We are absolutely spoiled for choice in New Zealand wedding venues – it almost makes me want to get married again… Whether you’re visiting from overseas or planning your wedding close to home, the land of the long white cloud really makes the most picture perfect backdrop for your big day. Discover the best Aotearoa has on offer with the top 10 locations to get married in New Zealand.
In New Zealand you’re never far from the sea or the mountains, as well as the best of everything beautiful in between – vineyards, gardens and hilltop weddings are our specialty, as Nicole Warne’s beautiful Wanaka wedding recently was testament to!
In all honesty, you are probably going to struggle to choose just one of the many beautiful New Zealand wedding venues … but that is a good problem to have, right?
Hawkes Bay Weddings
Where better to get married than in New Zealand’s oldest wine region? Napier, Hastings and Havelock North are home to some of the most wonderful wedding venues, not to mention wonderful wine. There will definitely be a venue that will suit your dream wedding, with indoor and outdoor venues, wineries, vineyards or even stunning old art-deco buildings. Hawkes Bay is known for its beautiful sunny weather during wedding season, making that outdoor wedding all the more achievable. There are no shortage of photographers, make up artists and wedding planners in the Hawkes Bay to make your wedding become a reality. Having lived in Napier and later Taradale, I’d love to go back for a Hawkes Bay wedding.
Here are some venues to choose from in the Hawkes Bay.
- Black Barn Vineyard
Incredible Havelock North Vineyard Black Barn has 6 different spaces on offer to host all of your wedding aspirations – it’s quite simple a perfect wedding venue.
- The Dome
The Dome is located in central Napier, with stunning views of the Pacific Ocean. There is also accomodation, making it easy for both you and your guests
- The Old Church
This venue can accomodate around 175 guests for your big day. The Old Church also has great options for winter weddings for those of you wanted to do something different.
- Mission Estate
With beautiful views and incredible surroundings, how could you say no to the Mission Estate winery, the oldest in New Zealand, since 1851?
Bay of Islands Weddings
Just a short drive out of Auckland, the Bay of Islands is a gorgeous place to say “I do”. Packed with fascinating New Zealand history including the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi, as well as plenty of beaches, the Bay of Islands is the perfect place for a romantic summer wedding, with lots of activities for your guests to take part in while they are there. There are many options for both an intimate ceremony or a big wedding, with both indoor and outdoor venues. Who wouldn’t want a wedding outside in the Bay of Islands’ surreal scenery.
Here are some wedding venues to choose from in the Bay of Islands.
- Treghan Lodge
Located in KeriKeri, Treghan Lodge is a beautiful lodge offering luxury accommodation, as well as a small wedding venue. There is a gorgeous relaxed atmosphere for you and your guests to enjoy. If you’re planning a garden wedding, there’s really little other decor you need to create a beautiful space and you will have spectacular photos to remember your special day (Treghan Lodge styled wedding shoot).
- The Duke of Marlborough
In another piece of interesting history from the Bay of Islands, The Duke of Marlborough was New Zealand’s first licensed hotel, bar and restaurant, and now its the most beautiful wedding venue in the Bay of Islands, overlooking the clear waters of Russell (Read related article).
- Puketotara Lodge
If you are after a private and tranquil venue, this is the wedding venue for you. Have your wedding at the Lodge itself or next to the Puketotara river with a surrounding vineyard and show off to your guests what unmatched beauty New Zealand has to offer.
- Eagles Nest
To cater to a guest list of up to 80 people, Eagles Nest is an elegant choice, with luxury accomodation on the property which overlooks the beautiful Bay of Islands. The venue is designed wih an eclectic, contemporary vibe, with a garden blending into the natural foliage and topography. It is only a short walk into the beautiful Russell.
Situated right over the water, have a stress free beach wedding at Alongside. You can have both your ceremony and reception at this impeccable wedding venue, meaning you and your guests can relax all day. Is there anything more romantic than being able to watch the sunset over a beautiful Bay of Islands beach on your big day?
Only a short ferry ride from Auckland, Waiheke is one of New Zeaaland’s most picture perfect locations for your wedding. Whether you wanted a beach wedding or a wedding at a vineyard, there are plentiful options for everyone
- Cable Bay
With incredible views, food and wine, you and your guests will certainly have a day to remember at this stunning Waiheke wedding venue. A winner for an outdoor wedding, you can say your vows on the lush green lawn or in the vines with the ocean and a view of Auckland behind you. Your guests will be talking about it and sharing photos for years to come.
