Wairarapa hotspots for the kids

wairarapa school holidays

Family friendly and suited to all budgets, the Wairarapa is a favourite for school holiday escapes, with so many fun, free and nearly free experiences for the kids to enjoy. Keep an eye out for events - there’s always a great line-up to keep the whole family entertained! 

Holiday highlights...

  • QUEEN ELIZABETH PARK
  • BIKING
  • OUTDOORS
  • INDOORS
  •  PEDAL
  • WALK

Visit Queen Elizabeth Park - jammed packed with hours of fun! Test out your climbing, sliding, swinging and flying skills on the Kids Own Playground, you can’t miss it! 

Masterton Skatepark - perfect for skaters, rollerbladers, and scooter riders of all ages to have a blast!

Mini train rides - taking a ride on the train is a must-do for both kids and adults. The most fun you can have for $1!

Mini golf - challenge the family to a round of golf.

Pedal Boats - jump in a pedal boat and enjoy a leisurely cruise around the lake.

Pop over the swing bridge - on the other side you'll find the deer park and BMX track.

Tree lover? Queen Elizabeth Park boasts a collection of exotic trees – some planted more than 140 years ago. Check the plaques for details while wandering beneath the canopies. 

Visit the ducks - walk around the lake and feed the ducks. Can you count how many tuna (eel) are swimming beneath the surface?

Cycling Toms - hire an e-bike for your Wairarapa cycling adventures, and enjoy the child friendly cafe in their shop with cool colouring and hot chocolates!

Lansdowne Mountain Bike Park - located on a section of hillside at the northern edge of Masterton. Free to use with professionally designed and built tracks for beginners through to experienced riders with grade 2, 3 and 4 tracks.

Rivenrock Mountain Bike Park - try out the purpose-built and professionally designed tracks in Mount Holdsworth. For all levels of mountain bikers. Open for the summer season from October - April on Saturday, Sunday & Wednesday evenings.

Abseiling and Rafting - feel adventurous? Check out Wellington Rafting for exciting kids Abseiling and Rafting events along the Waiohine River.

Coastal adventures - grab fish & chips, ice creams, and run wild at the coast!

Martinborough Manor - learn about farm animals with a hands on guided visit around a working farm.

Pūkaha National Wildlife Centre - explore the forest, meet native birds, and learn about the connection to the land at a unique conservation centre.

Stonehenge Aotearoa - open everyday in school holidays 10.00am - 4.00pm for self-guided tours.

Waimeha Camping Village, Cape Palliser - kids can practice their swing at the Waimeha Driving Range with a bucket of 25 balls for $10. Feed the friendly animals including Gary the goat, Penny the pig, Shaza the sheep and Daisy the cow. Kids under 13 get 20% off lunch at Cape Palliser Bar and Grill open Thursday to Sunday.

Wairarapa Trails - walking, cycling. A vast range of trails means it's your choice! Choose from a short lakeside stroll or bike, to a multi-day trip along the coast or tramp in the Tararua Ranges.

Aratoi - Wairarapa Museum of Art & History - take in the latest exhibition and watch local artists create inside colourful shipping containers at nearby ConArt Gallery & Studio.

Bookworm in the family? Choose something from Hedley's Books awesome kids collection, or specialty children's bookstore Chicken and Frog in Featherston.

Cinemas - kicking back at the movies is a perfect wet weather activity. Take your pick from Circus Cinema in Martinborough, or in Masterton - Regent 3 Cinemas and The Screening Room.

Cobblestones Museum - Step back in time at Cobblestones, a charming historic village and museum in Greytown. Peek into the past at the historic village complete with schoolhouse, fire station, church, hospital, family home, interactive displays and much more. 

Eats & Drinks - fill the family up with scrummy treats from bakeries, cafes and restaurants right across Wairarapa.

Indoor Pools - Across from Queen Elizabeth Park Trust House Recreation Centre is full of indoor pools, a hydro-slide, river ride for lots of fun in the (warm) water!

The Fell Museum - view the H199 - the only locomotive of its type in the world and learn about the unique aspect of New Zealand's railway heritage.

The Woolshed - learn about the industry, culture and international sport of shearing in New Zealand. Experience the ambience (and smells) of two historic wool sheds.

Wairarapa Trails - jump on your bike and get pedaling.

Cycle the wineries - mix your cycling with wine tasting around Martinborough Wine Village.

Greytown Woodside Trail - coming by train from Wellington? Pop your bike on and cycle the scenic Greytown trail. You can walk it too!

Lansdowne Mountain Bike Park - free to use with professionally designed and built tracks ideal for beginners through to experienced riders.

Remutaka Rail Trail - explore eerie tunnels and old railway ruins -  there are ride lengths to suit everyone from easy day trips to overnight trips (you can also walk the trail!).

Rivenrock Mountain Bike Park - a purpose built and professionaly designed Mountain Bike Park for all levels of mountain bikers, located in the stunning Mt Holdsworth area of the Wairarapa.

Wairarapa Trails - get outside and breathe in the fresh air on one of our many trails. Some fun family friendly walks to discover:

Deliverance Cove track - walk the 162 metre track up to Castle Rock at Castlepoint - named by explorer Captain Cook in 1770. The magnificent views will be worth the effort.

Henley Lake - walk around 43 hectares of flat tracks through wetlands, and native plants with plenty of picnic spots in between. Listen for up to 72 different species of birdsong. 

Lansdowne Recreational Trail - explore this trail popular with walkers, cyclists and runners.

Rewanui Forest Park - take a short 1-2 hour loop walk through native bush and pine forest, just 20 minutes east of Masterton on your way to Castlepoint and Riversdale.

Waiohine Gorge - just out of Carterton, kids will love walking across the long suspension bridge.