Sunday Mail - Travel/Escape - - FRONT PAGE -

Ohakune Grow­ers As­so­ci­a­tion de­cided to erect a 7.5m car­rot at the en­trance to the town. Even­tu­ally in­stalled in a park on the fringe of the Car­rot Cap­i­tal, the big or­ange sym­bol has since been pho­tographed by thou­sands of tourists.

In 2011, it was painted black to sup­port the All Blacks’ bid for the Rugby World Cup. It could be worse: in Cromwell, Cen­tral Otago, they have gi­ant fruit. See vis­i­to­ North Is­land’s west coast, but In­gle­wood, Taranaki is the place.

From rac­ing cars and trac­tors to tip trucks, fire en­gines, air­craft and more, these sta­ples of Kiwi child­hoods have been pro­duced since 1935 and are still made on-site. Warn­ing: Fun Ho! toys are ad­dic­tively col­lectable. See fun­ho­ Ki­wis have a big melan­choly streak and their soggy green land­scapes cer­tainly en­cour­age it. Thumb your nose at it all by rid­ing a RailBike through it.

For­got­ten World Ad­ven­tures op­er­ates sea­sonal semi-guided tours along a moth­balled 140km stretch of rail­way be­tween Okahukura in the Cen­tral North Is­land and Stratford in Taranaki.

The six-hour RailBike ad­ven­ture tra­verses the un­spoilt wilder­ness of the Tan­garakau Scenic Re­serve on comfy two-seater, pedal-your-own ma­chines. This beau­ti­ful re­mote area has de­fied all ef­forts to “break it in” but you travel through it with a yee-ha! See for­got­ten­worl­dad­ven­

See gis­bor­ has bal­looned into a glob­allysig­nif­i­cant fash­ion/art/theatre event. Nel­son lost the event to Welling­ton a few years ago so if you can’t make the an­nual three-week show each Septem­ber, the WOW & Clas­sic Cars Mu­seum in Nel­son dis­plays 60-plus jaw-drop­ping gar­ments. See world­ofwear­ wow­

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