Hokitika Airport serves the town of Hokitika in the West Coast region of New Zealand’s South Island and is located 1.9 kilometres north east in the suburb of Seaview. The small public aerodrome served the first airline to fly scheduled air services in New Zealand, the Air Travel (NZ) Ltd, travelling to Haast in South Westland in 1934.
What to see & do
A combination of cold weather and tropical scenery, Hokitika has a different holiday-vibe that will wow the tourists. People of Hokitika present their home as “a cool little town better enjoyed with coffee.” With many restaurants and cafes around town that offers a variety of good food and coffee, visitors will never run out of a place where to eat and drink—whether if it is a five-star meal or from the streets. Instead of the usual hustle and bustle, Hokitika boasts of a different set-up for tourist vacations. Despite the cold weather, Hokitika boasts of its beaches and lakes that would give travellers that summer feel.
Hokitika is also known for their greenstone (pounamu), or the “New Zealand jade”, and other mining industry. Although there was a fall in their economy in the recent years, Hokitika bounced back with its advocacy on ecotourism. To witness the growing ecotourism of Hokitika, tourists should first visit the Hokitika Gorge Scenic Reserve. With its awe-inspiring blue and green water, visitors can cross the Hokitika Gorge Walk to experience a 360-degree view of the river.
Discover Hokitika’s other bodies of water such as the Lake Kaniere and Lake Mahinapua, and try water activities there like kayaking, fishing, and water skiing, among others.
For an authentic food experience, tourists may visit Hokitika on the second Saturday of March every year just in time for the Wildfoods Festival. The festival has a wide range of unique dishes like paua titties and lamb or goat testicles.
Tourists can also experience looking for pounamu along the beaches and watch the carvers work on the New Zealand jade. They can also try carving for themselves. They can also do whitebaiting and look for tiny translucent fish on the West Coast. At night time, visit the Glowworm Cave for a short walk.
For Hokitika’s art and culture, learn about the town’s history by doing a heritage walk around the museum with a tour guide.
How to get around within Hokitika
Travellers can go around Hokitika by foot because it is a walkable small town. It is best to walk around, especially with the scenic view of the beach and river near the town centre.
There is a taxi service for long-distance trips like a 10-minute drive down south to Lake Mahinapua or a 20-minute drive inland to Lake Kaniere.
There is also a shuttle service going to West Coast Wilderness Trail for tourists and their bicycles who are about to take the trail.
How to get there
Hokitika Airport offers five flights a day from Christchurch. The flights are provided by Air New Zealand Link operated by Air Nelson, and Air New Zealand Link operated by Eagle Airways.
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