Welcome to the Land of Ranges!
Tararua's Location and History (click the map on the right to enlarge)
Tararua District is situated on the south-east coast of the North Island - bound to the west by the Tararua Range, the district has four territorial authority neighbours: Central Hawkes Bay District to the north, Manawatu District, Palmerston North City to the west, and Masterton District to the south. Tararua District is affectionately known as New Zealand's River Region because of the hundreds of rivers and streams that traverse it's borders. The largest being the Manawatu River and its tributaries (Mangahao, Mangatainoka, Makakahi, Makuri and Tiraumea rivers).
The Waewaepa and Puketoi Ranges, running parallel to the Tararua and Ruahine Ranges, are located in the middle of the district and separate the Manawatu river valley to the west from the coastal hill country to the east. Much of the district's native bush has been cleared and the land is now mostly used for pastoral sheep, cattle, dairy farming, although there are also large areas devoted to forestry.
State Highway 2 is the main route through the region. Travel North from Wellington or South from Hawke's Bay to arrive in Tararua - the district that is becoming known as the place to live with its natural beauty, friendly people and uncrowded lifestyle. Click here to check for any road alerts.
Urban Tararua has matched farming development with services and industry to provide for the needs of the rural community. There is evidence of an increasing trend for people to live in Tararua, taking advantage of the lifestyle and low cost of living.
The five commercial centres in the district include Pahiatua, Eketahuna, Norsewood, Woodville and Dannevirke, all with their own special characteristics. Dannevirke and Pahiatua provide services for large rural communities and are well equipped with retailing, banking, accounting, legal advisory and insurance services. Woodville is famously known for being the junction of two State Highways and is a mere twenty-minute drive to Palmerston North. Eketahuna, Woodville and Norsewood have retailing services, manufacturing businesses and cater for an increasing tourist trade.
The primary industry in Tararua is agriculture with over a third of the district's workers employed in this sector. Tararua has a wealth of resources, the greatest being the farmland that grows top quality stock, producing wool, meat and dairy products of a high standard. Tararua also has several manufacturing and processing industries that currently employ a significant number of staff.
Domestic tourism is emerging as an area of growth with a significant number of new businesses developing in this sector. Tararua District is set to become a feauture for tourists seeking rural New Zealand experiences at their best.
Tararua Heritage and Culture
Rich in pioneering heritage and history, Tararua offers a diverse range of activities, sports and entertainment. Our ultra-fast broadband (UFB) connection in commercial areas means you will always be connected to your markets around the country and the rest of the world.
Tararua is a great place to raise a family - safe caring communities, fantastic facilities and a feast of outdoor activities.
There are some interesting communities waiting to be discovered in Tararua. Each has a unique identity, story to tell and experience to share. From the hardship tales of the Scandinavian settlers who felled the Seventy Mile Bush, to the pioneers who established farming on the region's rugged east coast at Herbertville and Akitio. These communities are one of the features that make this region unique in New Zealand.
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