It is home to the famous historic site, Hayes Engineering Works, established in 1895 

The township of Oturehua is in the Ida Valley of the Maniototo. The land around Oturehua was originally used by migrating southern Maoris to extract silcrete for making weapons to hunt the Moa. Originally called Rough Ridge, it was changed back to its Maori name with the introduction of the railway in 1907.

It is home to the famous historic site, Hayes Engineering Works, established in 1895 by millwright turned engineer, Ernest Hayes. Gilchrist's Store with its 1899 interior and original merchandise on the shelves is still trading today.




Population: 27

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"The Mill B & B"

Tagged as: Bed & Breakfast, , Historic

"The Mill B & B" is a 125 year old 3 storied stone flour mill which has been lovingly restored and converted into a unique dwelling whilst retaining its historical characters.


$155 Double - $100 Single. Full country breakfast included in tarrif.

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Oturehua Railway Hotel

Tagged as: Hotel, Historic

Whether you are riding or walking the Central Otago Rail Trail or driving through the Ida Valley stop for a while and enjoy the stunning views of Rough Ridge and the Hawkdun Ranges from our large family beer garden or alternatively warm up by our cosy fire on our comfortable couches.


$60.00 per person for two people or more. Single rate $75.00.

This rate includes a continental breakfast.

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Gilchrists Store & The Old Shop B&B

Tagged as: Bed & Breakfast, Historic

The Otago Central Rail Trail has some wonderful accommodation experiences.  As the name suggests “The Old Shop B & B” was once a store, the original Gilchrists Store in fact that was opened in the 1890’s. What was 'out the back of the shop' now offers comfortable accommodation for up to six people...


2 persons $70.00 per head,  3 to 6 persons $65.00 per head
Includes continental breakfast.

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Crow's Nest Accommodation

Tagged as: Tourist Park / Camping, Backpackers, Self - Contained

Just 100 m. from the Otago Central Rail Trail.  Multiple Accommodation options in Oturehua. 


Backpacker, cabin, & tent site from $15 to $90 p/p a night.  

Doubles rate for cabins $110 - $145 p/night

Child rates apply – 10 years and under.

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Inverlair Lodge

Tagged as: Bed & Breakfast,

Inverlair Lodge is purpose built facility located in Oturehua, just metres from the Central Otago Rail Trail. Inverlair will offer you very affordable high quality accommodation for rail trail enthusiasts, curling groups, weekend getaways, corporate functions and conferences. The lodge is the ideal setting to sit back, relax and enjoy the ambiance of the surrounding countryside.


$90 per person per night including children 3 years old and upwards.  Under 3 years old FREE.
Sole Occupancy $120

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Tagged as: Bed & Breakfast

Comfortable private accommodation in purpose built cottages. On the trail with great views of the Hawkduns. All within easy walking distance of the cafe and pub.


Studio units $170 per night incl breakfast, $130 sole occupancy

Two bedroom $220 per night for two or $340 per night for 4 including breakfast

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Gilchrist's Oturehua Store

This is a working historical general store and has been operating continuously under the name of "Gilchrist" since 1902.They stock fresh fruit and vegies, groceries, pies and sandwiches, ice-creams, lollies, Grahame Sydney prints, and much more.

Oturehua Railway Hotel

Situated half way along the Rail Trail we are your ideal stopover and children are welcome. A full range of meals and snacks are available, specialty coffees and Central Otago wines.

Hayes Engineering Cafe

There is a cafe in one of the historical mud brick buildings which is part of Hays Engineering Works and Homestead. Closed over winter.

Hayes Engineering Museum

Hayes Engineering was important for every New Zealand farmer, with a variety of farm equipment having been invented there. The most famous of Ernest Hayes inventions was the Hayes Wire Strainer which is still used on fences throughout the world to this day. Power for the engineering works in the early days was provided by an innovative 12m high windmill.

Open 7 days 10am  – 5pm

Contact: ph 03 4445801

Email hayes@heritage.org.nz


Oturehuas Gilchist Store

Visit Oturehuas Gilchist StoreThis historic building in the centre of Oturehua town is one of the best known stores in Central Otago.  Built in 1899 this store is a rare delight for any nostalgia enthusiast, successfully merging the old and the new.  The shelves boast memorabilia such as the original telephone exchange, an antique bacon slicer, tinned coffee and food from the late 1800’s.  Present day goods are also sold.

Golden Progress Mine

A good opportunity to stretch the legs, the Golden Progress mine can be found ten minutes off the Rail Trail by following the sign-post on the town’s outskirts on the way to Wedderburn. Note that the mine is normally closed to the public in spring time due to lambing.

Oturehua Tennis Courts

There are community tennis courts on the edge of town which are available to the general public.


Curling on the Ida Burn Dam can occur during the winter months if the ice is thick enough. The dam hosts the ancient curling Bonspiel tournament.

Ph: 03 444 9878


Hays Engineering & Homestead 'Live' Operating Days

Experience the remarkable belt- driven Hays Engineering Works in operation wander the grounds and the view the interior of the grand homestead.

Where: 39 Hays Road, Oturehua

When: Sunday 6 January, 3 February, 3 March 7 April 2019 (10.00 am - 5.00 pm)

Ph:03 444 5801 

Brass Monkey Rally

The Brass Monkey motorcycle Rally is one of the last great motorcycling adventures in New Zealand and is now in its 25th year. The Rally is always held over Queens Birthday weekend and culminates in a campsite at Oturehua. Motor cyclists converge on the district to share their love of motorcycling, and often endure the first snow of the season. 

Where: Idaburn Dam, Oturehua

When: Saturday 1st Jun - Sunday 2nd Jun 2019 (Queens Birthday Weekend)


Contact : Otago Motorcycle Club, (03) 477 5549

Web site: www.brassmonkeyrally.org.nz

The Rail Trail Guide Book

The single most important resource when travelling the Central Otago Rail Trail

A beautifully crafted book with amazing photography by Peter Andrews showing Central Otago as it truly is, one of the most rugged, extreme and beautiful locations on the planet. Stunning scenery, amazing and important historical and current information, detailed maps, lists of accommodation, frequently asked questions, where to eat, how far between towns, etc. It’s all in here.

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