Moondance Manor Gardens

Moondance Manor Gardens is a Waikato “Garden of Grandeur” located in Tamahere, between Hamilton and Cambridge. The gardens are set on over a hectare bordering the Waikato River and are extensively planted with abundant flower beds, expansive lawn areas, a wealth of native and exotic trees, a large ornamental pond and island, and substantial formal hedging.

Just 1 hour and 45 minutes drive from central Auckland, Moondance Manor Gardens is a favourite private lunch and garden stop on our World of WearableArt Awards tour and Country Roads & Cross Hills Gardens Fair tour

Meet the gardeners

Jeanette and Stephen Williams are the owners and gardeners at Moondance Manor. They came to Tamahere in 1996 having left corporate careers after their travels around the world.

Having always nurtured a garden wherever they lived as well as enjoying visiting many gardens on their journeys, it was perhaps destined that Jeanette and Stephen would become the stewards of Moondance Manor Gardens.

It is now their passion to harmonise with the seasons and help nature display its best in their little piece of paradise. The icing on the cake of this endeavour for them is the delight in being able to share their garden and joy of gardening with their many visitors.

History of Moondance Manor Gardens

On our arrival nearly 16 years ago, our home and gardens were informally known in the neighbourhood as The Manor. While we agreed this was a fitting description of the property, we also felt it needed a degree more personalisation and so we searched for a name to which we could better relate.

Therein followed several days of thought, then one evening while listening to Van Morrison’s Moondance, well it was like a message from the ether.  And so Moondance Manor was born, a name that always reminds us of that beautify song and has pleasing and memorable alliteration.

Now, it has been rumoured that during some warm summer evenings under a full moon, graceful dancing can be observed in secret parts of the garden but we have no knowledge of any such occurrences.

What you’ll see at Moondance Manor Gardens

SpringVarieties of narcissus, a wide collection of rhododendron, a sprinkling of bluebells and clivia, swaths of cherry blossom, colourful beds of iris, a selection of spraxia, stands of columbine, clusters of helleborus orientalis, garlands of wisteria, brilliant magnolia blooms, and fresh verdant leaves on all the deciduous trees and of course the brilliantly yellowed kowhai along with rows of pretty camellia.
SummerRoses, roses, and roses from standard Iceberg, to Just Joey, to Pilgrim, to Sophie’s Choice, to Margaret Meryl, to Benjamin Britten. Then there are beds full of multi-hued dahlia, alstroemeria, fox gloves, gerberas, hollyhocks, and hydrangea all bathed in surrounds of nepeta, lambs ear, acanthus, loropetalums, and Japanese anemones. Then in the pond majestic gunnera and floating waterlilies.
AutumnAs one would expect, autumn colours abound in all the trees such as the Liriodendron tulipifera, cercis canadensis, quercus robur, acers and many.
WinterThe garden is closed in winter.

Climate and soil conditions

The general climate of the Waikato is plentiful in rainfall and sunshine, all at the right times of the year, as is evidenced by the abundance of dairy farms and horticulture in the area.

Our land is bordered by the Waikato River which gives it a pleasant and cooling microclimate protected from the wind. Being the remnant of a once long ago river terrace and the recipient of an also long ago volcanic deposit, our soil rich and fertile and generally described as sandy loam.

With Moondance Manor’s climate, the challenge is not plant growth but managing for its best presentation.

Location and Directions

From Hamilton 
Drive south on SH1 for about 10 km, take the Airport / Tamahere Exit, at the bottom of the ramp there is a roundabout, turn right at the roundabout, drive under the overpass, proceed across the next roundabout onto Airport Road.

From Cambridge
Drive north on SH1 for about 12 km take the Airport / Tamahere Exit at the bottom of the ramp there is a roundabout, turn left at the roundabout onto Airport Road.

Once on Airport Road, continue for 1.1 km, take the first road on the left, Pencarrow Road. Continue along Pencarrow Road for 2.5 km, taking the first road on your right, Te Awa Road. Stay on Te Awa Road, do not turn left into Te Awa Lane. Drive down Te Awa Road for 1 km to the turnaround at the very end of the road, keep going straight ahead down the lane in front of you, and Moondance Manor (115 Te Awa Road) is the first driveway on the left below the road. There is a sign outside our driveway entrance.

Moondance Manor Gardens Contact Details and Address

Address:    115 Te Awa Road, Tamahere, RD3 Hamilton, 3283

Phone:       +64 7 859 0130

Stephen and Jeanette’s Moondance Manor Gardens can be visited by appointment only.

The best way to visit Moondance Manor Gardens is by jumping on one of our small group escapes. So many of our guests say the lunch and garden visit at Moondance Manor Gardens is the highlight of their whole trip.

Tours You'll Love

World of WearableArt Show 6 Day Tour

Enjoy the best of the WOW Show, 5 star luxury at the Bolton Hotel and stay on the lakeside at Taupo and Napier’s waterfront.
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