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Wairakei International Golf Course | Bird Sanctuary NZ


Best Golf Courses in New Zealand | Wairakei International Golf Course
Wairakei International Golf Course | Bird Sanctuary NZ | Private Golf Lessons

Many find sanctuary on a golf course, but it is rare to find a golf course that is a sanctuary - Wairakei Golf + Sanctuary is thought to have scored a world first! Skilfully designed to blend with the natural rolling countryside and developed to meet the rigorous design standards for world class championship competition. 

Officially opened February 1970 by the Tourist Hotel Corporation.  Special guests including the Minister of Tourism Hon. H. J Walker were invited to an exhibition match followed by a celebratory luncheon.  Today, the basic layout of the golf course remains true to the original design of Commander John Harris, Michael Wolveridge and Peter Thomson.  Ownership has changed but the drive to provide a world class golfing experience continues.  There have been many enhancements to the golf course environment including a strong focus on conservation and providing a predator free sanctuary for wildlife. 

Since 2012, Wairakei has worked closely with the Department of Conservation to develop conservation and restoration opportunities for native birds and wildlife to thrive. This includes using the predator free environment as a creche for kiwi chicks and a retirement home for retired breeding takahe.  The takahe pairs have enjoyed sanctuary life so much there have been takahe chicks in the last few years.  A variety of wildlife flourish within the sanctuary, mixed colour pheasants, guinea fowl, pekin ducks, fallow deer and a pair of karearea (NZ Falcon) that have nested and raised their chicks for many years. 

Early 2020, Wairakei celebrated 50 years and the completion of a robust green restoration project.  The magnificent putting surface of the new greens complement the beauty of the course and sanctuary environment. Navigate your way through 18 testing holes of exceptional beauty.  Listen to the cacophony of birdlife, the meandering streams, and delightful waterfalls … 

Wairakei Golf + Sanctuary is a truly unique golfing experience that cannot be missed.

Visit Our Pro Shop

At Wairakei we have a fully stocked Pro Shop with leading brands like Callaway, Greyson Clothing, Kjus, Peter Millar, Footjoy, Oakley, and more. An excellent selection of mens and ladies Wairakei branded clothing, caps and visors. A variety of shoes, golf balls, putters, bags and accessories are also on offer. Everything a golfer needs.

We sell gift vouchers that can be purchased for specific items, such as an 18 hole green fee, Wairakei cap or a half hour golf lesson. If you can't decide on an item, vouchers can also be purchased for any nominated dollar value for the recipient to choose their gift. Vouchers are valid for one year from date of purchase and we can post them to the buyer or recipient. Please give us a call, send an email or drop in to see us.

Wairakei Golf Course | Private Golf Lessons | Golf Schools | Best Golf Courses in NZ
The Wairakei Experience

It's all about the experience, and when you arrive at Wairakei it is our aim to make your golfing experience a memorable one.

Xiem Hong

This is a beautiful golf course, and the wildlife Sanctuary makes it a very unique and beautiful place to play golf. The staff are great friendly and helpful. The facilities are great. I love the practice facilities and warm up areas. Highly recommend it. I loved it and played a total of 9 rounds in 2 visits.

Xiem Hong
Murray Pimm

Tough course. Played the white tees off a 20hcp adjusted to 23. Stunning course, restaurant was amazing, really fairly priced quality food. Will deff be back next year but hopefully play better.

Murray Pimm
Caroline Forbes

Beautiful surroundings with deer and bird life amongst and between each hole. An enriching and calming environment to play golf. Amazing facilities and friendly staff.

Caroline Forbes
Joanne Rogers

Amazing course, just beautiful. The pro shop staff were very welcoming, organised, and professional. Carts spotless. Loved the whole experience of playing at Wairakei.

Joanne Rogers
Dan Stevens

Everything about this place is special. Great course and friendly staff. Wonderful scenery and wildlife. Perfect

Dan Stevens
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