It's so good to leave the city, especially in winter. This is Wenderholm Regional Park, next to the Puhoi River and only forty-odd minutes out of Auckland. We stayed in a converted farmhouse right on the water's edge, with a fruit orchard full of grapefruit, oranges and spindly pukeko running around in the grass.
My favourite part of the visitors' book was an entry by Alma Schischka, whose husband was born in the house's middle bedroom in 1915. And the food! She prepared a daily menu for the farmers that included ten slices of bread and jam (each), multiple billies of tea, porridge, flounder, scones, cold mutton and 'something from the tins.' We didn't quite match that but did eat a lot of chocolate (compulsory walking fuel), buttered crumpets and oranges from the garden. A small amount of art making was done, but not much - I seemed to spend a lot of time just staring at the river thinking about dinner.