Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 

A world first NZ rail tourism venture to launch in October

18 September 2012

A world first New Zealand rail tourism venture to launch in October

A beautiful and isolated corner of New Zealand will soon be open to travel from a truly unique perspective – a self-driving rail cart.

From 13 October 2012, Forgotten World Adventures will be offering the chance to travel on rail carts along the disused railway line which runs between Stratford in Taranaki and Okahukura near Taumarunui in the Ruapehu district.

This region, often referred to as the Forgotten World, is a window into New Zealand’s pioneering history with pristine native bush, rugged hills and isolated farms. With trips ranging from a half day to a two day journey covering the full 140 kilometres of this historic line, experiencing the adventure of the Forgotten World has never been easier.

Forgotten World Adventures is the brainchild of entrepreneur Ian Balme, who secured a 30-year lease to the line which was mothballed by KiwiRail in 2009.

“This truly is a journey like no other. It’s a magical part of the country and travelling by rail cart has to be the best way to see it,” Mr Balme said.

George Hickton, former Chief Executive of Tourism New Zealand and now a professional company director, is a big fan of the journey. "The Forgotten World Adventures self-drive railway experience has to be the best possible way to explore this unique region,” Mr Hickton said.

“This innovative kiwi business has the potential to link visitors and locals for mutual benefit and bring to life the history and lifestyle of a region forgotten by most of us," Mr Hickton added.

After seeing the runaway success of the Otago Central Rail Trail, Mr Balme is confident Forgotten World Adventures offers a significant economic development opportunity for the region. In little more than a decade, the Otago Central Rail Trail has grown into a business attracting thousands of visitors a year and contributing millions of dollars to local businesses, testament to the strong appeal of rail-based tourism.

KiwiRail's General Manager, Passenger Services, Deborah Hume said it was enthusiastic about the opportunity for Forgotten World Adventures to raise interest in rail-based tourism. “It is great to see a line that had to be mothballed being used again to bring tourism to the region," Ms Hume said.

The Forgotten World Adventures rail carts are either two or four seater, petrol driven and have a maximum speed of 20 kilometres per hour. In what is believed to be a world first, the carts are fully self-driving: the driver has complete control over acceleration and braking. The journeys are semi-guided, with the beauty of travelling by rail cart the ability to stop and admire the scenery at any time.

“This unforgettable trip will be enjoyed by everyone from young to old and in between, with its unique perspective on New Zealand’s rugged landscape and pioneering past,” Mr Balme said.

www.forgottenworldadventures.co.nz

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
Gold For RNZ: Muslim Post-9/11 Series, Kim Hill Win In New York

The Radio New Zealand podcast series Public Enemy has won a gold award for excellence for its presenter, Mohamed Hassan, at the prestigious New York Festival Radio Awards announced in Manhattan today. RNZ National’s Saturday Morning host, Kim Hill, also received a gold award for Best Radio Personality. More>>

Human Rights Commission: Give Nothing To Racism

A campaign urging New Zealanders to give nothing to racism and refuse to spread intolerance has been launched by some of the country’s most well-known people. More>>

Louis Vuitton Series Win: Emirates Team NZ Will Challenge For The America’s Cup

By beating Artemis 5-2 they now take on Oracle Team USA in the America’s Cup match starting next weekend. More>>

ALSO:

Monterey: Rodger Fox Big Band Invited To Celebrated Festival

The Rodger Fox Big Band has received an invitation to perform at the 2017 Monterey 60th Anniversary Jazz Festival in the USA in September of this year. More>>

AntARTica: Scientist’s Painting Discovered In Antarctic Hut

The New Zealand Antarctic Heritage Trust has discovered an almost perfectly preserved 118 year old watercolour painting among penguin-excrement, dust and mould covered papers found in an historic hut at Cape Adare, Antarctica. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: Set In Stone

Tthere are over a thousand public war memorials scattered around the country, commemorating over 30,000 New Zealanders who have died in wartime, and most of whom are buried overseas. More>>>More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION