Te Mata Peak

This is the 100th entry on my Colours of New Zealand blog, and Te Mata Peak really deserves this status. Te Mata is just south of Hastings in the Hawke’s Bay and rises up to 399 meters. The peak itself is very popular with tourists, and the slopes are with hikers and mountain bikers. The suburb of…

Whakapapa

Whakapapa is a ski resort in the Tongariro national park. The Whakapapa village also serves as the main information centre for the ski fields. It is popular from June – October for skiing, and at all other times of the year for tramping (treking). Whakapapa is, however, primarily, the fundamental principle that permeates all Maori culture. It is…

Ohakune

Ohakune is a service town on the Southern end of the Tongariro National park, on the central plateau of the North Island. It is used as a base for people who are drawn to the region for the skiing in winter and the camping & tramping (treking). There are many treks throughout the park, for…

Te Kuiti

The sign welcoming you to Te Kuiti says “birthplace of champions”, and they are not exaggerating! This small town is called home by many prominent kiwis. Some of the most notable include the former Prime Minister Jim Bolger, All Black Kevin Boroevich (amongst a couple of other All Black who now call the town home), World…

Wellsford

Wellsford is a town north of Auckland, it is the north most settlement in the Auckland region. Wellsford has a relatively small population, it is however about halfway between Auckland and Whangarei. There is really not much else to say about Wellsford as wherever you are headed, you really don’t need to stop here. Having said that, Dulux…

Snells Beach

Snells Beach is a coastal town about 8km east of Warkworth. Being only about an hour drive north of Auckland it is a popular spot for weekend getaways. By far my favorite thing to do in Snells Beach is to visit the Brick Bay Sculpture trail. It is located in the Brick Bay vineyard, and features…

Puhoi

In Auckland, when you think cheese, the very next thought is Puhoi Cheese. It is, in fact, a small village about 50km north of Auckland that is located on the Puhoi river. Puhoi translated means ‘slow water’, a reference to the river itself. The area was settled by German migrants who brought with them their culinary flair….

Dargaville

When the Lonely Planet says that Dargaville is a town that boasts it is most famous for its Kumara (sweet potatoes) and goes onto say that there is not much else worth visiting you are not left with high hopes. However, for those looking to explore a region that was in its prime during the…

Kaipara

Kaipara is a district north of Auckland, located in the rolling hills north of the Kaipara Harbour. The region is most famous for the Kaurie timber industry, which was at it’s peak in 1800’s and ended in the 1950’s. A real feature for me along the Kaipara coast highway is Gibbs Farm, which contains the largest outdoor…

Raglan

What a revelation Raglan is. We headed to the bustling seaside town on Auckland anniversary weekend, a long weekend in NZ, just to check it out. Not really sure what to expect, we found a buzzing town with lots of people visiting. There is a great strip of shops, cafes and restaurants which heads down to…

Ruawai

Ruawai is a small township located 30 km south of Dargaville. The name literally translated from Maori means ‘two waters’ referring to the nearby Wairoa River and Kaipara Harbour. The township primarily serves the outlying farming area which consists mainly of cattle farming and kumara growing and the town declared itself as the Kumara capital of the world….

Baylys Beach

Baylys Beach is the quintessential North Island unspoiled beach. It is situated on the north western Kaipara coast, about two and a half hours from Auckland. The beach is famous for it’s multi coloured baches (the kiwi term for holiday homes), which litter the hills that over look the water. Interestingly, the Kaipara coastline is…