Waihi; New Zealand’s Heart of Gold

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Visiting Waihi on your way to the Coromandel is an essential stop. Exploring Waihi’s rich gold history is only one reason to stop. There is plenty to see and do, so you should stay over a night or two.

Waihi; New Zealand's Heart of Gold
Waihi; New Zealand’s Heart of Gold

Waihi Township

Walking through the Waihi township you will notice many structures. Each one commemorates a piece of history. Additionally, each structure’s plaque details its history and sculptor.

The Kids Statue
The Kids Statue

This sculpture portrays a pioneer woman bathing her child. The child’s bath is a traditional bath where the water was heated over an open fire.

Pioneer Woman Bathing Her Child
Pioneer Woman Bathing Her Child

Waihi Cornish Pumphouse

Standing above the township, the Cornish Pumphouse is easily visible. While a relic of the original mine, it is now protected by the Historic Places Trust. Though fully fenced for safety reasons, you can still get close enough to view and photograph it.

Waihi Cornish Pumphouse - Interior
Waihi Cornish Pumphouse – Interior

It’s a perfect landmark for when you’re out and about and not sure where you are.

Waihi Cornish Pumphouse - Exterior
Waihi Cornish Pumphouse – Exterior

Martha Mine Pit Rim Walkway

We enjoyed our walk around the Martha Mine Pit Rim. While it’s approximately 4km long, it’s not a difficult walk.

Martha Mine
Martha Mine

We were a little disappointed as part of the walk is blocked by trees and you can’t see any part of the mine. However, there are some spectacular views along the way.

Martha Mine Pit Rim Walkway
Martha Mine Pit Rim Walkway

Along the top, near the pumphouse, there are centennial poppies. These poppies represent the people from Waihi District who served in World War 1.

World War 1 Centennial Poppies
World War 1 Centennial Poppies

Gilmour Reserve

A perfect location for an easy stroll and ideal picnic spot. Additionally, it’s very popular in the weekend for families with children.

Gilmour Reserve Duck Pond
Gilmour Reserve Duck Pond

An impressive and tall war memorial, there are also several other memorials located around the park.

First World War Memorial
First World War Memorial

Union Hill Heritage Trail – Mill Stream Walkway

From the Gilmour Reserve we found a sign for the Union Hill Heritage Trail so decided to follow it. Part of the trail was hard to find, whereas other parts were easy to follow with signage along the way.

Mill Stream Walkway
Mill Stream Walkway

However, as we progressed through the walkway we came across the old cyanide tanks. Their massive size is quite impressive.

Waihi Gold Mining Company Cyanide Tanks
Waihi Gold Mining Company Cyanide Tanks

Next to the tanks are the Waihi Battery Ruins. Some of it has been fenced off, however it’s still possible to walk around some of them.

Waihi Battery Ruins
Waihi Battery Ruins

The Old Waihi Railway Station

This beautiful railway station is preserved by Goldfields Railway. On several occasions we have tried to visit when the train was running, however this has not worked out for us.

Waihi Historic Railway Station
Waihi Historic Railway Station

The Old Waikino Railway Station

When the trains are running, they go from Waihi to Waikino. Goldfields also preserves the Waikino Railway Station too.

Waikino Railway Station
Waikino Railway Station

Waikino’s Victoria Battery

While in Waikino, a visit to the Victoria Battery is essential. Not only is it a great walk, there is plenty of history here as well. However, most of the buildings and machinery has been dismantled. Though there are still some foundations to explore.

Concrete Cyanide Tank Stands
Concrete Cyanide Tank Stands

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