Stratford is in Taranaki, New Zealand. Sitting on the banks of the Patea River, Stratford enjoys impressive views of Mount Taranaki/Egmont. The mountain provides a year-round source of recreation, with skiing, hiking, climbing and scenic walks. Trout fishing is popular at the region's rivers and streams, and the town boasts several fine gardens, including Te Popo. South of Stratford, the Taranaki Pioneer Village houses a collection of historic buildings. The Stratford-Taumaranui Heritage Trail also takes in historic sites - a booklet about the trail is available at the visitor centre.
Hire a car in New Plymouth or bring a campervan.
Stratford is small enough to walk around. There is no bus system or taxis.
All of the streets have Shakespearean names. Romeo St and Juliet St don't intersect for some reason. There is an art gallery next to the I-Site.
- Glockenspiel clock tower. The only one in New Zealand.
- Whangamomona Republic. New Zealand's "other nation." 50 km or so down Route 43. In January of every other year (2007, 2009, 2011...) the population swells to about 5,000 to celebrate its independence. Has a border guard (an outdoor toilet), a president, and its own beer. Get your passport stamped at the hotel.
Chocolates at the sweet shop are in the shape of Taranaki, the Glockenspiel, kiwi, etc.
There is a good bakery and a small ethnic shop selling cheap groceries. New World supermarket is the town's only big supermarket, selling a large range of groceries. There is an Italian restaurant serving excellent pizza, located on the main street
There is free internet at the library. Expect a wait and a 30 minute time limit