It is approximately 56 kilometers (35 mi) in length and flows into the Tasman Sea eight kilometers north of Hokitika, next to the Arahura Pa. The lower reaches of the Arahura River was a major producer of gold in the past - and extensively mined, but it is now worked out. It is also a major source of pounamu (greenstone) for the local Māori.
In 2009 the 120-year-old dual road/rail bridge across the river was replaced. Sections of the old bridge were reused elsewhere on the rail network and one complete span was retained for a local heritage park.
- "West Coast road-rail bridge opens early". NZ Transport Agency. 11 December 2009. Retrieved 1 October 2011.
- An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand, edited by A. H. McLintock, originally published in 1966.
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