Arrowtown is one of those places you visit and you visit and visit some more and you slowly uncover all the secrets and delights. It can get busy but if you know where to go and when to go (try early morning it’s divine) you could be in a cafe with just your sweet self to talk to.
First up COFFEE and food. There’s quite a few places but I like to meander to Provisions for good strong coffee and sticky buns. There’s also a delicious menu with seasonal plates to keep you warm and salads to experience all the Central Otago fruits we have here.
The Chop Shop Food Merchants is an absolute gem of a place. It can either be crammed packed or lovely and peaceful but you never know what so just GO. My pick- Nasi Goreng, Pork Belly Bao Buns or the Japanese Pancakes. And more coffee. Always more coffee.
Meander on down to the Arrow River and settle if it’s hot. You can pick up the trail right from town and wander the 5-ish-k loop around or head out further afield into Sawpit Gully, Tobins Track, Mace Town, Newchums or up into Big Hill. If it’s cold or rainy the walks are still a goer just wrap up and get some boots on! During the Summer months there’s swimming holes all the way along Centennial Ave if you know where to go (wink wink).
If you’re a shopper at heart there are some little boutiques where you can fill up your tank. Frances Patterson has a gorgeous collection of homewares, eye wear, children’s toys and collectables. Blue Moon Rummage has the most incredible range of antiques, mixed with cards, jewellery, furniture and presents. Attic Homestore makes me want to run screaming to the bank manager “I want EVERYTHING” homewares, antique prints, throws, rugs and glassware.
Goals and Ikon will deal with everything clothes and shoes and if you’re a lover of flowers newbie on the street Rosie Flowers is tucked into one of the laneways.
I’ve been meandering the lanes of Arrowtown for a wee while now and I always find something new. The little path up Feely Hill allows you to see the whole of Arrowtown (and a Geo-Cache), Queenstown Trail bike trails for miles, secret cocktails at Blue Door, amazing tapas at La Rumbla.
Local delights; Arrowtown Farmers market in the warmer months and the library which is set in a beautiful building with grounds. Across the road is the Lakes District Museum and Art Gallery which holds exhibitions and relics of the district. A beautiful three tier building with research facility and book shop. Right across the road Fork and Tap has a great selection of locally brewed beers and good food for after that
walk across the road huge walk you just completed.
Dudley’s Cottage encourages gold panning alongside your flat white and there’s a teeny shop inside.
In the evening I love to catch a movie at Dorothy Browns and settle in ultimate coziness in their massive chairs and cashmere throws. Their book shop section is the ultimate in new and old classics and I always get the magazines you just can’t get at our local book shops.
Newly expanded (and already delicious) Slow Cuts now has a huge dining and bar area where you can try (my fave) Fish Burger, Rotisserie Chicken, Mac and Cheese all locally sourced made fresh in the kitchen. Local and NZ brewed beers.
Further afield Amisfield Bistro and Cellar Doors celebrates the award winning wines from the area and food created by wizard Chef Vaughan Mabee.
Akarua Wines and Kitchen by Artisan never ever fails to disappoint for breakfast and brunch and has a great kids play area.
Because I live in the area it’s the perfect place to wander, grab coffee, stay for the evening (SO MANY RESTAURANTS), shop, snap, people watch. Any season. Any time of the day.
Don’t forget the Arrowtown Autumn Festival too where the colours pop and theres a huge timetable of events for five days. And the pool oh I nearly forgot the pool……..
All photos taken by me. All words made by my brain. I just love Arrowtown. That’s it. If I’ve missed your favourite let me know here!