Things to see and do in Opunake


Shopping in Opunake is a relaxing experience. Free, easy parking that allows you access to shops. Take a rest between shops at one of our cafes that service amazing coffee and teas. You will find a great range of gifts and services in Opunake.




The Opunake Walkway is one of 11 walkways in the Taranaki/Wanganui region. It is 7 kms long and takes about 2 1/2 hours to complete. Start at the Opunake Lake boat ramp and head around the lake anti-clockwise before heading toward the Opunake Beach. Cross Dudley's bridge with is new addition to the walkway before heading the Wharf Lookout. The walkway ends north of the town at the Te Namu Pa site beside the Opunake cemetary. Check out the new heritage signs that are placed along the walkway.




Mt Taranaki stands 2518 mtrs above sea level on the West Coast of the North Island of New Zealand. It has a symmetrical cone shape with a smaller cone protruding from its South western side called Fanthams Peak. It is surrounded by 33,534 hec of rainforests called Egmont National Park. It is the source for over 50 rivers and streams round Taranaki. The soil type is volcanic loam which is great for dairy farming. There are many walking/tramping tracks throughout the park catering for all fitnesses. The beautiful Dawson Falls is situated 14 kms from Kaponga up the Manaia Road. The Dawson Falls Mountain Lodge has splendid accommodation and food and is considered the perfect retreat for a weekend getaway.




Opunake Beach is one of the safest swimming beaches in New Zealand offering a great holiday spot for families. It is patrolled by surf life savers throughout the summer months. It offers great fishing spots and has a very popular motor camp which is busy throughout the summer holidays. There is a children's playground and paddling pool for the little ones. The beach has two massive headlands which provide shelter and protection from winter storms. Currently under construction, is an artifical surf reef which will provide excellent surf from the north side of the bay when completed.




Surf Spots can be found down most roads that head to the sea along Surf Highway 45. The most popular and easy access is Opunake Beach. Other popular spots along the coast are: Green Meadows, Arawhata Road, Dumps and Mungas, all these spots are within 10 mins of Opunake.




Opunake Mural Trail consists of 23 murals depicting historical images and contemporary work throughout the town. Many of these murals represent our rich and varied history, from early Maori through to today's dairying and Maui's natural gas and oil production.
The Egmont Community Arts Council has produced a map of these wonderful murals that are scattered around our town, available at the libray. Mural plaques are kindly donated by Dennis Lattimer, who is one of the artisits responsible for most of the murals. Click to view more Murals.




Opunake Community Baths Society Incorporated is the body that runs the Opunake swimming pool complex on Opunake High School grounds, for use by everyone in the Opunake and Coastal Taranaki area.  Foresight of earlier community members means we have a heated covered 25m pool plus three small pools in our complex.  This incorporated society runs the pools for all types of aquatic activities with a minimum of funding and many volunteer hours.  Our pool is usually open from the start of the school holidays between terms three and four until the end of term one holidays, funding permitted.  Public swimming times are usually 1-4pm on weekends and daily during school holidays.  There are many organised groups with bookings outside these times for example swimming club and surf lifesaving club, lessons for babies and preschoolers, early morning and night time lane swimmers, triathlon group at have-a-go and improver levels.
These poles have recently been painted with a child-friendly theme of otters and other sea life animals. Thanks to Dennis Latimer and funding from Egmont Arts Council.
For further information contact Committee members:  Hannah 06 761 8701. Pool phone during opening is 7617175.



Opunake Lake has two purposes, to produce electricity for the national grid and to provide a recreational sport for boating, water skiing, trout fishing, for walkers or just feed the ducks. In the summertime the lake is as busy as the nearby Opunake Beach and every weekend the sound of pleasure craft zooming around the lake can always be heard. The history of the lake goes back to the early 1900s, when it was first muted that electricity would be a necessity for the growing town and surrounding districts. A chunk of land beside the Waiaua river, which formed a natural basin, was considered suitable to store water from the river for the purpose of making electricity. This area once was the vegetable garden for the Armed Constabulary.



Everybody's theatre in Opunake is an elegant historic theatre in Taranaki which has been restored to it's former glory.  The historic building, completely restored inside and outside, complimented with the latest digital screen technology and has brand new luxury seating upstairs.
In addition to all the latest new releases, the theatre also hosts boutique nights, playing a selection of classic, foreign and fringe films.

Movies play on Wednesday, Friday,  Saturday and Sunday nights at 7pm, with a matinee on Wednesday and Saturday at
1 pm. Our ARTHOUSE Movies are screened the 4th Wednesday evening of the month. For contact phone 027 383 7926 or



To launch your boat and go deep sea fishing and other water sports, drive down Heaphy Road past Sandfords Event Centre to Middleton Bay. Fish from the jetty or sand. Suitable for walking the dog, family picnics and water recreation. This beach has no surf life saving patrol. There is a fee to use the tractor to launch your boat.


Geoff Campbell - 027 441 96065


Membership: $75, Tractor Key: $75, Launch fee: $2.



Work began in 2000 to build a replica lighthouse down Bayly Road at the Cape Egmont Boat Club.
The original lighthouse is still situated down the Cape Road in Pungarehu.

The Historic Cape Light and Museum houses the light from the original lighthouse. The light is still operational by inserting a $2 coin. The museum holds many local treasures including information about Lord Earnest Rutherford's early days on the coast. The Rutherford family ran a flax mill close by the Cape Lighthouse. There is maritime memorabilia featuring early shipping along the coast as well.

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Pihama Lavender was purchased by Liz Sinclair in 2013. The previous owners had done a wonderful job of developing the property. Liz has added to their vision and created  boutique accommodation in what was the pump house of the original Dairy Factory. The lavender is magical and the gardens are charming. The shop and gallery add to these and will continue to draw another dimension to what is a fantastic site.
Pihama Lavender offers respite for weary travellers. It offers inspiration for the creative amongst us. It offers solitude for those wanting time out from their busy schedule.  It offers comfort for those wanting a decadent weekend as well as the perfect base for the adventurers amongst us who want to fish and surf and hike in the unparalleled beauty of South Taranaki.

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About 38 kms east of Opunake situated on the side of Mt Taranaki. Walk the many tracks up on Mt Taranaki to the Wilkes Pools, up the 100s of steps to Fanthoms Peak or 18m Dawson Falls. The visitors centre at Dawson Falls holds the history of the mountain and even houses the old Syme Hut inside. You will find the lovely Suisse style Dawson Falls Lodge or Konini Backpackers Lodge.



Open every day and admission is free. Bring a picnic and stay awhile at the lovely Hollards Garden. Mid Manaia Road Kaponga. This old established garden is of national significance and a must to see for the whole family.