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   Kamahi Cottage   

Kamahi Cottage

229 Barber Road
Otorohanga, Waikato/Waitomo
New Zealand  3975
Architectural Type:  Handcrafted Cottage
Established In:  2001
Phone:  +64 (0)7-873-0849
Fax:  +64 (0)7-873-0849
Google Talk:
Contact:  Elisabeth COWAN
 Send An Email:
Single Occupant Rate Is: NZ $250
Double Occupant Rate Is: NZ $295
NZ $350 (3 guests)
NZ $400 (4 guests)
Additional Occupant Rate Is: NZ $55
Accepted Payments: Cash, MasterCard, Visa, Travelers Cheques
Deposit Amount Requested: None
Minimum Stay Is: 1 night
Check In Time Is: 2 PM
Check Out Time Is: 11 AM
Cancellation Policy: 7 days or less - 100% forfeit of tariff.

If you're looking for an intimate luxury cottage in a beautiful farm setting, a 5 star bed and breakfast, gourmet food, relaxation, seclusion, comfort and great hospitality then Kamahi Cottage is perfect.

And it's all close to New Zealand's world famous Waitomo Caves in the central North Island.

Whether you prefer the privacy of your very own self-contained romantic cottage or you’d like to join us and share our warm hospitality over a meal in the homestead, the choice is yours.

Spend a night for a treat, plan a weekend escape or stay longer to relax, unwind and experience the exciting attractions our region has to offer.

There’s so much to do - amazing action packed adventures like blackwater rafting and cave abseiling (rappelling), the magical beauty of glowworm cave eco-tours, plus quad-biking, horse riding, trout fishing, golf, farm and garden tours and scenic nature walks.

We’re proud to offer cosy and luxurious bed and breakfast accommodation. The views are glorious; the atmosphere serene and totally private and the setting a lovely landscaped garden surrounded by lush farmland.

Handcrafted local timbers, relaxed comfort and charming décor make for an unforgettable stay. We provide all the extras you expect from a 5-star lodge, and if requested, you can finish your day with a memorable gourmet dinner complimented with fine New Zealand wines.

As the only farmstay in New Zealand offering this level of experience, we’d be delighted to share it with you.

We’re also family friendly and welcome children of all ages.

Learn more about the cottage and make a booking online. If you have any queries, we’d love to help.

Simply contact us.

Cottage features:

  • Smoke-free interior.
  • Spacious modern bathroom.
  • Stylish downstairs lounge and dining area.
  • Gourmet dinners available by arrangement.
  • Fully equipped kitchenette ideal for self-catering.
  • Outdoor furniture to enjoy the uninterrupted panorama.
  • Exclusive single party occupancy for a maximum of 4 guests.
  • Double sofa-sleeper downstairs for 2 extra guests or children.
  • Family friendly accommodation – children of all ages are welcome.
  • Queen bedroom upstairs with pure cotton bed linens and quality furnishings.
  • Full gourmet breakfasts (continental style plus selection of cooked choices) delivered to the cottage or served in the homestead.
  • Complimentary fresh flowers, home baked treats, freshly ground coffee, tea assortments, port (& Evan’s potent & delicious home-distilled schnapps!)
  • Farm tours of our 1100 acre (450 hectare) sheep and beef farm available by arrangement.

The Cottage:

Welcome to Kamahi Cottage, your luxury farmstay near the amazing Waitomo Caves.

We love sharing our beautiful location and built Kamahi Cottage as a serene retreat for visitors and friends. It’s modelled on a tiny century-old school house in our district, where previous generations of the Cowan family started their education.

If you’re planning a honeymoon, special anniversary or peaceful weekend the self contained cottage is perfect.

When you stay at Kamahi Cottage you get the whole cottage. There are no other guests. Enjoy complete seclusion or share our warm hospitality. The facilities, the sunsets, the peace and quiet, are yours and yours alone.

Start your day with a full gourmet breakfast delivered to the cottage or served in the homestead whenever it suits you. And if you prefer an intimate evening, let us spoil you and deliver dinner to the cottage.

