In the Region

A brief introduction to the arts in the main towns of Wairarapa & Tararua. The region has a range of landscape, from mountains to sea, pinnacles and rivers, nature trails and parks... For visitor information: / 06 370 0900 /

MASTERTON is the largest town in the Wairarapa, the seat of local government, and the town with the largest creative sector - see below. There are several local theatres, two cinemas, several cafes and pubs, restaurants (Chinese, Honduran, Indian, Malaysian, Thai, Turkish), a variety of shops with basic art supplies (Warehouse Stationery, Paper Plus, Uncle Bill's and Briscoes), large parks (including one of NZ’s earliest inland parks, Queen Elizabeth Park), a community access radio station, and NZ's oldest bookshop (Hedley's Books).

Aratoi Wairarapa Museum of Art and History The region’s main art & history museum, with exhibitions of NZ and international art.  Education programme. Performances. Several NZ Pacific Studio artists have exhibited, lectured and run workshops. Museum shop. Cafe.  /

Come Sew With Me is a creative community space with about 300 vintage sewing machines, old and new. NZPS often holds gatherings here, thanks to its founder, Heather Bannister. Located at edge of Queen Elizabeth Park, at Dixon St and Park Ave. / Contact: / Facebook

ConArt is a gallery & studio space beside Aratoi where Wairarapa artists can create, exhibit, promote and sell their art. NZ Pacific Studio artists can have access to studio space here, as we have a special arrangement ($100/wk from 1 Nov - 30 April, $50wk 1 May - 31 Oct) /

Hau Kainga is a centre for Wairarapa Māori and Māori arts., with a range of activities, from arts exhibitions to holistic health and Māori history, 15 Queen Street / For information: Facebook

King St Artworks A free open-door creative space. Gallery. Shop. Has pottery space / kilns. A creative place for the community, including people who use mental health services, and for their whānau/family and friends. NZ Pacific Studio has led many activities and workshops at this centre.  Open Mon-Sat. Friday is Women’s Day. 16 Queen St, Masterton (06) 378 -9777 /

Masterton Art Club Established in 1921, this club meets every Wednesday from 11am to 2pm; everyone is welcome to come and sketch/paint/draw. Also an event on last Wednesday of month. Printmaking sessions on Friday, and Watercolours on Monday. Venue: 12 Victoria St, PO Box 42, Masterton. Contact: / Facebook page.

Masterton District Library A friendly library offering many community activities. NZ Pacific Studio has co-presented many events here. 54 Queen Street. Tel 06 370 6253

Wairarapa Archive Excellent research centre. Photographs. Newspapers. Oral history. Genealogical resources. Military history. Archivist Gareth Winter, QSM, is a Founding Member of NZPS: Tel 370 6311.

Wairarapa Camera Club meets on the first Tuesday of the month (from February to November) in Masterton.

The Wool Shed - National Museum of Sheep and Shearing, recently remodeled, with friendly staff, good gift shop, and regular meetings of Spinners & Weavers Guild. They help with ithe annual Golden Shears championships, in February/March. Open daily 10am - 4pm. 12 Dixon St, 378-8008,

Regent 3 Cinema on Queen Street screens a selection of films from the NZ International Film Festival and they often give the opening night of the Festival to NZPS as a film benefit. Ticket prices are lower before 5pm.

Queen Elizabeth Park One of NZ’s oldest parks. Old grandstand by a cricket field. Old cemetery. Fallen sequoia. Rose garden. Funky old and new toilets opposite each other near Dixon/Bruce Street entrance. 

Henley Lake Walking paths along this artificial lake, with swans, ducks and geese. Can Connect to Queen Elizabeth Park. A beautiful old cafe within the park.

CARTERTON offers several second-hand shops, antique shops, farmers market (Sun. mornings), crafts markets, a community arts centre, an independent book shop (Almo's, 42 High St, South), Carterton Events Centre (the region’s largest facility for entertainment) and a library (one of NZ’s oldest public libraries).

Heart of Arts / community arts centre, shop, gallery. NZPS artists have exhibited there. 47 High St. Tel 0274 266 336.

Wai Art / This art club runs a major art sale every September. They run the studio & retail space No.23 on 23 Holloway Street. They meet on the first Monday morning of month. Several NZPS artists have been guest speakers. Contact 021 252 4767 / Jane Giles 06 379 6559 

Wairarapa Word / A free monthly programme featuring a range of writers. Founded 2012. Many NZ Pacific Studio residents have been featured. Session times vary, no session in January. Headquarters is Almo’s Books, 42 High St South, 06 379 7103.  Youtube Channel / Wai Word Facebook page

Norfolk Road Pizza Excellent wood-fired pizza. Gluten-free option. Beautiful location, woods, stream, log cabin, indoor and outdoor seating. Only open on Fridays from 5-8pm. Open year-round. Telephone ahead to reserve your pizza base. your place. Tel 06 370 1129

GREYTOWN is NZ’s first planned inland town, and has many weekend visitors from Wellington. Visit  Cobblestones Museum for a feel of village life from the 1800s, with a gourmet chocolate shop next door. Several shops and cafes, a community theatre, a friendly library, an organic foods cafe, an independent bookshop, and a small art gallery/shop, Kotare Art Studio, 65 Main St.


