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Desk with Book

@RAGLAN I Aotearoa, New Zealand

Updated: Sep 24, 2021

Trips are particularly special when one is with good friends, but our weekend in Raglan was especially memorable. Just a 2 hour drive from Auckland, it is a quick getaway to this quaint, soul-stirring town. Raglan is a stunning destination for those who appreciate art, music, food & nature. Creativity abounds.

Our lovely hosts Denise & Grant were warm and enthusiastic to make us comfortable. We had planned 2 days of discovering Raglan ourselves, however their direction and recommendations went a long way to making our experience, one we will not forget.

Stunning Views, sun-drenched apartment and pool table at the Silos in Raglan
The Waterfront Silos - Penthouse Apartment with stunning views, a loft bedroom & pool table

The Waterfront Silos are a boutique, hosted accommodation, perfect for couples, families & small groups looking for an exquisite, pampered experience over a weekend or short stay. The rough, grey cement is absolutely engaging and as Grant pointed up to the valve that once held the cement in, one wondered at the genius of turning it into a beautiful apartment - stunning views of the water with clouds hovering over the hills, beautifully furnished rooms with bespoke arched lines and the escape of day-dreaming as the sun streams through the windows. We were treated to sights of the sea-gulls fishing and feeding early in the morning and caught a glimpse of rowing teams at practice on the water. Our two evenings in the Penthouse apartment were entirely captivated by the wonderful pool table and our amateur attempts at the game.

Local art creations on sale in Raglan

Denise is a story-teller and her passion for The Silos and Raglan is contagious, more so though, were her carefully considered recommendations for dining and exploring. We discovered as many walks as we could around town and across the bridge. Bridal Veil Falls was just tremendous and such a great experience to see the falls from 3 different lookout points and perspectives. Equally fun, was exploring the shops - Tony Sly’s pottery store on the wharf, Zinnia’s unique gifts & books, La la land chocolates and so many others selling vintage treasures, driftwood turned into art, hand sketches & crafted wonders.

Wyld Cafe located on Bow Street, Raglan has a delightful menu with great breakfast food.
WYLD Eatery & Bar, Raglan - a delightful experience

The dining was exceptional and within our limited time and stomach capacities, we ate at Orca Eatery & Bar, WYLD & Ulo’s Kitchen. Orca Eatery & Bar has such a great location with pleasant views and we enjoyed a Mediterranean salad and sides. Ulo’s Kitchen is clearly the most popular dinner restaurant in town and the energy, music and décor creates a very memorable experience. It has a burst of colour and creative magic as your eyes dart from walls tiled with old music cassettes, to stools made from skateboards, shelves with showcased vinyl records & oddly matched crockery, moving to the rhythm of the DJ.

Gluten-free pancakes with caramelized bananas, almond butter and freeze dried raspberries with coconut ice-cream

The meal that captivated my soul though, was breakfast at WYLD, as Denise had recommended. It was the bright blue exterior of the café, the spacious seating and the sense of being welcome to sit as long as we needed to, that we cannot forget. I noticed unusually, that the menu had ‘gluten-free food’, not just gluten free ‘options’ and I chose the pancakes with caramelized bananas and an almond butter with raspberry dusting. What ensued was the most delightful and validating eating I’ve ever encountered as a person with dietary requirements. It was not a regular dish with items that had been swapped out. It was a plate of food designed and curated with care and love & complete in itself. It was one of the few times that I’ve not felt like the exception on a menu. I would go back to Raglan just for breakfast at WYLD. Well done!


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