Puhoi offers a laid back rural lifestyle with convenient commuting to Warkworth, Orewa and the Albany Basin. Auckland CBD, New Zealand’s largest city, is approximately just 50km to the south.
Orewa, which is part of the Hibiscus Coast is a 10 minute drive over Waiwera hill and hosts Café’s, shops and two supermarkets. Also close by is the Matakana Coast where you can visit numerous wineries, local markets, or a host of beaches.
Puhoi is a Historic town that has a real community spirit about it, which you can feel the moment you arrive.
The church, hotel and general store which are found in the heart of Puhoi, all originate from the days of the very first Bohemian settlers and could be the reason for Puhoi’s charm and character. Visit the infamous Puhoi Hotel which has a history and many stories of its own.
The quiet settlement is central to many of Rodney’s popular beaches such as Orewa, Omaha, and Hatfields Beach and to the west awaits the Kaipara Harbour. Take a short drive up the coast to Goat Island, a marine reserve where you can swim with and observe the amazing sea life or head out to the Tawharanui Peninsula where there are many little hideaways for swimming, surfing, Trekking or fishing.
For those with children, you can take your pick of schools, from Warkworth to Orewa or the closer Ahuroa, which is a small well established country school with an excellent reputation.
With the new motorway now open Puhoi has become the new “Gateway to the North” whilst still remaining a small country village. With copious amounts of native bush and the Puhoi River, there are many adventures to be had in this beautiful rural setting. If you are looking for a quiet friendly place away from the buzz of the city, Puhoi should be your very first port of call.
History of Puhoi
Puhoi, the Maori name for ‘slow water’ was first populated in 1863 by immigrants from Bohemia.
A small handful, (approx 82) Bohemians departed Bohemia to set sail on a long journey which would see them arrive in Puhoi after around 124 days. Once they had arrived small huts were built using native Nikau tree.
Food did not come easy for the new immigrants who had to learn what, if anything could be caught and gathered from the surrounding areas. This task was made easier when local Maori tribes bought small parcels of food and taught them valuable skills in foraging.
Because of the early Bohemians hard grafting Puhoi has grown into a beautiful village with a rich history.
Attractions and Things to Do
Located in the heart of Puhoi village and housed in the historic convent school, here you will find a treasure trove of historic tools, clothes, household items and many more items used in the earlier days of Puhoi. One of the most impressive things you will set your eyes on in the museum is a grand scale model of the village as it was in the 1900’s.
Take a paddle down Puhoi’s 8 Kilometre River with the team from Puhoi River Canoe Hire. Puhoi River Canoe Hire is a successful small family business operating from home, adjacent to the historic Bohemian landing site on the banks of the Puhoi River. Experience the tranquil waterways as you make your way to Wenderholm Regional Park and the mouth of the Puhoi River.
Wenderholm was the very first Auckland Regional Park and still remains one of the most Stunning. Opened in 1965 Wenderholm offers a safe swimming Beach with numerous sheltered sites for picnics or BBQ’s. Take a hike up the hill over to Waiwera or stroll the 4km perimeter track and enjoy the abundant wildlife. Wenderholm also offers a boat ramp, many walking tracks and has the historic Couldry House which sits in beautifully cared for grounds and makes for a very popular wedding location.
The Waiwera Hotpools are built on thermal energy and all pools and water slides are filled with naturally hot mineral water. The complex also boasts a luxury medi-spa, massage and beauty therapies, luxury accommodation and its very own holiday park. Take your own lunch to cook on the many BBQ’s or treat yourself at the licensed café.
The Puhoi Hotel is an authentic colonial hotel and is one of the most well known Kiwi pubs world-wide. The interior conceals an amazing array of memorabilia where you will find vintage pictures of Auckland and many knick knacks dating back to the very first Bohemian settlers. Faded Bank notes from around the world left by the many visitors over the years now paper the bar. The Puhoi Hotel is an adventure of its own and is a definite must see.
Puhoi Valley Cheese was established in 1983 in the upper reaches of the Puhoi Valley. Over the years Puhoi Valley Cheese has grown from two employees to 100 and is well recognised for its award winning cheeses. The Puhoi Valley Cafe & Cheese Store offers Visitors a wide range of cheese, food and ice cream. Meals and snacks prepared from products made on site can be enjoyed at the café along with a great cup of coffee.