This is a story of forests rejuvenated, wetlands reborn and native wildlife re-turned. Ohuatahi, meaning ‘first place of plenty’ was the name given to this land by Māori. The name Tahi (meaning ‘first’ or ‘one’ in Māori) was drawn from this, and because we are once again restoring this land to a place of plenty.
As the guardians of this land (kaitiaki in Māori), we are here to restore and reawaken the land, bring nature back into balance, and preserve Tahi’s rich ecological and cultural heritage. To provide a sanctuary for all – people and wildlife – and a legacy that can be experienced by many generations to come.
A Spirit of Giving Back
Tahi is a living example of positive transformation, rejuvenation and commitment to a sustainable business model that places the environment ahead of profit. We are breathing life back into the land, and, at the same time, running an ecologically conscious and socially responsible business.
Tahi’s ethos is all about giving back and we are now 100% full circle, with all profits going towards supporting and nurturing our 4Cs – community, culture, conservation and commerce. And that’s just the beginning of our story…
Part of History
The landscape of Tahi was once wild, rich and fertile, home to generations of Maori and alive with a vibrant indigenous culture. Originally the site was centred on an important pā (a Maori fortified village), the remains of which can still be seen – the living areas, cooking and waste pits of Te Waiariki, the earliest inhabitants.
With a deep belief in the spiritual sanctity of the land and the inseparable connections between all things, Māori tribes wove legends around the land, forests and sea. These legends, handed down through the generations, tell stories of how the landscape came to be. When European settlers arrived in the mid-1800s, they transformed the landscape, cutting the native forests for building material and fuel, introducing intensive farming and a host of pest species that decimated native wildlife. Wetlands were drained, the birds disappeared and the land lost its soul.
A New Beginning
Today, we’ve restored a neglected farm into a sustainable and productive nature sanctuary and eco-retreat.
Our restoration project began in 2004, when our founder, Suzan Craig, purchased a beautiful, remote, yet run-down cattle farm in Northland, New Zealand, and set about returning the land to nature.
Since then, we’ve restored nearly 30 hectares of wetlands, planted over 325,000 native trees, and created a buzzing honey business. Now, birdsong has returned after so long: where we once had fewer than 20 types of birds, we now see (and hear!) 71 species, of which 22 are rare or endangered. Native fish, lizards and insects are also returning: all signs of a healthy, happy ecosystem.