Garden Safari

An initiative of the Rotary Club of Kerikeri, the iconic annual Garden Safari celebrates its 36th anniversary this October.

Each year, at the end of summer, club members begin their search for a variety of gardens ranging from small town properties to large estates. They look for diverse, individual themes, styles and sizes that will offer interest to both avid gardeners and those who simply enjoy wandering through leafy environments.

Many of the gardens are never open to the public, so the safari offers a rare opportunity to discover what lies at the end of a tree lined driveway or private lane.

A detailed description of each property is provided, along with maps, refreshment and convenience sites, and is a valuable resource for out-of-town visitors.

Although initial planning is managed by a relatively small team, the culmination of the safari sees all club members involved in a myriad of ways. The event relies on many people to make it a success, particularly the garden owners, who work tirelessly throughout the months leading up to the safari weekend. At the close of the weekend, garden owners, Rotarians and the ‘Friends of Rotary’ volunteer group are invited to a combined dinner where each garden owner receives a gift of recognition from the club president. The social occasion is a wonderful way to say thank you to everyone involved.

The following day, garden owners are invited on a bus tour to meet fellow garden owners and view some of the safari gardens.

Other community charity groups are invited to use the event for their fundraising purposes. They offer refreshments and goods for sale, including garden and other art forms.

For several years the club has worked closely with the Northern Regional Council to select an appropriate site to provide information about weed eradication or pest control. The Council will again be involved this year, as well as ShelterBox NZ. A specific site will be made available for garden visitors to view the contents of a ShelterBox and discuss its history and objectives with the ShelterBox representative.

The 2023 Garden Safari will be held October 28-29 and tickets cost $30. For more information, email