Our next stop was Cromwell from Wanaka. It was a lovely drive through wineries to Cromwell.
Cromwell is another historic town that has a history in the 19th century gold rush days. The town is located right on the banks of the Lake Dunstan, where you can enjoy boating, swimming or kayaking. There are plenty of contemporary restaurants, accommodation choices and shops in Cromwell, but the heart of the town is Old Cromwell Town, which is full of restored buildings and even 150-year old miner’s cottages.
As we were driving, we knew we had reached Cromwell when we saw some giant fruits.
We stopped there, had coffee and cake, took few photos in front of the giant fruits and drove on to Old Cromwell Town.
The story is that when Lake Dunstan was being constructed (it is a dam) the locals knew that the original Cromwell was going to be drowned. The citizens of Old Cromwell, knowing the town was going to be drowned decided to move some of the buildings to higher ground.
Initially, eight buildings were chosen from the old commercial area due to be submerged by the advent of the new hydro lake. These buildings were to be relocated further up the main street to a site above the new lake level – and so began ‘Old Cromwell Town’.
Now Old Cromwell has a superb cafe called the Grain and Seed café, which serves excellent coffee and homemade food, as well as other shops and art gallery.
As we walked around the area, we saw a small area of residential dwellings of the 1880’s period and the preserved ruins of some of Cromwell’s original buildings. It was really awesome to see all the old things and imagine how people used to live in those days.
Some of the things are so old that I had almost forgotten that there existed such old ways of printing newspaper or the manual workings of blacksmith with coal fire and all.
After enjoying the great place, we headed back to the hotel at Queenstown. We had another big day planned for the following day which involved a trip to Glenorchy. Will be writing about that in my next post.
Take care everyone,
M from nepaliaustralian
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