Ora is Maori for wellbeing, hence the traditional Maori greeting 'kia ora', literally meaning 'be well'. The Ora Garden is the result of the combined creative energy of six talented New Zealanders, the six-member design team who took it to London with the help of Tourism New Zealand was led by designer Kim Jarrett. Other team members included plant designer Trish Waugh, her husband landscape designer Doug Waugh, Maori artist, carver Lyonel Grant, artist Tina Hart and greens master Brian Massey. After the Ora garden won a gold medal at the 'plant Olympics' (London's Chelsea Flower Show in 2004), its original design elements including the artwork, silica terraces and paving were returned to New Zealand. This stunning central North Island themed garden was purchased by the local community and the Taupo District Council. The garden was installed in late 2006 at the Taupo Museum by the original design team and officially opened in March 2007. In 2008, the New Zealand Garden Trust selected Ora as one of its prestigious Gardens of National Significance. At just under 120 square metres, it is one of the smallest gardens in this category. It was chosen for its strong design elements encapsulating spiritual qualities, a brilliant planting scheme illustrating the natural layering of native plants, plus its very special history at the Chelsea show (gold medal winner). The Ora Garden contains a number of special Maori cultural design elements including kaitiaki guardian figures and a large taniwha water feature created by artist Lyonel Grant. The garden has its own soundtrack too and fake rock speakers are hidden within the garden. Musician Richard Nunns, an authority on ancient Maori instruments, worked with engineer/producer Steve Garden to create an original soundscape merging birdsong with traditional instruments. Travel Guide New Zealand proudly presents this listing to you. Hopefully, when you visit Taupo and are looking for places to visit you will consider Ora Gardens. And if you do decide to visit Ora Gardens remember to come back to Travel Guide and share your experience.