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Whakatane is sometimes known as the birthplace of Aotearoa (Land of the Long White Cloud). It was here that the great Polynesian navigator Toi te Huatahi first landed. The remains of his pa, on the highest point of the Whakatane Heads, is now the site of the Wairaka Marae. Two centuries later, another great Polynesian canoe, Mataatua, landed here bringing with it the kumara plant. This was to become the staple diet of the Maori throughout New Zealand, and today is a popular vegetable.

With magnificant beaches and bays, Whakatane, enjoys a reputation as one of the three sunniest spots in the country. Many of the activities for the vistors centre on the water. Yet the town also gives ready access to other unique attractions in the area. From Whakatane, visitors can take a scenic flight over the ever active volcano White Island, or experience the haunting beauty of the Urewera National Park, the largest protected native forest in the North Island. Whakatane also boasts lucrative and accessible fishing grounds.

Picture of Whakatane

For more information contact:

Whakatane Information Ctr.,
P.O. Box 307,
Whakatane, New Zealand
Toll Free in NZ: 0800-500-447
Phone: (64) 7 308-6058 (24 hours)
Fax: (64) 7 307-0718

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