A stunning collection of photographs and stories, capturing Wairarapa a magical place.
Stretched between the majestic Tararua and Remutaka mountains to the west and the restless Pacific Ocean to the east, starting with the stormy Cook Strait in the south and ending in the rugged hill country of the north, it is a mixture of primeval forests, rural towns, the North Island’s third largest lake, and every conceivable form of agriculture.
The southern and eastern beaches draw many people. Landmark lighthouses,
seal colonies, exciting rock formations and some of New Zealand’s most picturesque coastlines draw both visitors and locals alike.
The western mountains offer recreation for all fitness levels. While the fittest strive to visit the goblin forests just below the bush line, and walk for days to get to the least accessible parts of the ranges, others happily splash in the mountain streams that flow out onto the plains.
Gastronomes hear the call of the region’s beverages, and all palates are catered for, from the fine wines of the drier areas of Wairarapa, to the more prosaic Tui beer from its iconic brewery at Mangatainoka.
The wide open skies provide cover for a vast range of agricultural pursuits. The home of New Zealand’s first extensive sheep stations, it is dotted with grand homesteads that were once the headquarters of large farms. Most are now subdivided, and more intensive farming – cropping and horticulture included – has taken the place of some large-scale grazing. Vineyards stride across the land where scattered sheep once grazed.
Each year the autumn skies are lit up by flights of balloons in many shapes, participants in the annual balloon festival. They provide a unique way to look out
Whether seen from the air or from the ground, Wairarapa is truly a magical place.
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