Weekend Itinerary: VISIT FRANKLIN: THE FOOD BASKET OF NEW ZEALAND
Less than 1 hour’s drive south from the CBD is the fresh produce capital of New Zealand. The rich volcanic soils around Pukekohe are not only the finest in the country, they supply most of New Zealand’s residents with fresh food daily.
If phrases like estate grown, hand harvested, whole bunch pressed, oak aged, handcrafted cheese, locally grown and free range excite you, then you clearly lovefood, wine and farmers’ markets and you must make your next weekend getaway in Franklin. We are serious about celebrating fresh produce, farmers’ markets, artisan crafted beer, wine, honey and cheese producers, local restaurants, cafes, food trucks and trailers and small businesses in the Pukekohe and Franklin district.
If you come in May, be sure to attend Veggie Basket Food, Wine and Market Festival. Exit SH1 at the turn off for Pukekohe. Stay the night at the fabulous Crowes Nest B&B and dine in the olive grove estate at Bracu, picking up some olive oil at the same time. Or stay at Counties BK Motor Lodge and dine at the Longkeeper, named after Pukekohe's very own famous onion. Visit Cafe Kaos for a nostalgic breakfast and retro decor, find a fabulous and unique gift at the Toi Mauri collective and be sure to visit the Franklin Market in Pukekohe. Travel down to Pokeno to enjoy a legendary ice-cream, pick up some award winning sausages and bacon or visit the whisky distillery. Slip down to Mercer to sample native bush kawakawa and horopito gouda and other exquisite handcrafted cheeses. Travel up SH2 to to Mangatawhiri’s Boutique Brewery and the John Hill Estate winery in Hunua before dining at the Hallertau Brewery and staying the night in Clevedon. Spend a leisurely Sunday morning at the Clevedon Village Farmers’ Market or visiting NZ Warbirds museum at Ardmore before heading home.
Day 1: Crowes Nest, Bracu, Counties BK Motor Lodge, Blue Ox Babe, Franklins.
Day 2: Cafe Kaos, Toi Mauri Collective, Farmer’s Market in Pukekohe, Pokeno Bacon, Pokeno Ice Cream, Pokeno Whisky, Mercer Cheese, Mangatawhiri Boutique Brewery, John Hill Estate, Hallertau Brewery.
Day 3: Clevedon Village Farmers’ Market, NZ Warbirds at Ardmore