Northland bush walking escapes

Botanist and guru of New Zealand foliage, Tony Foster, has set up a new venture tucked in a special corner of Northland, giving overseas visitors a unique first-hand experience of New Zealand’s plant life.

New Zealand foliage guru and botanist Tony Foster has a specialised tourism venture tucked away in a special corner of Northland that gives overseas visitors a unique first-hand experience of New Zealand plant life.

The western arm of Whangaroa Harbour is an isolated hotspot of bio-diversity that has helped to create an area rich in rare, native plants.

When Foster moved to Totara North in the mid-1990s, he discovered the uniqueness of his surroundings, and felt a strong desire to showcase its diversity.

Foster, who had previously owned and operated a native plant nursery and taught biology and horticulture, shares his extensive knowledge of Northland’s coastal forest with guided walks.

The two-hour guided walks from Totara North pass through bush to Lane Cove, in the outer reaches of the Whangaroa harbour.

The walk passes towering cliffs, waterfalls and and gardens of kumara - the sweet potato grown by New Zealand’s indigenous Maori.

A boat trip takes visitors to see the volcanic outcrops that characterise Whangaroa Harbour.

More information:

New Zealand plants and trees