Located on the West Coast beside the Tasman Sea, Hokitika boasts views of Mount Cook and the Southern Alps. As the gateway to the South Westland World Heritage National Park, this is a great destination to get out and explore the surrounding landscape.
Travel south from Hokitika to visit the glaciers at Fox and Franz Josef to see the ever changing colours of the ice caves and pinnacles. Choose from either a full day hike or a scenic flight to witness the impressive glaciers from a new height.
Explore Hokitika's unique history
Gold was first discovered in Hokitika in 1860 and the first settlers soon followed. The area was a significant river port in its time, but sadly many ships came to grief on the notorious ‘Hokitika Bar’ – due to the sandbar that shifts with each tide. Take an historic walk through the town to see beautiful old buildings and galleries specialising in pounamu jewellery and art works. Pounamu is greenstone, and the Arahura River, which enters the sea north of Hokitika is a source of this stone.
If you visit Hokitika at the end of the summer months, you can enjoy the Wildfoods Festival, which as the name suggests is a celebration of wild foods from the wild West Coast. This iconic and premier event has become very popular in New Zealand and attracts large numbers each year looking forward to the new wild foods that are introduced at each event. Are you brave enough to try crocodile bites, chicken feet, grasshoppers, colostrums cheesecake, mountain oysters and stallion protein shots? If this isn’t quite to your taste then there’s always marinated tuna, whitebait patties, smoked high country salmon and an assortment of game meat.