From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Waitati is located in New Zealand
Location of Waitati in New Zealand
Coordinates: 45°45′S 170°34′E / 45.750°S 170.567°E / -45.750; 170.567Coordinates: 45°45′S 170°34′E / 45.750°S 170.567°E / -45.750; 170.567
Country New Zealand
Island South Island
Region East Otago
 • Regional council Otago Regional Council
 • Territorial authority Dunedin City Council
Population (2006 census)[1]
 • Total 501
Time zone UTC+12 (NZST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC+13 (NZDT)
Area code 03
Local iwi Ngāi Tahu

Waitati, known in Māori as Waitete,[2] is a small seaside settlement in Otago, New Zealand, within the city limits of Dunedin. It is located close to the tidal mudflats of Blueskin Bay, 19 kilometres north of the Dunedin city centre. The small Waitati River flows through the bay to the sea.

The Dunedin-Waitati Highway section of State Highway 1, formerly and colloquially called Dunedin Northern Motorway, ends at Waitati; the highway continues north from here at a slightly lower grade of construction with more frequent intersections and accesses. Three km to the north, the highway ascends the notorious Kilmog hill. The Main South Line railway curves from east to north through Waitati. The old station yard remains as a train crossing loop and parts of the old station building are used by rail maintenance workers.

Waitati is home to a branch of the Dunedin Public Libraries, Blueskin Nurseries, a local school, a cafe and general store, and several holiday homes.

Alternative lifestylers and activism[edit]

Waitati war memorial commemorating fallen World War I soldiers

For many years Waitati has been known for its appeal to those who pursue an alternative lifestyle. The Waitati Militia, a pacifist warfare group, was founded here, and the village featured in the history of the Values Party, Mushroom magazine and anti Vietnam war and Aramoana aluminium smelter protests,[3] as well as the development in New Zealand of environmental education.[4]

Waitati has no sewerage system, and has become a centre in New Zealand for the development of composting toilets and other alternative sewage disposal systems.[4] Some villagers are edible garden and alternative energy enthusiasts.[4]

Waitati has become an arrival point for German immigrants to New Zealand and has a high proportion of Germans and German-New Zealanders.[citation needed]

The Orokonui Ecosanctuary wildlife sanctuary is set in an area of native bush here. Doctors Point Beach is a sandy southern beach that is home to a breed of blue penguins and other wildlife.

Waitati Film Society screens films every second Tuesday night during most of the year (every Tuesday night in the middle of winter).

Waitati is part of the Transition Towns Aotearoa[5] initiative, using some Transition Towns techniques and patterns for energy descent.


  1. ^ Quickstats about Waitati
  2. ^ Place names on Kāti Huirapa Runaka ki Puketeraki website, viewed 2012-01-04
  3. ^ Ian Church Blueskin Days Waitati 2007
  4. ^ a b c 'Sustainable Waitati' in The Star , Dunedin, 27 September 2007
  5. ^ "Transition Towns Aotearoa/Waitati". Retrieved 2008-07-24.