This short walk is believed to be the only one of its kind in the world. The two-kilometre (and growing) walk meanders along beside bends in the town’s river that’s a shade of deep green. The idea is to saunter along, taking time to read the large boulders and paving inscribed with haiku, or short poems.
It’s a ‘voyage of discovery,’ with walkers encouraged to interpret the poems in their own way. Don’t think it’s all sombre and introspective: there are haiku such as ‘Over hot sand dunes, a family skips,’ and the evocative ‘Delicious! Taste of my new strawberry chapstick on his lips.’
There are more than 30 boulders with poetry carved into them, including the work of New Zealand poet Earnest Berry and local artist Catherine Mair, a haiku poet of international standing. The Pathway starts near Katikati Information Centre and is open to the public at all times. The Information Centre sells a $5 guide complete with a map and all the poems that makes a nice memento.