The Queen Elizabeth Park in Masterton is a delight in early autumn. The park has plenty of deciduous trees to set the tone for autumn, with a mix of yellows, reds, browns and oranges.
There’s even a Horse Chestnut tree, near the children’s play area, offering up seeds for conker games. I felt a strong connection to my childhood roots, growing up in Hampshire, England, as I introduced my five year old to the fun of conkers. She sat, delighted with her stash, at a nearby cafe, after a fantastic explore of the park, lake and river nearby.
This was our first visit to the Waipoua river and deer park – not having ever ventured further than the park before. Usually we are too busy riding the miniature railway, playing on the flying fox and playground, or meandering around the lake.
There’s also mini-golf and boats for hire on the lake in the park. So much to do, in one beautiful space.
Opposite the park is the fabulous swimming pool, where we all enjoy the lazy river. The older girls (8 and over) love the slide and most weekends, and school holidays, they have a fun ‘Aqua run’ up in the big pool (which we like to call ‘the sausage’). It’s hilarious watching them running along it (particularly hubby – he’s a good sport!).
Summer is over in New Zealand, but we are determined to not let that dampen our spirits (though I’ll need some nice Pinot Noir and scented candles to get me through).
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