When, Where, Covid-19 Restrictions, Akaroa History and How to See and Explore!
The Akaroa Farmers Market is on every Saturday between October and April from 9:30 – 1pm. At the St Patrick’s Church grounds opposite the Recreation Grounds, offering a lot of free parking and plenty of space to relax and enjoy picturesque Akaroa!
A favorite of locals and visitors alike, the farmers market has a great range of local and organic produce, from breads and baking, through to oils and preserves, micro-greens, smoked salmon and in season asparagus and free range eggs.
International Flavors and Language!
There is a real international flavor to the market, not found at other regional markets around the country. With French crepes, Spanish paella, Czech sausages and now Thai street food.
It’s a fun place to practice a little language and enjoy a taste of the world, just say bonjour to Elise at the crêperie, who imported her hot plates from France and makes delicious sweet or savory crepes.
Or shout our hola to Fran, who sells the most delicious treats at his stall, the fruit tart is a local favourite dish, but his donuts are a hit with the kids, and the vegetarian focaccia can’t be beat.
A wide range of fresh and local produce, with an international atmosphere to be celebrated.
Covid-19 Alert Level Restrictions
Currently the South Island sits at Level 2 restrictions, face masks must be worn, visitors are asked to sign in with the Covid tracer app and keep social distancing. There is a limit of 100 people within the market, but there is abundant space to take a picnic over to the Recreation Ground and spread out and enjoy!
Benefiting Local Community Organisations!
The market has raised $20,000 over the past seven years and donated to local community organisations such as the Akaroa Health Hub, Fire Service, Pompallier House, Hinewai Reserve and last year $1,000 went to the Akaroa Preschool.
10% of all stall takings are contributed to the Market and after operational costs the stall holders agree who to donate the remaining money too.
This community focus and support ads even more flavour to your purchases as you know that your money is going towards a good cause.
The Akaroa Farmers Market is a Favourite Place of Locals
With the farmers market now held in at the picturesque green and grassy grounds of the St Patrick’s Church, local families love to come and relax in the shade of the historic old trees while the children run around on the gently sloping lawn. Lending a festive air to each and every Saturday.
With the expansive view over the Recreation Ground and out to sea, there is no better place for a market to be held. With plenty of free parking and a short stroll to the nearby shops and cafe’s.
The market is a great place to meet your friends and family and start your day in Akaroa, there is plenty to see and do!
Remarkable History of St Patrick’s Church Grounds
The church grounds are the site of a number of first’s for the South Island: the first Mass, the first church, the first mass by a Bishop, and the first Baptism of the first European born child in Canterbury!
The St Patrick’s Church was built in 1864-65 and has recently been restored, remaining in constant use.
When the French settler ship the Comte de Paris arrived in August 1840 they were met by three Marist missionaries who had traveled from the Bay of Islands on the French Frigate the Aube, accompaning the settler ship. The first recorded Mass in the South Island was celebrated on the foreshore on Sunday 23 August 1840.
Bishop Pompallier arrived on his own ship the Sancta Maria, on 2 October 1840. He commissioned the first church in the South Island, it was to be a small church, roughly six metres by four, built of rammed clay and stood near the current church.
On 19th October the first European child in Canterbury was born, Charles Joseph Maria de Malmanche, in a tent on the beach. His third name, Maria, was subsequently given him to commemorate the fact that he was baptized by Bishop Pompallier, who had recently arrived in the Sancta Maria.
Pompallier held his first mass in the South Island on October 25th 1840, and the first baptism in the South Island was held for Charles de Malmanche.
Family Connections to The Seventh Generation
Marie Haley of The Seventh Generation Tours, is a descendant of Etienne Lelievre and Justine Rose de Malmanche, French settlers who arrived in 1840 on the Comte d Paris.
It was Justine Rose’s mother who gave birth in a tent on the beach to the first born European child in Canterbury, Charles Joseph Maria de Malmanche, who was named after and later baptised by Bishop Pompallier.
In 1893 Antonio Rodrigues gifted the bell for the new tower. Antonio is Marie’s Great-great-great Grandfather and arrived in New Zealand from the Portuguese Island of Madeira, building the Madeira Hotel in Akaroa in 1870.
For the Perfect Day in Akaroa
Enjoy the Akaroa Farmers Market in the morning, meet with your friends and family and take a stroll around Akaroa for some shopping and a bite to eat and then book the Akaroa History and Nature Tour with Marie and really get to understand the depth and beauty of the history and natural environment making Akaroa such a special place, both for those with family connections and for those for whom Akaroa has always been a favourite place to visit and relax in.
Leaving Akaroa at 1pm, returning at 4pm, you will visit the most important historic sites in the South Island, understand how New Zealand’s history unfolded and enjoy personal connections that make that history come alive. Enjoy afternoon tea in the most beautiful picnic spot in Akaroa and then head over the hill to the Wildside, Hinewai Reserve and the cliffs at the End of the Earth. The scenery will blow you away, the stories will keep you enthralled. Don’t miss out BOOK NOW!