Explore Central Otago’s heritage sites and experience historic landmarks, heritage precincts and beautifully preserved historic buildings. Step back in time and explore the history and heritage of Central Otago.
The Gold Rush
Visit a variety of historic sites in Central Otago where the alluring gold was discovered and mined.
Learn about the journey the miners would've made to get here, the process to find that gold, the hardships and the conditions they had to endure.
Discover how the beautiful settlements we know today of Clyde, Ophir and Roxburgh to name a few, came to be.
'There's Gold in 'em hills!'
Cromwell Heritage Precinct and Bannockburn Sluicing's Tour
Visit the Bannockburn Sluicing's and explore the former goldfield and remains of the Stewart Town. Enjoy a 3.5km walk and you are sure to see remains of dams, water races, tunnels and towering cliff faces - all that is left of hills that have been sluiced away to find the precious gold.
Enjoy lunch at the Bannockburn Hotel. The Bannockburn Hotel has been serving great food and amazing wine since 1862.
After lunch you will visit the Cromwell Heritage Precinct. Step back in time to the gold rush and explore heritage buildings, many with artisan businesses in them, located on the shore of beautiful Lake Dunstan.
St Bathans and Ophir Tour
Ophir is steeped in gold mining history and rich in charm. Located on the eastern banks of the Manuherikia River, Ophir was founded in 1863. It grew to become the biggest town in the Manuherikia Valley during the gold rush days. Today, the small town is rich in historical buildings, including New Zealand’s oldest post office. Enjoy lunch at the famous Pitches Store Restaurant in Ophir.
After lunch you will visit St Bathans, and enjoy a walk around the spectacular Blue Lake. The walk is an easy 2 km, along the spectacular cliffs and sluiced areas with iron remnants still scattered around. Finish the day off with a refreshment from the Vulcan Hotel.