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Buckingham St, Arrowtown's main shopping street
Buckingham St, Arrowtown's main shopping street
Arrowtown is located in New Zealand
Coordinates: 44°56′33″S 168°50′09″E / 44.94250°S 168.83583°E / -44.94250; 168.83583Coordinates: 44°56′33″S 168°50′09″E / 44.94250°S 168.83583°E / -44.94250; 168.83583
Country New Zealand
Territorial authorityQueenstown-Lakes District
 • MayorJim Boult
 • District8,704.97 km2 (3,361.01 sq mi)
 • Urban
 • District
Time zoneUTC+12 (NZST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+13 (NZDT)
Area code(s)03
Local iwiNgāi Tahu
Amcal Arrowtown pharmacy

Arrowtown is a historic gold mining town in the Otago region of the South Island of New Zealand. Arrowtown is located on the banks of the Arrow River approximately 7.5 km from State Highway 6. There is also road access directly to Queenstown via the Shotover Gorge and a third route via the picturesque Lake Hayes.


There are many well preserved buildings used by European and Chinese[1] immigrants dating from the gold mining days of the town.

In the 1960s the population had fallen to a low of fewer than 200 people[2] before gaining popularity again. According to the 2006 New Zealand census, the usually resident population of Arrowtown was 2,151, a 27.1% increase since 2001.[3] Despite the growth and construction, it falls under strict appearance covenants applied by the local authority that aim to preserve the appearance of the town.

Arrowtown has one school, Arrowtown Primary School, with a roll of around 540 students from Years 1 to 8.[4]

Arrowtown is the home of the Lakes District Museum and Ah Lum's store which is part of the historic Arrowtown Chinese Settlement.

Nearby attractions[edit]

Bordering the town is Sir Michael Hill's Championship Golf Course[5] which is home to the New Zealand Golf Open. This championship golf course is a private membership club, but does allow green fee players by appointment only. The Club also provides a Day Spa that is available to the public.

Nearby is the luxury Millbrook Resort, which has a spa and 27-hole golf course. It was the site of the agreement of the Millbrook Commonwealth Action Programme, a programme of the Commonwealth of Nations on the implementation of the Harare Declaration.


Gold was found in the Arrow River in 1862, and a township of 1,000 miners soon sprang up. It was initially named Fox's,[citation needed] based on William Fox's claim to have been first to find gold there, but was soon renamed Arrowtown. At the high point of the gold rush the population of Arrowtown rose to over 7,000 and it became the center of a larger municipality, which covered the new settlements of Macetown, Skippers Canyon and Bullendale (today only ghost towns).

Arrowtown was constituted as a borough in 1867[2] and became part of the Queenstown-Lakes District in the local government reorganisation of 1989.

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ "2. – Chinese – Te Ara: The Encyclopedia of New Zealand". Retrieved 2016-09-11.
  2. ^ a b Te Ara: The Encyclopedia of New Zealand 1966: Arrowtown
  3. ^ Quickstats about Arrowtown
  4. ^ "Our School". Retrieved 2019-05-10.
  5. ^ Michael Hill's Championship Golf Course

External links[edit]

Arrowtown travel guide from Wikivoyage