We all know of the wildly popular Wild Foods festival in Hokitika – mountain oysters, possum kebabs, and huhu grubs tickling our tonsils – but how about Hokitika for some R&R during a quieter time?
Apart from walks in the bush or on the beach, watching the dramatic sunsets, or other such relaxing things, what else is available in Hokitika? There is plenty so check out the visitors centre when you arrive. For history buffs the 22 point heritage walk is a great way to get to know, and see, some of the early pakeha history. (described in a freely available brochure)
Hokitika was settled in the 1860’s following the discovery of gold. For Maori pounamu (greenstone) was the natural treasure here and today there are a number of places you can watch carvers as they transform the extremely hard rock into traditional or modern pieces.
Just north of the town boundary is the Glow Worm Dell – a free opportunity to see these magical tail-lights which are designed to attract food onto the sticky threads from which the worm hangs. Make sure noise is kept to a minimum as you gaze on the thousands of little lights.
Hokitika is also a good base from which to explore other West Coast delights such as Okarito to see the kotuku and of course the glaciers to name only two.
While on the Coast I stayed at B&B Farm stay – Berwicks Hill in Ruatapu, 14 ks south of Hokitika. Perched on a hill it provides wonderful views of both the Tasman Sea and Southern Alps. It lived up to its advertised “warm and friendly stay”.
Owned by the Berwick family for three generations, the farm is now run as a hobby farm. Close by is the beautiful Lake Mahinapua with its great bush walks, a golf course, and the beach. With only two rooms for guests booking ahead is recommended -arrive with an empty stomach as the food is superb too.
Cnr Tancred & Hamilton Streets
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