The weather this weekend is expected, for the most part, to be as bright and shiny as an Easter egg, the MetService has forecast.
Long-awaited rain is forecast for the drought-hit Northland region.
Steady drizzle may have rained off the cricket in Dunedin but it failed to dampen more than the central city, leaving the rest of the area in extreme fire risk.
Many long-time Dunedin residents are scratching their heads trying to remember the last time the city experienced such a consistently good summer.
It was the best of summers, it was the worst of summers. It was the season for beach and barbecue. It was the time when dreaded drought stretched its grip across the country.
One of the driest Januaries in more than 100 years has resulted in an "extreme" and "severe" lack of soil moisture across all of the North Island.
A sweltering night led to another hot summer day in Otago yesterday - the 11th day out of 12 when the region recorded a temperature above 20degC.
The golden weather being enjoyed by much of the country will come to an end early next week, but it will be back, says the MetService.
The country will continue to swelter, as temperatures in some areas reach at least 30C today.
Aucklanders can expect more easterly breezes and cloudy skies over the long weekend - and it's likely to be little different in popular holiday spots like Northland and Coromandel.
Southern parts of New Zealand will struggle to get to temperatures in the low teens as a cold snap moves over the country.
Otago Regional Council is continuing to monitor river levels as the already sodden region braces for more rain.
Umbrellas and raincoats will be needed for a few more days, especially in the mainland, before settled weather finally arrives, MetService says.
The warm settled weather looks set to continue for most of the country as children prepare to go back to school.
Thunderstorms are forecast for the lower North Island today (Thur) with strong winds and large hail possible.
One person was reported missing after heavy rain caused river levels to rise sharply in Nelson and a flash flood swept away two cars where people were camping.