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Events, markets

Making stuff, 5 workshops for your next holiday

  • 2 minutes

New Zealand


Whitiangi a quintessential summer destination for locals for generations and now there is an excellent reason to visit in winter when it is quieter. The picturesque scenery is unchanged and hot water beach will be relatively empty of crowds.

Bone carving Whitianga, New Zealand @maoriartbrno
Bone carving Whitianga @maoriartbrno

Bone carving is as old as human history itself and long ago evolved into more than just a way of fulfilling utilitarian purposes. Many cultures the world over have used it as an important means of expression, a practise which continues to this day. Travellers from Polynesia arriving sometime in the 13th century by Waka (canoe) were the first to settle Aotearoa (New Zealand). Amongst the cultural practises these indigenous peoples (Maori) brought with them was the art of bone carving. In traditional Maori culture, bone carvings themselves are treasures which in an age before power tools could take years to make. Handed down from generation to generation within tribes, traditional designs often tell a story inspired by nature and elements of Maori mythology. Nowadays, it is common to see New Zealanders of both Maori and non-Maori decent wearing bone carvings influenced by traditional Maori culture. This signifies an expression of pride in sharing attachment to the land and culture that defines New Zealand.


Gisbourne and surfing go hand in hand, how about making your own wooden surfboard. Amazing fun creating something that you use or perhaps your grandchildren try out. Red Leaf Surfboards. Red Leaf Surfboards was born out of our passion for fine woodworking, surfing and the environment. We have been surfing for many years and were frustrated with the short lifespan of the foam boards we were riding. We also grew to understand just how toxic and petrochemical dependent the majority of surfboards are today. As lifelong woodworkers, it struck us that we had the perfect skills and understanding of timber to develop an alternative method of surfboard construction, one that is sustainable and has minimal impact on the environment.

Gisbourne surfing, New Zealand @redleafsurf
Gisbourne surfing @redleafsurf



Nelson is idyllic, a spectacular holiday destination where you can get creative with upcycled materials or learn how to weave a flax basket. NZ Textile Experiences: Textile workshops Nelson Tasman region. Unconventional Textiles – Pre used and Unusual Materials.

There is an emphasis on learning techniques and managing repurposed materials to create art jewellery, what you learn can also be applied to creating light shades, baskets, sculptures, cushions and more, the choices are huge with your outcomes being totally unexpected and surprising.


I love Taupo campaign message is marketing the indisputant fact that Taupo is stupendously beautiful. Lakes, waterways and mountains make for a million or so visitors. Currently there is space for the locals aplenty with Australians cordidally invited in the near future. The chocolate box picture postcard of New Zealand tourism is open for locals.

Woodwork Lessons & Woodturning | Learn Woodcraft in Taupo, NZ Woody’s Place evolved from my passion for trees and being creative with wood. I have worked as a tree surgeon for 10 years during which I collected some amazing timbers for that “One day when …”. Then I bought a lathe… and now I run woodworking courses and a woodcraft gallery. Whether you are a local, keen to make your own furniture and express those Kiwi DIY genes or whether you are a tourist, looking for things to do in Taupo – I can help you discover your hidden creative talents too. Many of my students keep returning and overseas visitors in particular have ranked their woodcraft day as really unique as they get to take their very tactile creations home.



On your way somewhere think about stopping here.

Papermaking is fun, it is messy with lots of grey goopy shudge and fine mesh screens, here is a special place that is about sharing is caring is put into practice. Whangarei, waterfalls, Hundertwasser and great walks and a workshop dedicated to papermaking. The papermill is a charitable trust The Papermill – A special place for special people. Established in 1989 The Papermill is a safe, vibrant, creative space where artists with intellectual disabilities create handmade paper and works of art from natural fibres and recycled paper. Visitors can browse the studio and meet the Papermakers and are encouraged to watch the paper making processes, or have a go themselves under the watchful eye of one of the skilled tutors. Paper art has a special focus at the Papermill; techniques and textures are explored and experimented with, showcased as an annual exhibition and winning wearable art

The papermill Whangerei, New Zealand @thebluegoosepapermillcharitabletrust
The papermill, Whangerei @thebluegoosepapermillcharitabletrust
Glider Trial Flights, New Zealand @Glide Omarama
Glider Trial Flights @Glide Omarama


Wanaka and the majestic Southern Alps. Plenty of space for locals and you get taste of what overseas visitors flocked in their thousands to experience. And you soar above the landscapes with a bird’s eye view.

Glide Omarama Glide Omarama is a family run Soaring School, home to some of the worlds most experienced mountain flying instructors. The South Island of New Zealand, with Omarama approximately in the centre, produces some of the world’s best wave flying as well as astonishing ridge, thermal and convergence soaring amidst the spectacular and dramatic mountains of the Southern Alps where the visibility is often in excess of 400 kms.

All workshops are in areas where there are travel guides to inspire you with lots of great ideas what to do and see while attending the workshop.

NOTE: Our workshop guide has let the workshop hosts talk in their own words. Check their websites, past comments and their social media feeds before you decide.  It is a very much individual experience matching your expectations to a workshop. Your comments will be very helpful as the sharing is part of making our information resource rich.


The journey is worth a workshop or… two.


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