- Tantalus Estate
This relative newcomer to the Waiheke wedding venue scene offers everything you could possibly dream of in one magical location. This is a vineyard has two settings to choose from, depending on if you want a floral or wetlands backdrop. The venue is flexible to meet your requirements for your big day – this was also the venue that Bride Tribe’s Wilhelmina chose.
- The Venue
The Venue, Waiheke Island will certainly meet all your aspirations of a beach wedding, moving up to the deck for your drinks at sunset and inside for the reception.The options at The Venue are never ending, with even a secret garden for your ceremony, and the team can style your wedding to your dreams.
Queenstown hosts what are arguably New Zealand’s most beautiful weddings all year round, so perfect for those who favour Winter nuptials too. Queenstown is packed with adventure and activities for you and your guests, so definitely worth the travel if need be. See my recent Queenstown vlog for just a few examples of what to do in Queenstown.
There are so many stunning wedding venues to choose from; vineyards, lakes, gardens, private estates and churches are only a few. You can only imagine your wedding photos…
Some of Queenstown’s best wedding venues:
- Skyline Queenstown
Overlooking lake Wakatipu, Skyline offers an incredible view of Queenstown for your wedding photos. With access by Gondola, this will create something really unique for your day that your guests are sure to love. The team at Skyline make the planning process easy, with many wedding packages available.
- Stoneridge Estate
With a background of Lake Hayes, mountain ranges and a vineyard, this wedding venue really shows the unique beauty of New Zealand. Stoneridge has its own water gardens, a vineyard and art gallery, as well as a 5 star bed and breakfast with rustic vibes provided by the infrastructure from an old church.
- NZ High Country
This spectacular Queenstown wedding venue is situated on a 200 hectare property 800m above sea level. NZ High Country has breathtaking views of country and also of Queenstown. It has only recently been opened to the public for functions and has four locations to choose from for your wedding – definitely has something for everyone.
Bay of Plenty Weddings
There is a venue for everyone in the Bay of Plenty, from an intimate garden ceremony to a large wedding. Bay of Plenty is accomodating, with both high and low budget options, but still having luxury and romance wherever you choose. Bay of Plenty is a popular place to get married, being relaxing, warm in summer and has incredible beaches and scenery.
Here are some to choose from;
- Te Runanga Tea House
This is a beautiful venue in the heart of Rotorua, with a lot of history, built in 1903. It is in the historic Government Gardens, filled with character and romance, perfect for your wedding. This is a venue for a relatively small wedding, with a veranda overlooking the property. Your guests will enjoy their time in Rotorua, with many relaxing and fun romantic activities.
- Old Forest School
Since the doors of Old Forest School opened in 2013, its been a popular wedding venue, and you’ll see why. Private and secluded from the city, it has beautiful rustic buildings, tall trees and gardens – you can choose to get married inside or under the giant trees. With a barn for a rustic reception, it’s sure to meet all your Pinterest goals, and there is also accomodation on site for your wedding party. It is a perfect location for your wedding photos, with many different backgrounds and settings, meaning you do not have to leave your guests for too long by going offsite.
- Eagle Ridge
Situated in Tauranga is the stunning, luxurious Eagle Ridge. With rustic indoor and outdoor options, insane views, and a immaculate property with colourful landscaped gardens with fireplaces. There are event managers at the venue, dedicated in making sure that no detail is missed. If you want a luxury wedding experience, this venue is for you.
New Zealand most populated city, it’s also home to the most weddings. With Auckland being so big, there is definitely a venue for everyone, and I’ve previously written on article on just how to choose your wedding venue in Auckland and surrounds. From the beach to the countryside and even modern event centres, you can find a wedding venue in Auckland that meets your guest list and budget.
- Kauri Bay Boomrock
This venue holds up to 250 guests and located in Clevedon, not far out of the heart of Auckland. With views of the Hauraki Gulf, your guests will never be bored with options of golf and other outdoor games while you are getting your picture taken as the new Mr and Mrs. Photography locations are available on the property.
Located in Mount Eden or on the waterfront, guests will not have to travel far for this venue overlooking the waterfront. It is Italian styled, with a courtyard that overlooks the Harbour Bridge. This is definitely a venue for couples set on a big city wedding with an elegant and luxurious feel. With a maximum of 60 guests, this will be the perfect venue for a small and intimate wedding with the one you love.
