New Zealand in October: Weather, Tips & Water Sports


Visiting New Zealand in October is an amazing opportunity for travelers to explore this beautiful country without large tourist crowds around. With the ski rush over and summer yet to start, New Zealand is in the midst of the spring season in October. The weather is pleasant and colourful blooms of flowers all around. Whether you are hiking in the mountains of Rotorua or sipping wine in Martinborough, New Zealand will not disappoint visitors with its enchanting setting .

New Zealand Weather in October

Paddle on your own and experience freedom in New Zealand in October.
Get your fill for adventure by going Kayaking in New Zealand.

The days are starting to warm up, but nights can still feel a bit frosty in New Zealand in October. The country’s temperature averages 15°C during this month. The weather in Auckland is fairly drier than in other parts of the country, with daytime temperature reaching 16°C, making it a great month for lower altitude hikes and treks. Expect slightly cooler days in Wellington, which reaches the highs of 14°C, which can be ideal for a stroll through the botanical gardens or kayaking through the harbor.

In the South Island, October can still be a frosty and wet month. Queenstown, for instance, sees an average day temperature of 10°C and approximately 18 days of rain. A great way to escape the rainy days in Queenstown is to treat yourself to an Onsen Hot Pool experience or explore the Lakes District Museum.

For a seasonal overview, check out our guide on the best time to visit New Zealand.

Weather in New Zealand in October - Rainfall and Temperatures

Avg Daily (°C)
Avg Nightly (°C)15.916.515.31412.310.89.710.110.311.312.714.8
Avg Daily (°F)68.3668.3667.2863.6859.956.4854.6855.5856.6659.1862.0665.84
Avg Nightly (°F)60.6261.759.5457.254.1451.4449.4650.1850.5452.3454.8658.64
Avg Rainfall (mm)2729.53243.5485952514337.54047

Why Visit New Zealand in October

The weather in New Zealand is ideal to visit Sutherland Falls.
Visit New Zealand's highest waterfall, Sutherland Falls on the Milford Track.
See Maori art in New Zealand.
Visit New Zealand for the art festivals in October.

 Here are some reasons why you should travel to New Zealand in October.

  • Festivities: The Auckland Heritage Festival is a great way to immerse yourself in the city’s history through exhibitions, tours and performances. The Taranaki Arts Trail offers people a chance to meet with artists in their studios and learn about their works. For live performances, comedy and theatre, check out the Whangarei Fringe Festival. And, if you are in Wellington, you should visit the World of WearableArt Show, New Zealand’s largest theatrical production.
  • Stunning scenery: Spring is a great time to go see the waterfalls of New Zealand, particularly Kitekite Falls in Auckland and Sutherland Falls, New Zealand’s tallest waterfall, in the South Island. October is also the best time of the year to go see the stunning forget-me-not flowers blooming in Waitangi.
  • Water sports: October is also a great month for water sports in New Zealand. Kayaking in Milford Sound and whitewater rafting on the Kawarau River in Queenstown are some of the popular water sports you can enjoy during this month. Meanwhile, moderate wind conditions are also great for sailing the coast of New Zealand.
  • Fewer tourists: Most travelers prefer to visit New Zealand during the winter or summer seasons. If you are visiting the country in the spring, you will find low crowds in tourist spots and shorter queues outside popular attractions.
  • Better rates: Discounts on accommodation and cheaper flights to New Zealand are common during the low season. As the ski season wraps up in mid-October, you might find some end-of-season deals at ski resorts.

Where to go and what to do

Visit the North Island for the thermal pools.
Relax in a thermal pool in Rotorua.

The weather in New Zealand in October is generally mild, making it a great time for trekking in the North Island. Hike the Cape Brett trail for stunning coastal views, take a relaxing stroll to the geothermal hot springs in a Rotorua trip or tour Hobbiton and the Waitomo Caves in Auckland.

Head to Wellington and make the most of a sunny day by taking a trip to Matiu Somes Island, where you can enjoy the many walking trails and historical buildings without the busy summer crowds. Kapiti Island is another popular destination in Wellington to see its diverse bird life, including the Little Spotted Kiwi and the Kaka.

Shelter yourself from the rainy days in the South Island with a trip to the Quake City and the Canterbury Museum in Christchurch, or immerse yourself in Maori culture at the Te Ana Maori Rock Art Centre.

Looking for more ideas on places to visit in New Zealand? Check out our guide on how many days to spend in New Zealand for inspiration on what to see and how to plan your trip.

Sunny days, flowing waterfalls and fewer visitors make spring a wonderful time to visit New Zealand. Whether you are planning to sail through Milford Sound, search for wildflowers in North Island, or soak in thermal pools surrounded by luscious forests, October in New Zealand guarantees a trip you will treasure throughout your lifetime. Still unsure where to go in New Zealand? Get in touch with our local travel experts who can create a customized tour of New Zealand to suit your individual needs.

Other articles:
New Zealand in September
New Zealand in November

Create your custom-made trip to New Zealand

Traveling to New Zealand? Chat with a local travel specialist in New Zealand who can help organize your trip.

  • Geoff Venning
    Geoff Venning
    Travel Expert in New Zealand
  • David Tupper
    David Tupper
    Travel Expert in Australia & New Zealand
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