That Wanaka Tree
That Wanaka Tree in Lake Wanaka is the kind of thing you hate to love. It’s been there, largely overlooked, for at least 90 years, having sprouted from a willow fence post. Then Dennis Radermacher took a photo of the tree in 2014 and won an award.
From there, it has progressed to being one of the most photographed trees in the world, with its own social media presence. Sadly, it was vandalised a few years ago, with a prominent lower branch partially hacked off, but fortunately the tree is still going strong.
Finding the tree is easy – walk west along the lake from Wanaka town centre until you see it (about 10 minutes). There is also a lakeside car park close to the tree, but you will need to do a bit more than just turn up to get that idealised shot.
Getting up before sunrise, planning your angle to get the mountains in the background, or poplars in autumn, and practicing your long exposures to smooth out the water are some of our top tips. Here are a few of our attempts over the last few years.