Graham & Paula Grant and their 6 children moved to the Wairere Boulders in December 2017. Graham & Paula are originally from the Isle of Islay on the West coast of Scotland, where Paula owned the veterinary clinic. In 2004 they moved to a farm in the Limousin region of France and opened Limousin Farm Holidays; a luxury campsite with tipis and yurts, and a farm shop. In 2014 they made the move to New Zealand and the Wairere Boulders is their next adventure.
The family have taken on the legacy of Felix and Rita Schaad, and will continue to develop the boulder park in the same environmentally friendly way. Paula and Graham want to give visitors the chance to enjoy the area more, by opening a cafe and campsite. They also plan to take small groups on guided walks through other hidden valleys on the property.
Felix and Rita Schaad
Originally from Switzerland, Felix and Rita bought the property in 1983 and the boulder valley lay undiscovered for a number of years. At that time the area was very remote and the land was considered too harsh to farm productively.
Whilst chasing an escaped goat, they discovered the boulder valley. Over the next few years they fenced off the bush and boulders and formed paths so that they could enjoy the unique environment.
In 1999 they decided to create a walkway that could be open to the public.It was a very dangerous and labour intensive job. Rita had to secure Felix on many occasions with a rope, to make sure he did not disappear in one of the 30 m deep gaps between the boulders. Most of the construction materials and tools had to be transported down to the valley floor by a flying fox.
After 4 years of hard work the walkway was complete and they opened the park. It became an instant success and has won numerous awards on Tripadvisor and is one of New Zealand's 101 'Must Do's'.