A town like no udder… so says the sign in this Manawatu town of Bulls.
That’s along with the sign for the Town Hall (Social-a-bull), the library (Read-a-bull) and the police (Const-a-bull). Its sister city must have been carefully selected. Cowes, of England.
And, when you’re after a little something to sort the appetite on the road, look for Delect-a-bull. Naturally.
On the road to snow
And Bulls is an excellent road trip pit stop, heading north from Wellington, New Zealand’s capital. In these winter months, it’s part of the journey up the island, heading to the north island’s beautiful central snow mountains.
Not far from our capital city, and soon you’re in fertile farming areas. And through that farming belt, heading into the Rangitikei district, Bulls and nearby towns are around the half way point for those travelling to those North Island snow fields.
For the hungry, there’s an excellent selection of fine rural eateries along the way. From Te Horo to Taihape, in between and either side, we’ve found a collection of impressive places to pull up…
And more about Bulls
But back to Bulls. There’s a gorgeous wee cupcake cottage right there as you pass through. A welcoming spot with lots of pretty china and linen, and some very tempting cupcakes to set you up for the road.
You’ll find shops full of collectables (collect-a-bulls, more like). And a fitting segue to your own pit stop - a Chris Amon connection - a local, who was one of the best Formula One racers never to win a Grand Prix. No bull.
So there’s a lot to be said for this small town of around 2,000 locals. James Bull - the 1858 hotelier and general store owner after whom the town is named - should be pleased, we think.
And more good things to do nearby
There’s more of New Zealand on show nearby too. Excellent coastlines, talented food producers, and special eateries to find on that journey north up to Bulls. Spot signs for local growers. Fish and chip spots beachside. Cafes in old woolsheds. Cafes in design stores. Pie award winners. Even a full size, operational, 17th century replica Dutch windmill that mills flour today in the traditional manner.
There’s New Zealand’s gumboot capital just a smidge north. You’ll spot the Jeff Thomson gumboot sculpture - a spot on kiwi corrugated iron creation - in gumboot park at one end of Taihape. (Note to travellers - in winter months you’ll miss the annual World Gumboot Throwing Championships.)
New Zealand military connections are close too. One of the three New Zealand Air Force bases is located virtually next door at Ohakea. And the New Zealand Army can be found just a little up the road at Waiouru Military Camp. There, the National Army Museum, Te Mata Toa, has a unique collection of military exhibits and memorabilia.
Yes, there’s a lot of New Zealand on show in this roadie to the snow. Unforget-a-bull, really.
Your road trip companion…
To find more on The FoodPath NZ’s handpicked eateries and food producers, for our collection of spot on New Zealand food moments to check out on your next New Zealand trip, including the road trip from Wellington to Bulls and beyond, you’ll find The FoodPath NZ guide (for mobile) here.