About Opunake

Head south from New Plymouth along Surf Highway 45 for 61.8 kms taking 51 minutes depending on traffic.

By car from Hawera

Head north from Hawera along Surf Highway 45 for 43.5 kms taking 34 minutes depending on traffic.

By bus

Pickerings Motors runs a bus service Monday morning and Friday afternoon only.

Monday morning pick up and return
Pick up opposite the Opunake Post Office at 6.30am. Arriving at Ariki Street Bus Depot, via Taranaki Base Hospital then out to Fitzroy, at 7.40am. Returning to Opunake, via Fitzroy and Taranaki Base Hospital, at 8am.

Friday afternoon pick up and return
Pick up opposite the Opunake Post Office at 2.45pm. Arriving at Ariki Street Bus Depot, via Taranaki Base Hospital then out to Fitzroy, at 3.55 pm. Returning to Opunake via Taranaki Base Hospital at 4pm.

Map of Opunake

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Opunake & Coastal News

The Opunake & Coastal News is published every Thursday fortnight. To advertise or place an article - phone/fax 06 761 7016. After hours phone 06 761 8206.

23 Napier Street, Opunake
PO Box 74, Opunake
Email: general@opunakecoastalnews.co.nz
Web address: www.opunakecoastalnews.co.nz

The Birth of a Town

Opunake or Opunaki as it was once known was a clearing hacked out of dense bush that had migrated down from the steep slopes of Mt Taranaki.
More notably was Te Namu Pa at the northern tip of the bay beside the clearing and Matakaha, a village on the southern headland at the mouth of the Waiaua River.
I have taken these notes from “The Clearing” written by Mrs Kate Mickelson, QSM, a lady born and bred in Opunake. Mrs Mickelson has kindly allowed me to quote from her book and I will continue this story with snippets, in her well written words instead on my humble attempt.
“Until 1865 there was no European settlement from Tarataimaka to Patea, and apart from a strip of land along the coast the country was covered by beautiful dense forest, right to the centre of the North Island.
There were many clearings, mostly near river mouths, which were occupied by Maori pas. Perhaps the most famous of all was Te Namu, consisting of two palisaded fortifications at the north-western boundary of Opunake, one at the mouth of the Otahi River, and the other at the opposite end of Te Namu Bay.
Te Namu Pa was presided over by Wiremu Kingi Matakatea, and the hapu consisted of some 400 men, women and children.
Before the turn of the century flax mills were operating at both the Otahi and Waiaua Rivers. Good men earned five shillings a day and boys earned two shillings and sixpence. The township was first surveyed by Mr O. Carrington in 1868.
By 1869 when war with the Hauhaus in South Taranaki had ended, the population of Taranaki was estimated at 4,000. Hawera, Normanby, Stratford, Inglewood and Eltham were not yet on the map, but Opunake was a year old and showing signs of becoming a progressive settlement.”

Kind thanks to the late Mrs Kate Mickelson, Q.S.M for allowing me to quote from her book, 'The Clearing.'

Whats happening in 2019/2020


Food Bank Christmas collection
Tuesday 26 November - 5.30 - 7.30 pm - See details in advert.


Opunake Christmas Parade
Tuesday 24 December - 7 pm
See details & download entry form in advert.

January 2020

Opunake Beach Carnival
Saturday 4 January 2020. 10 am start.
Free admission. For more details click here

Whats happening in 2019


Opunake Beach Carnival - 5 Jan 2019, 10am start, Free Admission.


Growers Market - Sunday 17 February

150 Years of Opunake Book Sale. $20.

Books available at Pastimes, Opunake Fish Chips & More & the Library.
Postage extra if needed.

Everybody's Picture Theatre

This unique heritage building has been restored to a high standard and will serve the community well.

Check out their website for information, photos and screening times. www.everybodystheatre.co.nz or phone 027 383 7926.

Growers and Makers Market

Pihama Lavendar Farm

3510 South Road - 6km south of Opunake. See you there. For more information contact Liz Sinclair. Ph 06 761 7012

Egmont Community Arts Council Walkway Ideas

A surfboard fence something like this will be going beside the Club hotel down Havelock Street on the way to the beach.

If you have old surfboards please donate them to the Arts Council. Check out their Facebook page

Please phone Rhonda (761 7466) or Margaret (761 8923) if you can help.