Connecting with our seas during Seaweek

Discover amazing events during Seaweek 2024 showcasing the importance and diversity of marine environments.

Waitaha/Canterbury is home to around 800 kilometres of beautiful coastline, home to ecologically rich and diverse marine habitats that support a variety of plant and animal species, such as seabirds, marine mammals, fish, invertebrates, and seaweeds – many of which are recognised as taonga species.

While we are lucky to enjoy Canterbury’s beaches and bays for recreational fun, Seaweek, Saturday 2 March to Sunday 10 March 2024, is a reminder that we also have a responsibility for the health and well-being of these coastal and marine ecosystems; encouraging us to all be kaitiaki or guardians of the sea.

Stormwater leads directly to our sea

One major way our region can look after the sea is by being mindful of how we treat our local stormwater system. Stormwater is water that runs off hard surfaces like roofs, driveways, footpaths and roads. In urban areas of Canterbury, stormwater drains (the grated drains you see on the side of the road) lead directly into our streams, rivers and ocean—untreated.

In May 2023, after Christchurch’s seventh-annual Mother of all Clean-Ups event, a shocking 466 large bags, or 2,370 kg of rubbish was removed from local waterways.

Dr Elaine Moriarty, Surface Water Science Manager, explains why this is a problem:

"Litter in our waterways can leach contaminants into the water, clog up stream bed habitats and often break down into smaller particles like microplastics that are ingested by aquatic organisms causing harm or death."

This Seaweek, get involved and learn more about the small things we can all do to make our waterways cleaner, healthier, and safer.

Events and activities

Celebrating connection with the sea | Toi Moana - Toi Tangata.


Seaweek with Envirokids

When: 2 and 9 March, 10.00am – 1.00pm
Where: The Kiosk, Botanic Gardens
What: Get creative with Envirokids! For tamariki between 5 and 13 years old. All materials provided FREE. Find out more on the Facebook event.

Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour: A pātaka and playground

When: 5 March, 5.00 – 6.30pm 
Where: Naval Point Yacht Club, Erskine Point, Lyttelton 
What: A conversation with Brent Barrett from the Healthy Harbour team to hear more about the inspiring mahi helping to bring back the health and vitality of the harbour.

Canterbury Workers Educational Association (CWEA) CWEA

In 2024, the CWEA is offering five events during Seaweek. Check out the information on the CWEA website.

Phone: (03) 366 0285
Address: 59 Gloucester Street
Office hours: Monday to Friday: 9.30AM - 3:00pm

Estuary Edge clean-up (South New Brighton)

When: 2 March, 1.00 – 3.30pm
Where: South New Brighton Community Centre, Beatty Street
What: Join CVNZ & Sustainable Coastlines in cleaning rubbish from the estuary edge. The rubbish will be audited at a Litter Intelligence event in Sumner on 12 March.
Register here.

Lyttelton Harbour clean-up

When: Saturday 9 March, 10.00am – 12.00pm
Where: Meet on the grass in front of the Naval Point Yacht Club
What: Come clean up the shimmering waters of our beloved Whakaraupō.
Register here.
Contact: Hamish Fairbairn, 021 399 040


Seaweek quiz night

When: 4 March, 10am–1pm
Where: Emporium Brewery, 57 Beach Road, Kaikōura.
What: A seaweek-themed quiz night to be held at The Emporium Brewery. Make up a team of four and come along and test out your marine knowledge with local quiz master, Kevin Heays. Tip – the quiz it will include local questions. Thanks to the team at the Emporium for hosting the quiz.

Register your team: email Saraya by 26 February:

Lyell Creek and beach clean-up

When: 8 March, 10.00am – 1.00pm.
Where: Meet at the Catholic Church Parish Hall, Ludstone Road and Grays Lane, Kaikōura.
RSVP: email Jodie Hoggard,|What: Come along and join the community to clean up the Lyell Creek and beach. Please bring your gardening gloves, wear closed-toe footwear and come dressed for the weather. Bags will be supplied (if you have a stash of feed bags, fertilizer bags or similar, they are useful). Join us afterward for a BBQ and see the interactive Stormwater Superhero trailer from Christchurch EnviroHub.

Kaikōura blue fish treasure hunt

When: Entries close 8 March 2024.
What: Kaikōura township has some new blue creatures guarding our stormwater grates. How many of these guardians can you find? Head into either the Kaikōura District Council or Environment Canterbury (96 West End, Kaikōura) reception desks to pick up an entry form. Prizes to be won!

Waitarakao Washdyke Lagoon – Timaru

When: Saturday 2 March 2024 from 2.00 - 4.00pm

Where: Waitarakao Washdyke Lagoon. Access from the Bridge Road track entrance (please park before the railway bridge).

What: Give our local lagoon and wildlife sanctuary a good tidy-up - and learn about the wildlife and plants that live in this special coastal environment.  Bring your own bag to collect rubbish and wear sturdy footwear.

For details of all events across Canterbury and New Zealand view the event calendar (PDF file, 894.38KB) or visit the Seaweek website.

Art competition

Using your artistic skills, celebrate your connection to the sea by looking at the ocean or beach through the eyes of creatures of the marine environments... maybe through the eyes of an albatross/toroa, a hermit crab/kāunga, or perhaps as sand/onepū onto which the waves break

How to enter

Once you have created your artwork, you can enter the competition in two ways: 


Seaweek art competition: Submit your artwork online.

By post

Download this form to submit a hard copy of your entry (PDF file, 268.79KB) and post it to our office at:

Christchurch office
200 Tuam Street
Christchurch 8011
Ph: (03) 365 3828
Hours: 8AM – 5PM, Mon – Fri
Kaikōura office
Level 2, 96 West End
Kaikōura 7300
Ph: (03) 319 5781
Hours: 8AM – 4:30PM, Mon – Fri
Timaru office
75 Church Street
Timaru 7910
Ph: (03) 687 7800
Hours: 8:30AM – 5PM, Mon – Fri
Entries close at the end of Seaweek, Monday, 11 March 2024.

Winners will be contacted later in March when the judging has taken place. Entries that place will be displayed at The Kiosk, Botanic Gardens with great prizes to be won for 1st, 2nd and highly commended in each age category.

Criteria of artwork: 

  • Media: wet or dry media such as paint, charcoal, ink, graphite, pen, pastels, or printmaking may be used. Texts and symbols may be used. Mixed media and collage are acceptable.
  • Support: paper or card, not canvas. Must be ready to hang.
  • Scale: as large as A3 (297 x 420 mm) and not smaller than A5 (148.5 x 210 mm). NOTE: ECE – for group art creations, please no bigger than A0 i.e. 841 x 1198 mm.
  • Glitter, fluorescent pens and all other art supplies that are disproportionately harmful to the environment are actively and strongly discouraged. Read this article on the sustainability of art supplies.
  • Please do not sign or place your name on the front of the artwork. Creators of the artwork retain ownership of their work and will be acknowledged if shown publicly.

Who endorses Seaweek?

Seaweek is supported by the following organisations in Canterbury: Environment Canterbury Regional Council, Christchurch City Council, Lyttelton Port Company, Black Cat Cruises, Akaroa Dolphins, Canterbury Workers Education Association, Rātā Foundation, Help Pōhatu Conservation Trust.

Many different organisations across Aotearoa New Zealand support Seaweek either financially or by providing goods or services as prizes. Find out which organisations and businesses are involved this year on the Seaweek website.

More information

Contact Jocelyn Papprill via email at or phone on 027 7030 772.