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Lawrence is an early gold mining town, where Gabriel Read first discovered gold in what is now known as Gabriels Gully. You can absorb this rich history on the Gabriels Gully interpretative track or visit the Lawrence Chinese Camp, established during the Otago Gold Rush of the 1860s. Back in Lawrence, soak up the history through architecture from the gold mining era and sample the growing café and boutique shopping scene.
Lawrence is the home of New Zealand’s national anthem, God Defend New Zealand, where local school teacher John Woods created the score to a Thomas Bracken poem in 1876. He is buried in the well- kept hilltop Lawrence Cemetery, dating back to 1864. The cemetery is notable for its elaborate Victorian ironwork, beautiful Celtic crosses and the Chinese section.
The Hart’s Black Horse Brewery ruin at Weatherstons is a picturesque reminder of Otago’s most successful provincial brewery. The brewery closed in 1923, but is still a popular destination in the spring due to the uncounted varieties of daffodils planted on 25 acres in 1895. The site continues to come alive each spring, with the annual ‘Daffodil Dayze’ a must-do on the local calendar. Equally unmissable, is the Clutha Gold Cycle/Walking Trail, which can be started/finished in Lawrence. The trail is easy grade, accessible year round and is 73km, which takes 2-4 days to complete.