Having driven past the red and white giant beehive a few times during our stay in Kerikeri, New Zealand, I finally asked, “Do you want to go inside the beehive?” “No!” was the initial answer – as you’d maybe expect. I ignored little man anyway, teehee, and off we went for some hands-on learning inside New Zealand’s Giant Beehive.
We paid our $4 entry fee and were given a torch and an information card, which helped you spot different types of honey bee – workers, drones and queens. The torches were more to help us see the bees in a better light, rather than for seeing in the dark, so no need to worry about taking little ones in if you’re ever heading that way. You won’t get stung either as the honey bees are behind glass, so no need for big bee keeping suits.
The lovely lady from the shop gave us plenty of information and helped us spot our first queen bee, who we even got to see laying some eggs. We were then left to enjoy the beehive alone, so we had a competition to try and spot the most queen bees. Daddy won that one by spotting two, while myself and little man spotted a big fat zero. I think it’s because we were too busy watching the honey bees do their waggle dance, which is how bees communicate to other bees where the nectar is.
The giant beehive, egg laying and waggle dance were all great to see, and very educational too. It was nice to get up really close to an insect that we’d maybe normally run from… OK, the glass did help!
Plenty of Honey Products
After our ‘inside the beehive’ experience, we had a look around the shop. We all had a taste of the local honey, which little man now asks for all the time, and there was a lot of bee-related products to chose from, including beauty items. Don’t forget to stock up on your way out if you visit! I thought I’d try some bee venom eye cream… I’ll let you know how my wrinkles get on. 😉
For anyone in the area, it’s certainly worth a visit. How many people can say they’ve been inside a giant beehive?! It’s an easy half hour to fit into your day, and was great to see Kerikeri’s honey bees at work. 🙂
For further information, and other bee experiences, visit Bay of Islands Honey Shop’s website.
If you’re not in New Zealand but want to try some of New Zealand’s fabulous bee products, the link coming soon will take you straight to some great products.
If you’re more interested in bee keeping or learning more about honey bees see what’s on offer.