Now whilst it would not immediately come to mind as something that would be celebrated in New Zealand there is actually a very strong French connection and influence around the Banks Peninsula near Christchurch.
History tells us a French whaler, Captain Jean Langlois, purchased land in Banks Peninsula in 1838 which was later used to establish a French settlement at Akaroa and the French influence and culture has remained to this day, so much so that there is great frivolity at the bi-annual Akaroa French Festival!
Thousands of people flock to the village for the weekend for lots of French fun!
With plenty of Ohh la, la's, Can Can girls, a Fete des Lumieres Party, a very well orchestrated re-enactment of the landing from the ship Comte de Paris which brought those first settlers as well as a Parade and plenty of entertainment fun and games.
Of course it wouldn't be a real French event without a fabulous market with Le Jour du Marche full of goodies and delicious French fare.
On the Sunday the merging of cultures comes into play with the annual Ki-o-Rahi tournament. This is a traditional Maori ball game, vaguely resembling something between netball and touch rugby, taught to the original French settlers.
The weekend also naturally wouldn't be complete without fireworks!
The event is held every second October and the 2015 event was a huge 175th anniversary of the arrival of the settlers.
The next event will be held on 13-14 October 2017. Full details can be found at www.akaroa.com
What could be more fun than wandering around your local market. Fresh baking smells, lovingly handcrafted items, each one unique and special, delicious home grown produce - that's what we love and we hope you do too!