Womad leads festival list

"Womad is sort of a unique festival."

HANNAH FLEMING
Last updated 05:00 05/11/2012
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CAMERON BURNELL
Womad may soon be listed in the top 10 attractions in New Zealand

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Taranaki's world music festival is currently in the running to be named one of the country's top attractions.

Three weeks into the voting for AA Tourism's 101 Must-Do's List, Womad is being dubbed a "left-field newcomer" currently sitting within the top 10.

Although tight lipped about the specifics of current rankings, AA Tourism marketing general manager Rebecca Cherry has indicated the current top 10 is split evenly between North and South Island attractions.

She said Womad had been given a lot more votes than other festivals vying for a place on the list.

Taft chief executive Suzanne Porter was thrilled Womad was in the running to grab a top-10 finish.

"I think it's deserved," Ms Porter said.

"Womad is sort of a unique festival. There's something for everybody to do, regardless of what you're into, whether it's the music or not, which makes it one of those must-do things."

Ms Porter said it was no surprise to hear it had the edge on its fellow festival opponents.

"We've got that broad-based appeal. So many festivals out there target youth, whereas ours is a family event. Having grandma, mum and child all there in one spot - I can't think of another festival like that," she said.

"And this is the only festival where you can go to experience world music."

Ms Porter said the recognition was good for not only Taft, but the whole region.

"I think it's just great. You get on to something like this by people voting, which I think is quite cool.

"It's not some notable person saying ‘oh, this is the best festival I've ever been to', it's the general masses saying it's something you can't miss."

Other Taranaki attractions currently featuring in the top 101 are Heliview, Egmont National Park, New Plymouth's coastal walkway, Tawhiti Museum & Traders and Whalers, Taranaki's beaches, Pukekura Park, and the TSB Festival of Lights.

Taranaki had four of its attractions on the original must-do list created by AA in 2006.

Mt Taranaki ranked the highest at 24, the Forgotten World Highway at 71, the Coastal Walkway at 73, while a tour of the region's best gardens ranked 79.

Voting closes on November 15 and the list will be revealed on November 25.

Votes can be cast at www.aatravel.co.nz/101.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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