Coastal North Otago
Maheno, Herbert & Waianakarua
Maheno is known for its historic flour mill and Heritage New Zealand site, Clarks Mill as well as its collection of charming churches including St Andrews. Clarks Mill was once part of the wider Totara Estate, another Heritage New Zealand site which is located 5 minutes north.
From Maheno, visitors can take a winding inland route to Livingstone, Danseys Pass or Duntroon. Alternatively, visitors can veer out to the seaside town of Kakanui, or journey on south to Herbert.
Herbert is a pleasant little village situated on sunny sheltered hills around 20 minutes from Oamaru.
Pop into the interesting second-hand store on the main road or head to Glencoe Campsite - a lovely DOC managed space surrounded by bush with the river running below. Camp Iona is another option for those staying in area, or head down the hill to the Herbert Forest Camp Ground.
Herbert is popular with walkers and mountain bikers with a selection of trails in Herbert Forest. There are a number of walking tracks on offer from a short 1/1.5 hour loop to longer 4.5 hour circuit As for mountain biking, riders will love the 5km single-track descent through the forest. The full loop is a 10km intermediate grade circuit with some cycling on gravel roads so be wary of traffic.
Port Blakely kindly grant public access to the forest and Mountain Biking North Otago and the North Otago Tramping and Mountaineering Club both maintain their respective tracks. These tracks may be closed at times due to forestry operations.
Just south of Herbert, the oldest stone bridge still in use on a New Zealand highway is found at Waianakarua (the 5 A's). A historic mill house sits beside this bridge and these days provides a venue, dining and accommodation facilities while the nearby Waianakarua River offers lovely swimming and picnic spots.