- Boutique Barn
Boutique Barn is a short drive from Auckland city, located in Puhoi. Puhoi is rural Auckland, giving a country setting for your wedding. It is becoming a popular venue for small and rustic weddings, holding up to fifty guests. There are both indoor and outdoor areas, so no matter the weather, your special day will still be perfect. It creates a luxurious setting with chandeliers, vintage furniture and barns. There is also accomodation for the bride and groom on site.
Don’t let the earthquake put you off considering a Christchurch wedding. Wedding venues in Christchurch are as beautiful as ever, in both Summer and Winter. Home to some of the most beautiful gardens, historic homes and vineyards Christchurch weddings venues are as varied and unique as they are beautiful. See the complete Christchurch weddings article, as well as these few top picks:
- Waipuna Estate
Waipuna has two picture-perfect locations for outdoor weddings. Our covered terrace is surrounded by rustic gardens, and has sweeping views of Christchurch and the Canterbury Plains – which can be used for your ceremony in either fine or wet conditions. Waipuna Estate offer BYO on all beverages, and don’t charge any corkage, making it a relatively cheap wedding venue in greater Christchurch – just in the hills above Tai Tapu. They also specialise in Winter weddings, with a large open plan function areas inside the villa. With a capacity of up to 85 for seated, or 120 for a cocktail style wedding reception, Waipuna is a stunning choice for your BYO Christchurch wedding.
- Ilex Cafe
Instantly, Christchurch Botanic Gardens come to mind, where new wedding venue Ilex Cafe offers a stunning modern sanctuary, and Jonny Schwass’s famed local cuisine. After the Christchurch earthquakes, wedding venues were harder to come by, and Ilex’s arrival in the beautiful gardens was welcomed by friends of ours for their beautiful February wedding. Ilex offers exclusive events spaces which can accommodate up to 120 guest for a seated event or 150 guests for a cocktail party, at quite affordable wedding venue hire.
- Mona Vale Homestead
If your dream day involves a garden ceremony beside the River Avon, you can’t go past Mona Vale Homestead for a truly ‘Christchurch’ Wedding Venue – your guests can even punt the Avon between rounds of croquet, quoits and giant jenga. With a capacity for either a seated dinner for 150 guests, or cocktail function for up to 220, the beautiful residential gardens of Mona Vale Homestead provides a perfect wedding venue for a hire fee of $3,500.
Hamilton may have a bit of a bad name by some New Zealanders, but it does have some incredible wedding venues. Located only an hour and a half out of Auckland, it is not far of a drive, especially if you are looking for a venue and all of your dates are booked up in Auckland. The Waikato shows off rural New Zealand, while also being close to the city with more modern venues. There is definitely something for everyone in the Waikato.
- Red Barn
This location is perfect for both your ceremony and reception, as well as your rehearsal dinner. The barn can accomodate up to 140 guests, with the option of a buffet or plated meals. There is an outstanding view of Hinuera Valley and Lake Karapiro. Being in the country gives a sense of isolation so the day is all about you and your loved ones. There are large fireplaces to make the venue feel comfortable and cosy and makes a winter wedding realistic. There are stunning backdrops for your wedding photos.
- The Boatshed
Lake Karapiro makes The Boatshed an incredible place to have your wedding. Having both indoor and outdoor areas, allows you to plan out your wedding any way you like. The gardens and lakefront creates a gorgeous and romantic setting to say your vows. There is rooms available for the bride and groom to get ready on site. Meals are vibrant and fresh and use local produce, as well as being BYO.
- Windy Ridge
If you want a intimate and romantic wedding in Hamilton, this venue is for you. There are several locations on the property for you to say your “I Do’s” and also for your reception. Windy Ridge are flexible and open to ideas, catering for all wedding dreams. Their secret garden is the perfect exclusive place.
If you’re lucky enough to have been to Wanaka, you’ll know what I mean when I say it is STUNNING, and home to arguably the most beautiful of all New Zealand wedding venues, as Nicole Warne’s wedding photos (at Rippon Hall in Lake Wanaka) above attest. Very popular during Winter, but just as amazing in Summer, Wanaka has quite simply everything you could look for in a New Zealand wedding venue
- The Lookout Lodge
This beautiful Wanaka wedding venue seatss up to 124 guests, as well as having accomodation for 18 guests, perhaps perfect for your bridal party or close family. Isolated and rural, with fantastic country views of Wanaka’s amazing mountains and gardens, the Lookout Lodge is definitely what it’s name suggests.
