Akaroa Harbour

Akaroa Harbour, is part of Banks Peninsula in the Canterbury region of New Zealand.[2] The harbour enters from the southern coast of the peninsula, heading in a predominantly northerly direction. It is one of two major inlets in Banks Peninsula, on the coast of Canterbury, New Zealand; the other is Lyttelton Harbour on the northern coast.

Akaroa Harbour
A photo of Akaroa Harbour from the northwest with Ōnawe Peninsula clearly visible
Akaroa Harbour
Nautical chart "NZ 6324 Akaroa Harbour"
LocationBanks Peninsula
Coordinates43°50′40.56″S 172°55′30.719″E
IslandsThe Long Boat
SettlementsAkaroa, Duvauchelle, Takapūneke, Takamatua

The name Akaroa is an alternative spelling of Whakaroa,[3] Whangaroa or Wangaloa[4] from the Kāi Tahu dialect of Māori. Whakaroa means "Long Harbour".[5]

The harbour was used commercially for in the mid-19th century for ship-based and shore-based whaling.[6] Cruise ships occasionally enter the harbour, with the passengers visiting Akaroa.[7]

Ōnawe Peninsula is at the head of the harbour, the former site of a Māori .


Akaroa Harbour's waterfront has been continually inhabited since the 1840s.[8]

Akaroa, Duvauchelle, Takapūneke, Takamatua, Barrys Bay, French Farm and Wainui lie on the shoreline of the harbour. They are connected to the rest of Canterbury via State Highway 75. French Bay, the site of the French settlement of Akaroa, was originally known as Paka Ariki.

Geography and Natural Features

The harbour is one of two eroded volcanic centres from the extinct Banks Peninsula Volcano.[9]

The 475-hectare (1,170-acre) Akaroa Marine Reserve was given approval in 2013 after a 17-year campaign to get it established.

As of 2011, of the seven sites that are sampled in the harbour for water quality, six are graded as "good" and one as "fair" in terms of recreational use. Rainfall affects the grading.[10]

Image gallery

See also


  1. "Akaroa Harbour". LINZ. Retrieved 27 April 2020.
  2. "New Zealand Gazetteer". gazetteer.linz.govt.nz. LINZ. Retrieved 26 April 2020.
  3. "Akaroa". Kā Huru Manu. Ngai Tahu. Retrieved 26 April 2020.
  4. Jacobson, H. C. (1914). "Inside Akaroa Harbour". Tales of Banks Peninsula. Akaroa: Akaroa Mail Office. p. 375.
  5. Reed, Alexander Wyclif (23 January 2002). The Reed Dictionary of New Zealand Place Names. Reed Books. ISBN 9780790007618.
  6. "Akaroa Waterfront Historic Area". www.heritage.org.nz. Heritage New Zealand. Retrieved 26 April 2020.
  7. "Cruise ship visits". Christchurch City Council. 2 November 2011. Archived from the original on 16 May 2012. Retrieved 10 May 2012.
  8. "Akaroa Waterfront Historic Area". Heritage New Zealand. Retrieved 26 April 2020.
  9. Hampton, Samuel (2010), Growth, Structure and Evolution the Lyttelton Volcanic Complex, Banks Peninsula, New Zealand, University of Canterbury, pp. 1–311, retrieved 22 February 2019
  10. "Recreational Water Quality Map 2011". Environment Canterbury. 2011. Archived from the original on 23 May 2012. Retrieved 10 May 2012.