Arriving in Kerikeri you are suddenly aware of stately rows of towering shelterbelt trees lining the roadside. Fruit stalls appear at regular intervals and there is a profusion of signs promoting organic produce and crafts.

Kerikeri means ‘to dig’ and early Maori grew crops of kumera (sweet potato) here. Today the rich, fertile soil and equable climate ensure that citrus and subtropical fruits thrive, especially oranges, grapefruit, mandarins, avocados and kiwifruit. Casual workers find work in the orchards throughout the year and there is a heavy demand for labour in the harvesting seasons.

Strolling down the main shopping street you sense the special charm of this town, which has become increasingly popular as a tourist stopover point. Behind the quiet facade is a very lively place that can boast a regional airport, outstanding arts and crafts, excellent shopping facilities and busy cafès and restaurants.

Bus Pass New Zealand

Kerikeri has great significance to New Zealanders as a heritage site. The pretty Kerikeri Basin below the town was the stage for the founding of our nation. Thankfully the backdrop of that stage survives in the form of a terraced pa site, a two-storey mission house and a formidable stone building. Kororipo Pa still has great mana as the original stronghold of the war-like chief Hongi Hika who guaranteed protection for the peace-loving missionaries in Kemp House, the oldest European dwelling in New Zealand. The Stone Store was the first mission storehouse and today fulfils a role as a store and pioneer museum.

Other attractions include Rewa’s Village, a reconstruction of a pre-European village and the photogenic Rainbow Falls, an easy walk up the Kerikeri River. Further afield is the superb Puketi Forest, a very worthwhile side trip, where you can view strikingly tall and straight kauri rickers from an elevated boardwalk.

A special feature of the Kerikeri district is the excellent arts and crafts trail, details of which can be obtained from the visitor centre. This is an ideal way to meet some of the interesting and talented folk in this cosmopolitan community, which has attracted people from many parts of the world.

By | 2014-08-31T03:50:05+00:00 August 31st, 2014|North Island Towns|0 Comments

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Danny de Hek
Like most people, I have many passions, goals and dreams. As a self made business professional, my focus is helping my clients, associates and friends, build, strengthen and maintain their success. It would be fair to say I am in the full time business of building relationships and feel my purpose and skill is connecting the right people with the right people. My professional work tends to dominate my personal life, to the horror of my partner and business mentor. They both fully support me yet give me the hard truths when I need to hear this. I am always investing in my personal development to have a fulfilled work/life balance. I enjoy Target Shooting, Hiking & Mountain Biking to clear the brain and to take the guilt away when indulging at a quirky cafe for a cooked breakfast or brunch. My passion for travelling has seen me experience the world on many occasions, my next adventure will be doing the Tibet Rail Journey on the Qinghai-Tibet Railway from Lhasa to Golmud as long as they have Wi-Fi aboard ;-) I have many goals I still wish to achieve but am pretty chuffed that I have accomplished so many of these already.

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