According to some Maori
traditions Whakatene was the site where Maori first settled in New Zealand
some 1000 years ago from their Polynesian homeland of
Hawaiki. Today 40% of Whakatane’s 18,000 people are Maori which
characterizes the culture, art and feel of the region.
town of Whakatane lies at the eastern end of the sun drenched Bay of Plenty
dominated by the smouldering volcano of
White Island constantly steaming on
the horizon. White Island is an exciting place to explore either from the
air, on foot, or under the sea with a scuba tank. Experiencing the
photogenic island is truly memorable and promises to be a highlight of your
The town also offers visitors a range of interesting activities including
fishing tours, jet boating, swimming with dolphins and land based sights
include the local museum, several interesting galleries, magnificent gardens
and fantastic secluded beaches.
The town has a range of accommodation options ranging from moderately
priced motels and hotels to backpackers lodges and camping grounds.
Whakatane is one hours drive from Rotorua and 90 minutes from Tauranga. Its
convenient location together with affordable accommodation make it a great
place to explore the wider region.