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Westport is the West Coast’s second biggest town and Buller’s commercial and administrative centre. Situated on the mouth of the mighty Buller Kawatiri River, it is home to around 5,000 residents. Westport has a commercial port and airport, with daily flights to and from the capital city, Wellington.

Westport’s focus on major industry has shifted in recent years. While the mining and extractive sector is still one of the largest sources of employment in our community, a lot more focus and community drive is being put towards tourism and horticulture. Westport is forever growing and adapting to the needs of our District.

Westport is the perfect place to base yourself to explore the Buller District. Whether you are looking for relaxation, amazing scenery, great food, or a thrill-packed action adventure, Westport has something for you. Born from the rush for gold and later coal, the area still has mining running through its veins.

An hour and a half drive north of Westport is Karamea. A popular tourist destination, Karamea is home to the spectacular Ōpārara basin with its limestone arches and caves; and the Kahurangi National Park with the famous Heaphy track. The close-knit community of around 650 people supports a growing horticulture, dairy farming and tourism industry.

The area is packed with opportunities to experience the wonder of the environment. Walking, tramping, mountain biking, caving, fishing – it doesn’t matter if you are looking to fill an hour or a week, the small community of Karamea welcomes travellers seeking the road less ordinary.

An hours drive from Westport, Reefton is located at the heart of the magnificent Victoria Forest Park. Founded in the 1860s with the discovery of the nearby goldfields, Reefton became the first town in the southern hemisphere to have a public supply of electricity in 1888. The strong population of over 1,500 cherish the town’s historic past and the township features many heritage buildings.

Reefton offers a raft of walks, historic sites, and on and off-road driving opportunities. If you don’t feel like venturing off the beaten track, check out the Miners Hut on the main street for a real mining experience!

Nestled at the foot of the Paparoa National Park, the small coastal town of Punakaiki is home to around 70 full time residents. Midway between Westport and Greymouth (a scenic 45 minute drive), Punakaiki is one of the most visited conservation areas in New Zealand.

Punakaiki offers the opportunity to enjoy craft shops, cafes and some amazing beachside accommodation. One of the most popular attractions is the Punakaiki pancake rocks and blowholes walk. A short 20-minute loop walk, it is one of the most accessible tracks available and is suitable for wheelchairs and prams. The blowholes are most spectacular when the sea is rough, but the dramatic views of the rock systems and the township of Punakaiki are worth a visit even on the calmest of days.