Enjoy fresh picked flowers, home baked treats, freshly ground coffee, specialty teas, port and fruit schnapps distilled from our own orchard fruit.

Sophisticated finishing touches and attention to detail make our spacious handcrafted cottage the perfect place to relax and unwind.

Kamahi Cottage offers:

  • Stunning views, total privacy and exclusive single party occupancy
  • A family-friendly stay for a maximum of 4 guests – children are very welcome
  • Full gourmet breakfasts - continental style plus selection of cooked choices. (We also cater for vegetarians and those with gluten or dairy allergies)
  • Upstairs bedroom with comfortable queen bed, luxurious bed linens, quality furnishings, electric blankets, radio/alarm clock and amazing views!
  • Double sofa-sleeper downstairs for 2 extra guests or children (all linen supplied)
  • Elegant & comfortable lounge and dining area with sound system, CD collection, reading library, flat screen LCD TV, ceiling fan and electric heating
  • Spacious modern bathroom with shower, heated towel rail, exclusive complimentary toiletries, hair dryer, plush bathrobes, fluffy cotton/bamboo blend towels, slippers & bed socks
  • Fully equipped modern kitchenette built into a handcrafted cabinet. Complete with fridge, hot plates, microwave, cookware, crockery & cutlery for those keen to self-cater
  • Complimentary fresh flowers, home baked treats, freshly ground coffee, tea assortments, port and schnapps
  • Outdoor furniture and hammock chairs on the veranda for relaxing and enjoying the uninterrupted panorama
  • Free phone for your important calls
  • Free broadband internet facilities in the homestead. (To help you relax and unwind we have no internet connection in the cottage, so you can’t be tempted to clear those work emails constantly)
  • Smoke-free interior for your health and comfort
  • Comprehensive visitor information and complimentary booking services.

We can also arrange:

  • Lunches and picnic hampers
  • Trout fishing and other local activities
  • Private garden tours in the surrounding region
  • Farm tours of our 1100 acre (450 hectare) sheep and beef farm
  • Memorable home-cooked dinners accompanied by fine New Zealand wines

Gourmet Food:


We serve breakfast in our home or deliver it to the cottage – the choice is yours, whenever it fits in with your holiday schedule.

Continental selection:

  • Tea assortments and freshly ground, locally roasted Origin Coffee
  • Fresh Nashi Pear juice
  • Toast selection (white/whole-grain/cinnamon & raisin)
  • Freshly baked croissants
  • Homemade fruit conserves & locally produced honey
  • Homemade muesli (granola)
  • Fresh seasonal fruit selection
  • Fruit yoghurt


Cooked options:

  • Ramekin baked eggs in a crisp bread crust with a creamy mustard and cheese sauce
  • Fresh lemon scented pancakes with grilled bacon and maple syrup or a warm berry sauce
  • Bacon and eggs (scrambled, fried, poached or soft boiled) with slow roasted tomatoes
  • Orange and vanilla flavoured French toast with grilled bacon, caramelised bananas and maple syrup
  • Omelettes with your choice of savoury filling (mushroom, tomato, fresh herbs and cheese, bacon etc)
  • Freshly toasted homemade waffles with grilled bacon and banana or a warm berry sauce


  • Dinners at Kamahi Cottage are by arrangement
  • You’re very welcome to dine in the homestead with us
  • If you’d like an intimate private dinner, we’ll deliver your meals to the cottage whenever it suits you
  • We appreciate 24 hours notice to ensure that your choices are available
  • Please ask for current dinner fees


  • Mushrooms and bacon in a whiskey and thyme cream sauce served on homemade toasted ciabatta bread
  • Rustic tomato soup
  • Pears slow roasted with garlic and rosemary served with a hot bacon dressing, blue cheese, roasted hazelnuts and homegrown salad greens
  • Grilled polenta wedges topped with a homemade tomato sauce and melted cheese
  • Indian lime, coconut and shrimp soup – a delicately flavoured, slightly spicy soup
  • New Zealand green-lipped mussels with a Thai coconut cream sauce or a tangy chili coriander dressing – served with toasted homemade ciabatta bread
  • Swiss style cheese and savoury egg custard quiche - served with salad greens


