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Pacific Coast Highway road trip: Gisborne to Napier


Wairoa information plaques Wairoa information plaques

Wairoa is not usually viewed as a tourist destination. The town, similar to many rural communities, has witnessed a decline in the main street retail sector. There has been an issue with gang violence which has marked Wairoa in the country’s newspapers as a place steeped in criminal activities. Yet Wairoa is more than headline news. Wairoa’s main street borders the Wairoa River making it an attractive place to stretch the legs. The Wairoa regional museum is definitely worth a browse through while the Wairoa Riverside Lighthouse is a photo moment. The town of Wairoa got its name from the “Te Wairoa Hōpūpū Hōnengenenge Mātangi Rau” river which in Māori language means “the long water which bubbles, swirls and is uneven”.

Wairoa Lighthouse


Selfie location, WAIROA LIGHTHOUSE

Wairoa’s iconic building, the Wairoa Lighthouse. The lighthouse sits on its own created rocky space next to the Wairoa bridge and alongside the river. It’s a good place for photo opportunities as well as a distinctive feature of the Wairoa river walk. It’s best seen at sunset when the light of the lighthouse starts to blink.

Read more about 5 things to do in Wairoa, trip activities: travel guide by Best Bits.

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