Cambridge is a delight for visitors who enjoy taking home photographs to remind them of their stay in the town.
Top 8 Places to See and Photograph
1. Waikato River
There are spectacular views of New Zealand’s longest river from the Victoria Bridge, opened in 1907, or from the banks of the river as you head towards the Riverside Reserve. From there you can take the Camjet for a spin up the river to Karapiro Dam.
2. Lake Karapiro
Water, native bush and luscious green hills create an endless range of opportunities for the outdoor photographer – and there’s usually something happening on the lake whether it’s a sports event or someone having a paddle or fishing for trout.
3. Sanctuary Mountain
This 3,400 hectares of pest-free mountain reserve is a sanctuary for native birds and endangered species – it’s a chance to get up close to nature.
4. Panoramic views
If you like landscapes, the best views can be found at the top of the Maungakawa Scenic Reserve (8km and a 14-minute drive north-east from Cambridge). On a fine day, you can see as far as Mount Ruapehu and Mount Taranaki.
5. Home of Champions
If you fancy a gentle stroll, check out Cambridge’s tribute to our equine and sporting heroes. Wander along Duke St to find 25 plaques honouring the achievements of local stars in the town’s Sporting Walk of Fame, and as you turn into Victoria Street, look for 18 mosaics set into the footpath of prominent local horses. On the wall beside the ANZ in Victoria St, you’ll find a special collection of plaques honouring our 13 (and counting) Melbourne Cup winners.
6. Heritage walks
The Cambridge Museum website has maps of a number of local walks with landmarks described. These walks guide you through different aspects of local life – a Business Walk, A Tour of Churches, the Cambridge Domain, Leamington, Waikato River and the Suburbs Walk.
Wander around the town and you’ll see classic colonial buildings such as Cambridge Primary School (1879), the Town Hall (1909) and the Old Court House (1909) which now houses our local museum. The town’s original Post Office (now the restaurant called Alpino) was built in 1908 but its clock tower was removed in 1934 (after the Napier earthquake sparked fears it could topple) and it now stands in Jubilee Gardens.
7. Mare and foal sculpture
Outside the Town Hall in Victoria Street, proudly displayed to the thousands who drive past each day, is a life-sized bronze sculpture of a mare and her foal. Unveiled in March 2004, the 850kg statue was commissioned by the Waipa District Council, with financial support from the local equine industry, so the town could acknowledge the vast contribution made to its fortunes by horses.
Two Cambridge churches are among the most photographed in the region and are within sight of each other. St Andrew’s Anglican Church is one of the oldest buildings in Cambridge, having been built in 1881 and the tip of its spire is the highest point in town. Across Victoria Street is a converted church, now housing Good Union Bar & Restaurant originally built in 1898