20 Things You Must Do If You Are in Oamaru, NZ

Are you planning your next vacation in New Zealand? Is Oamaru on your list? Find out the top 20 things that you need to do if you are in Oamaru, New Zealand. 

Image Credit : Albom Adventure

Oamaru is an authentic Victorian precinct om New Zealand that millions of travelers visit every year regardless of the country. Starting from spending time with the blue penguins to knowing more about the historical steam engines; there is a lot of stuff to do in Oamaru. If you are planning your next vacation in New Zealand and looking forward to visiting its famous town Oamaru; find out the top 20 most exciting things to do in this place that offers a fine blend of natural beauty and cultural heritage. This place can be visited all year round as every season offers a unique charm of its own.

  1. Explore the Historical Victorian Precinct

The Victorian Precinct in Oamaru is a busy place and a hub where you can find everything together. Starting from quirky shops to beautiful galleries, to traditional artisan crafts; you get to explore a lot of options. The place offers pop-up ventures, eccentric interiors, handcrafted items, antiques, and treasures to help you find the best souvenir for your vacation in New Zealand. While you can explore a lot here, you can also simply enjoy your time in this relaxing town with craft beer or a fine whiskey.

  1. Steampunk Universe at Steampunk HQ Museum

Steampunk HQ is a highly renowned museum where you can have the real-time experience of being the driver of a steam engine. While it is definitely not ‘Thomas the Train’, the museum can bring out the child in you by allowing you to pull some levers, an allowance to intrusive thoughts. The elaborate details, bustles, crystals, coppers, and many other elements will take you in different dimensions. There is also an annual Steampunk Festival that takes place every year which features of handful of exciting events.

  1. Take a Stroll on Harbour Street

Heading down this street can help get a piece of history as you can see grand limestone buildings beside it. Most of these structures were built in in 1880s, Authentic, beautiful, and vintage; this street can take you back in time. Other than these buildings, you can also find many shops selling second-hand and vintage clothing from where you can also find your retrofit. If you like a little odd artwork then don’t forget to visit the Lost Souls Gallery that features surreal installations.

  1. Take a Ride on a Vintage Train

At Oamaru Steam & Rail, you can easily hop on a picturesque train ride which offers an adventurous journey through the clay cliffs of the Victorian Harbour. This train can help you reach the Red Sheds which are pre-occupied by the local artisans and the craftspeople. You can also visit the Forrester Galler which is an aesthetic of its own. You can get onto this train every Sunday as well as on the holidays and special events like Christmas, The New Year, the Victorian Weekend, etc.

  1. Make Sure to Visit the Moeraki Boulders

If you are wondering what is so special about these boulders, then understand that these boulders are huge, round, and made of granite which makes them look like the egg of a giant ancient animal, or let’s just say Godzilla. Smoothed by eons of seawater movement, these boulders can be found on the shores of Koekohe Beach. There are around 50 boulders on the beach and you can enjoy the best view on low tides when the whole beach looks like a surreal nest with giant eggs. The magic created by nature is now a hot spot for travelers, photographers, and Instagrammers as well.

  1. Walk on South Hill Walkway

This beautiful walkway on South Hill is around 2 kilometers long and runs between Takaro Park and the Lookout Point offering a magnificent view of the ocean and the town, While walking through this walkway beside the Historic Precinct; you can also find a stop to visit the blue penguins.

  1. Time to Hike at the Skyline Walk

Traveling and adventure are practically incomplete without a bit of hiking. If you are in New Zealand and roaming around in Oamaru, make sure to hike at the Skyline Walk which offers decent elevation through beautiful trails, forest, green vegetation, and amazing views. It is a 4.6-kilometer hike that starts from Fenwick Park and then reaches a summit to offer a panoramic view. This hike can make feel stressed and pleasurable at the same time as it is strenuous yet scenic. You can also find the Astronomical Society on the way to this hike.

  1. Exploring Art Galleries in Oamaru

Oamaru in New Zealand is well revered for its art galleries as the creative essence can be found all over the town. There are a few galleries that you should definitely visit, such as the Forrester Gallery. This gallery consists of an amazing neo-classical look. This building from 1884 is filled with paintings, sculptures, prints, and many other elements based on local and Maori art. Similarly, there is also The Grainstore Gallery which offers a lively collection of local art.

  1. Visit Oamaru Public Garden

A public garden might not sound much appealing and unique but these gardens from the Victorian age have an elegant layer of sophistication and beauty. This public garden was built back in 1976 and it is one of the oldest public gardens in New Zealand it is known as the ‘Garden of Significance’, This garden offers both, natural beauty and man-made installations. Featuring ample sitting areas and sweet spots for picnics; this park is the best place to have a relaxing day after a few days of extreme traveling.

  1. Make Friendship with Blue Penguin Colony

Blue penguins are a special species of penguins which is the smallest among all. The rocky outcrops at the seashore are considered to be a natural habitat for these small penguins and that is one of the main reasons why Oamaru is a favorite place for nature and wildlife enthusiasts. It is a natural biosphere for the penguins where you can find them waddling along the beach shore.

