While we were at Lake Tarawera, we thought we should do some touristy stuff. Namely, a stones-throw down the road, we wanted to see The Buried Village.

The little museum at the Buried Village was very interesting because of all of the photographs. The Pink and White Terraces ones were great. Back in the day, tourists visited the terraces for bathing, and some would record their trip, like in the photographs below. It was fantastic to see these images and how marvellous the terraces were before they were blown to smithereens by Mt Tarawera exploding in 1886.

Photos of the White Terraces

The buried village was called Te Wairoa and it was literally buried in the 1886 eruption of Mt Tarawera. Volcanic ash preserved many of the buildings and other features of the village and visitors today can get a rare insight into 19th-century NZ life.

These are the remnants of a blacksmith’s workshop, where the dirt walls around were where the original building walls were.

Blacksmith remnants

This is a recreated whare (house). The little stone stove down the bottom left was  the key clue that this was once a home.

A recreated whare

This was a stone pataka (storehouse). It was rare for pataka to be made of stone. It would’ve been used to store potatoes and kumara crops.

Stone Pataka/Storehouse

These are the remains of the Rotomahana Hotel, a Victorian establishment which would’ve accommodated visitors from around the world. It was here that arrangements were made for their journeys to the Pink and White Terraces. You can still see some floorboards from the hotel jutting up.

Remnants of the Rotomahana Hotel

The other nice thing about The Buried Village is the surrounding grounds. It’s just really beautiful NZ nature.

Tall Trees

Mossy trees

Raging waterfall

Flooded stream

Pouring water

Beautiful. Thanks Buried Village!

View over Lake Tarawera

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