• The 10km (return trip) Greytown-Woodside Trail is a dual purpose track that follows the route of the Greytown-Woodside branch rail line which closed in 1953

Cycle Trails – Have two wheels, Will Travel

October 7th, 2017|Tags: , , , , , |

As a different way to explore a new region, there’s nothing better than pedalling your way around. You can make the most of hidden gems along the way and take time to enjoy those incredible views. It’s also another way to connect with the land and its people. The Wairarapa, a large geographical area located [...]

  • New arrival at the Thames Butterfly Garden, Honey the lorikeet. Other exotic finches there include Red Faced Parrotfinches, Firefinches, Orange-breasted Waxbills and Gouldians

A Butterfly Treasure

October 7th, 2017|Tags: , , , , , |

The Butterfly Garden in Thames was the first in New Zealand, started in 2000 by a Swiss couple, Roger and Sabina Gass. Now owned by Colin Anderson, it is a ‘must-see’ for visitors, who can wander amongst a stunning variety of winged colour darting, fluttering, exploring and landing in a humid exotic-planted garden house. Colin, [...]

  • One of several swimming holes surrounding the grassy river flat. (The clearing can be seen on the far side of the river, middle left)

Native Bush Picnics and Swimming in Mountain Streams

October 7th, 2017|Tags: , , , , , , , |

Mt Richmond Forest Park comprises 165,000 hectares of mostly native forest-covered mountain country located between Blenheim and Nelson. Within the park there are a multitude of Department of Conservation walking and tramping tracks ranging from very short 15-minute nature walks to more adventurous 10-hour-plus tramps up to high peaks such as Mt Fishtail (1641 metres) [...]

  • The finished product

Awanui Ka Pai Mana Kai

August 3rd, 2017|Tags: , , , , |

Even the exquisitely designed bee motif, embossed in gold on Mana Kai Honey’s business card has been created with precise attention to detail. Using Māori symbolism, it represents the company’s business and personal values where all staff are actively included in Mana Kai’s new era of the honey industry. Derived from the Māori words mana [...]

  • The massive suspension bridges on this trail were both stunning and daunting

A Great Ride – A Rekindled Treasure

August 3rd, 2017|Tags: , , , , |

Long before the cycle trail wound its way around Mt Pureora, the walking track to the summit held a warm place in my heart. On one of the first dates with my girlfriend, wearing swannies and hats against the cold, we tramped through the cloud forest and overlooked the little-known forest park. A quarter of [...]

  • The river runs through steep mountains clothed in native bush

Ghosts of the Mystic River

August 3rd, 2017|Tags: , , , |

Sister Susanne Aubert was so revered by Māori on the Whanganui River that they called her, ‘Meri Hohepa’ – wahine tino whakapono, a very holy lady. With her Sisters of Compassion, Aubert cared for orphaned and abandoned babies and children during the 1890s at the Jerusalem convent. One baby was dispatched anonymously in a basket [...]

  • A large crowd assembled, with visitors from around the world, colleagues, friends, family and locals all looked on

Te Kuiti Salutes local Colin Meads

August 3rd, 2017|Tags: , , , |

I doubt that Te Kuiti has had a more beautiful day. For a while though there was reason for considerable anxiety that the 81-year-old, dubbed ‘New Zealand’s Rugby Player of the Century’ in 2000, would make it to the event to honour him. Colin is very unwell, his cancer of the pancreas is well documented; [...]

  • Riverside Golf Club, player Chris Charlton

They Love their Golf in Waikato

August 3rd, 2017|Tags: , , , |

The Mooloo province has a proud sporting tradition with rugby’s Chiefs, netball’s Magic and cricket’s Knights all based in the province. But the district golf association, covering a huge area from Kawhia in the west, down to Taumarunui in the south and up to Matarangi on the Coromandel Peninsula, encompasses 43 golf clubs – the [...]

  • Iconic Buzzy Bee at the entrance to Bay of Islands Honey Shop

Beyond Breakfast

August 3rd, 2017|Tags: , , , , , |

Honey would have to be one of the most versatile natural products in the world and since ancient times there have been references to its use as a currency. In recent years the antiseptic and antibacterial properties of manuka honey in particular have raised both awareness and the price of the product. Honey is widely [...]

  • Greytown Town Centre – this is the third building over the years used as the town centre. This one was extensively refurbished in the mid-2000s and is well utilised by the community today

Gracious Greytown

August 3rd, 2017|Tags: , , , , |

The Wairarapa is a unique region in many ways. Not having a single set of traffic lights is one of those idiosyncrasies the casual tourist may not notice, but is a small point of difference we are proud of in the region. The wine industry in Martinborough and in other geographical areas around Masterton and [...]