My Local Secret


From the mountain to beautiful beaches, Taranaki is a spectacular destination, but there's much more to discover beyond its good looks. We've asked some locals to share their favourite secret destinations, hang-outs, adventures and experiences.

Mark Louis is a Taranaki hospitality heavyweight.  As a co-owner of Hour Glass, Polpetta, Our Place and Peeking Panda, Mark is not short of good food and great chat, that’s for sure.  It’s a wonder how he finds time to hang with his wife, kids and the dog, let alone get out for a surf when it’s pumping!  But he does it and he does it well. 

Check out Mark’s secret spots in New Plymouth...

Lisa Tamati

As an ultra-marathon runner Lisa Tamati has conquered massive distances, across the most hostile of environments, including the length of New Zealand, the Sahara Desert, the Australian Outback and the Himalayas. Settled with her roots back in Taranaki, Lisa continues to coach people from her experiences, while still finding time to design bespoke jewellery and enjoy her local secret spots.

Check out Lisa's local secrets...

Jo & Dave James are a husband and wife team where engineering meets the love of gin! Together they produce Juno Gin, a boutique London-style gin distilled in New Plymouth using ingredients grown and sourced in Taranaki and throughout New Zealand. They have three core values: make it fun, make it together and make it right. 

Discover Jo and Dave's local secrets here...

Belinda and Louise Hunt

Mother and daughter duo Belinda and Louise Hunt are the brains and beauty behind Lushington Jackets. Together these lovely ladies have turned a passion into a successful business, creating unique jackets with bespoke features that are a perfect reflection of Taranaki's beauty and individuality. Belinda and Louise might keep the secret to creating their stylish jackets close to their hearts but they're more than happy to share their local secrets!

Check out Belinda and Louise's local secrets...

Back Beach

Ben is a young New Plymouth-based photographer and videographer. Despite being only 23 years old, Ben’s already clocked up an impressive resume, and is well on his way to carving a career out of his talents. Ben’s passion for capturing the perfect shot helps him see things differently, and he’s often out exploring the region to find the best spots. Lucky for us, Ben is happy to share a few of his discoveries!

Check out Ben's local secrets...

Nicola Ngarewa

If you have not met Nicola Ngarewa you need to. A Patea "old girl" who has returned home to give back to the small coastal town she grew up in. Nicola is the Principal of Patea Area School and in just a few years has led the school from strength to strength. Nicola was awarded the Sir Peter Blake Leadership Award in 2013 and named the 2016 Taranaki Daily News Person of the year. While those are both secrets Nicola may have wanted to remain as such, she's more than keen to share her and her family's favourite local secrets.

Check out Nicola's local secrets...

Potaema Track

To say that Rod and Lynne Pulford are busy is an understatement. They balance the management of Ngati Ruanui Stratford Mountain House alongside their own luxury Stratford accommodation, Platinum Lodge, with spending quality time with their 13 grandchildren and getting out and about to enjoy the beautiful place they call home. You’ll love the secret spots Rod and Lynne have discovered!

Check out Rod & Lynne's local secrets...

Nicola Ngarewa

Jordan Barnes
Fiona Ross
Daisy Day
Michael Mansvelt
Simon Rees
Annalee Muggeridge

Click here to see the winning photos from our #mylocalsecret competition, sent in by Taranaki locals!