Free and nearly free
There's nothing like having fun on a tight budget. Check out these ideas - they're all free or cheap as chips.
A gold coin will get you entrance to the purpose built mountain bike park near Mt Holdsworth
Check out NZ's national museum of sheep and shearing - a great experience straight off the sheeps back!
Cobblestones Museum in Greytown will take adults back to a more simple time and leave the kids astonished! Plus it's right next door to Schoc Chocolates were you can grab a beautiful handcrafted sweet for a couple of dollars.
Fell Locomotive Museum
Fell Locomotive Museum in Featherston is home to H199, the only fell locomotive of its kind in the world! Plus if you head up the road to Cross Creek and walk in you can see fantastic remains of the workpits from back in the day that this engine was actually used!
An outstanding look at cars, machinery and clothing from the past and all of it has a Wairarapa story behind it.
Middleton Model Railway
One of the largest model railways in New Zealand.
A Wine Tasting
The Wairarapa is filled with beautiful wines and you can enjoy a tasting at any one of these for about $5 (some don't charge at all).
The Wairarapa region is well known for its beautiful gardens - from formal topiary to blowsy cottage blooms. Pack a picnic and make a day of it.
Aratoi Museum of Art & History
Based in Masterton, Aratoi tells the history of the Wairarapa through stories and art. They have some spectacular exhibitions on display and are always looking to help out local talent.
A walk in the Wairarapa can be anything from an easy stroll around a town lake through to a multi day tramp through the Tararua Ranges. Take one of the walking trails that weave through native bush reserves or make your tracks along a Wairarapa beach.
Queen Elizabeth Park
Take some time out and watch the kids play on the awesome playground at Queen Elizabeth Park in Masterton. Walk the swing bridge to visit the deer and feed the ducks on the lake. There's also a great miniature train that goes for a spin each Sunday - it's not free though, about a dollar per rider, must be one of the few things in the world that's only a dollar!
Head to some of the great swimming holes around the region.
Take advantage of the Wairarapa's fantastic free cycling tracks!
Carrington Park in Carterton has a skate park, a play area for the smaller kids and one for the big kids. A big sports field at the back surrounded by a pathway and fitness equipment mean it's a great spot to kick a ball around.
Greytown Memorial Park
Greytown Memorial Park is great fun for the kids with a sportfield, playground, tennis courts and plenty of magnificent trees to save them from that hot summer sun.
Carterton Mountain Biking Track
A mountain bike track suitable for the whole family, this little ripper is just outside of Carterton in the farming area of Dalefield.
World War I Self-guided Tours
Pick a story which resonates with you and drive to the story's points of interest and explore the Wairarapa at the same time.