MARTINBOROUGH has an elegant town square around which is an old hotel, several gift shops, cafes, a colonial museum, Martinborough Bookshop (6 Kitchener St) and down one artery is Circus Cinema & Cafe which screens mainstream and some art house films. Several vineyards and olive orchards in the area. Ventana Creative Collective (37 Jellicoe St) runs arts workshops and creative sessions.  Several NZPS residents have exhibited or performed there. (Tel 0210 245 5153)


FEATHERSTON is NZ’s first Booktown, with 7 new and second-hand bookshops, a major festival every May, and a few other events during the year. The town has an artisan cheese shop, a beautiful old ANZAC Hall periodically used for concerts & events, a railway museum, a newly built town square called 'squircle', a small friendly library, and a strong community spirit. Great Farmers Market on Saturday mornings - entrance is near the pharmacy. Note the yellow wind sculpture opposite the library.

Common Ground is a new creative space (opened in 2023), with exhibitions, music events, and more, set up by musicians Holly & Zac Winterwood, who have been performed at and attended various NZPS programmes over the years. / 50c Fitzherbert Street / 


ANZAC Memorial Bridge. Located in Kaiparoro, on SH2, a small white bridge over the Makakahi River built in 1922 to honour those who served in WWI. In 2006, NZPS co-founded Friends of ANZAC Bridge and has collaborated together to run an art project many years, on the afternoon of ANZAC Day, 25 April.

Pūkaha National Wildlife Centre A complimentary pass allows NZPS residents free entry. Many of our artists have been inspired by the Centre and have exhibited there. Bush walk. Free flight aviary. Cultural tours. A new carving school. Kiwi, kaka, takahe and other native birds. Also the ancient tuatara, and eels. Cafe with good coffee and counter food. Open daily except Christmas Day. (06) 375 8004

Kaiparoro Road Walk Across State Highway 2, a bit north from Pukaha, this gravel road meanders between stream and fenced pasture, and dead-ends at private property (clearly marked). From Hwy. 2 to end is approx 4.5 km/3 miles.

W.A. Miller Scenic Reserve and ANZAC Bridge: A loop trail and walkway that leads to the historic ANZAC Memorial bridge (built 1922). Access to Makakahi River. NZ Pacific Studio and Friends of ANZAC Bridge offer an annual residency, since 2006, focused on the bridge and ANZAC Day (25 April): ANZAC Fellowship.

Mount Bruce Native Plant Interest Group This group organizes periodic walks, usually on a Sunday afternoon, led by a very experienced and friendly guide, Trevor Thompson. (

EKETAHUNA offers several small shops, a cafe or two, a museum, second-hand shops, souvenir shop/information centre, a library and cash-out services, an old church, an access radio station, and art galleries.

Mark Dimock Art Gallery, 87 High St. Tel 375 8213

REV Art Gallery in former church. Corner Haswell/Bengston. Mark Watson 021 146 8984

Ekehatuna Library has internet, postal, photocopying, and cash-out (EFTPOS) services. Open Monday to Friday: 10:30am - 12:30pm, 1:00pm - 4:30pm (closed on statutory holidays) 31 Main Street. 376 0219.

Cliff Walk built in 1911, a scenic 1km walk above stream. Access from Bridge Street.

Eketahuna / Mellemskov Museum, founded in 1950, located at 16 Bengston St, collection of local history, with a special interest in textiles, early colonial artifacts. Class B Historic building. Open Sundays 2-4pm, Contact person: Bridget Wellwood, Tel  021 146 8984 / Facebook page.

St Cuthbert's Anglican church, built 1898, Church Street, 10am Service on Sundays, and on the third Sunday,  it's conducted in a mix of English and Te Reo Maori. 

MAURICEVILLE, founded by Norwegians, is a very picturesque settlement. See the book ‘Rainbows Over Mauriceville’ in NZPS library, written by Kay Flavell.

Mauriceville Church the oldest in the Wairarapa, always open. Organ. Cemetery.

Mauriceville Fair, one of the region’s largest, is on the first Sunday in December.

Mauriceville School (primary) – Over the years, several NZPS residents have offered various activities there – the student body is approximately 100.

MANGATAINOKA is the home of the Tui Brewery, established in late 1800s.  Located on State Highway 2 (SH2). A range of beers on tap, daily brunch/lunch, tours (11:30 and 2:30 - bookings essential), gift shop. Open May - October : Sun-Thu - 10:57am - 4:02pm, Fri-Sat 11:04am - 5:03pm and Nov-April: open Sun-Thu 10:59am - 4:58pm, Fri-Sat 11:01am - 6:03pm. Tel 06 376 0815 

PAHIATUA has a handsome promenade down the centre of the town, with various second-hand shops, cafes, a supermarket, library, and Regent Cinema.

Tararua College (secondary) – Over the years, several NZPS residents have offered various activities there.

Red Chillies (Indian and Nepalese restaurant) is meant to be good. 92 Main St, 06 -376-7825

Regent Cinema Pahiatua Community owned and operated cinema. 64 Main Sr. Tel 06 376 8607.

WOODVILLE offers cafes, second-hand shops, antique shops.

Gottfried Lindauer Studio was built in 2001 to pay tribute to this highly regarded painter who lived and worked in the town until his death in 1926. The studio houses copies of his paintings, photographs, books and other associated memorabilia. 42 Vogel Street, Tel 06 376 0217.