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Girls on the Road Again Tours Blue Duck Station - Expired

28 Apr - 02 May 22

Come join multi-award winning photographer Lesley Whyte in Retaruke!

We are hosted by Dan Steele, owner of Blue Duck Station which is located in the Ruapehu District on the banks of the Whanganui and Retaruke Rivers and surrounded by Whanganui National Park. The station’s core values are to conserve its endangered wildlife, increase the health of native bush and rivers, and preserve the history of the area while educating visitors about the endangered New Zealand blue duck, other native species and local history. There are many treats on this tour:

* Jetboat ride and a walk to Bridge to Nowhere

* Morning tea hosted by the Richard and Rachel Steele at their 108-year-old homestead where not only will you have breathtaking views from their porch of the Whanganui and Retaruke Rivers but treated to Rachel’s biscuits which are NZ famous

* Get a taste of what Blue Duck Station is all about as we are taken on a safari. Get an understanding of the local history, hear all about our conservation work and witness the everyday workings of the station. Take a short kayak through the gorge at the base of the Kaiwhakauka falls where you may see some Whio as this is their favourite place to hang out

* Garden tour at Ohakune and hosted for lunch.For the foodies: The highlight of the four-night, five days is your dining experience at The Chef’s Table. The fine dining experience entails a refined 10-course degustation menu from the land. The Chef’s Table at Blue Duck Station offers a stripped-back and unique fine dining experience under the stunning night’s sky at Blue Duck Station – a 30-minute ATV trip. Located on the highest point of the station affectionately known as the Top of the World, it has views of the Tongariro and Whanganui national parks. The mountains Taranaki, Tongariro, Mount Ruapehu and Ngauruhoe are spectacular on a clear day. To make this experience even more memorable, you will head out with Jax and the chef on the station foraging for items to be included in your fine dining experience – a refined 10-course degustation dinner from the land. There is no expense spared here, your meal comes with pre-dinner drinks and wine matching across all 10 courses, followed by coffee. After your meal a return 30-minute ATV ride back down. Don’t expect to be back home before 11.00pmFor the photographers: If you are a photographer, you will be at home here – Lesley will provide photography mentoring and run an evening light painting session against the backdrop of the old rustic trucks

View from the top of the world, blue duck station - visit ruapehu.jpg

The photographic opportunities from “Top of the World” are breathtaking – long exposure sunset or simply an amazing panoramic image

From the Northerner’s open-air carriage, it is a photographer’s dream as we go through the Rangitikei and Central North Island areas

The photography from the jetboat ride is outstanding, the sheer cliffs covered in virgin bush, through to the dappled light on the walk to the Bridge to Nowhere. Meals & Accommodation:* Dinner (with wines), lunch and breakfast are included; morning or afternoon teas unless noted are own cost

* Pre-tour accommodation and breakfast in Wellington’s luxuriously beautiful QT Hotel with a three-course fine dining experience (plus wines) at Hippopotamus is included. Post-tour accommodation in Wellington can be arranged at an additional cost.

* While on the station your meals are at the Blue Duck Station’s café – the central meeting point for everyone; those on the farm and those enjoying the station’s activities. Fully cooked breakfast, lunch and two-course dinners are rustic homecooked and eaten sitting around one of the two large tables – an opportunity to meet and chat with Dan Steele who joins most nights.

* This is a working station; the accommodation is warm and very comfortable; you are spread out across two houses which are 2 minutes apart. One of the houses is a central day meeting point which has a shared kitchen and large living area. Transport: A dedicated Girls on the Road Again driver and luxury coach return travel to Wellington.

More details are available here.