Exploring Gore – Day 164

Today we’re gonna be discovering African Art in the Eastern Southland Gallery and having a walk around the beautiful Dolamore Park.

Today we’re gonna be doing heaps of free stuff around Gore and we start with the Eastern Southland Art Gallery. It’s an art gallery in the little township of Gore which is right at the bottom of the South Island of New Zealand and believe it or not it features heaps of African Art. But we start with an artist more contemporary. It’s called jigsaw life it’s a collection by Eion Stevens and it’s really cool, it’s super colourful. There’s a lot of pieces of his life in an abstract way. i really dig all the colours even if I don’t understand every single meaning of those pieces of art.

But that’s only a small room in the Eastern Southland Art Gallery and we quickly move onto the main section of the gallery which is the African art collection.

This is not what we were expecting when we walked into the little art gallery in the middle of New Zealand. There are all these African art and statues of Malian warriors. it feels like we’ve all of a sudden walked into another country.

This permanent exhibition here at the Eastern Southland Gallery features pottery, statues and masks from all over Africa from Mali to South Africa.

The most impressive part of the whole collection has to be those life size Malian warrior statues. They are carved in wood and have amazing amount of details. I really did love them. The last section of the whole gallery is dedicated to the contemporary art form local artists so there is a bunch of artists from New Zealand which have created massive pieces for the art gallery including some really famous names or at least famous in New Zealand like John Money, Rita Angus and Theo Shoon.

The Eastern Southland Gallery was really impressive to us. We did not think that in such a small village we would be able to find such a cool art gallery. it’s free for anyone to get into and it’s an awesome activity to do on a rainy day when in Southland because you know what, it does rain a lot in Southland but today is not one of those days. it’s actually great weather so it gives us some ore time to explore Dolamore Park which is also where we are staying tonight.

The Dolamore Park is a huge park in the gore area. There is heaps to do playgrounds, gardens, even some bush walks it’s really awesome and it’s super cheap to stay there if you do have a self contained like we have and that has been our accommodation right here in Gore for the length of our stay.

In Dolamore Park we get the chance to explore the Croydon Bush Scenic Reserve which is the largest part of surviving forest in the Hokonui Hills. There’s about 95 hectares of podocarp forest to explore and there are so many different bush walks as well which we’re gonna take advantage of today. The walks range from about 10 minutes to 4 hours.

And right out of the gate we’re seeing a huge diversity of vegetation here. For instance, here is the Hound’s Tongue which we actually learned about when we did a guided walk when we were in the Fiordland National Park and we are using that knowledge as we are travelling around New Zealand right now which is pretty awesome. Apart from the hounds tongue we also see these trees with flaky bark as well as all these moss hanging from the branches sort of creating a veil through the forest.

There’s a lot of information signs as well telling us about the biodiversity in this forest and it works as a jigsaw all working together.

Since the walk are actually quite short it gives us the opportunity to do at least a couple of them which is quite cool. But there is much more than walks in this park we are actually learned at the end of the walk that there is even mountain biking available here. There is quite a few mountain biking tracks which are grade 3 which is great for anyone to do mountain biking here it’s really awesome.

And this wraps up our day exploring the little township of Gore. There is really heaps to do here and we’re really stoke to be staying in such an amazing area. The Dolamore Park is the perfect place to stay if you travel around New Zealand with a camper and make your way down to the township of Gore.

Then we move onto some… How pretty am I? How pretty am I? Really pretty.

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