182nd Ports of Auckland Anniversary Day Regatta

Celebrate the birthday of the City of Sails as hundreds of vessels take to the water under sail, steam and paddle power in one of the world’s biggest - and most historic - one-day regattas.

The Auckland Anniversary Regatta has been around since 1840, when an impromptu boat race was held by General William Hobson to commemorate the day Auckland was founded. 

The Ports of Auckland Anniversary Day Regatta is now held every year on Auckland Anniversary Day to celebrate the birthday of the ‘City of Sails’.

There's so much to see at the Ports of Auckland Anniversary Day Regatta. Each year a huge fleet of vessels take to the water, making this the single biggest one-day regatta in the world, regularly attracting hundreds of vessels and participants to take part. It’s a glorious spectacle with tall ships, gaff riggers, classic yachts and launches, modern keelers and multihulls, sailing dinghies, radio controlled boats, waka ama, dragonboats and tugboats all racing for victory, prizes and a historic trophy collection.

Highlights not to be missed:

  • Tugboat Race & Display - Tugboats may not be designed to race, but when they do, they are a spectacular sight. Dozens of tugs will start off Westhaven at 10am, racing down to Orakei and back again, followed by a display.
  • Classics - Auckland has the largest fleet of vintage yachts and launches still on the water, anywhere in the world, and many of them are on display at Ports of Auckland Anniversary Regatta. Be at Westhaven from 11am to watch the classic launches race, and from midday to watch the classic yachts carry out their exciting manoeuvres as they line for their start.
  • Radio Controlled Yachts - Incredibly dextrous for their miniature size, radio controlled yachts are fascinating for all ages to watch. Competitors regularly include America's Cup and top level sailors, as well as weekend warriors. Watch the RC yacht races at Westhaven Marina 
  • Dragonboat Racing - Dragonboats in full regalia will fight it out in the Viaduct Harbour on Anniversary Day. Each boat is crewed by 10 paddlers, a drummer to keep the timing and a sweep or helm to keep the boat in a straight line, and the excitement and pressure, even in a friendly race, is immense.
  • RNZN - Each year one of the Royal New Zealand Navy’s vessels will join the Anniversary Day celebrations as the flagship of the event, hosting VIP guests aboard for lunch and a front row view of all the on-water action.

See the full schedule of events, here.

Park for $2 per hour at the Downtown car park on evenings and weekends. Find out more.

Come into the city centre on public transport for as little as $2 each way. Find out more

Last updated: 12 September 2019