Last week I wrote a post about “visible shipwrecks” of the North Island coastline, wrecks that you can visit on foot. Our fascination with these rust-ridden hulks comes partly from our simultaneous love/fear of the sea, and partly the fading link they provide to New Zealand’s past. You can read part one here. Sadly, they are […]
Shipwrecks have a special lure, don’t they? The spectre of tragedy that surrounds them, the resonance of loss, and a reminder of the ocean’s uncompromising power. More than most historical artefacts – restored cars, preserved buildings, antique furniture; embalmed in modern veneer; enshrined in modern surroundings – a dead ship feels like the past reaching
Railways were once the heart of a country. Both socially and commercially they were vital links, often the only links. In 19th century New Zealand thousands of settlers laboured for years, even decades on a single route, chiseling through horribly uneven terrain and dense native bush with picks, shovels, and an occasional blast of TNT.
Not being a frequent visitor to the Manawatu region, I was rather astounded to discover this relic. Just a few minutes south-east of Palmerston North alongside SH56, these are the remains of the longest suspension bridge in New Zealand, the Opiki Toll Bridge. One hundred years ago and more, the soggy swamplands around
Explore a forgotten but historic stretch of the New Zealand wilderness at the wheel of your personal rail cart. This is very, very cool. If the romance of vintage rail travel is your thing, then picture yourself clattering along miles of disused, overgrown tracks. If rambling through New Zealand’s native wilderness without even a change