A terrace runs to the hills

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Beyond the new garden with its natives and daisies and flowing grasses, the Rakaia Walkway heads west to the hills.

It stops far short of the hills – the walkway is 3.5km – but the walkway is a gem.

It threads along the Rakaia Terrace, with commanding views of the Southern Alps, the Rakaia River (in places) and the land on the southern side of the river.

It has been generously planted and there are benches along the way so walkers can.

The walkway is a full 2m wide to make it easy for anyone pushing a pram or buggy.

The walkway began life as an idea from the Rakaia Community Association and has involved thousands of hours of community labour.

The garden created near the start of the walkway (just behind the Rakaia Primary School) was a finalist in the NZ Gardener of the Year.

Creating the garden was work enough, with wrist-thick broom and gorse having to be cleared and the cleared ground sprayed to rid it of other pest weeds.

Now it winds around a stone-edged path near the town’s recycling centre before linking with the walkway proper along the terrace.