- Criffel Woolshed
The Woolshed offers a rustic setting for your wedding in Wanaka. There is a historic feel to the venue, creating character that your guests will enjoy. The venue is unique to others around the country, looking out to the mountains through Poplar and Pine Oaks. There are options in case the weather is wet, still with the rustic surrounding. This is definitely a venue for all you Pinterest lovers.
- Stone Hut Terrace
Offers you and your guests a elevated setting with views of Wanaka. You can choose a tipi or a marquee that for your ceremony, which can be designed to any theme or style of your choice. This is a venue which allows you to have total control of the styling and theme. The venue looks out to Mt. Baker and Wanaka Basin for your ceremony . They offer a gravelled fire pit area, outdoor seating, and spaces crafted to create an ideal area for guests to mingle.
- Rippon Hall
Where better to conclude this guide to the most beautiful New Zealand wedding venue locations than with the one chosen by Australian social media superstar, fashion blogger and stylista Nicole Warne. Warne recently married her photographer husband Luke Shadbolt at Lake Wanaka’s Rippon Hall, looking out over Rippon’s vines, Lake Wanaka, Ruby Island, and the Southern Alps beyond. With access right down to the lake itself, The Rippon Hall offers the very best of Central Otago: vineyards, lake and mountains…
You can find all of Nicole & Luke’s wonderful Wanaka wedding photos on Vogue.com (and then probably want to book Rippon now…). See also, Nicole Warne’s pre-wedding beauty routine.
Whether you’re looking for a wedding venue in Wellington city itself, further north towards Kapiti Coast or to Wairarapa, Martinborough or Cape Palliser, or somewhere in between, you have so many options in beautiful Wellington region. There is nothing better than Wellington on a sunny day, which is why Wellington is a stunning place to say “I Do” during wedding season.
The best thing about choosing Wellington or the Wairarapa is that you are spoiled for choice. Whether you want a beach, church, garden, vineyard or an indoor wedding, there is definitely a venue for you, no matter the amount of guests or your style/theme. In all honesty, the hardest part about finding a venue in Wellington or the Wairarapa will be narrowing it down to only one.
Blair grew up in Wellington, and for a few years while we lived in Hawkes Bay and Bay of Plenty, we spent a lot of time in the region, so I’m fairly familiar with it and have even attended a couple of Wellington weddings myself.
- The Milk Station
Located on the Kapiti Coast, this stunning venue hosts up to 200 guests with both indoor and outdoor settings. There is onsite accomodation, including a five-star bridal suite. You do not need to leave the location, being able to have your ceremony, reception and photos in this gorgeous location. The Milk Station was built in 1919, but still has its rustic charm intact. Some amazing features include influences of Italian architecture, four acres of gardens and a big black iron chandelier.
- Tarureka Estate
Accomadating 120 guests, Tarureka Estate is a restored barn that has been voted in the top 10 barn wedding venues in the world. This venue is perfect for country styled weddings and allows you to have your reception and ceremony at the same place, perfect for you and your guests. This venue is also perfect for winter weddings with wood-fired heating, creating a warm and cosy vibe to your special day. There are on-site caterers, but also BYO which is a perfect way to save some money.
- Old St Paul’s
Located in Wellington central, this is perfect if you do not want to travel out of Wellington. This is a historic and beautiful church, with stained glass windows and glowing wooden interior, as well as incredible architecture for those of you after a more traditional wedding. This church allows everyone personalise your wedding, allowing a religious service or a more modern service. Old St Paul’s welcomes everybody, including same sex couples. Old St Paul’s also allows you to have the bells rung, which signals the arrival of the bride to the church and again once the newly weds leave.
What are your other favourite New Zealand wedding venues?
I couldn’t possibly cover all of the stunning New Zealand wedding venues on offer, but I’d love to hear where you’re choosing to get married. Leave a comment below, and make sure to check out the wedding planning index too!
Once you have chosen where you are going to get married, check out our posts on how to plan a wedding in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. Why not also look at How to Actually Find Wedding Venues?