Walking around Oamaru with its whole streets of white limestone buildings fronted with vintage-styled shop signs, really makes you feel like you’re in the 19th century. That’s on a day when there’s NOT hundreds of people walking around the town dressed in Victorian clothing and steampunk outfits! We love the enthusiasm and the amount of people actually participating by wearing costumes to the Oamaru Victorian Heritage Celebrations. This is day two of the Victorian Fete in Oamaru. After yesterday’s parade with steam engines, costume and penny farthing competitions, we are keen to head back into town today to see what else the Victorian celebrations have in store!
Steampunk capital of New Zealand
Although the Victorian Fete, along with its stalls and entertainment, starts at 10am, we want to check out Oamaru’s permanent homage to the Victorian era, more specifically, a certain theme of the Victorian era: steampunk! For those of you who don’t know what steampunk is, it is a genre of science fiction that uses steam-powered machinery rather than advanced technology. As steam-power comes from the Victorian age, you’ll often find that this genre of sci-fi depicts people in Victorian clothing and set in Victorian buildings. In Oamaru, they have a whole museum dedicated to steampunk. So first things first, we’re going to Steampunk HQ!
The smoking steam train
You can’t miss the building in the corner of Oamaru’s Victorian Precinct with its huge steam train outside pimped out with extra steam-exuding pipes and all sorts of metal spikes welded around its body. This train is more powered by a $2 coin rather than steam, releasing fire and smoke from its pipes. Above is a blimp sporting the cog and skull logo of Steampunk HQ.