A dedicated band of volunteers have created a botanical beauty spot on the site of an old quarry.
Formerly a large quarry, Te Puna Quarry Park is an enchanting haven of plants, pathways and outdoor art. A team of dedicated volunteers have spent several years planting and landscaping the park, which covers 32 hectares. From the upper levels there are spectacular panoramic views out over the Bay of Plenty.
Plantings at the quarry include native species and specialised plant groups such as cacti and succulents, roses, bromeliads, orchids, vireya rhododendrons and palms. There are also themed sections featuring plants from Australia and South Africa. Huge outdoor artworks give the park character. There are over thirty works on permanent display, ranging in size from small pottery pieces to man sized stone sculptures. Mediums include Hinuera stone, pottery and ponga (tree fern trunk). There is a music area for children and an amphitheatre. The waterfall in the quarry reserve is called 'Te Mimi O Tuanehe', which translates roughly to mean 'a man having a pee'.
The park is open daily during daylight hours. Admission is free but donations are welcome.