Nestled between the foothills of the Rimutaka Mountain range and the clifftops above the dramatic Palliser Bay, Wharekauhau Country Estate...
Set within a peaceful garden scape beside the world-famous Tongariro River, try your hand at trout fishing in one of New Zealand’s most beautiful rivers by day, and enjoy our luxury lodge accommodation by night.
Accommodation in Turangi, at River Birches Lodge includes your choice of 3 guest rooms. River Birches is a low-slung, cedar-clad luxury accommodation retreat set within a peaceful, established garden. The stylish interior reflects its east-meets-west character – sophisticated and welcoming.
French doors open onto a large deck where you can relax and enjoy the serenity of the Tongariro riverside environment.
In summer, join other guests for drinks and canapes before dinner.
The music of the river and native birdsong provides a warm welcomes to our visitors. The same air of calm has attracted people seeking tranquility and adventure for nearly 100 years.
In 1926 Zane Grey, Captain Mitchell and Maori guide Hoka Downs tramped through the then bush-clad lower reaches of New Zealand’s Tongariro River. They covered the area that is now River Birches on their way to explore the deep, green pools of the river’s left bank.
The river’s fame grew in the 1930s and an eclectic mix of retired military, visiting royalty, overseas and Kiwi fishing enthusiasts came to test their skills on the Tongariro river. Despite the Great Depression, these years were a golden era for the river. Gracious life-stylers and humble campsite dwellers coexisted, united by the river and a passion for large, wild Tongariro rainbow and brown trout.
Within a few years of Grey’s visit, Bert and Effie Boulton built one of the first cottages close to the river. They called it The Birches, and remained at the original homestead until the early 1980s. Many of the exotic trees they planted, such as silver birch, copper beech, oak and redwood, still remain today.
The popular swing bridge at the bottom of the property was named in the Boulton’s honour – The Birches Bridge.
Legend has it that many years ago the bridge was a favourite access point for sheep and cattle rustlers. They would cross the bridge in the dead of night, rustle the livestock on the adjoining farms and carry them back across the bridge. Today, the Birches Bridge provides anglers and walkers with access to the right bank of the river.
A low-slung, cedar-clad boutique lodge with the ambience of a large, elegant , quality home, architecturally designed and built to meet the needs of discerning travellers. This is and environment where you immediately feel comfortable and at ease: a home away from home. River Birches’ guest rooms, each named after a famous fishing pool, all open to a private verandah and award-winning garden. Guests can stroll under mature birch trees and listen to native birdsong mingling with the sounds of the river.
River Birches Lodge offers an exclusive, privately guided crossing in the World Heritage Tongariro National Park. You will be in the safe hands of your own personal mountain guide who will take you on a journey of exploration, highlighting the very best features of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing.
For the fisherman, the lodge is set on the banks of the famous Tongariro River-the perfect location for a fly-fishing adventure. Options include heli-fishing in the many rivers surrounding the Central Plateau or fishing the upper reaches of the Tongariro from guided rafts.
To visit this Lodge's website Click Here.
19 Koura St
Freephone: 0800 102 025
Tel: +64 (0)7 386 0445
Fax: +64 (0)7 386 0442
Mobile: +64 (0)27 406 3650
Related lodges by activity and location