25 Jan 2013

Tourist demand prompts rediscovery of hidden landscapes

6:31 am on 25 January 2013

Growing expectations of tourists have played a helping hand in re-discovering some hidden landscapes of the Whakarewarewa Valley in Rotorua.

The New Zealand Maori Arts and Crafts Institute (Te Puia) has made a start on clearing away scrub and undergrowth in parts of the area.

It says the work has re-discovered hidden landscapes including various palisades and the valley the Papakura Geyser, named after a famous past guide, Maggie Papakura.

The geyser became inactive in 1979.

General manager visitor experience Taparoto Nicholson said tourist expectations have contributed to why the clean-up was done.

He said they want to hear stories about Maori culture and its people's relationship with geothermal areas.

Mr Nicholson said the clean-up will lead to making the valley look like it would have when tourists first began coming more than a century ago.