Known affectionately as New Zealand’s ‘Cool Little Town’, Hokitika is exactly that and so much more. Hugging the South Island’s west coast, little more than 250 km west of Christchurch is New Zealand’s subtle and understated answer to Los Angeles. Miles of golden, sandy beaches are a prominent feature of Hokitika. The town is also known for its historic gold mines and jade jewellery boutiques and is known as the birthplace for New Zealand jade, also known as pounamu in Maori. A thriving art scene supported by a host of great cafes, venues, and galleries to showcase the local talent has also become a definitive feature of Hokitika’s unique and distinct personality.
Hokitika rose to prominence during the 1860s as gold was found and a rush of people soon followed leading to the town’s boom. Remains of the mines are still tourist attractions that can be visited. Hokitika is also notable for its driftwood strewn beach, where the beach crashes onto Hokitika’s main street. Hokitika is also known as the birthplace for pounami, or New Zealand jade because the Arahu River, where jade has traditionally been found, forms into a delta close to the town. There are many reputable galleries that sell authentic New Zealand jade in Hokitika.
Hokitika is also the home of the Hokitika Gorge, a viewpoint that offers incredible views of the turquoise waters of the Hokitika River. After you are finished drinking in the view, a short hike away leads you to Dorothy Falls, the perfect place to take a dip in the refreshing waters.
Download Hokitika PDF Guide
Free . Works Offline . Share Anywhere