  1. Soak in The Bushy Beach Scenic Reserve

With long sandy beaches and coastal forests, Bushy Beach offers a fantastic opportunity for photography. It is a bio-reserve where people can find a glimpse of coastal wildlife. The coastal vegetation includes hebe, ngaio, mahoe, broadleaf, and many other types of trees which are home to numerous types of birds and insects. The beach and its surrounding area offer a rich collection of flora and fauna including native plants and influences of other regions. You can also find the yellow-eyed penguin on this beach.

  1. Visit Janet Frame’s Childhood Home

Janet Frame is one of the most revered, talented, and celebrated authors of all time and she used to live in Oamaru in her childhood. The house is still located at 56 Eden St and many people visit here. The house has now turned into a museum where people can witness Janet Frame’s works of her lifetime. There are many bookworms around the world who are also fanatics of Janet’s works and if you are one of them, make sure to visit this place to get more inspiration.

  1. Learn History at Waitaki Museum & Archives

Waitaki Museum, also known as the North Otago Museum, is the place where you can gain more knowledge about the rich history of the native people of the country. The museum can offer all the nitty-gritty of the town including natural, political, cultural, agricultural, and industrial avenues of the Waitaki District. The museum lets you explore the history of this place, Oamaru is one of the most influential port towns in the whole world.

  1. Finding Fossils at Vanished World

When it comes to the most fascinating geological sites, the Vanish World stays at the top of them. This place is filled with rare fossils from the pre-historic era. Starting from whale skeletons, prehistoric penguins, Sharktooth dolphins, and many other kinds of animals that used to belong here and there fossils can be still found scattered all over the place. The Vanish World is located 43 kilometers away from Oamaru.

  1. Have a Taste of the Whitestone Cheese

Oamaru has the best artisan cheese factory in the whole world and it is well revered as ‘ Whitestone Cheese’. Starting from cheese tasting to enjoying a visit to the factory. Therefore, you can not only eat cheese but also witness the cheese-making process. This is the best place for all kinds of cheese lovers so make sure to take your kids along.

  1. Jet Boat Ride on Braided River

Braided River can offer you the most thrilling experience if you join the jet boat ride. This ride can keep your heart pumping at a high rate with an enthralling experience, wildlife, and bold& cold water. You on enjoy the ride as it is tailor-made to your preferences. You can opt for an adventure that starts from the Waitaki Hydro-Dam and takes you towards the Pacific Ocean. You can enjoy hours of sightseeing, photography, and fishing from the boat.

  1. The Finest Wine-tasting Session

The Waitaki District is famous for many reasons and one of the prime reasons would be the wine breweries. It has slowly become one of the most unique wine-growing regions in New Zealand that does not only offer the best wines but also spectacular views. The grape vine-yards on the green fields beside big mountains look spectacular. You can take a wine tour and visit the locals as well as boutique cellar doors to get yourself some spirit. The gravel beds beside the Waitaki River are very fertile and can offer the taste of seasonal, fresh, and hand-picked grapes.

  1. Learn Farming at Totara Estate

Totara Estate is historic place of significance that is well revered for its ingenuity in farming. This is the birthplace of New Zealand’s successful business of livestock and frozen meat industry. Located only 9 kilometers away from Oamaru, you can easily visit this place in less than 30 minutes. The architecture model in the farm still remains the same and can offer you a clear depiction of farms from the mid-1800s. The structures also include well-designed stables, tack rooms, bunkhouses, cookhouses, butcher sheds, and many others. Make sure to visit this farm and enjoy a cup of billy tea with tasty scones.

  1. Enjoy the Coastal View at Cape Wanbrow

Cape Wanbrow offers a beautiful walking track that directly leads to the Lookout Point which offers incredible panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean as well as the harbor. However, be careful when you walk up there as the climb is very steep and can turn slippery on rainy days. Dogs are also allowed in this walking track so, make sure to bring your pet along. Cape Wanbrow also consists of many mountain bike trails that you can hit on your MTB. There is an 8-kilometre circuit that is interconnected to explore the whole area.

  1. Visit Oamaru Opera House for an Event

Oamaru Opera House is situated at the historic Thames Street and is well revered for hosting a variety of shows. Starting from comedy, drama, theater, music, and dance; everyone can find something to enjoy here. The opera house has a total of 9 flexible spaces which are mainly rented for various events, both commercial and personal.

Some of the other worthy mentions are, Bay Playground, Art at Woolstore Complex, Trip to Whitestone City, S14 Beach, Ocean Cycle Trail on Alps 2, Clark’s Mill, Devil’s Bridge Wetland, Kakanui’s Sunflowers Field, and the list goes on.

Anna Abbott

I am Anna Abbott and I give “Digital Wall” an insight into the most recent news hitting the “Entertainment” sector . I have been an independent PR adviser for over 11 years in the city and in recent years turned my experience in music and passion for journalism into a full time role. <strong>Address:</strong> 661 Station Street, Fremont, CA 94536, USA <strong>Phone:</strong> (+1) 510-936-8074 <strong>Email:</strong> [email protected]

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