Port Waikato

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Aerial view of Port Waikato
Wharf overlooking the Waikato River

Port Waikato is on the south bank of the Waikato River at its outflow into the Tasman Sea, in northern New Zealand. Now a small town with a population of under 300, it was an important port during the New Zealand Land Wars of the 19th century. The Port has a Wharf Store, established 1893, a take-away shop, library, community hall, fire station, surf club, yachting club and an active fishing club.

Port Waikato is a well-known surfing and whitebaiting destination and a popular holiday spot. Fish can be caught off the rocks and surf beach, and off the sand dunes that border the river mouth. Flounder and mullet are also plentiful using drag nets. It is also one of the few places dinosaur fossils can be found in New Zealand.

Just south of the town are spectacular limestone outcrops where Weathertop footage from the Lord of the Rings was shot.

A school camp was established near the town in the 1920s, which boasts a well-formed BMX track. Port Waikato also serves as a popular wedding destination.[1]

Port Waikato is a 75 minute drive south from Auckland's central business district.

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Coordinates: 37°23′S 174°44′E / 37.383°S 174.733°E / -37.383; 174.733