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Karikari Peninsula

About the profile areas

The 2018 population for Karikari Peninsula is 1,245, with a population density of 0.07 persons per hectare.


Note: This page displays the area boundaries used for the 2018 Census. In some cases, these are significantly different to the pre-2018 areas. For more on this, see the Census 2018 page.

Location and boundaries

Matauri Bay - Kaeo - Whangaroa is bounded by the Pacific Ocean in the north, the locality of Kapiro in the east, the localities of Waihou Valley-Hupara and Hokianga North in the south, and the locality of Karikari Peninsula-Maungataniwha in the west.

Name origin

Matauri Bay is named from the Māori words “ma” meaning “stream” and “tauri” meaning “feathered ornament”. Kaeo is named from a Māori word meaning “a freshwater shellfish”. Whangaroa is named after the harbour, which is named from Māori words, with “whanga” meaning “harbour” and “roa” meaning “long”.

Profile areas
Karikari Peninsula

Settlement history

European settlement dates from the 1820s, when a Mission station was established in Kaeo. Early industries included ship building, whaling, kauri gum digging, logging and milling. Population growth took place during the late 1800s, aided by growth in fishing industries. Expansion continued from the post-war years. The population was stable between 1996 and 2001, and then declined slightly between 2001 and 2013.

Land use

Matauri Bay - Kaeo - Whangaroa is a predominantly rural area, with several small settlements including Kaeo, Matauri Bay and Whangaroa. Land is used largely for farming and fruit growing, with commercial fishing, forestry and tourism also being important industries.

Major features

Major features of the area include Whangaroa Harbour, Cavalli Islands, Motukawanui Island, Stephenson Island, numerous other small islands, several beaches, Kauri Cliffs Golf Course, St Paul’s Rock, Rainbow Warrior Wreck, Mangonui Forest, Omahuta Forest, Puketi Forest, Centennial Park, Manginangina Scenic Reserve, Marlin Reserve, Ratcliffes Bay Reserve, Taupo Bay Reserve, Tauranga Bay Reserve, Te Ngaere Bay Reserve, Turner Street Reserve, Whangaroa Community Swimming Pool, Whangaroa Health Services, Kaeo Memorial Hall, Whangaroa Township Hall and numerous schools.

Included areas

This area encompasses the localities (Census area units) of Kaeo and Mangapa-Matauri Bay.