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Now listed in top 10% of attractions worldwide

Winner of the Traveller's Choice Award 2023 - TripAdvisor

When someone first suggested turning a decommissioned railway line in the Central North Island into a tourist attraction, no one could have guessed how an ambitious gamble would have become such an instant success.

12 years on from its launch in 2012, that attraction, Forgotten World Adventures, now welcomes around 7000 visitors a year and employs 40 staff in peak season.

Owners Laura & Grant share their Forgotten World Adventures story so far...

Forgotten World Adventures has evolved into the authentic Kiwi experience. We offer guests the opportunity to self-drive their own, now iconic, Forgotten World rail cart along the 142km of heritage rail tracks whilst immersed in the truly spectacular and ever-changing native New Zealand landscape. We offer the thrill of a scenic train journey from the unmatched perspective of a rail cart, an unrivalled experience in Aotearoa, New Zealand...

We purchased and took over the business after relocating our young family from France to New Zealand in March 2022, a move which brought with it a much desired professional challenge for us both and on the personal side, fulfilling the dream to give our two boys, Harrison and Cameron, a traditional Kiwi upbringing.

Originally from Wellington, Grant left New Zealand in 1989 to play professional rugby in South Africa and then later France, winning the European Cup with French club Brive in 1997 and the national championship with Stade Français Paris in 1998. A career in television followed, latterly working for Dutch giant Endemol as Global Head of Acquisitions and most recently for Banijay Group, where he and Laura met. Laura, born and bred in Kent, England, spent close to 15 years working in television for international production groups RDF Media, Zodiak Media and finally Banijay Group as Head of Creative Operations. A move into the tourism business was quite the leap for us both, but a truly great one we were excited to take together. Grant's two older daughters, Manaia and Airini, remain in Paris keeping his connection to France strong. They were delighted to give their stamp of approval on 'The Republic' experience when they visited in December 2022, and again in February 2023. Thanks girls!

We, together with our gifted Forgotten World Adventures whānau, hold a shared vision; to make our business New Zealand's most loved Kiwi adventure tourism experience, providing never to be forgotten experiences for all. As well as creating jobs locally, we are pleased to say that the business continues to increase visitor numbers to a regional area that wasn't previously considered a tourist destination. We are proud to contribute to the economic growth of the area and to support local businesses and producers as well as local charity, the Taumarunui Women's Refuge. We are also extremely fortunate to be partnering with some truly wonderful heritage attractions and operators in the King Country, including our friends at the Whangamōmona Hotel, Blue Duck Station, Lauren's Lavender Farm, Bradley's Garden, Omaka Lodge and Posh Pioneers. Thank you all for being such an important part of our story and success so far. We couldn't do what we do without your hard work, dedication and support.

We believe the Forgotten World has an incredible amount to offer travellers and adventurers of all ages and abilities; so many stories to tell, both old and new.

We hope this inspires you to escape your world and join us in ours.

Laura & Grant

 

 

 

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