Amazing Arrowtown

YUZH! I’ve finally managed to find the time to write about something. I had meant to blog about Arrowtown last Wednesday but, for some reason, the temperature dropped and all of a sudden, it became too cold for my body to function. I had all these ideas going through my head but my feet and fingers just wanted to feel the warmth of my electric blanket. It’s really quite chilly – it’s much colder now than this time last year. Brrr ….

Anyway … Arrowtown. On the first day of my second South Island Sojourn (the first was in 2008), after dumping my stuff at The Base, I headed off to Arrowtown to witness their Autumn Festival. I seriously didn’t know this was going to be held on the week I would be in town. I found out about all about it some time before I had to fly off. I think I did a Google search on Arrowtown (I think I was looking for someplace to eat) and the Arrowtown Autumn Festival came up.

Arrowtown’s a really lovely place. It is a historic gold mining town that’s located about 5 km from South Island’s State Highway 6. Today, Arrowtown has a population of just over 2,000 but during the height of the gold rush, the population was over 7,000. It was then the centre of a larger municipality which included the settlements of Macetown, Skippers and Bullendale. However, none of these three other settlements exist today. It was constituted as a borough in 1867 and only became part of the Queenstown-Lakes District in 1989. Miss Kaladkarin and I have seen it in summer so I was quite excited to see what it looked like in Autumn – I’ve been told the place looks amazing when the leaves have started to turn.

So anyway, when I got there, the festivities were in full swing! They had a band playing on one side of the town and there seemed to be games being held in the main street. There were also a lot of people walking around wearing period costumes (and they were all willing to be photographed).

I didn’t stay too long at the town centre (might get tempted to shop), so I headed for the Arrow River (Ms Kaladkarin and I missed that area in 2008, because we explored the Chinese Mining Village, which is still part of Arrowtown). It was during my little trek that I discovered just how beautiful the scenery really is!

The hillsides were cloaked in a myriad of colours! I just could not stop taking pictures! Every step seemed to present me with a vista that was slightly different yet more amazing than the previous one. Golden leaves covered the path and crunched softly as I walked on them. I was so thankful that the weather was absolutely perfect! It was warm without being uncomfortable so I really enjoyed my walk. I think I have about a hundred photos of the scenery (unfortunately, none of them did the place any justice). I just couldn’t get enough of it!

As I mentioned in a previous post, I was supposed to hike up to Tobin’s Peak but opted against it because it was getting late. So I headed back but walked on the other side of Arrow River instead and the views were still amazing. Even in black and white the place looked absolutely magical.

I seriously had to rush back to the town proper because it was getting dark and quite chilly. As much as I loved Arrowtown, I didn’t want to spend the night in the forest. I doubt if the trees would look as enticing as they do in broad daylight. I really wanted to get back because I was cold and hungry and tired. I just wanted to rest my feet. Besides, I had another busy day ahead of me so I needed to rest and make sure I was ready for it.

So anyway, before heading off to Queenstown, I just had to have another look at the hillside and …

It was seriously a great start to a great holiday!

For more information on Arrowtown, visit their website at


Author: Viv Phillips

That's not exactly a flattering image. Eh! Anyway, when I'm not taking photos, I do acrylic painting or write about my adventures (and misadventures) in this wonderful journey called life. :)

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