Work and play in Hawke’s Bay

Hawke’s Bay is blessed with fertile soils and a warm temperate climate making it one of New Zealand’s must-visit tourism regions. Tourist attractions include Cape Kidnappers, Te Mata Peak, the many wineries throughout the region, rivers for fishing and swimming, and hundreds of kilometers of coastline.

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Contact for seasonal work information in Hawke’s Bay.

Work opportunities

The best time for work in Hawke’s Bay is in mid-November until Christmas for Apple Thinning; November to January for summerfruit (apricots, cherries, nectarines, peaches, and plums) picking or packhouse opportunities; and from mid-February until May for Apple Picking.

In regards to wine-growing Hawkes Bay is a relatively large and diverse region capable of producing a wide range of varieties to a very high standard, Hawke’s Bay is best known for its Red Blends and Chardonnay but aromatic whites are consistently good and Syrah is incredibly impressive. The numerous wineries and vineyards encompass both large multi-regional entities and tiny family-owned boutique producers; all share a commitment to making great wine.

The work planner below provides a general idea of job demand throughout the year.

Job Demand



Very high

Where to stay

The region has plenty of backpacker and camping facilities and many growers offer worker accommodation either on or off site. Alternatively, you can take a short term rental house.

For more information on Hawkes Bay accommodation click here


Important information before you start

Before you start work you must sign an employment agreement with the employer. It is advised that you take a photo of the first page of the agreement showing the business name and address and ask for a copy of the signed agreement.

Keep your own record of what days you worked and the number of hours you worked each day.

Please make sure you have an IRD number and bank account before you start work.


What to see and do in Hawke’s Bay

The celebrated lifestyle of Hawke's Bay offers a warm and sunny climate, al fresco dining, safe swimming and surf beaches, good fishing, cafes, vineyards and wine tastings, expansive vistas, shopping and outdoor attractions.

Hawke’s Bay has a population of about 160,000, many of which live and work in the twin cities of Hastings and Napier. Other major urban areas are Wairoa, Havelock North, Waipawa and Waipukurau. The city of Napier is home to world-famous examples of art deco architecture, fresh local produce and gourmet food. February boasts the Art Deco Weekend and Harvest Hawke's Bay, just two of many events in the region.

Hastings and Havelock North have an easy blend of shops and cafes, and there are other lovely towns and beaches to explore further south in the hinterland, as well as walks and hunting in the surrounding ranges.

5 must do activities

  1. Drive, walk or bike to the top of Te Mata Peak
  2. Tour some of the many wineries such as Craggy Range, Mission Estate, Elephant Hill, among many others
  3. Do the walking Art Deco Tour in Napier
  4. Visit the gannets at Cape Kidnappers
  5. Explore Lake Waikaremoana

Click here for more tourist information.