All served with fresh seasonal vegetables and/or homegrown salad greens

  • Lemon crusted fish baked with a lemon/parsley crumb topping - served with a fresh fruit salsa and a layered potato bake
  • Chili and coriander grilled chicken – served with Asian style noodles
  • Roast lamb flavoured with garlic, rosemary and lemon - served with oven roasted potato wedges
  • Bacon wrapped chicken breasts with a parsley, lemon and garlic stuffing, baked on a bed of sliced tomatoes - served with a cheesy potato bake
  • Pork chops de luxe oven baked with a creamy mushroom topping - served with lemon/garlic pasta
  • Prime beef fillet with a cream mustard sauce - served with rosti (Swiss potato pancake)
  • Cheese and ham stuffed chicken breasts, oven baked with a garlic tomato couli – served with garlic and rosemary roasted potatoes
  • “Bangers and Mash” – the ultimate old-fashioned comfort food. (The sausages are “Leo’s Best Beef Sausages” produced by local butcher, Ray Arnold, from a recipe brought to New Zealand in 1874 by one of his forefathers. Ray has won awards in the NZ Sausage Contest for Leo’s Best Beef Sausage --- a real Kiwi Banger) Our traditional Bangers and Mash are served with sautéed onion rings, yummy gravy, minted peas and salad
  • Traditional style beef roast and mini Yorkshire puddings – served with a selection of roasted vegetables
  • Moroccan chicken casserole simmered with apricots, prunes and Middle Eastern spices - served with fragrant spicy couscous
  • Slow roasted lamb shanks in a delicious spiced tomato sauce - served with Kumera mash (New Zealand sweet potato)


  • Plum flan drizzled with plum syrup and served with fresh whipped cream
  • Moist lemon and yoghurt cake served with fresh fruit slices and lemon cream
  • Toffee glazed meringue soufflé with Crème Anglaise
  • Orange and cinnamon flavoured meringues served with berry sauce and fresh whipped cream
  • Swiss apple and custard flan with fresh whipped cream
  • Orange flavoured chocolate cake, raspberry couli and fresh whipped cream
  • Soft meringue roll filled with mango cream and served with a passion fruit/mango sauce
  • Pears simmered in orange and cinnamon infused red wine syrup – served with freshly whipped cream and orange wafer biscuits or lemon shortbread
  • Lemon silk tart – served with fresh whipped cream

These are just a few examples of dinner choices at Kamahi Cottage. I love to create new dishes - if you have a special request, please ask!

We also have numerous vegetarian options and can cater for those with gluten and dairy intolerances.

Things To Do:

Kamahi Cottage is close to an amazing range of unique attractions for adventure seekers, as well as those wanting a more relaxed experience.

We’ve listed activities within a half hour drive of our farm, and also within an hour’s drive.

Take three or four days to enjoy this magic part of New Zealand!

Absolute Adventure:

If you're physically active, try a real caving expedition that allows you to freely explore and experience the sport of caving. Traverse high level passages, climb and abseil waterfalls and squeeze your way through wet and dry passages dripping with pristine crystal formations.

The Legendary Black Water Rafting Co:

Cave tubing or black water rafting is an experience unique to New Zealand. It involves the use of an inflated rubber inner tube to weave, jump and gently float your way through glow worm lit Ruakuri Caves.

Waitomo Adventures Ltd:

A range of Five Amazing Adventure Options: Tumu Tumu Toobing, Haggas Honking Holes, Lost World 4 hour 100m Abseil, Lost World 7 Hour Epic and St Benedicts Caverns.

Waitomo Big Red:

New Zealand's ultimate quad biking adventure. Get off the beaten track, explore Waitomo's rugged countryside through native bush, over farmland and amongst the sheep and cows. A 2-hour adventure tour with your own personal guide.

Ranginui Hunting:

Outfitters and professional guiding services for hunting Red stag, Rusa stags, Fallow buck, trophy goats, wild boar, wild rams, Thar and Chamois. Outfitter Mark will share with you his hunting domain on private land where his family have hunted for four generations.

