Edgecumbe & Awakeri

Follow Age Hacker Cherry as she introduces us to her surroundings and documents it all via a blog and vlog (video blog) using her smartphone. Learn about nature, technology and more!

The township of Edgecumbe is situated inland from the coast and lies 15 km to the west of Whakatane. It services the agricultural region surrounding the plains of the Rangitaiki river.

  • The earthquake in Edgecumbe on March 2nd 1987 occurred 8 km below the earth’s surface causing widespread and in some places, serious damage. 50% of the houses in Edgecumbe were damaged including the dairy factory. Kawerau suffered damage with Whakatane also experiencing the effects.
  • In April 2017 the entire town of Edgecumbe was evacuated due to major flooding.
  • Edgecumbe is the home of the Fonterra Dairy Factory which employs 1/5 of the local population and is one of the oldest dairy factories in New Zealand.

The village of Awakeri is a 10 minute drive from Whakatane. It is best known for the hot springs, farming and fruit -growing and recently the Awakeri Rail Adventures.

  • I have driven past the entrance to Awakeri Hot Springs Holiday Park hundreds of times without venturing in. When I did, I was really impressed with the size of the park and facilities on offer. There is a large and well-stocked shop just at the entrance to the park and the sound of bird life was amazing. There are many accommodation options all set in park-like surroundings and the pools are supplied with geothermal water from deep bores. The Awakeri Hot Springs website is worth a browse to get a feel for the natural beauty of this place.
  • The Awakeri Rail Adventures is run by an operator (an ex-engine driver) who has leased unused rail line from Kiwi Rail for his tourist business. It was launched 19 months ago and according to local and online sources is becoming one of Eastern Bay’s ‘top attractions’.

The rail carts used on the historic track has been adapted for tourists to drive themselves while following the ‘pilot’.

I really like that Awakeri Rail Adventures have formed a unique partnership with the Department of Conservation. The operator, with the help of the local Scout Club, manage the trapping of rats, ferrets and stoats to prevent further decimation of bird life.

There are 4 different types of trips on offer. I opted for the three-hour return trip which included, a bush walk, a stop to feed an enormous gaggle of chickens and other birds and having a cuppa made from boiling water in a ‘billy’ and biscuits.

I thoroughly enjoyed the afternoon and would recommend going onto the website for a look around.

EDGECUMBE & AWAKERI from Cheryle Bewley on Vimeo.

cherry_profilephotoBy Age Hacker, Cherry