Landmarks Whenua Tohunga in Otago

The vivid landscapes of Otago provide a picture-perfect setting for stories of discovery, courage, entrepreneurship, and prosperity contributing to New Zealand's economic development. 

Landmarks Whenua Tohunga
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Compelling, engaging, moving – and located in some of the most beautiful landscapes in New Zealand – Landmarks / Whenua Tohunga take visitors on a journey through the stories and awe-inspiring places that continue to inspire us today. When we experience these places, we gain a deeper understanding of who we were, who we are, and who we will be in the future. 

The places

  • Arrowtown - one golden village, two tales
  • Bannockburn Sluicings - Man-made badlands
  • Dunedin Railway Station - a first-class destination
  • Hayes Engineering Works - A home of Kiwi invention
  • Historic Oamaru - A Victorian time capsule
  • Larnach Castle - New Zealand's castle
  • Kawarau Suspension Bridge - A leap of faith
  • Olveston - A slice of grand Edwardian life preserve
  • Otago Central Rail Trail - Pedalling Otago's rural heart
  • Taieri Gorge Railway
  • Totara Estate - Putting New Zealand sheep on the world table
  • TSS Earnslaw - Lady of the lake.

Explore as many of Otago's Landmarks / Whenua Tohunga as you can to find the connections between the stories, land and people of Aotearoa New Zealand. Download this handy reference (pdf, 1.3mb) to use as a guide for your journey or visit www.otagoandmarks.nz to learn more about the fascinating history you'll see along the way.

  • TSS Earnslaw

    Lady of the Lake: a slow boat to paradise, this grand steamship from 1912 is one of New Zealand’s original tourist attractions.  Image: Richard Nester DOC

  • Kawerau Suspension Bridge

    A bridge over a canyon that in 1880 pushed design limits - a century later it became the birthplace of bungy. Image: Matthias Klappenbach CC BY 2.0


  • Otago Rail Trail

    The famous Rail Trail takes you through traditional country towns and sheep-farming land farmed by families for many generations.  Image: oneshot_1022899

  • Arrowtown Cinese Mining Camp

    The picturesque preservation of two very different gold rush communities – Chinese and European – in Arrowtown.  Image: Kathrin and Stefan Marks Flickr CC BY-SA 

  • Bannockburn Sluicings

    Explore the spectacular landscape that remains from large-scale water blasting during the 19th century search for gold. Image: Sarah Stewart Flickr CCL

  • Hayes Engineering

    The workshop and homestead of Ernest Hayes, a New Zealand inventor who excelled at Number 8 wire ingenuity.  Image: Grant Sheehan for Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga

  • Taieri Girge Railway

    Linking Central Otago with Dunedin, the Taieri Gorge Railway was responsible for bringing town and country together.  Image: oneshot_10004570

  • Dunedin Railway Station

    An exuberant expression of New Zealand’s confidence in rail – right through to its littlest room.  Image: Dunedin City Council


  • Larnach Castle

    The ultimate expression of 'my home, my castle' where no expense was spared.  Image: Larnach Castle

  • Totara Estate

    Totara Estate - the birthplace of our billion-dollar meat export industry.  Image: Grant Sheehan for Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga

  • Oamaru Historic Area

    A grand Victorian streetscape carved in distinctive local stone and built on the bounty of wool and grain. Image: Waitaki District Council

  • Olveston

    Wealthy, civic-minded benefactors left this grand Edwardian mansion and its contents to the people of Dunedin.  Image: Olveston Historic House