Get a Taste of the Tararua District
The adventure starts here. Tararua District, with its two national forest parks and impressive river network, is a sporting paradise for all ages, abilities and fitness levels. Keen hikers and walkers are spoilt for choice with the array of walks through native bush in the Tararua and Ruahine National Parks, across farmland and along rugged coastline.
Covering 424,000 hectares, Tararua District is threaded by State Highway 2, and the iconic rural road, Route 52. With its natural beauty, uncrowded lifestyle and vibrant, caring communities, is it any wonder that when people come here they don't want to leave?
A modern and comprehensive roading network, a main rail trunk line and ultra-fast broadband keeps its 17,600 residents well and truly connected and makes Tararua District the perfect location to work and play.
Exploring Tararua District means discovering unique and active communities, each important with their own story to tell. Settlements were founded by the efforts of the early Scandinavian settlers and on the rich Maori history of the Rangitane and Ngati Kahungunu Iwi. These same settlements are now sustained by modern day pioneers leading the way in the global markets with sheep, beef and forestry.
Spreading from Norsewood, through to and encompassing the towns of Dannevirke, Woodville, Mangatainoka (home of the iconic Tui Brewery), Pahiatua and further south to Eketahuna, the district covers a large area that extends out to the Pacific coast to the east.
For visitors, the district offers a wonderful variety of things to do and see. Anyone with an interest in history and wanting to get a feel of the past should not pass by Norsewood, at the northern end of the Tararua District. Settled by Scandinavians in the 1870's, who made their living out of clearing dense bush that covered much of the area, today it has kept its Scandinavian heritage.
Further south takes you to the largest community and town in the district, Dannevirke. With plenty of cafes and diverse restaurants, 'foodies' will be spoilt for choice.
Woodville also has much to offer including wonderful shops, which sell everything from antiques to fabulous designer clothing. With beautiful gardens open to the public, Woodville was also home to famous Czech artist Gottfried Lindauer who lived there from 1890. A replica of his studio can be found next to the Tararua i-SITE Visitor Information Centre on the main street.
If you are an angler seeking some of the best brown trout in the country, centralise yourself in Pahiatua and discover the choice of five rivers - the Mangahao, Makuri, Mangatainoka, Makakahi and the Manawatu rivers.
Eketahuna town upgrade looks amazing and where better to start your hiking adventure than accessing the Tararua Range across the unique Putara swing bridge. Every town has walking trails from casual short day walks in scenic reserves to longer multi-day tramps.
Just over an hour's drive from any of the main towns will take you to the coast where the hardest decision will be which beach to go to.
Rediscover the way of life you've always wanted - life does not have to be an empty promise. Tararua District is an excellent place to raise a family in a friendly and safe community. The low cost of living here is attracting more and more people who want to balance work with a rewarding and relaxing way of life.
A great way of life starts with where you live and it starts with Tararua District where the good life promises a slice of New Zealand at its very best!