Development of The Waterlily Gardens began in the 1940's thanks to retired farmers, Tom and Mabel Gordon, and celebrated 60 years of opening to the public in 2011, The gardens were first open to the public for four Tuesdays in February 1951. 

The gardens host an abundance of hardy water lilies in the lake and ponds, lush trees, native forest walks, waterfalls and formal lawns.


Park up and wander through the gate, onto the formal lawns, past the café, Giant Oaks, liriodendrons, maples, liquid ambers, meta sequoias and swamp Cyprus.

Here you can find the small lake, abundant with hardy water lilies, local sculptures and a backdrop of ornamental cherry trees. 

Over the stream, through some casually arranged ponds awash with colour. before heading through a path of native New Zealand flora and fauna. After exiting the bush, past cascading water, past the ginko trees and the copper beech, the gardens open to an expansive two-acre lake, overlooked by a weeping willow, and surrounded by giant flora.

Sit and relax, or play under the trees then amble back up through the bush, on the other side of the stream.



Twenty stream-fed ponds, including the 0.8ha lake, are home to 70 varieties of water lily – including hardy, tropical types – and lotus plants


Why not book in for in High Tea or Cream Tea.

Our Café is currently open by appointment for large groups.

So make sure you book ahead if your group is planning on coming. Contact us for more information



The bush area is filled with rimu, kahikatea, lancewood, miro, kauri, punga, ferns and many more flora and fauna. Finches and Fantails flit through, following you on your journey. Tui's call from the high branches. The tranquil setting is like something out of a fairy tale. If you are bringing children, make sure they keep a look out for the fairy garden.

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Group Tours


Pre-booked group tours, and morning/afternoon tea or a decadent High Tea, are available for large groups of 30 or more.

Your guide will lead you through the delightful gardens, talking you through how we tend to the water lilies and surrounding fauna and flora, any projects we are currently working on and also the compelling sculptures found through-out the property.

Afterward you will be treated to a delicious morning or afternoon tea, freshly made on site.

Booking for this is essential, contact us for more information