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The Māniatoto Plain, usually simply known as The Māniatoto, is an elevated inland region in Central Otago, Aotearoa New Zealand. The region roughly surrounds the upper reaches of the Taiari River and the Manuherekia River. It is bounded by the Kākaunui Range to the north and the Rock and Pillar Range to the southeast. This area can have the hottest and coldest temperatures in the country. One possible explanation of the name Māniatoto is that Mānia means “plain” and Buchanans Sedge (Carex buchananii) – the reddish brown native sedge that is widespread throughout Te Waipounamu. In certain light the Buchanans Sedge on the plain resembles a huge red blanket, or a sea of red blood (toto).

In the back tussock country it can be extremely isolated and at times desolate – this is what attracts me to this extraordinarily beautiful and spiritual landscape . It is a huge area of land, perhaps something that is hard to appreciate until you fly over the area in an aircraft.


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