Every year on 6 February - Waitangi Day - people of all communities, backgrounds and creeds gather to commemorate the signing of New Zealand’s most historic document: Te Tiriti o Waitangi - The Treaty of Waitangi.
On Waitangi Day, the Waitangi Treaty Grounds closes its buildings for the day and the grounds become the location for the Waitangi Day Festival. This free public festival features all-day entertainment, market stalls and children’s activities, and is open to all.
Waitangi Day at the Treaty Grounds starts at 5am with the traditional Dawn Service in Te Whare Rūnanga - the carved meeting house. Continuous entertainment takes place over three different areas of the grounds: the Upper Treaty Grounds, the Waka Stage and the Sports Field opposite the Treaty Grounds.
Some 150 market stalls are present, offering art and crafts, clothing and a wide variety of food for sale.
Children’s activities include bouncy castles, kids racing cars and sports games.