Akaroa Harbour

Coordinates: 43°50′40.56″S 172°55′30.719″E / 43.8446000°S 172.92519972°E / -43.8446000; 172.92519972
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Akaroa Harbour
A photo of Akaroa Harbour from the northwest with Ōnawe Peninsula clearly visible
A photo of Akaroa Harbour from the northwest with Ōnawe Peninsula clearly visible
Location of Akaroa Harbour
Location of Akaroa Harbour
Akaroa Harbour
Nautical chart "NZ 6324 Akaroa Harbour"
Nautical chart "NZ 6324 Akaroa Harbour"
LocationBanks Peninsula
Coordinates43°50′40.56″S 172°55′30.719″E / 43.8446000°S 172.92519972°E / -43.8446000; 172.92519972
IslandsThe Long Boat
SettlementsAkaroa, Duvauchelle, Takapūneke, Takamatua

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.

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 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.


The Akaroa Harbour statistical area covers the settlements around the harbour with the exception of Akaroa. It covers 162.14 km2 (62.60 sq mi).[9] It had an estimated population of 720 as of June 2023,[10] with a population density of 4.4 people per km2.

Historical population
YearPop.±% p.a.
Source: [11]

Akaroa Harbour had a population of 729 at the 2018 New Zealand census, a decrease of 27 people (−3.6%) since the 2013 census, and an increase of 18 people (2.5%) since the 2006 census. There were 330 households, comprising 363 males and 366 females, giving a sex ratio of 0.99 males per female. The median age was 57.9 years (compared with 37.4 years nationally), with 78 people (10.7%) aged under 15 years, 63 (8.6%) aged 15 to 29, 333 (45.7%) aged 30 to 64, and 255 (35.0%) aged 65 or older.

Ethnicities were 93.8% European/Pākehā, 6.6% Māori, 1.2% Pasifika, 2.5% Asian, and 2.5% other ethnicities. People may identify with more than one ethnicity.

The percentage of people born overseas was 21.0, compared with 27.1% nationally.

Although some people chose not to answer the census's question about religious affiliation, 49.4% had no religion, 39.9% were Christian, 1.2% had Māori religious beliefs, 0.8% were Buddhist and 1.2% had other religions.

Of those at least 15 years old, 159 (24.4%) people had a bachelor's or higher degree, and 90 (13.8%) people had no formal qualifications. The median income was $28,100, compared with $31,800 nationally. 84 people (12.9%) earned over $70,000 compared to 17.2% nationally. The employment status of those at least 15 was that 279 (42.9%) people were employed full-time, 132 (20.3%) were part-time, and 3 (0.5%) were unemployed.[11]

Geography and Natural Features[edit]

The harbour is one of two eroded volcanic centres from the extinct Banks Peninsula Volcano.[12]

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.[13]

Image gallery[edit]

See also[edit]


  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. Ngāi 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. ^ "ArcGIS Web Application". statsnz.maps.arcgis.com. Retrieved 2 January 2024.
  10. ^ "Population estimate tables - NZ.Stat". Statistics New Zealand. Retrieved 25 October 2023.
  11. ^ a b "Statistical area 1 dataset for 2018 Census". Statistics New Zealand. March 2020. Akaroa Harbour (333300). 2018 Census place summary: Akaroa Harbour
  12. ^ 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
  13. ^ "Recreational Water Quality Map 2011". Environment Canterbury. 2011. Archived from the original on 23 May 2012. Retrieved 10 May 2012.

External links[edit]