Special Features: 

Aviary 8B
Band Rotunda 9C
Basketball / Tennis / Bike Polo Courts 7A/B
Bay Hall 8B/C
Benvenue Cliffs 1A/3A
Caroline Bay Rides (summer) 8D
Children’s Train (summer, school holidays) 7C
Community Lounge 8C
Disc Golf (first tee) 7H
Entertainment Complex 9C/D
Gym/Fitness Equipment 5A 8B 9E 7H
Ice Cream (Summer) 8D
Lighthouse 1B
Makary Fountain 8D
Memorial Walk 10E/10F
Mini Golf 7C
Paddling Pool 7/8B
Pallisar Fountain 8C
Penguin Watch Area 5I
Peony Garden 10F
Petanque Courts 8/9D
Piazza 11D
Piazza Elevator Access 10E
Playground 7B
Roller Skating Rink 8H
Sculptures 8B, 9B, 10E, 12D/E
Skatepark 6C
Soundshell 10C/10D
Tearooms 9C
Timaru Mural 9D
Trevor Griffiths Rose Garden 10E
Vegetated Dunes (Along the boardwalk)
Volleyball Sand Courts 6H
Wetland Pond Lookout 4B
WuHoo Signs 4D, 6G
WW1 and Victoria Cross Memorials 9D/E

How many buckets can you tick off?

1. Point to 12 on 2 different sundials
2. Have your photo taken with all the WuHoo Signs at the Bay
3. Find the Weather Vanes at the Tearooms and Rose Garden
4. Look out from the Benvenue Cliffs and knock on the Lighthouse door
5. Walk along the longest log or longest line you can find on the beach
6. Write your name as big as you can in the sand
7. Salute Timaru’s tallest “Champagne” tree 32m and over 150yrs old
8. Make a loud echo in the Port Loop Tunnels
9. Find four fountains, whistle to one with the most instruments
10. Try 5 different Outdoor Gym machines
11. Find 5 sculptures choose your favourite
12. Twirl around the Rose Garden. Can you find the largest Rose Flower?
13. Pull a face at the Face of Peace. Find your country at the War Memorial
14. Feel the protected Schinus molle Peruvian Pepper Tree on the Piazza
15. Fly a kite, throw a frisbee, bat a volley ball or kick a ball at the Bay
16. Get a photo with a Yellow Horse, and on the Paddling Pool Bridge
17. Rub the top of a little Lighthouse
18. Count 10 different types of birds in the Aviary. Which is your favourite?
19. Follow the Brass Rubbing Trail with a WuHoo Rubbing Hunt
20. Have your photo taken in the Bluestone Arch with a special stone

The Bay formed between lava flows providing shelter and food gathering for local Māori for several centuries. Te Rehe was the influential Kāti Huirapa rangatira from Arowhenua. Can you find him in the mural?

The name Caroline may derive from an early whaling ship used to drop off supplies and pick up whale oil. Most likely the Barque Caroline that was recorded at Lyttelton Harbour in September 1836. Can you point to a sign with “Caroline Bay”?

The Weller Brothers had their whaling station from 1839-1841. A whale pot stands at Pohatukoko Stream, known as Whale’s Creek. Can you stand above the pipe under ground?

The Bay was described “a dreary and uninviting line of rock under a cliff over which was dumped night soil and rubbish”.

By 1873 a voluntary rocket brigade had saved fifty one lives at sea. Can you find the brass rubbing plaque celebrating them?

1878 the Timaru population was 3389 and the construction of the harbour began. Currents created a sandy beach under the cliffs. Can you stand in the only sandy bay between Oamaru and Banks Peninsula?

1891 wheeled bathing sheds appeared. Can you find the large photo of them at the Bay?

The council leased the new foreshore from the harbour board in 1902 for a European-style beach resort. Can you find the willows by the Soundshell that was one of the first projects for the Timaru Beautification Society?

The first buildings at Caroline Bay were the caretakers’ cottage and shelters followed by the tearooms in 1903 and band rotunda in 1904. Alexander Gibson was the first caretaker and steps that lead down behind the tea rooms were named after him. Can you find the large rock with "A F Gibson Timaru 1904-1939" to the left of the blue stone arch in a garden marking his 35 year contribution?

1911 Caroline Bay Association was established. Timaru’s population was 11280. Christmas carnivals began, attracting thousands. Over the next century it featured beauty pageants, baby shows, concerts, rides and side shows. Can you find a large photo with a crowd?

1912 Marine Parade and a concrete Piazza overlooking the band rotunda were opened. Can you find the plaque with “Wynne Raymond” who opened the modern Piazza?

1919 A sundial was commissioned by The Bay Association to commemorate Mr Rhodes, who had been Deputy Mayor and Chairman of the Waimate County Council, and who had made a generous bequest to the Association. It’s probably Timaru's first sundial. Can you find “HORAS NON MUMERO NISI SERENAS” translating to “I do not count the hours unless they are sunny.”?

Hot Salt Water Baths built in 1915 and demolished 1968 for the new community lounge. Can you find the plaque?

1929 The Caroline Bay Association commissioned a 350m wall recording 101 battles from the First Word War. Can you find the a sundial inscribed with the names of the 11 New Zealanders awarded the Victoria Cross?

1929 The Timaru Skating Rink opens.

1930 The first aviary was built and gifted by the Caroline Bay Association. There is a plaque at the aviary. Can you tweet to the birds that are not native?