Relaxed Activities:

Kamahi has 3 acres of landscaped gardens.

Panoramic views, BBQ facilities & children’s play equipment. We also belong to a group of beautiful private gardens open to visit and can arrange tours for you.

Drive through the Home Farm at Kamahi with Evan as your guide. August to October are the months for newborn lambs and calves.

Trout Fishing:

We can arrange expertly guided trout fishing expeditions in local rivers during the fishing season (October - June). All equipment provided. Ideal for all skill levels - novice to experts.

Otorohanga Kiwi House and Native Bird Park:

See our iconic native bird in New Zealand’s original Kiwi House, plus a great range of native birds in a bush park setting.

Otorohanga Township:

New Zealand’s official Kiwiana Town "(often called 'Oto' by locals) is a friendly, easy-going farming community and the perfect example of the Kiwi icon that is the onestreet town ... decorated with murals and displays of other kiwiana, including the All Blacks, sheep, Maori carvings, gumboots, Anchor butter and pavlova." (Lonely Planet 2006). Great shopping, food and freshly roasted coffee at the Origin Coffee Company.

Waitomo Golf Course:

The Waitomo Golf Course (Par 72) on State Highway 3 welcomes visitors. There is no handicap required.

Creative Waitomo:

A guide to some of the most talented artists & craftspeople in the Waitomo and Otorohanga Districts of the King Country region.

Ruakuri Cave:

Ruakuri is New Zealand's longest guided underground walking tour - 1.6 km of cave passages, elaborate cave formations, underground rivers, myths, legends and sacred Maori sites. The new spiral entranceway to Ruakuri is a remarkable feat of stunning modern engineering and design.

Ruakuri Scenic Reserve Walk:

A spectacular 30 minute loop section of track 4 kilometres from Waitomo Village on Tumutumu Road. Ruakuri Scenic Reserve contains classic limestone outcrops and is a place of strong spiritual and cultural significance to Maori.

Spellbound Eco-Tour:

A 3 hour eco-tour of the glowworm paradise that is the Mangawhitikau Cave, plus Te Ana o te Atua (the Cave of the Spirit). Safe, friendly, informative and suitable for all ages.

The Shearing Shed - with a difference!

Cuddle white angora rabbits and watch see them being shorn in a fascinating free demonstration. Beautiful angora products for sale.

Waitomo Glow Worm Caves:

Waitomo’s original and world famous glowworm experience. A 45 minute guided tour through over 250 metres of stunning underground scenery ending with a boat trip through the spectacular Glowworm Grotto.

Waitomo Walkway:

The 4 kilometre walk starts at Waitomo Village, traverses the classic limestone landscape and follows the Waitomo Stream through forest and open farmland. It ends at the Ruakuri Scenic Reserve, with toilet and car parking facilities at both ends.

Woodlyn Park's Pioneer Show:

Daily at 1.30pm. Great family entertainment – a fun-filled demonstration of New Zealand’s pioneering days.

Altura Horse Treks, Gardens & Wildlife Park:

  • 1/2-hour and 1½-hour horse treks over gorgeous NZ farmland (12 years and over)
  • 5 acre country garden with a “Garden of Regional Significance” award
  • 20 acre wildlife park with 85 different sorts of birds and animals and free pony rides for children.

EarthWorks Studio:

Award -winning studio potter, Adrienne Bolton, produces a range of individually hand-crafted home decor products, unique sculptural art pieces and pots.

Mangapohue Natural Limestone Bridge Walkway:

Situated five kilometres past the Appletree Road turn-off. The 17-metre high limestone arch, which spans Mangapohue Stream, is all that remains of an ancient cave system.

Piripiri Cave:

Four kilometres past the Mangapohue Bridge. The cave is not operated commercially so you will need a torch and good boots, as the cave floor is slippery.

Marokopa Falls:

20 minute return walk to the spectacular 36-metre waterfalls two kilometres past the Piripiri Cave. The falls are among the most beautiful in the country. Don't forget your camera!

