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The Ōtaki Identity Story

Ōtaki is unique. We are a small coastal town in which we thrive – living, working and enjoying life as a community.

We are blessed with a temperate climate, rich soils and a stunning landscape.

We live between two beautiful rivers that flow from the rugged Tararua Ranges into the vast Tasman Sea. From our beach you see the mountains of the South Island, Taranaki and Ruapehu and the sunsets over Kāpiti Island are also spectacular.

Our uniqueness – and reason for being – can be traced through our history as a way-point. From the earliest times Ōtaki has offered hospitality to Māori and Pākehā traders, whalers and settlers.  Stagecoach travellers enjoyed a resting place in our town. This manaakitanga is deeply ingrained within our town’s values.

Pioneer settlers of varied nationalities have helped to build the character of our town. Our beliefs have been shaped from many multi-cultural stories and traditions.

Today we are a bilingual town with deep Māori and Pakehā relationships. We have become the epicentre of Māori language revival. Te reo Māori is spoken in our homes and on our streets.

We uphold diverse educational opportunities, a commitment to culture, to the arts, to Papatūānuku and to our stunning environment.

We have always nurtured our strong and generous sense of community. We are compassionate, accepting, connected, supportive and we get along. We value our independence and our lifestyle.

We are a small town aware of our unique environment, rich history, strong community and vibrant spirit.

A proud community.



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