1938 The band rotunda is replaced with a large Soundshell at Caroline Bay. Can you race up the steps to tell the time?

1941 UK Parliament Buildings are bombed in WW2. Can you find a brick that was brought to Timaru, and placed as a tribute in a round stone shelter near the whaling pot?

1957 The Stadium seating is presented to the citizens of Timaru by the Caroline Bay Association. Can you find the plaque?

1973 The Loop Rd opens to improve access to the Port. There are two memorials, can you find them?

1986 Timaru North Rotary provide stairs from Marine Parade to the sand where the Volleyball courts are now. Can you find the date in concrete?

1997 The Piazza opened, including a fountain and an elevator. Can you take in the view and a selfie with a sculpture?

2004 The Bay redevelopment began. 2008 The first Sculptures are unveiled from the Heartland Sculpture Challenge. Can you find five sculptures?

2009 Interpretive memorial at the bay was unveiled on Armistice Day. Can you find New Zealand on the map and find the country closest to “33"?

2009 The Face of Peace Sculpture was unveiled, near the memorial walk. Can you find the bird? What is it?

2010 The dunes of Caroline Bay were awarded the Best Dune Re-vegetation Project trophy. Today the established plantings are likely to be the most diverse in the country and studied by university students. Can you find 8 different
plants along the boardwalk?

2010 The aviary was relocated. Can you find the plaque with the original aviary donors name?

2014 Caroline Bay beach was voted the most popular beach in the South Island. Can you get a selfie with the red sign?

2016 Little penguins established a colony in Caroline Bay. Can you find the sign?

Bay History. Can you learn... about the bay by reading the signs at the Piazza with history and images? Can you see what has changed at the Bay, and what has remained the same? There is also a sign celebrating Timaruvians over the years. Can you find John Hardcastle 1847-1927? He made a significant contribution to world geology through his discovery of loess stratigraphy. Can you see the curving horizontal lines in the cliffs? He found that these indicate changes in climate going back many hundreds of thousands of years.

North. Can you navigate... to the Chatham Islands, London, Toyko, Greymouth and Vancouver? Stand at the top of the Loop Rd to get your bearings with the distance dial Toposcope. Look to the west, can you see Timaru’s tallest tree, the 34m high Wellingtonia Gigantica? The tree has a lovely connection to Timaru’s past. George and Elizabeth Rhodes were one of Timaru’s early European settlers. When George died, Elizabeth remarried Arthur Perry and moved to Beverley Estate. This tree was shifted there in 1873 by wheel barrow, and a case of Champagne was bet over its survival. Rumour has it Edmund Hillary climbed it as a young man when he stayed with neighbours.

Roses. Can you smell... one of the largest collection of heritage roses in the Southern Hemisphere? End of November to the beginning of December is when the garden is at its peak. Do the tea rose smell like tea? Can you find the woman in an arm rest? How many instruments can you find the peony garden? Who is the garden named after?

Play. Can you paddle... in a shallow sandy bay with a pontoon and slide, or dip your toes in the paddling pool at the playground? The first slides, sea-saws, cradle swings, and flying fox were set up around 1904.

Carnival. Can you see... the century old Merry-go-round, the only one of it's kind in New Zealand that used to run by steam? (If you are visiting outside of carnival season, spy it in a large photo instead). Christmas carnivals have been held at Caroline Bay since 1911 years by volunteers from the Caroline Bay Association. The carnival starts on Boxing Day each year until January 12.

Wrecked. Can you stand... on a cliff named after tragedy? From 1865-1890, before harbor works were completed, the Port was the graveyard of 28 ships. 14 May 1882 the Ben Venue and City of Perth wrecked on the cliffs. Hundreds gathered in sunshine and witnessed, despite the gallant effort of volunteers, the loss of nine lives in the sea below. This included Captain Mills who later died of exposure. Can you find the memorial on Perth St in the Timaru CBD close to the South Canterbury Museum?

Rail. Can you wave... to a train when it chuggs along the cliff? In 1871 the first sod for the Timaru-Temuka railway was turned by the late Mayor Captain Cain’s wife, Mrs Cain. Can you stand on some of the quarried rock used to protect the cliffs and extend the Port?

As the sand built up the times changed

After the construction of Timaru's artificial harbour, currents created a sandy beach under the cliffs. Stroll along the Promenade from the Piazza to the Kook Out at Caroline Bay. Can you find the Mean Tide posts? Can you work out where the tide used to be when these photos was taken?

Quarried rock protected the loess cliffs. Ashbury Park used to be Waimataitai Lagoon.

1880s Bay starts to form as a result of the ongoing development of the breakwater which began in 1878.

1882 The Ben Venue and City of Perth ships were wrecked against the Benvenue Cliffs which at this time were much further into the open sea. Can you stand where the ships were wrecked? Can you find the sign near the Lighthouse?

Women changed in private and access the sea using special carriages. Can you compare the fashion on the left to what we wear at the Bay today?

As the beach extended, the original Band Rotunda, (seen here) was replaced 30 years later by the larger Soundshell, reflecting the rapid increase in the popularity of the “European-style beach resort”. Can you stand at the Piazza and compare views?

1920s. The Memorial Wall was built to mark battles New Zealanders fought in the Great Wars, and was the sea wall at the time. Can you walk all the way along the wall? Can you find the Palliser fountain?