Welcome to Peel Forest
Tucked away between the foothills of the Southern Alps and the Rangitata River, Peel Forest is a small but important remnant of indigenous podocarp (conifer) forest. Many of the totara, kahikatea and matai trees here are hundreds of years old and are home to an abundance of bird life, including riflemen, kereru (wood pigeons), bellbirds, fantails and grey warblers. There's a small settlement, mostly to serve the visitors who come to tramp, ride and raft the beautiful surrounds.
A road from nearby Mt Peel sheep station leads to Mesopotamia, the run of English writer Samuel Butler in the 1860s. His experiences here partly inspired his famous satire Erewhon ('nowhere' backwards, almost).