The Travel Tart
Offbeat Tales From A Travel Addict

Shoe Fence – Strange Tourist Attraction of the Week, near Waihola, New Zealand

Shoe Fence = Free Footwear!

If you’re ever driving south of Dunedin towards Invercargill on the south island of New Zealand, you might come across this strange tourist attraction – the Shoe Fence.

This is a massive collection of footwear that has been tied up to a wire fence that stops tourist in their tracks because they want to pull off the main highway to check out this bizarre shoe construction to take heaps of photos and pictures for shoes that have probably seen better days.


At first, I thought this was the fence where Imelda Marcos (wife of former Filipino President Ferdinand Marcos, see more here) sent her extensive shoe collection once she had worn them only once.

But it’s actually locals and passer byes that leave their old shoes in what I probably call shoe heaven – where shoes in New Zealand go to die!

But It’s A Shoe Fence with a Zap!

You have to be careful – note that there is an electric fence wire running just above the Shoe Fence (see above photo).  So if you’re trying to place a worn out pair of Dunlop Volleys on there, you might receive a large-ish zap if you don’t know what you are doing.

But apparently, bizarre fence collections like this are not uncommon in New Zealand.

There is a bra fence at a town called Middlemarch which is not that far away, and who knows what else.

Feel free to add your 2 bob worth if you know of any other bizarre fence collections that might be floating around the world!

So if you’re after a shoe bargain, this is the fence to visit.  Here is a panoramic shot of what I call, ‘THE IMELDA MARCOS FENCE’. 🙂


Somehow, I don’t think they followed instructions from The Fence Bible: How to plan, install, and build fences and gates to meet every home style and property need, no matter what size your yard.!

About Anthony The Travel Tart

The Travel Tart writes about the funny, offbeat and weird aspects of world travel today. Travel wasn't meant to be taken too seriously! Check out ways to say hi below or sign up for his silly newsletter!

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  1. Imelda Imelda
    February 26, 2009    

    Imelda wouldn’t be caught dead in flat shoes 🙂

    • February 27, 2009    

      You’re right! I might need to find the ‘high heel’ fence for her shoe cast-offs! Cheers!

  2. bill d bill d
    April 4, 2009    

    if you are ever in the texas hill country on the drive from kerrville south out of hunt texas you will come across a fence that is adorned with , yes of course, cowboy boots. turned heel side up on each of the fence post streching a good mile around the curve. it is ahard place to shoot and get the whole picture but it is a colorful site. loclas say it started from a trail ride a few years ago and the folks all left their boots to declare the end of the trail. cactus billd from the great state of texas.. and thanx for sharing the go fasties on the fence too cool!! now where do i find the bra fence again???? ; )

  3. railing system railing system
    June 9, 2009    

    If I was a tourist visiting Waihola, I wouldn’t wanna go near those shoes… Come’on now, how smelly can they be?

    • June 9, 2009    

      Sorry, I didn’t conduct a smell test when I visited!

  4. January 27, 2010    

    This would be a very strange thing to see while travelling the country. I wonder if any backpackers have actually tried to steal some shoes in the past, would be amusing to tell someone you got your shoes of a fence in the middle of New Zealand!

    I was also wondering if as a visitor you could add to the collection by donating an old pair of trainers. Then you could return a few years later to see if they are still there!

    Any pictures of the Bra fence? Would like to see that.

  5. March 11, 2010    

    I really like your ideas about posting comments. i am a new for blog posting and i just like your thoughtful post. i know i am not like that what you want in posting but i,ll try to be like that but honestly, i really like your thought

  6. March 26, 2010    

    I’ve heard about it but never seen it. It certainly looks cool I must say haha. Thanks for the information. Cheers

  7. Weddings in Spain Weddings in Spain
    March 30, 2010    

    Well, if I am ever in need of a mis-matching pair of shoes in New Zealand, I know where to go. In my opinion it’s unsightly, but heh.

  8. israel travel israel travel
    April 17, 2010    

    yeap, it like chewing gum wall in Seattle 😀 as somebody already mentioned, donn’t put us on smell test on that fence…

  9. Weldon Obrien Weldon Obrien
    April 30, 2010    

    Love the post. Hope hiking shoes should guide someone there.

  10. August 29, 2010    

    This is definitely strange. I wonder if the place is smelly from all those shoes.

    • TravelGal TravelGal
      January 5, 2011    

      I was visiting NZ in 2000 and while driving to Mt. Cook my friend said, “we are going to stop and look at the shoes.” I thought he needed new walking shoes. Nope we stopped and looked at a fence lined with shoes. I don’t recall that it smelled at all. I have a great picture of me standing near it.

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