We are a sustainably designed, rural property on the edge of a protected wetland of regional significance in the lower North Island of New Zealand. We have fully organic domestic vegetable gardens, a small orchard, and firewood trees in addition to the wetland margin and native replanting. The main house is a new, sustainably designed building using solar and wood fired water heating. It has magical calm and tranquility.
We are a same-sex couple who both work in education, have traveled to many places in New Zealand and overseas and enjoy the company of others. We enjoy cooking (our guests tell us the meals we provide are very good) and can cater for vegetarians or omnivores. Our interests and general knowledge are broad and we love meeting new people who care about the planet.
We are five minutes from the Ōtaki rail station and inland from the coast. It is a one hour drive to Wellington city, and between 10 and 20 minutes from beaches at Ōtaki, Pekapeka and Waikanae. Having your own transport is good but we can collect you from bus or train stations. It is about a 30 minute walk to the nearest shop.
We are happy for visitors (I person or 2) to stay up to 4 nights (but can be longer by negotiation) and will provide dinner and accommodation in exchange for 4-5 hours each help per day. We appreciate non-smoking, visitors who want to learn about New Zealand birds and plants, organic gardening and sustainability, or who want quiet, reflective time after their work is done.
Ayuda en proyectos ecológicos
Proyectos de construcción y bricolaje
Ayuda en una granja
We have many books about New Zealand plants and birds and knowledge about wetlands and their importance but also can talk about New Zealand history, literature, and poetry. We do preserving of fruit, berries and vegetables and focus on eating and cooking seasonally from the property. We are constantly exploring how to become more sustainable - you may have great ideas to help with that - and really enjoy learning about new approaches to cooking. We keep a well stocked spice and sauce cupboard and grow a range of fresh herbs.
We are looking for help with general property maintenance: firewood work (cutting, stacking, moving), wetland development (weeding and replanting), domestic vegetable garden and orchard work, as well as domestic chores such as house maintenance (window washing, repainting, home handy person repairs). We sometimes require DIY skills for small retaining walls, chicken coops, potting shed areas.
Accommodation is in a private, stand alone cottage with a renovated bathroom, a gas stovetop and microwave cooking facilities, which located beside the main house. It has one double bed and a sofa bed as well as a table and chairs and decks with views into the orchard and beyond. We provide food for you to make your own breakfasts - and you can tell us what you like - and provide a hot meal with us in the house at night. Lunch is usually provided but sometimes you may need to make your own if we are both out at midday. There is limited internet access in the cottage, and no TV, but you can do emails and download to devices in the main house.
In your time off on weekdays, there is no easy off-property transport other than your own feet. In the weekends we can take visits to the local market, the local beach, or short local forest walks.
Acceso a Internet
Acceso a Internet limitado
Puede alojar familias
The internet connection in the cottage may not be strong enough for full connection but we are happy to share office space in the main house where the connection is based on the capacity of a strong copper cable connection. There is no fibre cabling in this area yet.
There is a flat parking pad halfway up the drive where a reasonably large camper can be parked. It is some distance from the cottage and full ablutions and power can only be supplied via an outdoor extension cord in dry weather.
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week