Kawhia and Aotea On The Beautiful West Coast:

Fabulous scenery, dramatic black iron sand beaches, fishing, boat trips and the amazing Hot Water Beach at Kawhia - go at low tide, (we’ll give you a spade) and dig your own hot pool!

Your Hosts:

Liz and Evan Cowan are delighted to welcome you to Kamahi Cottage.

For years city friends have enthused over their wonderful hilltop location, so they finally built a guest cottage to share the serene beauty of their country setting with visitors.

Liz was born in Switzerland and still speaks Swiss-German fluently. As a young child her family emigrated to New Zealand to farm. Her mother was a fabulous cook, gardener and home-maker, and it took Liz some years to realize that she also enjoyed cooking, gardening and interior design. These days she loves experimenting in the kitchen, sharing her recipes, meeting people, making new friends, tending the large garden, reading and listening to music.

Evan was brought up on the family’s 1120 acre (450 hectare) sheep and beef farm, left to study organic chemistry at university and met Liz, who was studying literature & language. At the end of their university studies they returned “home” for a year. They never left!

Evan’s father developed the farm at the end of the Second World War after his return to New Zealand as an ex-Prisoner of War. He cleared the brush-covered land and literally sowed grass seed by hand, a seed sack slung over his shoulder. In his retirement years he has become one of New Zealand’s leading conservationists, planting hundreds of thousands of native trees to ensure the regeneration of some of New Zealand’s beautiful native forests. The picturesque family farm has large tracts of protected native bush – a proud testimonial to his work.

Evan retains a great interest in chemistry and “things scientific”. He’s also developed a passion for the bagpipes and now plays with a local band – he can often be heard practising at an appropriate distance from the cottage and has had many favourable guest reviews! His other interests include astronomy, constructing various engineering projects in his large workshop, distilling schnapps and sampling red wine.

Evan and Liz share the homestead with their teenage son and Coco, the resident cat. When he’s not relaxing, Coco loves nothing better than welcoming visitors.


Kamahi Cottage Farmstay near Otorohanga & Waitomo.

  • At the south end of Otorohanga township and the Waipa River bridge (on State Highway 3) turn onto Otewa Road
  • Drive under the overhead railway bridge
  • Follow Otewa Road for approximately 12 kms
  • Turn right onto Barber Road
  • Travel for another 2.29 kms to 229 Barber Road
  • Kamahi Cottage and the homestead are on the left, clearly sign-posted:
    • “Kamahi - E.J. & E.M. Cowan”

Kamahi Cottage is centrally located in the North Island:

  • 2 hours from Rotorua and its amazing geysers, boiling mud pools and thermal attractions
  • 2 hours from beautiful Lake Taupo and the volcanic Central Plateau
  • 1 hour from Hamilton, an attractive provincial city with lovely public gardens, great shopping and excellent restaurants
  • 2.5 hours from Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city and multi-cultural mecca.

The Details

Kamahi Cottage
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Web Page:  Yes


Languages Spoken:  English, German, Swiss German


Types of Breakfasts:  Full

Special Meals Available:  Yes


Room Types:  Self Contained Luxury Cottage


Private Bathrooms:  Yes

Handicap Accessible:  No

Smoking:  No

Consumption of Alcohol:  Yes

Children:  Yes

Pets:  No


Amenities/Features:  Kitchen, TV, Phone, Sundeck, Garden, Beverage Tray, Fridge, Alarm Clock, Tea & Coffee Making Facilities, Radio, Internet


Nearby Activities:  Hiking, Rock Climbing, Golfing, Horseback Riding, Fishing, Shopping, Sight Seeing, Botanical Gardens


Suitable For:  Pleasure, Relaxation, Family, Spiritual, Anniversaries, Honeymoons, Romance, Gay/Lesbians


Near To:  Rivers, Caves, Forests, Countryside, Nature & Parks, Wildlife Sanctuaries


Sunsets:  Yes
Sunrises:  Yes
Wildlife:  Yes
Foliage:  Yes
Open:  All Year


Additional Comments:  5 Star rated by Qualmark New Zealand. Closer to unique range of eco & caving adventures, glowworm caves at Waitomo. Farm setting with panoramic views.

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