February 2024

Koha for reserve funds appreciated


Yoga on the Beach with Natalie

Come and start your week with some movement and connection, 7:00am yoga flow on our beautiful beach here in Island Bay. We will focus on our lower body, the class is suitable for all levels - no previous yoga experience required, just come with an open mind and a touch of curiosity. Bring a mat, or towel and a layer to keep warm at the beginning and end. See you there!

Island Bay Beach
14 February 2024



Community Gardening Volunteers

Join us in the Community Centre garden for our weekly gardening session. It is an opportunity to get your hands in the earth, socialise, and help grow food for our community. 

All welcome, please feel free to pop by for as much or as little as you want!

Island Bay Community Centre
14 February 2024


9.30am - 11.00am

Mural Blessing

As you may have seen, the stunning mural artwork by Greta Menzies on the fence along the pedestrian laneway between Clyde Street and the Parade is now complete.

This is part of the village upgrades in Island Bay, and Council is humbly excited to add this pride of place to the project.

We would like to invite you to join us in celebrating this work at 12:45pm on Friday 16 February, at the Island Bay Community Centre where the artist and team behind the mural will talk about the project.

Please RSVP by Tuesday 13 February, to

We look forward to this celebration and hope to see you there.

Laneway between Clyde Street and the Parade
16 February 2024



Red Mole Doco Screening + Q&A

Annie Goldson’s new feature documentary explores the origins, performances, personalities and fate of Red Mole, who burst onto the scene at the height of the counterculture in Aotearoa NZ in the early 1970s. 

An indefinable genre of poetry, dance, mask, fire-eating and rock music, Red Mole took young NZ by storm, then departed for NYC in the 1980s where they reached some acclaim until the demands of the city fragmented its core. Red Mole: A Romance is both a social history and a poignant personal story.

‘Unmissable – a blast and a joy’ – Graeme Tuckett, SST

‘Ribald and entertaining – and deeply emotional’ – Chris Bourke, NZIFF

Watch the trailer

More about the film

Empire Cinema
17 February 2024

Marine life at the Island Bay Snorkel Trail

Discover the marine life at the Island Bay Snorkel Trail (weather dependent). Are you a keen snorkeler who wants to get to know your local marine life better? Bring your gear/waterproof camera. Nicole Miller, Chair Friends of Taputeranga Marine Reserve will be at the Snorkel Trail to point out local critters to snorkelers.

Car park, opposite 194 The Esplanade, Island Bay.
17 February 2024



Bait House Aquarium

The Bait House is open and teeming with marine life for your enjoyment!

The Island Bay Marine Education Centre's Bait House Aquarium is an interactive marine experience based on our south coast in Island Bay. There are lots of creatures to see inside so come along and be inspired.

The most popular feature inside the Bait House is the "Touch Gently Pool" where visitors of all ages have a chance to hold some of the marine animals in their care.  Even your little ones can get involved.  All are welcome and encouraged to touch the animals under the guidance of experienced Marine Biologists and knowledgeable volunteers.  The kids can probably show you what they have learned about in school. 

There’s plenty to see and lots of support to ensure your visit is a memorable one.

Bait House Aquarium
18 February 2024

$5 Kids / $10 adults (pay at venue)

10:00am - 3:00pm

Nela's Chai - Vegetarian curry with Raita workshop

A rare opportunity to learn how to cook Indian food from scratch! Ever wondered about the health benefits of Indian food? Come learn from Nela of Nela’s Chai.

You’ll learn from Nela as she shares her knowledge about the health benefits of Indian spices. With a long held passion for using ethically sourced spices in her delicious food, Nela’s spice blends are proven to aid in the likes of improved digestion, anti-inflammatory properties and better circulation.

Note: The dishes demonstrated in the workshop are all vegetarian. Nela will discuss gluten-free and vegan options too.


Nela's House - 12B Murray St Island Bay
18 February 2024

$15 per Family

4:30pm - 5:30pm
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