WOMAD Festival. © Duchesne Markham

WOMAD: a world of music, art and dance

View the map


World of Music, Arts and Dance, to give WOMAD its full due.

We have Peter Gabriel to thank for the first WOMAD, back in 1982. (Imagine what he was wearing! Eek.)

The man who was at the forefront of bringing World Music to the, um, world would be surprised and delighted by the extent of his vision — and look how far it’s travelled!

New Plymouth has hosted WOMAD since 2005. And, to use a quaint and formal term, it goes off. Its appeals are many, but one certainly is the sheer breath-taking breadth of performers that grace the stages. The Bowl of Brooklands rings to the sound and vision of a staggering array of dancers, performers and musicians from truly anywhere and everywhere.

Local dubstep, dance-pop from Mali, South African a cappella; legends, the children of legends, standing on the shoulders of giants, jiving, gyrating and vibing from dawn till, well, dawn, really.

The Bowl of Brooklands hosts them all, itself a natural amphitheatre of some reckoning, ensuring the congas, castanets and clapping fly through the air with the greatest of ease to your awaiting eyes and ears.

What’s ultra-smart about WOMAD is that it’s organised to a frightening degree to cater to all-comers, new-comers and old WOMAD hands. If you just want to pitch the tent and get in amongst it, step this way. If you need to entertain the kids in between catching your favourite acts, there are arts and crafts for our future WOMAD stage-gracers, an array of specially targeted activities that are amazing — and totally free.

Camp or glamp, champ, the choice is yours. It’s a festival, with that full outdoor, laid-back, summertime festival vibe, yet every need is catered to and the fantastic administration, and long experience, of the organisers ensures a maxed-out, but chilled-out, good time for all. You can even zhooj it a tad and do the Wildernest thing where a concierge, no less, will show you to your already pitched and perfectly readied tent so you can just let the fun begin.

Be the first to comment on this page. You cannot post comments until you have logged in. Please log in or register if you don't have an account.

More stories like this

Find out more

Things to do > Out and about

Mount Taranaki: picture-perfect peak

You want a nice, classically shaped volcano? Well, look no further.

Find out more

Things to do > Out and about

Taranaki's gardens: a sight to make the heart sing

Taranaki's gardens are a sight to make the heart sing — especially since you don’t have to do the weeding.

Find out more

Things to do > Out and about

New Plymouth’s Coastal Walkway: welcome to Taradise

New Plymouth has grown into a funky little city with the view from just about everywhere dominated by Taranaki’s paternal presence.

Find out more

Things to do > Out and about

Egmont National Park: the shining mountain

Seen from above, the Egmont National Park on the western coast of the North Island forms almost a perfect circle, surrounding the beautiful Mount Taranaki.

Where to stay in New Plymouth

Show me all Places to stay

From $88
Braemar Motor Inn

Braemar Motor Inn offers clean and comfortable accommodation at an affordable price. Located only 300m from downtown shopping and business centre. ...

Book now

Rosandra Retreat

Beautiful, modern 1-bedroom self-contained detached luxury cottage/unit, nestled amongst gardens with a rural & sea views. Serviced daily. Ideal fo...

10 /10
From $44
Fitzroy Beach Holiday Park

At the beach, in the city - Fitzroy Beach Holiday Park is sited in a beautiful tranquil and sheltered setting adjoining New Plymouth's award-winnin...

9 /10
From $90
Carrington Motel

Carrington Motel is the closest affordable New Plymouth Motel to Pukekura Park and the bowl of Brooklands, TSB Stadium, and close to racecourse as ...

Book now