Next stop is Masterton, the main area of the Wairarapa. The biggest attraction this prosperous farming town has to offer is the annual ‘Golden Shears’ shearing competition. Contestants come from all over New Zealand and overseas to demonstrate their skills at sheep-shearing. A top shearer can remove the wool from a sheep in less than a minute, but the judges also control the quality of the shearing and not just the speed.

Worth a longer look is the Wairarapa Arts Centre. Of particular interest here is the Stidolph Museum of Early Childhood with its collection of clockwork toys and antique dolls. There are also regular art and craft exhibitions held at the Centre.

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