……and here we are again…almost summer….almost Christmas!

WOW!!!  Franklin is once again showcasing a great deal of things to do and places to be over the next few weeks – just to start the summer season!!

Our area is quite a vast rural one, on the outer edges of what is now the Auckland Supercity, (not too far from the airport) but also taking in the Northern edge of the Waikato region, so we do have lots around – the west and east coast beaches are great for surfing and swimming (when the weather is fine), but also fantastic to walk along and take in the sounds, smells and sights at this time of year.

Port Waikato beach
Port Waikato on the West coast
East coast beaches in summer
East coast beaches in summer

Right now we can also enjoy (well many of us can!!) a long weekend with fun times at the local Glenbrook Vintage Railway. This weekend is their opening weekend for the season and there will be fun aplenty for all ages,, including a country market day on Monday! gvr-steam-train-and-engine.jpg

Our local Pukekohe Performing Arts group will help bring back memories of a bygone era with their production of “Grease,” showing until  Sunday.

Then there’s the local markets, an Orchid fair and the amazing Blast to the Past at Waiuku!

Heaps of great accommodation choices too – motels, hotels, campgounds, B&B’s – you name it!! along with dining experiences of all sorts!

If that isn’t enough to get you interested, then just wait and keep an eye out for more happenings in the region – including the V8 Supercars – only a matter of weeks away now!!! and with Christmas looming ever closer, there’s always the Christmas display to help get into the swing of things to come .

bersanti day spa

A new Park in Franklin…

The Franklin region has a new Regional Park opening today (8th March).

This wonderful new Regional Park – Waitawa – only 15 minutes from Clevedon Village, in Franklin Country is holding an open weekend this weekend, showcasing a fantastic place for all to enjoy.

Today and tomorrow, the park is open for visitors to enjoy and has activities to take part in too – kite flying, mountain bike riding, walking tracks, swimming, golf discs and more. There are also food tents in case you get caught short without your own picnic!

…and if you want to check out the lay of the land before committing to any one area, take a shuttle trip in one of the shuttle vans and sit back to enjoy!
The Park has a fair bit of history, – having once been an explosives storage area –

The park land at Waitawa is of great importance to Maori as it is located upon a traditional boundary line between Te Urikaraka (Ngati Paoa) and Ngati Kohua (Ngai Tai / Te Waiohua). The area has a long and rich history of human occupation which is reflected in the numerous archaeological sites recorded on the parkland at Waitawa and the wider area. Sites of significance include Waitawa, Waipatukahu and Ruakakariki kainga, the inland kainga of Papaporutu, Oamio and Karioi the Pawhetau, Orakau, Mataitai, Koheruarahi and Kauri pa as well as cultivations at Te Aroaro.

For historic video clips of Waitawa Regional Park, see below:
A Holiday at the Beach
Pāwhetau Pā
Working at Waitawa

…and for interesting historic photos, take a look at these links:
The Wharf
No Smoking Sign
Clean Area
Explosives Truck
Waitawa Bay and housing

It is really quite amazing what we have here on our doorstep!! so get along and visit the Park…it will be open to pedestrians all day from Monday 10th March and will be available to walk the tracks or bike them.
Well done to the Council and team of Park Rangers and others who have helped to get a wonderful place up and running!

Plaque of Waitawa  official opening
Plaque of Waitawa official opening